Maui Arts & Entertainment

2023 Barrio Fiesta celebrates Filipino culture, May 26-27

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PC: Barrio Fiesta Maui

The 54th Annual Barrio Fiesta will be held at Binhi at Ani Filipino Community Center in Kahului on Friday, May 26 (5 p.m. to 10 p.m.) and Saturday, May 27 (10 a.m. to 10 p.m.).

“We are pleased to again present the annual Barrio Fiesta,” said Melen Agcolicol, president of Binhi at Ani, the coordinating organization.  “We continue to refocus on sharing our rich Filipino culture–whether it’s through food, entertainment, exhibits, and contests.  It’s really a continued perpetuation of our culture so our youth will not forget their roots and the rest of Maui can appreciate our Filipino culture as well.”

This year marks the event’s 54th year. The Barrio Fiesta was initiated by the Maui Filipino Community Council and first held on May 31, 1970 at the War Memorial grounds near the swimming pool.

“At that time, there was an influx of recent immigrants from the Philippines which caused many problems, especially in the schools,” according to an event announcement. “The initial purpose of the Barrio Fiesta was to share the Filipino culture with the rest of Maui County and to also instill a sense of pride in local Filipinos of the rich culture of their motherland. Today, the need to share the Filipino culture with all of Maui’s residents remains true as Maui’s Filipino community continues to grow by leaps and bounds.”


Food, culture, pageantry, contests, and special events will be featured.

Barrio Fiesta. PC: Binhi at Ani Filipino Community Center

Traditional Filipino food will be offered such as balut, banana lumpia, bangus, cascaron, chicharon, dinuguan, empanada, longanisa, pansit, pinakbet, pork adobo, pork and peas, and pork lumpia.  Local favorites will also be offered, such as bbq beef, chow fun and shoyu chicken. 

A special booth will feature the Philippine Consulate General of Hawaiʻi who will provide information as to the various services provided.

Several contests with large prizes are scheduled:  

  • Any Kine Sisig Challenge (Saturday at 3:30 p.m.–$500 to the winner);
  • The Barrio Fiesta Voice (Friday at 8:30 p.m.–$500 to the winner);
  • Barrio Wear Contest (Saturday at 7 p.m.–$250 to the male winner; $250 to the female winner);
  • Climb the Greased Pole Contest (Saturday at 1 p.m.–$500 to the winner);
  • Da Pansit Eating Contest (Saturday at 3 p.m.–$500 to the winner);
  • Do the Sungka (Saturday at 10:30 a.m.–$500 to the winner);
  • Pabitin (Friday at 6 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.; Saturday at 10:30 a.m. and 3 p.m.); and
  • Sabado Art Foundation Keiki Art Party (Saturday at 2 p.m.–$500 to the winner).  

Philippine cultural entertainment will be provided by:

  • Bailes de Pilipinas (Friday at 8:30 p.m.),
  • Dance International Production (Friday at 7:30 p.m.),
  • Kāʻanapali Beach Hotel (Saturday at 8:30 p.m.), La Galeria:
  • Compania Baile Filipino (Saturday at 9 p.m.),
  • Sto. Nino Organization of Maui (Saturday at 6:30 p.m.),
  • Students of Aggie Cabebe (Saturday at 7:30 p.m.), and
  • Wailea Marriott (Saturday at 8:30 p.m.).

At 10 p.m. each night, there will be a drawing (no entry fee required, one entry per person, must be 18 years or older, entry must match government issued ID) for a $500 Travel Certificate. Sponsoring the Friday night drawing is Asian Mart & Fast Food while Grace Sales, Realtor is sponsoring the Saturday night drawing.

Inside the Center, there will be a replica of a Bahay Kubo created by the Bahay Kubo Heritage Foundation. Cultural villages depicting several provinces/regions of the Philippines will also be featured:  

  • Cebu created by Sto. Nino Organization of Maui;
  • Cordillera created by Sabado Art Foundation;
  • Ilocos Norte created by Julie Agcolicol Cruz;
  • Metro Manila created by Philippine Nurses Association of Maui, Hawaiʻi;
  • Mindanao created by La Galeria: Compania Baile Filipino; and
  • Pangasinan created by Miguel Agcolicol. 

The best cultural village will receive a $500 prize. Cultural villages will be graded on culture, originality, presentation and interactivity.  

PC: Maui Now file photo

Vying for the title of Miss Barrio Fiesta are Kiara Ganoy and Naeomi Paa. 

  • Ganoy is the daughter of Loren and Diana Ganoy.  Ganoy is a 7th grader at Lahaina Intermediate. 
  • Paa is the daughter of Richard and Jeanice Paa.  Paa is a sophomore at Maui High School. 

The 2023 Miss Barrio Fiesta will be crowned on Friday evening at 7 p.m.

Special Events include:

  • The Santa Cruzan depicting the finding of the Holy Cross by Queen Helena featuring the Miss Barrio Fiesta queens (Friday at 6:30 p.m.);
  • the Veterans Memorial Service (Saturday at noon);
  • the introduction of the Miss Maui Filipina contestants (Saturday at 6 p.m.); and
  • the Outstanding Housekeepers Awards (Saturday at 8 p.m.).
  • A lechon demonstration (Saturday at 4:30 p.m.) is also being arranged.
PC: Barrio Fiesta Maui

“We’re very excited to again present the Annual Barrio Fiesta–the longest running fiesta in the United States,” says Nora Cabanilla-Takushi, Event Chairperson.  “We could not have continued this unmatched tradition without the support of our sponsors, advertisers, donors, vendors, entertainers, volunteers and the Miss Barrio Fiesta contestants.  There is definitely something for everyone at the Barrio Fiesta–food, culture and entertainment. It’s a terrific way to continue to share our culture with all of Maui and to be with old and new friends.”  

Major sponsors include Bayer Crop Science Hawaiʻi, Maui Health, US Renal Care and McDonalds of Kahului. 


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