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Wanted: Saloon Girls, Cowboys, Soup Cooks and Line Dancers for Honoka’a Western Week

Honoka‘a Western Week is coming around the bend May 21-29, 2017. The fun kicks off with the 2nd Annual Farm Festival at Hāmākua Harvest, and continues through the week, wrapping up with Friday night’s Paniolo Parade and Block Party, and the 61st Annual Hawai‘i Saddle Club Scholarship Rodeo over the weekend.

PHOTOS: Sarah Anderson for Honoka’a Western Week

The Western Week committee is now recruiting participants for all scheduled activities (see below) and urges the community to support the colorful celebration of Hāmākua’s paniolo heritage and unique cultural blend.

PHOTOS: Sarah Anderson for Honoka’a Western Week

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS:
Subject to change.

May 20. Deadline to enter Saloon Girl and Cowboys Got Talent Contests. For information and applications, call Michelle Hartman, 775-9777.

All week, May 21-29. Celebrate Honokaʻa Western Week with Honokaʻa Business Association. Everyone is invited to dress up western-style, visit Honoka‘a town merchants, and enjoy different paniolo-themed activities every night.

Sunday, May 21. 2nd Annual Farm Festival at Hāmākua Harvest, 8 a.m.-3 p.m. All-day entertainment, dozens of vendors and food booths, educational presentations, silent auction, keiki activities and more. Located at the intersection of Māmāne Street and Highway 19 in
Honoka‘a. No charge for admission.

Monday, May 22. Stick horse creation at Hāmākua Youth Center, 3-5 p.m.

Tuesday, May 23. Portuguese Bean Soup and Sweetbread Contest at NHERC Pavilion, 5-8 p.m. Hosted by Gramma’s Kitchen.

Wednesday, May 24. Line Dancing at Honoka‘a People’s Theatre, 6-9 p.m.

Thursday, May 25. Historic Honoka‘a Town Talk Story at Honoka‘a Library, 4 p.m., featuring Ross Stephenson, author of “Honoka’a Town,” and led by HWW Sheriff Larry Ignacio.
Also Thursday, a “Rowdy Rodeo” at The Landing restaurant.

Friday, May 26.
4 p.m., Paniolo Parade down Māmāne Street, with mounted and marching units, pā‘ū riders, gleaming vintage cars and more.
5 p.m., Stick Horse races
6 p.m., Saloon Girls and Cowboys Got Talent Contest
7-10 p.m., Great music and dancing in the Streets. Plus, a free “Keiki Corral” for the kids from 5-7 p.m., with carnival-style games, silent auction and more. Vendors interested in booth space for the Block Party may email westernweekhonokaa@gmail.com, or download forms from the website.

Sunday-Monday, May 28-29. 61st Annual Hawai‘i Saddle Club Scholarship Rodeo.  For more information, contact hawaiisaddleclub@ymail.com.

Honoka‘a Western Week is a volunteer-driven project supported by the Honoka‘a Business Association, the Hāmākua Farm Bureau, Councilwoman Valerie Poindexter, Steinlager, and others. Checks payable to “Honokaʻa Business Association” can be sent to P.O. Box 474, Honokaʻa HI 96727, attention: Honoka‘a Western Week. For more information, follow Honoka‘a Western Week on Facebook or visit www.honokaawesternweek.org.

2016 Honoka‘a Western Week Rides Into Town

Honoka‘a Western Week rides into town May 23-30, 2016, kicking off with Monday’s Portuguese Bean Soup and Sweetbread cookoff and winding up with Friday night’s Paniolo Parade and Block Party on Mamane Street, with the 60th Annual Hawai‘i Saddle Club Scholarship Rodeo over the weekend.

PHOTO BY Sarah Anderson

PHOTO BY Sarah Anderson

Mamane Street will close for the Parade and Block Party, and roving Sheriffs will be on the lookout for attendees not wearing the commemorative HWW buttons. Buttons may be purchased to show support for the festival, and to automatically enter the “lucky number” drawings during the Block Party. Although not required for admission, buttons will keep attendees from being thrown into “jail” (all in good fun).

PHOTO BY Sarah Anderson

PHOTO BY Sarah Anderson

Honoka‘a Western Week is a volunteer-driven project supported by the Honoka‘a Business Association, The Hāmākua Farm Bureau and the Hāmākua Lion’s Club, Councilwoman Valerie Poindexter, Steinlager, and others, celebrating Hāmākua’s paniolo heritage and unique cultural blend. Checks payable to “Honokaʻa Business Association” can be sent to P.O. Box 474, Honokaʻa HI 96727, attention: Honoka‘a Western Week. For more information, follow Honoka‘a Western Week on Facebook or visit www.honokaawesternweek.org.

