Kauaʻi Poke Fest announces Hawaiʻi Community Foundation – Maui Strong Fund as beneficiary

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Poke bowl from the Kauaʻi Poke Fest competition in 2023. Courtesy of Kōloa Landing Resort

This June, proceeds from ticket sales for the Kauaʻi Poke Fest, an annual celebration and competition of Hawaiʻi’s famous dish hosted by Kōloa Landing Resort, will support the Hawaiʻi Community Foundation (HCF) – Maui Strong Fund.

“As part of the Hawai‘i community, we are continuously looking for ways we can support each other and in this case, help Maui recover,” said Aaron Bambling, general manager of Kōloa Landing Resort on Kaua‘i. “At this year’s Kaua‘i Poke Fest, we’re very excited to join Hawai‘i Community Foundation and the Herbig Brothers who have a passion for giving back and supporting our community in raising funds for families displaced by the Maui wildfires.”

HCF is working closely with state and county leaders, nonprofit organizations and members of the community to understand the evolving priorities and unmet needs of families displaced by the Maui wildfires. As of Feb. 9, 2024, the Maui Strong Fund has raised $180,216,799 that will support the immediate and long-term recovery of Maui families.


“All of us at the Hawai‘i Community Foundation express our sincere mahalo to Kōloa Landing Resort for donating the proceeds of the Kaua‘i Poke Fest to the Maui Strong Fund,” said Micah Kane, CEO and president of the Hawai‘i Community Foundation. “Everyone who takes part in the Kaua‘i Poke Fest will not only enjoy a great event but will know that they’re helping to support the people and places on Maui affected by the August fires.”

Two Pittsburgh Steelers professional athletes and brothers, Nate and Nick Herbig, will serve as celebrity judges for the 2024 Kaua‘i Poke Fest poke competition, returning to their birthplace of Kauaʻi to reaffirm their commitment to giving back to their community.

The Herbig brothers are alumni of Saint Louis High School on Oʻahu and currently play for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Nick recently completed his rookie season as an outside linebacker, while Nate completed his fifth season in the NFL as an offensive guard. Following the devastating Maui wildfires, the brothers teamed up to show their support for their Hawaiʻi community, partnering with Dick’s Sporting Goods’ Sports Matter program to present the Lahainaluna High School football team with a $25,000 grant to support their upcoming season. They also created “Herbie Gives,” a program that provides education and opportunities for the youth of Hawaiʻi.


“Poke has been one of our favorite foods since we were kids,” said Nick Herbig. “We are stoked to be a part of this event back on Kaua‘i this summer.”

The Kaua‘i Poke Fest, an annual celebration of Hawai‘i’s famous dish, features a competition between professional and amateur chefs with an original poke recipe, live entertainment, food and drinks, and a poke demonstration by James Beard Award winning Chef Sam Choy. Event attendees, along with a panel of celebrity judges, will get to sample and vote for their favorite dish in the following categories: taste, originality and presentation.

The event takes place on Saturday, June 8, 2024. For Kaua‘i Poke Fest tickets, applications to compete, room packages, or for more information visit KauaiPokeFest.com.


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