Kona Coffee Festival
Put on Your Dancing Shoes! for the Kona Coffee Cultural Festival 2011
Get ready to drink some fine Kona coffee as well as pick coffee, judge coffee, learn about coffee history, attend art shows, enjoy farm tours, enjoy Kona coffee recipes and cooking contests, celebrate cultural parades, and celebrate all aspects of Kona Coffee Country and the fine products it produces!
Also put on your dancing shoes, because there will be live music!
The Kona Coffee Cultural Festival is one of the highlights of all Hawaii festivals and it is coming up soon.
The 40th annual Kona Coffee Cultural Festival took place from November 5 to November 14, 2010 all around Kona town. Here is an account of that festival.
Also see: The Top Ten Coffees in the World
Aloha Makahiki Concert Opens the Festival
The Kona Coffee Festival will begin as usual with a lively concert at the Makaeo County Pavilion. This Aloha Makahiki Concert will take place on Saturday, October 30.
Kona Coffee Festival 2010
Kona Coffee Pageant
On the following day, Sunday, October 31is the Little Miss Kona Coffee Pageant at the Keauhou Beach Resort.
This charming Kona Coffee sponsored contest divides the contestants into various divisions that range from Miss Outstanding Teen who for girls ages 13 to 17, to the Tiny Miss Kona Coffee Blossom for children ages three to five.
Lantern Parade and Bon Dance
The International Lantern Parade event of the Kona Coffee Cultural Festival takes place on November 5 (Friday). This is when the festival starts in earnest.
The Lantern Parade includes lanterns as well as ethnic costumes that celebrate the heritage of the coffee farmers, and takes place at 6:30 pm and travels from Kailua Pier to Hale Halawai along Alii Drive in Kona town.
Kona Coffee Cultural Program
Then once you get to Hale Halawai you can enjoy the Kona Coffee Cultural Festival Cultural Program which begins at 7:30 and provides an array of multi-ethnic entertainment along with sumptuous foods, tastings of Kona coffee, and a colorful and festive Bon dance.
Also see: Five Best Coffees In the World
Kona Coffee Art Stroll
The following day, on Saturday November 6, you can enjoy some of the region’s finest art by attending the Holualoa Village Coffee & Art Stroll.
The many galleries will be open throughout the day and along the way you can taste Kona coffee samples and talk to the many Kona coffee farmers who will be there presenting their Kona coffee until 3 pm.
Kona Coffee Scholarship Pageant
That evening head over to the Miss Kona Coffee Scholarship Pageant at the Keauhou Bay Resort & Spa Convention Center beginning at 6:30 pm with no-host cocktails followed by the pageant at 7:30. During the evening the Miss Aloha Hawaii 2010 will be crowned, as will Miss Kona Coffee.
Kona Coffee Cultural Festival 2010
Kona Coffee Picking Contest
By now you are well into enjoying the 40th annual Kona Coffee Festival and so it is time to spice things up with a good ‘ol fashioned coffee picking contest on Sunday, November 7.
The Kona Coffee Picking Contest registration process begins bright and early at 7:30 am (hey, we all know coffee farmers get up early!), and then the picking competition starts at 8:30 am.
This coffee picking contest is timed and challenges both the master coffee pickers as well as the neophytes. You will be amazed to see the masters at work as they can pick much faster than you could imagine. This Kona coffee picking competition offers cash prizes, and there will also be refreshments available as well as entertainment.
Kona Coffee Recipe Contest
When you have had enough coffee picking head over to the Sheraton Keauhou Bay Resort for the Kona Coffee Recipe Contest. This is also the site of the Big Island Showcase, the events take place from 12:30 pm to 3 pm.
You will get to taste some of the finest Big Island products including, of course, Kona coffee. The Kona Coffee Recipe Contest will feature the pros as well as culinary students and even kids cooking up their best recipes. After the awards are given the public will be allowed to sample the sumptuous entries.
Kona Coffee Festival 2010
Kona Coffee Living History Farm Tour
A festival favorite is the Kona Coffee Living History Farm Tour which takes place on Monday, November 8. This event is sponsored by the Kona Historical Society and tours will take place in Kealakekua from 10 am to 2 pm.
The tour takes you back to the early days of coffee farming in Kona and gives you a glimpse into the lives of the pioneering Kona coffee farmers. The tour will be offered on other days as well. Call (808) 323-2006 for more information.
Kona Coffee Farm & Mill Tour
Another great coffee tour takes place on Tuesday, November 9 when the Kona Coffee Council leads their Farm & Mill Tour from 9 am to 2 pm. Call (808)-322-6575 for more information. The tours start at Hale Halawai and proceed to visit various coffee farms in Kona Coffee Country. This will also be offered on Friday.
Kona Coffee Cupping Competition
Once Wednesday, November 10 rolls around things start to get serious. This is when the Kona Coffee Cupping Competition begins. Preliminary rounds of the renowned coffee competition take place from 9 am to 2 pm at the Keauhou Beach Resort.
