Top 20 things to do on Maui Aug. 31-Sept. 12: Kū Mai Ka hula competition, Buddhist temple grand opening, punk rock band Fear

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Paddle outs to honor the victims of Maui wildfires, a premiere hula competition, and a Bon Dance with a grand opening of a restored buddhist temple are among the top events taking place on the Valley Isle from Aug. 31 through Sept. 12.

Check out the top 20 list below. And for a comprehensive list of upcoming events — concerts, shows, entertainment and community events, and outdoor farmers markets — for this week and beyond click here.

No. 1 – Hoʻoulu i Nā Mele fundraiser (Sept. 8, Kahului)

Kumu hula and composers of Hawaiian songs take center stage on Sept. 8 at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center’s McCoy Studio Theater.

A portion of the proceeds for the Hoʻoulu i Nā Mele will go to the Maui Strong Funds to provide relief for victims of Maui’s devastating wild fires.

Participants include kumu hula Kamaka Kukona and Pueo Pata, and composers Zachary Alakaʻi Lum and Anela Uʻilani Tanigawa-Lum. The host is Maui kumu hula Hōkūlani Holt. It starts at 7:30 p.m. For more information, click here.

No. 2 – 2023 Kū Mai Ka Hula competition (Sept. 9, Kahului)

The 2023 Kū Mai Ka Hula competition, Maui’s premiere adult hula competition, begins at the Castle Theatre at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center on Sept. 9 at 1 p.m. The event features award-winning hālau competing in solo and group performances with male and female dancers performing in traditional and modern style.


This year, participating hālau are from the Hawaiian Islands, the continental United States and Japan. For more information including ticket purchases click here.

No. 3 – Grand opening, Bon Dance in Hāna (Sept. 9, East Maui)

Taiko drummers perform at a Bon Dance at Hāna Buddhist Temple. Photo courtesy: Hana Buddhist Temple Preservation Association.

A Bon Dance takes place at the Hāna Buddhist Temple at 1819 Hāna Highway on Sept. 9. There also will be a grand opening of the restored temple building. The blessing is at 4:30 p.m., followed by the opening of food service at 5 p.m. and music at 6 p.m.

It’s a time when Buddhists commemorate and reunite spiritually with deceased ancestors. It’s believed that ancestral spirits visit them, then return to their afterlife. The Bon dance is a celebration, with a blend of Hawaii influences. A variety of island food is sold, including sushi, chow fun, taco bowls, and chili rice bowls.

Visitors are welcome. Donations also are being accepted to restore the four Buddhist temples destroyed in the Lahaina wildfire. For more information, go to the Hana Buddhist website or call the Hana Buddhist Temple Preservation Association at 808-248-7010.

No. 4 – Prema Love performs at community fundraiser at Above the Wave (Sept. 1, Kahului)

A free community event, with donations going to Maui wildfire relief, is scheduled on Friday at the Above The Wave Co-working space at 400 Hana Highway, space B1 & C, in Kahaului.


Doors open at 2 p.m, with the event running from 3 to 6 p.m. Several musicians, including Prema Love, will perform in this fundraiser. For more information, click here.

No. 5 – Paddle outs for wildfire tragedy (Sept. 8, South Maui & West Maui)

Paddle outs are scheduled on Maui to honor the victims of Maui wildfires. This paddle out occurred at the Cove in Kīhei last Saturday. PC: Cammy Clark

Paddle outs are planned in South Maui and West Maui Friday to honor the memory of the victims of the Lahaina wildfire. A paddle out takes place at Papalaua Wayside Park “Thousand Peaks,” South of Olowalu, in West Maui at 12 p.m. A separate paddle out is planned at Kalama Park in South Maui for the same day near sunset at 5 p.m..
Nearly 100 people paddled out last Saturday at the Cove in Kihei to honor the memory of victims of the Lahaina fire. Organizers say the gatherings provide an opportunity to bring together the community including surf ‘Ohana to remember the beloved Lahaina Town and those affected by Maui wildfires.

