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Tiki Central Forums Tiki Events Other Events Hukilau 2004: Discuss!
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Hukilau 2004: Discuss!
PolyProud1
Member

Joined: Sep 26, 2004
Posts: 3
From: Fort Lauderdale
Posted: 2004-09-30 9:31 pm   Permalink

Aloha & Talofa to Tikikiliki, Swanky and the entire Hukilau Tribe. Much Mahalos, Fafetai Tele Lava for giving Polynesian Proud the opportunity and pleasure to be a part of a great event with great people who all share the same and common love and aloha of tiki, culture, Mai Kai and a hula good time. Despite the weekly Hurricane happening on Hukilau weekend it was a blast to meet and be part of the energy of Hukilau, so many wonderful people we met at our booth and after the performance. Mahalo for your kind words and applause of the show. We hope you enjoyed our newest member "Tiki".Amazing to be in the company of all those that we read, hear and see on TC and the books that they pen and works of art that are created, music that keeps ya shakin, all in one room. On behalf of Polynesian Proud a big kahuna thanks to 2 very special people for keeping the vision alive and making us a part of Hukilau 2004, Tikikiliki & Swanky. Look forward to next year.

 
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tikilee
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Sep 17, 2002
Posts: 122
From: The Enchanted Mitten
Posted: 2004-09-30 9:50 pm   Permalink

Big thanks to Kiliki and Swanky for months of hard work and dedication. I know the two of you exhausted every last ounce of energy to put together the 2004 Hukilau and believe me I will forever applaud your efforts. I had a blast. Even though I didn't make it to the Mai Kai Saturday night like the rest, I still got to visit Monday evening. Either way I would have never seen it at all if you didn't put forth all the work to put Hukilau together in the first place. If there was no Hukilau, I never would have been in the area to visit the great tiki Mecca known as the Mai Kai. Thanks again, seriously, your efforts and work were and still are greatly appreciated.
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Sabina
Grand Member (8 years)  

Joined: Apr 08, 2002
Posts: 372
From: The Lounge of the Seven Pleasures!
Posted: 2004-10-01 12:14 pm   Permalink

Hukilau this year was really special for all of us I think- we each had our own versions of Hukilau and hearing from everyone else what theirs was like has actually been part of it for me, anyway. Each year has its own personality and comparing one year to another is impossible.

Hukilau 2003 for us was in many ways about the scheduled- Hukilau 2004 was about the 'adventure' (admittedly I can only say that because it's not my house or business that's a pile of splinters right now). It was about not knowing what was behind the next corner and not having the hard and fast schedule- so much of what this thread has been about is the off the mapness- small room get togethers, adventures in hoteling, but none-the-less finding Ohana shining at their brightest all through it.

THE example, of course, being the Mai Kai. We missed Saturday night, but I fully believe the tales of hospitality and kindness, by the Mai Kai and the rest of the TC Ohana are the stuff Tiki Tribal legends are born of. Even those of us who weren't there have some feeling for how special and unique it was thanks to the stories brought back by those who were.

Elvis afterparties are the unexpected. The Mai Kai even being open in a Huricane is the unexpected. TCers 'survival' stories post evacuation are the unexpected. This was the Hukilau of random chance- and amazingly, in the end, that off the map-ness seems to have been taken in stride and even dare I say, was part of the specialness and goodness of this year's event.

A few personal high points;

Riding the water taxi over to the Cabana Thursday night and as we pulled up, the boat captain pointed out the Tikki Beach (our ship for the evening in all its well thatched wonder) and said it was a "party boat"

And what a party it was! Thursday night was a blast! The music, !!!the boat!!!, the people- far too many names to even try to recall here, the drinks, the lovely waterways of 'America's Venice', the sunset, what a wonderful, relaxing way to ease in to an event.

Trust me, even if this supposedly ended up not being the Hukilau that was planned, it was wonderful EXACTLY the way it was.

Most of Friday was a wash for us-although we did get checked in and get our mugs and the VERY special Hukilau print!. We're down here on an extended road trip with Hukilau as one part of it, so we had our Truck packed with stuff for the trip which we needed to find a huricane safe place for, and we had friends flying in. So we spent much of Friday trying to line up hotel space in advance, and getting our friends on a flight back out. Mainly we were just glad we had the truck and could help those we could.

The escalating warnings led to a small lesson in Florida evacuation 101 for us out of towners. We found one hotel Friday were all set in case the evacuation came down, and then found out that the hotel was in a secondary evacuation zone that if Jeanne was a cat 3 or stronger we would settle into only to get back booted out of. So we had to find another, further inland. Which worked well for us, but not so well for the rest of the MD/DC/VA folks I wanted to try to help.

