Heiva I Kauai Tahitian Dance Festival — August 4 & 5

Female Tahitian Dancers at Heiva I Kauai. Photo by Mike Teruya

The 17th annual Heiva I Kauai – Iorana Tahiti Cultural Festival  presents a colorful and exciting international Tahitian dance and drumming competition located at Kapaa Beach Park from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on August 4th and 5th. Gates open at 9 a.m. This annual contest features solo and group competitors from Hawaii, the Mainland, and Japan. Performers are considered the next generation of talent portraying their cultural knowledge and skills. The festival also includes Pacific Island artists & cultural demonstrations, Island foods and Polynesian crafts plus a silent auction daily. Admission is $7. There is no charge for children 12 and under.

Following the opening ceremonies on Saturday, solo competitions start with the youngest age groups and continue through adults, until the championship dance-offs in the afternoon. Categories include traditional otea, vahine and tane for junior, senior and master (age 26+) divisions. Sunday’s schedule provides group competition including otea, aparima, ahupurotu and drumming categories. On both days, the award-winning Honolulu Tahitian dance group, Te Vai Ura Nui will perform house drumming and exhibition dancing. Sponsored by HTA & County of Kauai, ADA info: 808-822-9447. For more information go to www.heivaikauai.com