Sponsored by Gevalia Kaffe, the Kona Coffee Cupping Competition awards are coveted by all of the Kona coffee farmers, and the winners of the preliminary rounds will advance to the final competition.
Kona Coffee Festival 2010
Kona Coffee Art Exhibit
While the cupping competition is going on at the Keauhou Beach Resort you can also enjoy the Kona Coffee Art Exhibit that showcases the Kona coffee lifestyle. The public is asked vote on these artworks to determine the People’s Choice Award. The works by local Big Island artists will also be for sale.
Discover the Finest Premium Gourmet Coffees
Kona Coffee Label and Website Competition
Another competition going this day at the Keauhou Beach Resort is the Kona Coffee Label & Website Competition which offers awards and cash prizes for the best creative marketing of Kona coffee products.
Last but not least, other events taking place will be the Kona Coffee Quilt Contest & Show (9 am-2 pm) as well as a Lauhala Weaving Workshop (10 am-2 pm).
Makaeo Cultural Events
Also on Wednesday, November 10 are cultural events taking place at the Makaeo County Pavilion from 9:30 am to 3:30 pm.
Events include coffee roasting, coffee tasting, a coffee museum, cultural workshops, a Kona Coffee showcase, a Hawaiian quilt workshop, a Hawaiian Master Drum Maker & Wood Carver exhibition, and also entertainment.
Kona Coffee Festival 2010
Kona Coffee Cupping Finals
Oh Thursday, November 11 it’s the finals of the Kona Coffee Cupping Competition from 9 am to noon at the Keauhou Beach Resort. An esteemed panel of international judges will discern the very finest Kona coffees.
The Kona Coffee Art exhibit will also continue at the venue, and the People’s Choice award will be given, as will the winners of the Kona Coffee Label competition and the Kona Coffee website competition.
Also continuing will be the Kona Coffee Quilt show and the Lauhala Weaving Workshop. Over at the Makaeo County Pavilion the cultural events will also continue from 9:30 am to 3:30 pm.
Kona Coffee Council Dinner and Benefit Auction
On the evening of Thursday, November 11 a dinner and benefit auction at the Keauhou Beach Resort will include a silent auction, entertainment, and a buffet dinner. The event starts at 6 pm with no host cocktails, and the dinner starts at 7. Call (808) 322-6575 for more information.
Kona Coffee Grand Parade
Sadly now we are nearing the end of this fine Kona Coffee Cultural Festival an all of its fun and educational events celebrating the pioneering Kona coffee farmers, the current Kona coffee farmers, the many wonderful Kona coffee farms, and all of the artisans, craftspeople, and farmers of Kona Coffee Country and the Big Island beyond.
On Saturday, November 13, the Kamehameha Schools Kona Coffee Grand Parade will begin at 9:30 am at the Royal Kona Resort and will proceed to the Makaeo Country Pavilion.
Sponsored by Kamehameha Schools, which by the way owns much of the land of Kona Coffee Country and leases it to the Kona coffee farmers, the Kona Coffee Grand Parade will feature floats adorned with colorful flowers, costumed riders on horseback, marching bands, and lots of participation from local community groups.
Also featured at the Kona Coffee Grand Parade will be the newly crowned Miss Aloha Hawaii as well as Miss Kona Coffee.
Cultural Events at Makaeo County Pavilion
Once you get to the end of the parade route at the Makaeo County Pavilion you can enjoy all the fun events that will be taking place there from 9 am until 3 pm.
Check out the Kona Coffee Lei contest, great flower displays, a Festival of Arts, a showcase of wares of the Kona Coffee farmers, a quilt workshop and a lauhala weaving workshop.
There will also be a master Hawaiian drum and wood carver, and plenty of entertainment. Also happening on Saturday is a luncheon to honor the pioneering Kona coffee farmers.
Scholarship Bowling Tournament
On Sunday, November 14 the final event of the Kona Coffee Festival takes place. This is a bowling tournament to benefit the Miss Kona Coffee Scholarship Pageant. Sponsored by the Kona Bowl, the family tournament begins at 9 am and the format is 9 Pin, No-Tap singles.
Kona Coffee Festival 2010
Kona Coffee Festival Debriefing - Another Year Gone By!
If you have spent the last ten days enjoying the Kona Coffee Festival you will now have time to take a deep breath and recall all of the fun Kona coffee related events you experienced.
You may also recall all the wonderful people you have met from the Big Island including the farmers and craftspeople, and also all of the other Kona Coffee lovers who come from all over the world to attend these Kona Coffee Festival events.
Alas, all good things must come to an end. But that doesn’t mean you can’t keep enjoying Kona Coffee Country. Perhaps before you leave you can take another drive up into the historic coffee towns, stop in and see some roasting and brewing and meticulous coffee plant cultivation.
Pack your bags full of the best Kona coffee you can find and surely before you are even gone from the Big Island you will be reminiscing about Kona Coffee Festival 2010, and will already be planning your return for the Kona Coffee Cultural Festival 2011!
Coffee Tasting at the Kona Coffee Festival
Also see: The Three Strangest Types of Coffee