No. 6 – Grammy-winning Kahumoku at Art Project Pāʻia, (Sept. 4, Pāʻia)

George Kahumoku

Multiple Grammy winner George Kahumoku has a night of light music and singing at the Art Project Pāʻia, 77 Hana Highway on Monday from 5 to 7 pm.

Bring your instrument and voice to this kanikapila jam and join the singalong. Admission is free. Donations are accepted. For more information, call 808-214-6949.

No. 7 – Fear’s Last Beer Tour at da Playground Maui (Sept. 1, Māʻalaea)

The Los Angeles-based punk rock band Fear, with Badass Noice Undercity Kings, performs at da Playground Maui on Friday at 8 p.m. The band, with frontman Lee Ving, is credited with helping to shape the sound of hardcore punk.


The group, banned from Saturday Night Live after a performance, is featured in several video game soundtracks, including Grand Auto Theft V. Doors open at 7 p.m. Must be 21 or older. Parking is free after 5 p.m. For more information, including tickets, go to or call 808-727-2571.

No. 8 – Eric Gilliom’s White Hawaiian comedy act returns (Sept. 10, Kīhei)

Eric Gilliom’s critically acclaimed dramatic comedy White Hawaiian returns to the ProArts Theater for three consecutive Sundays, beginning Sept. 10. The comedy begins at 3 p.m.

The play is about Gilliom and his entertainment family, including his own experience as an actor on Broadway. For more information including tickets, go to ProArts Playhouse.

No. 9 – Chenta Laury & Holly Wong exhibits (Sept. 12 – Oct. 28, Kahului)

A Holly Wong installation is scheduled to be on exhibit at the Schaefer International Gallery starting Sept. 12.

Maui artist Chenta Laury and San Franciso artist Holly Wong are exhibiting their works, interpreting the spatial potential of the Schaefer International Galley with installation projects. The exhibit opens on Sept. 12.

Laury’s work synthesizes natural fibers into forms that relate to growth, adaptation and transformation, as modeled by plants and as metaphors for her own life and identity. Wong creates installations of mixed media assemblages harnessing memory, myth and unexpressed trauma in visual reconstruction.

Admission is free. The gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The gallery is also open until 7:30 p.m. for select Castle Theater and Yokouchi Pavilion shows. For more information, go to

No. 10 – Jazz Maui presents An Evening of Classics (Sept. 9, Kīhei)

Jazz Maui presents An Evening of Classics at ProArts Playhouse on Sept. 9 at 7:30 p.m. The special guest is trumpeter Steve Dubey with the Maui Jazz Elements. John Zangrando is on saxophone and flute, Mark Johnstone on piano, Marcus Johnson on bass and Howie Rentzer on drums.

The classics come from Blue Note recordings, including songs by Dizzy Gillespie and Miles Davis. Jazz Maui is part of a nonprofit educational group that provides music workshops in the schools. For more information, including tickets, go to

No. 11 – Mark Johnstone performs at Pāʻia Bay Coffee & Bar (Sept. 3, Pāʻia)

Mark Johnstone

Jazz pianist and singer Mark Johnstone entertains at Pāʻia Bay Coffee & Bar at 120 Hāna Highway on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Johnstone is a member of the Grammy nominated Mick Fleetwood’s Blue Band and also plays regularly with other bands associated with the Jazz Maui series. For more information, go to or call 808-579-3111.

No. 12 – Blue Diamond Trio at Diamonds Bar & Grill (Sept. 3, Kīhei)

The Blue Diamond Trio with Gordon S. on saxophone along with a keyboardist and a drummer performs at Diamonds Bar & Grill on Sunday from 10 a.m. till noon. Breakfast is served.

The restaurant/bar is located at Azeka Shopping Center Mauka. For more information, go to or call 808-874-9299.

