Residents and visitors of all ages are welcome to enjoy a fun-filled day of arts, crafts, and learning about ʻōhiʻa, Hawai‘i’s most common native tree! The 3rd annual ‘Ōhi‘a Love Fest is a free public event held at ʻImiloa Astronomy Center, 600 ‘Imiloa Place in Hilo, from 9AM – 4PM on Sunday, August 25, 2019.
‘Ōhi‘a plays an integral role in our ecosystems and culture. We are all connected to ‘ōhi‘a in some way, from the water we drink, the landscapes we protect, the lei we wear, the mele (songs) we sing, the beauty we take in while hiking, hunting, or even driving over Saddle Road, to that beloved tree in your back yard or favorite forest.
The goal of this free public event is to celebrate ʻōhiʻa and promote awareness about this important tree and how we can help protect it. Come and listen to history, legends, and workshops about ‘ōhi‘a shared at Mo‘olelo (Story) Corner, take a tour through a 3-D ‘ōhi‘a forest experience, sow some ‘ōhi‘a seeds to start your own mini forest, and watch the 3-time Emmy award-winning film “Saving ‘Ōhi‘a - Hawai‘i’s Sacred Tree,” a documentary about the fight against Rapid ‘Ōhi‘a Death (ROD) disease. Attendees are invited to get answers to questions about Rapid ‘Ōhi‘a Death, the fungal disease threatening ‘ōhi‘a, directly from our ROD researchers.
‘Ōhi‘a Love Fest features crafts, games, prizes, educational booths, a photo booth, live music, hula, and food vendors. As a bonus, ʻŌhiʻa Love Fest attendees will have free access to ʻImiloa Astronomy Center and the planetarium.
The festival is a zero-waste event so please bring your own reusable water bottles.
This event is proudly hosted by the Department of Land and Natural Resources-Division of Forestry and Wildlife, and the University of Hawaiʻi Cooperative Extension Service, with support from the Rapid ‘Ōhi‘a Death Working Group and ʻImiloa Astronomy Center.