Fairmont Kea Lani, in partnership with the Hawaiian Outrigger Canoe Voyaging Society, will host Gathering of the Voyagers, a three-day celebration of Hawaiian and Polynesian culture. Bringing together revered voyagers, navigators, canoe builders, and cultural practitioners, Gathering of the Voyagers invites the community to come together for a weekend of ceremony, demonstrations, mākeke, and kanikapila at Fairmont Kea Lani in Wailea, a location historically significant to Polynesia’s rich seafaring culture.
“We are voyagers,” shared Anela Gutierrez, Executive Director of the Hawaiian Outrigger Canoe Voyaging Society. “From our ancient origins across the vast Pacific Ocean we arrived by double-hulled canoes and made these islands our home. Carrying with us the plants and animals to sustain us, the values to carry us forward, and our families to continue our traditions into the future. Gathering of the Voyagers is a celebration of our great Pacific ‘ohana and the cultures and values which guide us.”
Gathering of the Voyagers will commence on Friday, October 13 with a Hi‘uwai & E Ala Ē Ceremony followed by traditional protocol to welcome the arrival of the voyagers. Festivities continue throughout the weekend with powerful presentations with revered practitioners, culturally-rooted culinary offerings, paddling voyages, a native Hawaiian fashion show, live entertainment, and Heiva I Maui, a Tahitian dance competition for both soloists and small groups. A memorial paddle-out will also take place, along with fundraising opportunities to honor and support the impacted communities of Maui.
On Sunday morning, registered paddlers will have an opportunity to embark on a 10-mile voyage around Molokini, departing from Keoneopolo Beach fronting Fairmont Kea Lani at 8:00am. Gathering of the Voyagers will conclude with a traditional Hawaiian ʻAwa ceremony, where invited participants will join together and reflect on the weekend.
“We are privileged to partner with the Hawaiian Outrigger Canoe Voyaging Society for the second annual Gathering of the Voyagers” shared Michael Pye, Regional Vice President, Hawai‘i and General Manager, Fairmont Kea Lani. “Now more than ever, serving our community, perpetuating Hawaiian culture, and paving the way for future generations is incredibly important. Gathering of the Voyagers beautifully celebrates the culture, traditions, and values of Hawai‘i and Polynesia, and we are honored to serve as a conduit for this powerful event.”
All presentations, demonstrations, shows and exhibits at Gathering of the Voyagers are free and open to the public with the exception of the paddle around Molokini; paid registration is required to participate but all are welcome to partake in the oceanfront celebration. Throughout the weekend, a local mākeke will be open from 10:00am-4:00pm, where a world of handmade products and unique Hawai‘i-made gifts will be available for purchase. A preview of the schedule is listed below and additional information can be found at www.gatheringofthevoyagers.com. Support for Gathering of the Voyagers is provided by the Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority through the Community Enrichment Program.
Schedule of Events:
Friday, October 13
6:00am Hiʻuwai and E Ala Ē Ceremony
7:00am Opening Ceremony, Voyager Canoe Arrival
10:00am The Moʻolelo of Wailea, Talk Story with Kainoa Horcajo
12:00pm Paddle Making Demonstration with Malama Chun
2:00pm Canoe Building with Kalai Waʻa Charlie Noland
4:00pm Polynesian Dance & Drumming Demonstration with Kumu Mana Kekahuna
6:00pm Heiva I Maui Opening Ceremony
7:00pm Star Navigation with Kala Baybayan-Tanaka
Saturday, October 14
7:00am Community Memorial Paddle-Out
10:00am ‘We the Indigenous Migrators’ Talk Story with Kahu Lyons Naone
12:00pm ‘We the Navigators’ Talk Story with Sesario Sewralur
1:30pm PōMahina Designs Fashion Show
2:00pm Heiva I Maui, Tahitian Dance Competition
6:00pm Kanikapila featuring Kika Kila Band, Ron Kualaʻau, Kūlia, Wilmont Kahaiali’i, Dayan Kai and more
Sunday, October 15
8:00am Voyage around Molokini, *Advance Registration required
12:00pm Closing Ceremony