It was a beautiful Sunday morning and the streets of Honolulu echoed of vibrant colors and exciting smiles. I watched as a mass of people crossed the street near Kaka'ako Gateway Park. Where were they going? Then, I saw this sign! (above)
The 10th Annual Ukulele Picnic in Hawaii was happening in Kaka'ako and I needed to attend. At first, I didn't realize how large this event was going to be. I imagined maybe just a few tents, vendors and people sitting underneath a tree playing music. BUT BOY WAS I MISTAKEN!
This was my first time in attendance to the annual picnic that has happened for 10 years. This wasn't some small event, it was packed with ukulele lovers, music makers, small business supporters, and foodies! Tourists and locals alike joined each other to celebrate the UKULELE!
"Ukulele Picnic in Hawaii was founded by the renowned Japanese musician & Ukulele music scene pioneer in Japan, Kazuyuki Sekiguchi from the band Southern All Stars. From the inaugural picnic in 2009, it has attracted more than 5000 people, and has become a fun music event for whole family." - Ukulele Picnic Hawaii
At this musical event, dozens of small local businesses set up to showcase their talents and retail! There may be a few that Elev8 Hawaii readers may already be familiar with...
(Aloha Tofu & Aloha Tofu Town)
(Paul Uyehara - Owner/President of Aloha Tofu)
(Hau'oli Henna - Henna tattoos)
(Kiyomi (owner/artist) from Hau'oli Henna)
The "Ukulele Picnic in Hawaii" had lots of local sponsors that helped to make this event happen. This year's t-shirts were designed by 88 Tee's and they looked outstanding! I watched as people kept coming to purchase one, it was never ending! I loved the collaboration!
(88 Tee's and Ukulele Picnic in Hawaii)
(Jewelry from Emmie Jewels were featured at the Kupulau booth)
(Cute dishes created by Kupulau...perfect for wasabi & shoyu or small snacks)
The food vendors were out in force with a variety of snacks and meals ranging from musubis, teas, popcorn, plate lunches and even my personal favorite, SUN NOODLE's with their "Wiki Wiki Noodles" packets! These noodles are made in Hawaii at their original factory and includes a noteworthy sauce that could give good ramen shops a run for their money! (Stay tuned as I'll be profiling SUN NOODLES soon so subscribe to my mailing list).
The Ukulele Picnic is once again a celebration of the UKULELE and MUSIC so what would this event be without a showcase with the children! In the picture below, you'll find a bundle of children gathered to sharpen their ukulele skills! It was certainly a sight to behold!
WHAT A FANTASTIC EVENT! I had such a great time and I'm really looking forward to participate in next years event! Everyone was working so hard to ensure smiles on faces!
See you next year!