The Hukilau, named after the traditional Hawaiian fishing village festivals of old, has been netting in Tiki-philes and Polynesian Pop enthusiasts from all over the world to the sunny shores of South Florida since 2003. Co-founder and Producer/Organizer Christie White aka Tiki Kaliki has been busting her ass for the last nine years putting together one of the world's best and most respected celebrations of Tiki culture.
Close to 80 percent of those in attendance travel from far and wide, some for thousands of miles, to participate in this sacred celebration of all things Tiki. As South Floridians, thanks to our tropical climate and close proximity to legendary Tiki bar/restaurant Mai Kai, we have the privilege of only suffering a short car ride to witness these unique festivities. For those unfamiliar with the Hukiau or Tiki culture in general, I have summarized the weekend's events into an easy-to-follow itinerary that with the price of admission will get you a round-robin crash course into the world of all things Tiki: Fire-eating mermaids, seminars from jet-setting Polynesian cocktail aficionados, art and fashion Shows, Tiki markets, bands playing poolside, DJs, go-go dancers and hula-hoopers and the list goes on!
I would also like to add from personal experience, to those who may be
weary about feeling out of place, that the Hukilau-ers are an extremely
friendly bunch and among the least pretentious people you will find so
strongly dedicated to such a niche and seemingly obscure culture.
Friday: When 8 p.m. rolls around,
get it together for the not-to-be-missed Hukilau Main Event in the Sky
Lounge (Bahia Cabana's Western Penthouse) featuring live performances
by the Neanderthals, Sweet Hollywaiians, Stolen Idols, Walk the Plank,
Marina the Fire Eating Mermaid, Candy Del Rio, Reverend Valentine and
hosted by Hukilau staple King Kukulele. Wind down the evening again
with James Brown's Sweat before heading home and passing out face down
in your bed.
Saturday: Early afternoon you'll have the opportunity to revisit the
Art Show and Tiki Treasures Bazaar as well as attend the Sarong-O-Rama
fashion show and catch a screening of Duda Leite's Tikimentary in the
Grandview Room. A group photo at 3 p.m. and from then on its all about
the Mai Kai. Please be aware that no Hukilau ticket is required to
attend the following events at the Mai Kai but you MUST make your own
reservations in order to catch a dinner show in the Samoa and Tahiti
dining areas. 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. first happy hour show in Mai Kai's Molokai Bar
featuring The Bikini Beachcombers. 5 p.m. seating for the first dinner
show. 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. second happy hour in the Molokai Bar with Stolen
Idols. 8:30 p.m. second dinner show followed by Walk the Plank and the
Intoxicators in the Samoa and Tahiti Dining Areas. And 10 to 12 p.m., back to
the Molokai Bar with the Sweet Hollywaiians. If you have never
witnessed a Mai Kai Dinner Show this is highly recommended, no Hukilau
experience is complete without it.
Sunday: 11a.m. to 2 p.m. is the fond farewell to your Hukilau weekend -- poolside
at the Bahia Cabana for lunch and final performances from select
Hukilau entertainers If you have done as instructed you'll be bidding "aloha" to all your newfound friends and heading home for some much
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needed rest. Note: If you've avoided the festivities thus far for
monetary reasons Sunday afternoon is your opportunity to catch a small
slice of what you've missed all weekend free of charge.
Make sure to check thehukilau.com for the complete listing of event times and locations.