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS:  Subject to change.

  • May 20. Deadline to enter Saloon Girl and Cowboys Got Talent Contests. For information and applications, call Michelle Hartman, 775-9777 or check out the website.
  • May 23-30. Celebrate Honokaʻa Western Week with Honokaʻa Business Association. Everyone is invited to dress up western-style, visit Honoka‘a town merchants, and enjoy different paniolo-themed activities every night.
  • Monday, May 23, 5-7:30 pm Portuguese Paniolo Night hosted by the historic Andrade Building’s ‘Ōhi‘a Lānai, with Portuguese Bean Soup and Sweetbread contests. Attendees can buy $5 tasting tickets, and vote for People’s Choice. Hot dogs, chili and rice available for sale, and the event includes music, Portuguese dancing and line dancing. For more information call Marlene Hapai 966-9894 or email mhapai@aol.com.
  • Tuesday, May 24, 3:30 p.m. Stick Horse Creation at Hāmākua Youth Center (HYC). Kids are invited to come and make their own mounts for the Stick Horse race on Friday. Limited to the first 30 applicants to turn in registration forms at HYC. Please call 775-0976 for more information.
  • Wednesday, May 25. Munch popcorn and cheer for the heroes of Western movies at the Peoples Theater. At 5 p.m., the animated feature “Home on the Range,” followed by “Traditions and Family Values: A Blueprint for our Community, Pa‘auilo Mauka Kalopa.” At 7 p.m., “8 Seconds,” the story of Lane Frost, 1987 PRCA Bull Riding World Champion.
  • Thursday, May 26. 4-6 p.m., Historic Honoka‘a Talk Story with authors Dr.Billy Bergin, “Loyal to the Land,” and Laura Ruby, “Honoka‘a Town,” at the Honoka‘a Public Library. Meet the community’s successful writers and learn what inspires and motivates them. This event coincides with the library’s Summer Reading program kickoff.  6:30 p.m., Hāmākua Ranchers Branding at The Landing restaurants. Local ranchers are invited to BYOB (Bring Your Own Branding iron) and brand a special wall display.
  • Friday, May 27. 3 p.m., Stick Horse Races 4 p.m., Paniolo Parade down Mamane Street, with mounted and marching units, pā‘ū riders, gleaming vintage cars and more. 5-10 p.m., Block Party, Steak Fry, Saloon Girl and Cowboys Got Talent Contests, great music and dancing in the Street. New this year, a free “Keiki Corral” for the kids from 5-7 p.m., with carnival-style games. Vendors interested in booth space for the Block Party may email Sue Dela Cruz, westernweekhonokaa@gmail.com, or download forms from the website.
  • Saturday, May 28- Hamakua-Kohala Health 50th Anniversary Health Fair, 10 am – 2pm Honoka‘a Gym Complex.  A free, family style celebration with beautiful Hawaiian music and hula, a healthy lū ‘au, helpful information from AlohaCare, HMSA, Aloha Insurance (Medicare) and Hale Ho‘ola, and much more. The ‘ono menu includes kālua turkey, pork laulau, chicken long rice, fernshoot salad, sweet potatoes, hapa rice, fresh fruits and haupia.
  • Saturday, May 28-Monday, May 30, Hawai‘i Saddle Club Scholarship Rodeo. Tickets $7 in advance $9 at the gate.

Thousands Attend Honoka’a Western Week

Herds of people filled the streets of Honoka‘a town Friday, celebrating what was officially proclaimed by Governor Neil Abercrombie as “Honoka‘a Western Week” in Hawai‘i. Kahu and paniolo Larry Ignacio, dressed the part with chaps and six-shooter, read the proclamation to open Friday’s festivities, attended by over 2,000 people.

Big crowd fills Mamane Street in Honoka'a Friday, for stick horse races, talent show, music and dancing in the street. Photo by Sarah Anderson

Big crowd fills Mamane Street in Honoka’a Friday, for stick horse races, talent show, music and dancing in the street. Photo by Sarah Anderson

Mamane Street closed at 2 p.m., to prep for the Paniolo Parade and set up food and vendor booths, a stage for live country music, crowning of the Rodeo Queens by visiting Miss Rodeo Colorado Rhianna Russell, and exciting Stick Horse Races for keiki, emceed by Dominic Yagong. At 3 p.m., more than 40 horses and riders paraded through town, including Mayor Billy Kenoi and Councilwoman Valerie Poindexter, styling authentic garb.

