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Waipio Kalo Festival receives grant from OHA

MEDIA RELEASE

The Office of Hawaiian Affairs has awarded a $5,000 Ahahui Grant to support the Waipio Kalo Festival being organized by the community-based Ha Ola O Waipio organization.

The inaugural event, planned 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, June 4, 2016, will honor Waipio, the multi-generational kalo farmers, musicians, cultural practitioners, families with genealogical ties, and those who perpetuate Hawaiian culture in the Valley.

The event is free and open to all, offering numerous opportunities to learn about kalo, plus lei-making, lau hala and lau niu (coconut frond) weaving demonstrations, a Kalo Cookoff, wonderful entertainment, great food and a Taro Team Relay.

Through moolelo (stories), lessons and information, participants may come to understand how sacred and important Waipio Valley and taro farming are within Hawaiian culture and history.

The Festival is designed to encourage people of all ages to reconnect with the aina, feel empowered to grow their own kalo and provide healthy food for their ohana.

In addition, Festival presenters will teach about different varieties of kalo and their nutritional value and health benefits, various farming styles, and how to kui kalo (pound kalo).

Other information booths will teach about healthy soil agro-forestry, the importance of water, and the history of Waipio and the Hamakua district.

Friends of the Future serves as the fiscal sponsor for projects of Ha Ola O Waipio Valley. Founded in 1991, Friends of the Future’s mission is to facilitate a vision of lokahi among the diverse peoples of Hawaii, encouraging each person to contribute their deepest values, to create shared visions, and to continuously improve our communities.

For further information about the Kalo Festival, email HaolaoWaipioValley@gmail.com

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