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Planning a visit to Kauai? We regularly add news and information about events, activities, and places to see on The Garden Isle.

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Sheila Heathcote has lived in Hawaii since 1986. She's a published author on the topic of Kauai and the owner of Hale O Nanakai Bed & Breakfast.

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Waimea Town Celebration -- Feb 18 - 25, 2012

The aloha and unique character of the town come together for community events and the largest, held in February, is the Waimea Town Celebration. This year the event is 35 years old and hosts more than 10,000 people in an eight-day flurry of events.

Waimea Town, Kauai is the island's most ancient settlement and a capital from ancient Hawaiian days. Its history encompasses the turbulence of post European contact starting with the first landing in Hawaii of Captain James Cook on his extraordinary voyages of discovery in the Pacific, fur and sandalwood traders, to a dramatic stand-off of King Kamehameha superior forces by Kauai's King Kaumualii that lasted decades, Russian empire builders, to whalers and missionaries, and then to the growth of 19th century agricultural pursuits in rice, cattle and sugarcane bringing people from many nations … Asia, Europe and the United States. They all passed through and made Waimea a port-of-call.

Waimea Mill Site Activities -The old sugar mill site is provided by Kikiaola Land Company. Check out the lei contest and cultural demonstrations at the West Kauai Visitor Center across the street on Friday & Saturday.  Don't forget to collect the latest exclusive t-shirt design for the event. Visitors to the islands will find a family-style atmosphere where they are welcome to share and get to know a community that has been well known for its hospitality long before the anchoring of Cook's ships "Resolution" and "Discovery" in 1778.


Events are scattered over eight straight days and a two mile area and include an Hawaiian Outrigger canoe race, Hawaiian Cowboy rodeo events, Film Festival and cultural events at the Historic Waimea Theater, a 2k, 5k and 10k Fun Run, a Mountainball Tournament, and a 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament. The purpose of the Waimea Town Celebration is to give West Kauai schools, clubs and non-profits a chance to raise funds. Many businesses and individuals are involved in preparation, manning booths, and participation. It is an event coordinated and put on by community VOLUNTEERS. Proceeds go towards funding WKBPA civic improvement projects, the Waimea Main Street Program and other WKBPA efforts throughout the year.

Kilohana Long Distance Canoe Race - Saturday, February 18, 2011:

Traditional Hawaiian Outrigger Canoe Racing along the Waimea shoreline. One of the signature events of the WTC and the first event of the Garden Island Canoe Racing Association season. Start times for the races Saturday morning - 9am for women, 10:30 am for men. Finished around 11:30. Visible from the shore at Waimea near the Pier. Race course determined by ocean conditions that morning. Sponsored by American Savings Bank. Hosted by the Kilohana Canoe Club of Waimea. Free for spectators.

Waimea Theater Heritage Days Activities: 2/ 20-23                                                                    This year's focus will be upon the Japanese heritage within our community, with a Japanese Film Festval throughout the day on on Monday, Japanese Dance Performance on Tuesday evening, Japansese storytelling on Wednesday, and a Japanese music recital on Thursday. Live demonstrations of cultural significance will be coordinated at the Waimea Hongwanji Temple and at the Waimea Plantation Cottages. 

12th Annual Waimea Round-Up Rodeo: Friday thru Sunday,  February 24-26, 2012         Events take place behind the old Waimea Dairy (between Waimea & Kekaha, look for signs makai off the highway).Saturday Grand entry and flag ceremony with recognition of the Hall of Fame Cowboys starts at noon and features many of our revered paniolo. Fun events from Steer Roping and Po'owaiu to Barrel Racing. Refreshments available. Bring sunscreens, hats and enjoy the family fun for the afternoon. Admission is $3.00 / under 12 free to benefit the Kaua'i Keiki & High School Rodeo Association. 

Saturday, Feb 25, 2012: 35th Annual Captain Cook Caper Fun Run

10, 5, & 2k Run with a start time of 7am, Saturday morning. (Pre-Registration available at information booth near the stage area Friday night between 4:30 & 10:00 pm. ~ Late registration at 5:30am Saturday at the Waimea Plantation Cottages) Shuttle service to start lines from Waimea Plantation Cottages. Last bus leaves at 6:15 am so be there well in advance to check-in/or register for the race. Race takes place on the Hwy with the start line for 10k race at the Navy Housing Gate, 5k at Kekaha Neighborhood Center, and the 2k at Kikiaola Boat Harbor entrance. Entry fee includes t-shirt. Hosted by the Waimea High School Track Team. Free for spectators. 

Friday & Saturday, Feb 24 & 25, 2012: 13th Annual First Hawaiian Bank Hat Lei Contest    Creativity reigns as children and adults show off their lei contest entries exhibited Friday from noon to 9pm and Saturday, 9am-3:30pm at the West Kaua'i Technology & Visitor Center. Awards ceremony at 3:30pm Saturday.  Entry forms for lei contest available at the Visitor Center. Event sponsored by First Hawaiian Bank, Kaua'i Economic Development Board, County of Kaua'i and the West Kaua'i Business &

 Professional Association. 

Saturday, Feb 25, 2012:15th Annual Ukulele Contest Amateur strummers show their stuff with Hawai'i's favorite stringed instrument on the main stage at the Waimea Town Celebration. Starts at 1 pm. Grand Prize includes a brand new Ukulele! Sign up at the information booth Saturday. Sponsored by Scotty's Music.

Saturday, Feb 25, 2012: 13th Annual Lappert's Ice Cream Eating Contest    Age groups from young to old compete vie for the title of the fastest ice cream eaters in the west in front of the Waimea Town Celebration Stage starting at noon. Sign up at 11:00 am next to WKBPA Stage on Saturday. Limited seating in each category. Contest starts about noon.