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Pumpkins, chocolate and coffee at Kilohana festival

PUHI — The weather cooperated for the thousands of people who passed through the gates of the 8th annual Chocolate & Coffee Festival at the Kilohana lu‘au pavilion on Sunday.

“This is good weather for a Hawaiian Popsicle,” said Greg Askew, one of the event’s volunteers. “Hawaiian Popsicle is from Maui. Although their kitchen is in Kihei that was threatened, they lost 75 percent of their business from the Maui wildfires.”

In addition to the Hanapepe Economic Alliance being the beneficiary of the event’s proceeds, a portion of the proceeds will be set aside for Maui disaster relief.

The heavy traffic, enhanced by the arrival of busloads of visitors, flowed through the festival that featured live entertainment, a silent auction with prizes valued in the thousands of dollars, a tasting station itinerary and craft vendors.

Additionally, keiki attending the festival with their parents were invited to a free Halloween carving pumpkin, as the Hanapepe Economic Alliance partnered with the 10th anniversary of the Harvest Festival to present the festival at Kilohana instead of the large tent in Hanapepe Town Park.

“We want to help our agriculture community,” said Stephanie Iona of the Kekaha Agriculture Association. “Chocolate and coffee are agricultural products. And we also wanted to help Fred Atkins and Kilohana by offering free pumpkins to keiki for Halloween.”

Iona said more pumpkins for keiki are scheduled to be given away from as early as Friday, when pumpkins will be available at The Shops at Kukui‘ula, the Palm Court area, from 4 to 6 p.m. while supplies last.

“On Oct. 21, we’ll have pumpkins at Kumu Hula Leina‘ala Pavao Jardin and Halau Ka Lei Mokihana O Leina‘ala’s hoike,” Iona said. “On Oct. 23, there will be more pumpkins available at the Pau Hana Market from 3:30 p.m. at the Kukui Grove Center, and the last distribution will be at the Grove Farm Market on Oct. 28 starting at 9:30 a.m. The pumpkins are all for keiki, while the supplies last.”

In addition to the free pumpkins that were distributed by volunteers from the Kaua‘i Pop Warner Football League, Lihu‘e Patriots Association, Iona said they were also issuing keiki free train rides with paid adult fares to stimulate traffic through Kilohana.

Hawaiian Popsicles was among the two dozen vendors offering crafts and other items, joined by familiar Friday Night Art, a Hanapepe Economic Alliance venture, food vendor Sumiko’s who claimed the company’s namesake Sumiko, a 10th grade student at Waimea High School, was able to get out of the house.

Laurie Ho, of the Kaua‘i County Farm Bureau, was one of the lucky recipients of a (Tasting) Passport before tickets sold out.

“Randy Francisco told us to get the tickets online, early,” said Ho, displaying her free goodie bag and fan that accompanied the tasting ticket. “It’s a good thing we got them online because they’re sold out, now.”
Source: The Garden Island

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