La’ie, HI (eTN) – The Polynesian Cultural Center celebrates its 45th anniversary with a wide array of festivals and competitions that represent Polynesian cultures preserved and shared throughout the PCC’s long and proud history.
“We are thrilled to be a part of Hawai’i and Polynesia’s cultural landscape throughout the past 45 years,” said Alfred Grace, senior vice president of sales and marketing for the PCC. “We look forward to preserving cultural traditions throughout the community while sharing our Polynesian heritage with visitors from around the world for many years to come.”
Events planned for 2008 include the following:
January 19: 17th Annual Moanikeala Hula Dance Festival
This annual tribute and tradition of song and dance is in honor of La’ie’s own late Aunty Sally Wood Nalua’i. Keiki dancers showcase their skills in celebration of Aunty Sally’s perpetuation of teaching hula for almost 40 years as PCC’s first kumu hula.
May 14-17: Samoa Festival
16th Annual World Fireknife Dance Competition
Daring skill takes center stage as competitors showcase the art of Samoan fireknife dancing. Participants from all over the world converge in La’ie to spin their fire-lit knives, attempt to avoid the flames and show off their athletic prowess as they compete for the title of world champion. Tickets are hot so book them soon!
Samoan Cultural High School Arts Festival
Hundreds of Hawaii’s high school students come together as they test their expertise at traditional Samoan skills, music, and dance in this exciting competition to prove which school is the best.
July 5: 8th Annual Te Mahana Hiro’a O Tahiti
The fast rhythm of the ‘ote’a sounds as the fast swishing of the hau skirt captivate in this upbeat competition of group and solo Tahitian dance. Attracting visitors and locals alike, this festival features tamari’i, or children, from all over the island as they dance to the slow melodies and the rapid beats of Tahiti.
August 9: Maori Song & Dance Festival
Prepare yourself to witness the fierce strength and pride of the Maori warriors as they command attention with their melodic voices and passionate demonstrations of the traditional haka (male posture dance) and poi (dance with implements).
December: Christmas in Polynesia
The North Shore will come alive with an exciting new festival called “Christmas in Polynesia.” The 4-week holiday extravaganza will celebrate the season Polynesian-style with special cultural presentations in the villages, as well as free concerts by favorite local bands, hula halau performances and kama’aina specials.
“We always look for different avenues and opportunities to explore and share the many different faces of Polynesia,” said Alfred Grace, senior vice president of sales and marketing for the PCC. “With even more for visitors and kama’aina to enjoy, we are proud to continually offer a diverse range of events to those who wish to participate and showcase their culture.”
For more information on prices for each event, or to make reservations, please call (800) 367-7060 or in Hawai’i call 293-3333 or visit www.Polynesia.com. The events schedule is subject to change without notice so guests are encouraged to call or visit the Web site to confirm availability.
Founded in 1963 as a non-profit organization, the PCC has entertained more than 33 million visitors while preserving and portraying the culture, arts, and crafts of Polynesia to the rest of the world. In addition, the PCC has provided financial assistance to 17,000 young people from more than 70 different countries while they have attended Brigham Young University-Hawai’i. As a non-profit organization, all funds generated by the PCC are used for its daily operations and to support its cultural and educational missions.