The hotel was only allowing the number of guests the bed was made for (2 in our case), and gave us a piece of paper at check-in saying 4 hours before landfall we would all be evacuated floor by floor out of our rooms and locked into a ballroom on the second floor- and kept there until a building inspector could confirm the building was safe to return to! Don't like the terms? Check out!

Well fortunately, Jeanne went north enough for us that we got to ride it out from our 12th floor hotel room- which was facinating. The building rocked a little, the gusts against the windows were pretty amazing, and the winds howled down through the vent system. We stayed up and watched transformer after transformer blow- lighting the sky green or blue like horrible fireworks gone wrong- knowing that each one that went meant missery to someone else. Our power stayed on all night, and we have no hotel horror stories at all. We were extremely lucky.

So we missed the legendary night at the Mai Kai- and felt like wusses for missing it.

But, other highlights;

We finally did make the Friday evening show- a little late, but still in time to meet many TCers, enjoy the show, pick up our fresh leis, dance along with the Billy Mure snake, and even do a little shopping- hands down, Hukilau venders are the best! All so talented, and hearts to match!

Later in the evening, a very special moment running into Billy Mure with his lovely wahine friend packing up late Friday night in the parking lot at the Mar, we were about to bug out, but we spoke briefly and I got to tell him how amazing it was to see him here. He asked how I knew about him and I explained that a friend has passed me some of her parents' albums when she found out I was into this 'whole Tiki thing'. Billy seemed genuinely pleased to know that his music was touching a whole new generation and that he was appreciated.

And finally getting to the Mai Kai on Sunday- to find a small knot of Ohana still in town. We had a lovely dinner, enjoyed the show, strolled the gardens, thanked the staff profusely!, raided the gift shop, and tried a new several drinks that we hadn't before.

By the way, the Mai Kai interpretation of a navy grog is the 'yeoman's grog'. When I tried to order a navy grog I was asked if I was from the west coast- hmmmmmmmm. Interesting!

So our Hukilau was actually wonderful. As the evening wore down, those of us left got to watch the water running down the windows in the bar turn off and we got a very good look at the Tikis ourside- Ikitnrev may even have gotten a few pictures. Then we went outside and saw a Gecko on the side of the building (so yes, Gecko was here in spirit this year!)

Finally, late Sunday evening, we were the last folks leaving the Maik Kai, as we waited for a Taxi, they turned out the lights under the outdoor canopy and for one strange moment, it was erie silence with floats overhead and the wind gently rustling the leaves. I was a very special way to say Aloha- until next year.

Again, I simply cannot say enough wonderful things about everyone who made this happen and who made it to whatever parts of the event they did. Huricane or no- it was worth it- and we appreciate everything everyone went through to make it happen.

Mahalo!


 
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mrsmiley
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Apr 03, 2002
Posts: 3171
From: Las Vegas, NV
Posted: 2004-10-01 12:53 pm   Permalink

This Hukilau was incredible!!! Thanks Kiliki and Swanky!! I think it was worth all your effort.
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pablus
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 23, 2003
Posts: 2154
From: www.crazedmugs.com
Posted: 2004-10-01 1:33 pm   Permalink


I'm shooting for 500 posts before morning.

Not really.

Just wanted to mention 2 other things about Hukilau...

First, Polynesian Proud - a fantastic experience. I can't wait to see them again.

Second, just got off the phone with Kern from the Mai Kai - get this - not only was he not bummed about so many reservations being canceled for that fateful night, he was thankful for the people who did show up saying, "We would have had nothing without the Hukilau being there - so we're glad they were there - we had a blast."

What an incredible attitude and yet so typical of the outstanding caliber of people that make the Mai Kai what it is.

I want to live there.


 
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Humuhumu
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 22, 2002
Posts: 3606
From: San Francisco
Posted: 2004-10-01 2:37 pm   Permalink

This was the sort of weekend that will stand out above all the others in my life--the sort we'll continue to be talking about for years to come.

I feel terrible for Swanky and Kiliki--this weekend was outstanding, and it's hard to imagine how it could be better (I do love an adventure!), but I also know that the two of them have been working incredibly, heart-wrenchingly hard for many, many months now on this event. From the start, it was evident to me that they had poured themselves into creating an event that was very together, very polished, and jam-packed with entertainment in every corner. The intended event was no small feat to organize, and it must have been heartbreaking for them to see all that work not come to fruition the way that they'd been imagining in their minds for so long.