The new 1,200-seat Rose Andrade Correia Stadium at the Honoka‘a Rodeo Arena replaces old bleachers that were exposed to the elements.

The new 1,200-seat Rose Andrade Correia Stadium at the Honoka‘a Rodeo Arena replaces old bleachers that were exposed to the elements.

Earlier in the week, the Andrade Building in town hosted a gala re-opening of the ʻŌhiʻa Lanai, celebrating its 90th anniversary. The refurbished rodeo arena opened on Monday, named the “Rose Andrade Correia Stadium,” in honor of the Andrade family matriarch and benefactor who donated her land to the County of Hawai‘i in support of Hawai‘i Saddle Club and Hawaii’s paniolo.

"Sheriff" Eddie Castillo and Larry Ignacio with "jailed" saloon girls.  Prisoners were released after purchasing their Honoka'a Western Week buttons for $3.  Photo by Sarah Anderson

“Sheriff” Eddie Castillo and Larry Ignacio with “jailed” saloon girls. Prisoners were released after purchasing their Honoka’a Western Week buttons for $3. Photo by Sarah Anderson

The Hawai‘i Saddle Club Scholarship Rodeo continues through Monday, May 26.

Honoka‘a Western Week is a volunteer-driven project of the Honokaa Business Association, The Hāmākua Farm Bureau and the Hāmākua Lion’s Club celebrating Hamakua’s paniolo heritage and unique cultural blend. Sponsors include Hawai‘i Tourism Authority, County of Hawaiʻi CPEP, Councilwoman Valerie Poindexter, Kamehameha Schools, Mayor Billy Kenoi, Ramos Ranch, Steinlager, Paradise Beverages, Big Island Toyota, DeLuz Trucking, Hawaii Community Federal Credit Union, Andrade Building, Hapai Enterprises, and many other generous supporters.

Honoka’a Western Week Coming in May

A week wrapped in palaka, paniolo pride and performance rolls out May 17-26, with exciting drama, movies, food events, rededication of the new Honoka‘a Arena, a 90th birthday gala for the Andrade Building and the rollicking fun of Honoka‘a Western Week (HWW).

Honoka'a RodeoSpearheaded by the Honoka‘a Business Association, HWW brings together a lively cast of characters and rich regional history for a week-long celebration. In addition to HWW’s ever-popular Paniolo Parade, Saloon Girl Contest and Mamane Street Block Party, this year’s events ride the range from cultural to historical, food, family fun and more.

Highlights include the touring production of the new play “The Legend of Ko‘olau,” written by Gary T. Kubota with support of the National Endowment for the Arts, Sunday at Honoka‘a Peoples Theater. The play takes place in 1893, when Hawaiian cowhand Ko‘olau single-handedly repelled a militia that had overthrown the Hawaiian queen – and became a legend among his people.

On Monday, Mayor Kenoi and other dignitaries will hold a blessing ceremony and re-dedication of the refurbished “Honoka‘a Rose Andrade Correia Arena.” The new name pays tribute to the family matriarch and benefactor who donated her land to the County of Hawai‘i in support of the Hawai‘i Saddle Club and Hawaii’s paniolo. The restored arena features new covered bleachers, restrooms, concession stand and other improvements. Monday evening’s events continue with a Chili Cook Off at The Landing restaurant.

Honokaa Rodeo

Then on Tuesday, creative hands and imagination work together with the Hāmākua Youth Center group, Calley O’Neill and other area artists to build do-it-yourself stick horses for Friday’s pre-parade stick horse race. Wednesday is Western Movie Night at Honoka‘a Peoples Theater, with a great line up of favorite “horse operas” for all to enjoy.

Thursday is a very special day, as the community is invited to dress up western-style and help celebrate the historic Andrade Building’s 90th Birthday. Beginning at 5 p.m., the evening includes talk story, music by the Country Lads and dancing on the “vintage” ʻ Ōhiʻa Lanai, complete with five of the original barstools. Theme refreshments include “cool sasparilla” and “hot lil’ doggies” for sale, plus custom logo mugs and stadium cups.

The main event, of course, is when the whole town turns cowboy for the Paniolo Parade and Block Party on Friday. Commemorative Honokaʻa Western Week buttons are available now at businesses throughout Honoka’a town for only $3.00 Buttons automatically enter purchasers in the block party lucky number drawing, and are not required for admission to events. However, participants are forewarned that anyone without a button may be subject to “arrest” by roving sheriffs, and locked up in the hoosegow until bail can be arranged (all in good fun, of course).