No. 13 – Mondokane performs at The Shops of Wailea (Aug. 30, Wailea)


Mondokane performs a free concert at The Shops At Wailea on Wednesday from 4:30 to 6 p.m.

The Maui native is a singer, songwriter and musician who embraces a variety of styles reflecting his tropical island experience, including Hawaiian, contemporary, jazz, rock, reggae, R&B and country.

No. 14 – Fast Freddy’s Blues Showcase at ProArts Playhouse (Sept. 8, Kīhei)

Fast Freddy & Blue Lava Blues Band

Fast Freddy and Blue Lava Blues Band return to ProArts Playhouse on Friday at 7:30 p.m. for a rollicking dance show. Special guest is Adrian Trevino who has played at Fleetwood’s.

The proceeds will benefit the Keiki Relief Fund. For more information, go to

No. 15 – Throwback Thursday fundraiser at da Playground Maui (Aug. 31, Māʻalaea)

DJ Espresso presents a Throwback Thursday dance fundraiser at da Playground Maui with donation proceeds to support families impacted by the Maui wildfire. No cover charge. The music moves to the 80s at 8 p.m., 90s at 9 p.m. and 2000s at 10 p.m.

There’s also a Rumpshaka Booty Drop Contest to win prizes. Must be 21 or older. Parking is free after 5 p.m. For more information, including tickets, go to or call 808-727-2571.

No. 16 – Guitarist-singer Natalie Robles in South Maui (Aug. 31 & Sept. 1)

Natalie Robles

Guitarist-singer Natalie Robles sings soulful covers at the Wailea Marriott’s Kapa Room on Thursday from 5 to 8 p.m. and at the Hotel Wailea’s Birdcage Bar on Saturday from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. She’s at NatalieNicoleRobles on Instagram.

No. 17 – Upcountry Farmers Market (Sept. 2, Kula)

An Upcountry Farmers Market takes place at the Kulamalu Town Center on Highway 37 near Long’s Drugs on Saturday from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Vendors sell fresh locally grown organic produce including coconuts, macadamia nuts, fresh caught fish, tropical flowers, plants & trees, Maui grown coffee, lilikoʻi butter, raw and vegan prepared foods and exotic prepared foods such as Thai.

The Market sometimes serves as a business incubator where new enterprises start, such a Niu Life Kitchen, which now has a storefront at the Promenade in Wailuku. For more information, including any changes in schedule, go to

No. 18 – Maui Swap Meet (Sept. 2, Kahului)

The Maui Swap Meet, with more than 200 vendors and thousands of customers, takes place on Saturday from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. off Kahului Beach Road, across Wahinepiʻo Road from the Maui Arts & Cultural Center.

Vendors sell produce and a variety of goods and crafts. It often serves as an incubator for new businesses. For more information, call 808-244-3100.

No. 19 – Maui Sugar Museum tour (Sept. 4-7, Kahului)

PC: A woman waters plants outside her plantation camp home. Photo courtesy of the Alexander & Baldwin Sugar Museum.

Tours of Maui’s Sugar Museum are conducted at Alexander & Baldwin’s Sugar Museum Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The last admission is at 1 p.m. The museum at 3957 Hansen Road has exhibits about sugar plantation history during its 168 years on Maui and about the waves of immigrant laborers who came to the Hawaiian Islands, including the Chinese, Japanese, Puerto Rican, Portuguese and Filipino.

Admission is free to residents and children 5 and under. For more information including festival tickets, go to or call 808-871-8058.

No. 20 – Kamaole craft fairs (Sept. 3 & 6, Kīhei)

The Lahaina Gift and Craft Fair, formerly at Lahaina Gateway, has been moved to the Kamaole location at the corner of Keonekai and South Kīhei roads across from Kamaole III Park on Sundays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The Kīhei Gift & Craft Fair takes place at the same corner on Wednesdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Vendors sell a variety of items, including jewelry, sculptures, maps, T-shirts, wood carvings, paintings, flowers and soaps. Admission and parking is free to the public. For more information, go to [email protected].


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