That said, the united force of aloha spirit that Hurricane Jeanne brought out in us all was a beautiful thing to behold--the sort of thing that can't be engineered or designed to occur. I feel so fortunate to have been a part of it. Even while standing hungover Saturday morning in the Walgreens with my arms piled high with the suddenly neccessary flip-flops for my tiki brethren at the Budget Inn, I was giggling like an idiot.

Thank you to everyone who made this event what it was: first and foremost Swanky & Tiki Kiliki, the amazing 'ohana that is the Mai Kai, all the performers and vendors who shared their talents with us, and of course each and every last soul who was there to smile with, to laugh with, to talk with, to dance with, and to drink with. Thank you for the memories.


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[ This Message was edited by: Humuhumu on 2004-10-01 14:52 ]


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mrsmiley
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Apr 03, 2002
Posts: 3171
From: Las Vegas, NV
Posted: 2004-10-01 3:07 pm   Permalink

I second the following with a resounding....ZAAZZZ!!!!


Quote:

On 2004-10-01 14:37, Humuhumu wrote:
This was the sort of weekend that will stand out above all the others in my life--the sort we'll continue to be talking about for years to come.

I feel terrible for Swanky and Kiliki--this weekend was outstanding, and it's hard to imagine how it could be better (I do love an adventure!), but I also know that the two of them have been working incredibly, heart-wrenchingly hard for many, many months now on this event. From the start, it was evident to me that they had poured themselves into creating an event that was very together, very polished, and jam-packed with entertainment in every corner. The intended event was no small feat to organize, and it must have been heartbreaking for them to see all that work not come to fruition the way that they'd been imagining in their minds for so long.

That said, the united force of aloha spirit that Hurricane Jeanne brought out in us all was a beautiful thing to behold--the sort of thing that can't be engineered or designed to occur. I feel so fortunate to have been a part of it. Even while standing hungover Saturday morning in the Walgreens with my arms piled high with the suddenly neccessary flip-flops for my tiki brethren at the Budget Inn, I was giggling like an idiot.

Thank you to everyone who made this event what it was: first and foremost Swanky & Tiki Kiliki, the amazing 'ohana that is the Mai Kai, all the performers and vendors who shared their talents with us, and of course each and every last soul who was there to smile with, to laugh with, to talk with, to dance with, and to drink with. Thank you for the memories.


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Critiki - Hundreds of tiki bars, Polynesian restaurants, and other sites of interest to the tiki traveller, collector or urban archaeologist

[ This Message was edited by: Humuhumu on 2004-10-01 14:52 ]


_________________
I'm the most thirstiesterest of all!
TRADER VIC'S, Vintage, Vegas & more on EBAY 1957SPUTNIK
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If you like it, it is ZAZZ! If you don't it is RAZZ!


 
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RevBambooBen
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 12, 2002
Posts: 7439
From: Huntikington Beach
Posted: 2004-10-01 5:37 pm   Permalink

Kern asked if I coudld post this onto TC. (no worries. done deal!)
----------------

Also, there were people on Tiki Central asking about the old lady dancing Saturday night, could you post a link to this site that talks about her -
http://starbulletin.com/1999/03/29/features/story1.html
She is Pualani Avon, a long time customer and friend of the Mai-Kai. Whenever she comes in, she always asks to dance to her song. She always says that "Lovely Hula Hands" was written for her, so it must be true. It is still first hand knowledge as long as she is still alive, not story yet. She also leased space to open the first gift shop at the Mai-Kai, which she and her family ran until the remodeling in 1970 when the Mai-Kai took over. You can find her where ever the Aloha spirit thrives, and that is why she came to the Hukilau.

Keep in touch, you know where to find me.

Kern Mattei
Manager
Mai-Kai Restaurant


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Formikahini
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 22, 2002
Posts: 1494
From: Houston, Texotica
Posted: 2004-10-01 9:42 pm   Permalink

OMG! The woman IS Hawaii!! What an amazing article (thank you Kern!), and what a treat that we got to see her dance at the Mai Kai. Now I REALLY can't wait for my fotos to be developed!!

 
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Basement Kahuna
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 14, 2002
Posts: 3591
From: Jawja Province, Isle of North America
Posted: 2004-10-01 11:00 pm   Permalink

WOW....She knew DUKE KAHANAMOKU! The Matson Girl! I am floored, man. That's just too much. She is a true treasure.