Honoka‘a Western Week is a volunteer-driven project of the Honokaʻa Business Association, The Hāmākua Farm Bureau and the Hāmākua Lion’s Club celebrating Hāmākua’s paniolo heritage and unique cultural blend. Sponsors include Hawai‘i Tourism Authority, County of Hawaiʻi CPEP, Councilwoman Valerie Poindexter and many other generous supporters. Checks payable to “Honokaʻa Business Association” can be sent to P.O. Box 474, Honokaʻa HI 96727, attention: Honoka‘a Western Week. Anyone requiring special assistance, please contact the Committee prior to May 9, 2014. For more information, follow Honoka‘a Western Week on Facebook.

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

  • May 9. Deadline to enter Saloon Girl and Cowboys Got Talent Contests. For information, call Jill Mattos, 808-960-5605 or Lorie Farrell, 808-557-2780.
  • May 17-26. Celebrate Honokaʻa Western Week with Honokaʻa Business Association. Everyone is invited to dress up western-style and visit Honoka‘a town merchants, plus join in different paniolo-theme activities every night. For information, call Jeanne Keller, 808-775-0530.
  • Saturday, May 17, 7 p.m., “Hanau Ke Aliʻi,” a Hula Drama by Halau Na Kipuʻupuʻu about the life of King Kamehameha, Honokaʻa Peoples Theater.
  • Sunday, May 18, 3 p.m., “The Legend of Koʻolau” at Honokaʻa Peoples Theater. A special theatrical production about a true Hawaiian Cowboy written and performed by some of Hawaii’s foremost theatre personas and made possible by the National Endowment for the Arts.
  • Monday, May 19, 10 a.m. (subject to change) Blessing and re-opening of the newly refurbished Honokaʻa Arena.
  • Monday, May 19. Chili Cook Off hosted by The Landing. Set up at 5 p.m., judging at 8 p.m. Prizes for first, second and third place. For rules and details, please call Evelyn Offenbaker, 430-3593.
  • Tuesday, May 20, 3-5:30 p.m. Stick Horse Workshop. Make-your-own Stick Horse for the Races, with Calley O’Neill and other island artists,at Hāmākua Youth Center.
  • Wednesday, May 21. Western movies at the Peoples Theater
  • Thursday, May 22, 5-8 p.m. Memories of Honoka‘a Western Weeks Past, and blessing of the ʻŌhiʻa Lanai to celebrate the Andrade Building’s 90th birthday

Friday, May 23

  • 2 p.m., Road Closure
  • 3 p.m., Stick Horse Race
  • 4 p.m., Paniolo Parade down Mamane Street in Honoka‘a Town
  • 5 p.m., Block Party, Steak Fry fundraiser for Honokaʻa High School Track and Soccer Teams
  • 6 p.m., Saloon Girl and Cowboys Got Talent Contests
  • 8 p.m., Dancing in the Street

Saturday, May 24

  • 8 a.m.-6 p.m., Hawai‘i Saddle Club Scholarship Rodeo “Saturday Slack.” Rodeo tickets are $7 per person per day in advance $8 at the gate.

Sunday, May 25

  • 12 p.m. to Pau, Hawai‘i Saddle Club Scholarship Rodeo.

Monday, May 26

  • 12 p.m. to Pau, Hawai‘i Saddle Club Scholarship Rodeo.

 

Honoka’a Western Week is Coming Around the Bend!

Cowboys and horses on parade, a rollicking block party with dancing in the streets, local vendors, Big Island steak fry, Saloon Girl and new “Cowboys Got Talent” competitions, plus rodeo action in the refurbished Honoka‘a Arena and more make for an exciting roundup of paniolo festivities for Honoka‘a Western Week, May 17-26, 2014.

PHOTOS by Sarah Anderson Photography

PHOTOS by Sarah Anderson Photography

One of the most highly-anticipated events of the year, Honoka‘a Western Week (HWW) lets the usually-quiet, former sugar cane plantation town kick up its heels and celebrate a century-old paniolo heritage. The unique cultural blend of rodeo sports, high-energy events, music, food, and education offers visitors and kama‘āina of all ages a whole herd of ways to have fun.
Honoka'a Cowboys
Leading off with the Paniolo Parade on Friday afternoon, the HWW team will close down Mamane Street for its popular Block Party, featuring country-style music, a sizzling steak fry fundraiser hosted by the Honoka‘a High School Soccer and Track Teams, and a fun lineup of contests and events. A major highlight is the Saloon Girl contest, starring bold and beautiful women, young and young-at-heart, who strut their stuff in a talent and personality competition for the cowboys onstage.