 
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Johnny Dollar
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 01, 2003
Posts: 2953
From: Baltimore, Maryland, PNG
Posted: 2004-10-02 06:38 am   Permalink

me and the wahine (waikiki kitty) were a bit overwhelmed by the situation friday nite and thusly missed out on meeting the rest of you and spending more time with all of you we had met up with. that to me is the biggest sense of loss. on the "mai tai is half full" side, thanks to swanky, kiliki, poly proud, tikibars (sorry we had to run), the vendors, and everyone else who made the event so memorable.

dang tikiwahine and drunk'nmonkey, we will have to wait another year to sample your scope bottle!

peace to you all, and again, we look forward to seeing (the rest of you) all soon! j$'s
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Swanky
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 03, 2002
Posts: 5013
From: Hapa Haole Hideaway, TN
Posted: 2004-10-02 12:55 pm   Permalink

I was as surprised as everyone when I woke up Saturday morning to find I had to be out of the room by 10AM. I took the list from the front desk and called and got a room. We got over there and bought gallons of water and food and prepared for a long stay.

Then I called the Mai Kai and they said they were open and the bar was full. So I threw on my suit and we all headed over for dinner. I needed a shower badly, but, you gotta go. I was glad I did.

Being at the Mai Kai made all the stress of the previous days go away. It made me relax. It was very nice to be there. You would not have known there was a hurricane outside unless you peeked out at the winds.

Then we headed home to our rank hotel room and found that it was the only place without lights! Every building around had lights, but our hotel was dark. So we opened the window for a breeze and tried to get to sleep.

About 2AM I heard what sounded like rowdy men arriving. Shouts and car doors shutting. Then I heard more and more. Then I began to realize it wasn't stopping. It got REALLY loud. Lots of just screaming and hollering at the top of their lungs. Then it wasn't actually car doors, it was them throwing furniture at the windo of their room! It got louder and louder. It sounded like they were killing each other! I don't know when I have ever heard such screaming. And now the window has shattered and you can feel the furniture bouncing around through the floor. Insane primal screaming. Can't tell what they are screaming. And the halls are pitch black.

So we are fearing these insane men might set the room on fire. The cell phone had just minutes of battery left and we called 911. They came and arrested the two men. But our poor nerves were shot.

I had driven to Florida so even though things were cleared up south, I could not head back north because Jeanne was still in the way. So I spent more nights at the Mai Kai.
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hala bullhiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 26, 2002
Posts: 570
From: champaign,illinois
Posted: 2004-10-02 1:18 pm   Permalink

were you at the amerisuites in plantation ???....thats were we got a room (at 10 pm saturday night), and we pulled up to a blacked out hotel, ....no power, from the time we arrived til the time we checked out (11 am) the next morning...we were on the top floor, and that wind was howlin by midnight.......

 
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Benzart
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 09, 2004
Posts: 10364
From: Port Saint Lucie, Florida
Posted: 2004-10-03 7:03 pm   Permalink

Finally had a good night sleep now that the electric is ON. Its Sunday, the week after HukiLau sunday. I'll try to forget the past terrible week. At least this time we were only out of power for 7 1/2 days and not 9. Nothing can ever take away or Dampen the great memories of friday at HukiLau. It was SO Great meeting ALl you People I can hardly stand it. I can't name names because I know I will forget some and it wouldn't be fair. Just know that I Loved every minute of Friday. I'm sorry we had to leave early and I wish we could have stayed for one of the best sounding tiki parties EVER. To everyone who bought my art work, you have a deep part of my heart andI am so proud of each of you.
Sherry and I are already making plans for next year and hopefully for the Whole show.
Now we have still much work to do to get our home and lives back to normal. Big thanks to ALl who made HukiLau possible and made it such a fantastic happening, even if it was shortened.
HAPPY, happyhappy
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mrsmiley
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Apr 03, 2002
Posts: 3171
From: Las Vegas, NV
Posted: 2004-10-07 6:48 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2004-09-30 08:08, martiki wrote:


The one thing that did suck big time, was the unbridled horrors of the Budget Inn. Our room smelled so vile I gagged. I took back every terrible thing I said about the Cabana and started to miss it's musty damp carpet. I went to our dry cleaners yesterday with my Sandwich Isles jacket and Rebecca's dress, and the woman behind the counter lept back when she opened the bag. "Oh my god..smells so bad!" were her exact words. Until next year!



TOO funny!!!!
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I'm the most thirstiesterest of all!
TRADER VIC'S, Vintage, Vegas & more on EBAY 1957SPUTNIK
http://shop.ebay.com/1957sputnik/m.html
If you like it, it is ZAZZ! If you don't it is RAZZ!


 
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