Salon GirlsNot to be outdone, the cowboys will vie for titles of their own, as will stick horse riders, and the best chili cooks around. In the days leading up to HWW, businesses, decorated western-style, invite everyone to dress up in their best cowboy boots, hats and duds, and help bring back the spirit of a wilder time.

And, premiering the newly renovated Honoka‘a Arena, the 58th Annual Hawai‘i Saddle Club Scholarship Rodeo kicks into action, starting with “Saturday Slack,” an elimination round. Then cowboys, keiki and wahine are put through their paces Sunday-Monday, competing for buckles, saddles and prize money. Unique-to-Hawai‘i rodeo events, like Po‘o Wai‘u, are in the lineup, along with bull riding, calf roping, bareback and saddle bronc events, sheep riding for the keiki and much more.

PHOTOS by Sarah Anderson Photography

PHOTOS by Sarah Anderson Photography

In its 58-year history, the Rodeo has awarded thousands in scholarship funds to high school seniors island-wide as well as continuing education scholars. Taking place in the newly-restored arena, this year’s Rodeo promises to be better than ever, with new covered bleachers, restrooms, concession stand and other improvements.

More events, concerts, educational exhibits and activities are in the planning stages. Commemorative HWW buttons will be available to purchase as show of support, as well as automatic entry in the “lucky number” drawing during the Block Party. Although buttons are not required for admission, attendees receive fair warning that those without buttons at the Block Party risk being thrown into the hoosegow by roving sheriffs.  (All in good fun).

Honoka‘a Western Week is a volunteer-driven project of the Honoka‘a Business Association, The Hāmākua Farm Bureau and the Hāmākua Lion’s Club celebrating Hāmākua’s paniolo heritage and unique cultural blend.  Sponsors include Hawai‘i Tourism Authority, County of Hawaiʻi CPEP, Councilwoman Valerie Poindexter, Steinlager, and many other generous supporters. Checks payable to “Honokaʻa Business Association” can be sent to P.O. Box 474, Honokaʻa HI 96727, attention: Honoka‘a Western Week. For more information, follow Honoka‘a Western Week on Facebook.

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS:
Events are subject to change, with more to come!

  • March 31. Deadline to enter HSC Rodeo Queen competition, 808-756-3293
  • April 1. Deadline to apply for HSC Scholarships. Call 808-960-2947 or email hawaiisaddleclub@ymail.com
  • May 9. Deadline to enter Saloon Girl and Cowboys Got Talent Contests. For information, call Jill Mattos, 808-960-5605 or Lorie Farrell, 808-557-2780.
  • May 17-22. Celebrate Honokaʻa Western Week with Honokaʻa Business Association. Everyone is invited to dress up western-style and visit Honoka‘a town merchants, plus join in different paniolo-theme activities every night. (Subject to change, details coming soon). For information, call Jeanne Keller, 808-775-0530.
  • Monday, May 19. Chili Cook Off hosted by The Landing, for information, call Steve Offenbaker, 775-0888.
  • Tuesday, May 20. Art Event: Make-your-own Stick Horse for the Races
  • Wednesday, May 21. Western movies at the Peoples Theater.
  • Thursday, May 22. Memories of Honoka‘a Western Weeks Past, and blessing of the ʻŌhiʻa Lanai to celebrate the Andrade Building’s 90th birthday
  • Friday, May 23:

2 p.m., Road Closure

  • 3 p.m., Stick Horse Race
  • 4 p.m., Paniolo Parade down Mamane Street in Honoka‘a Town
  • 5 p.m., Block Party, Steak Fry
  • 6  p.m., Saloon Girl and Cowboys Got Talent Contests
  • 8 p.m., Dancing in the Street
  • Saturday, May 24. 8 a.m.-6 p.m., Hawai‘i Saddle Club Scholarship Rodeo “Saturday Slack.”  Tickets $7 in advance $8 at the gate.
  • Sunday, May 25.  12 p.m. to Pau, Hawai‘i Saddle Club Scholarship Rodeo. Tickets $7 in advance $8 at the gate.
  • Monday, May 26. 12 p.m. to Pau, Hawai‘i Saddle Club Scholarship Rodeo. Tickets $7 in advance $8 at the gate.