Monday, May 23, 2016

Making Food Safe To Eat Again – Highlights from the Center for Food Safety’s Talk on Maui, March 2016

Is it food? Or does it resemble cardboard doused with bug killer? It’s hard to know these days, because currently food is not labeled with GMO ingredients or pesticide content. Not everybody eats this kind of food, but it is commonly available in most supermarkets in the US and increasingly, around the world. It looks like food, tastes like food, smells like food, but is not food.

According to Andrew Kimbrell, Executive Director of the Center for Food Safety, “For the first time in human history, there are a lot of pesticides in food. The EPA has raised the levels of allowable herbicides in food by 20 times in the last 5 to 6 years.”

Pause for a moment. That is a disturbing thought especially to anyone with young children.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Salsa at Z-Land

Deep in the heart of Haiku, down a long driveway, on a narrow road, you’d never expect to find a custom-made dance studio for Cuban salsa dancing aka Casino Rueda. 

But Haiku is full of surprises. It’s more than hippies, chickens, and pot plants. Salsa rueda or Cuban style salsa has been hosted for years by Zephyr at his Z-Land dance studio on Friday nights. Dance lessons are free and last for a half hour, then are followed by an hour of beginning dance, then an hour of advanced dance.The entire session is free.

We drove in the dark, looking for a dance studio from the driveway. We ended up driving all the way down, and parked near a gate to a garden, walked around to a house with lights, but there was only one person visible from the outside, and he looked like he was cooking, so we drove back up the driveway where we heard music and a lot of laughter. 

Friday, May 6, 2016

Seabury Hall Craft Fair

Seabury Hall Craft Fair is one of the largest and most delectable craft fairs on Maui. It will take place tomorrow, Saturday, May 7, from 9 am to 4 pm in Olinda.

Held every spring the Saturday before Mother’s Day, the Seabury Hall Craft Fair is an excuse to splurge, ostensibly on a gift for mom, but just as easily for oneself. Admission is $5 and includes parking. Children 12 years old and younger enter for free. The proceeds go towards financial aid for students who are smart enough to be admitted into this competitive and prestigious secondary school but whose families are not rich enough to foot the entire tuition bill. The yearly tuition is as much as some colleges and universities. 

La Patisserie - outside pastry shop
The craft fair is large, sprawling across the campus and filling several buildings. Outside, rows upon rows of booths display their wares, in a beguiling manner to entice shoppers.  Booths on the main path from the entrance pay the highest fees for their prime location.  The discerning shopper will make sure to wander through all the pathways to visit booths that are tucked farther away from the entrance, down side paths and by the food stands.

Towards the middle of the campus, the outdoor patisserie or French pastry café showcases a smorgasbord of desserts and baked goods. Some cakes and pies are donated by top notch Maui restaurants, while others are made by parents and students slaving away in hot kitchens. 

So many desserts, and this is a fraction of what is presented.
A specially priced ticket lets the buyer select three desserts from the table.  Sometimes this can take a long time, because the desserts are so tempting. The selection of desserts changes during the day: when one dessert is finished, another magically takes its place.

My favorite part of the festival is the area with bouquets. Flowers in creative arrangements fill bowls, vases, and containers of all sizes and shapes. Another table has different types of leis, flower garlands, that are not just colorful and pretty, but some are refined and sophisticated. Fresh produce and garden plants are also for sale.


One building contains silent auction items, donated by many businesses and individuals across Maui. Here is where one may luck out and snag tickets to a luau or private boat trip, accommodations for a weekend getaway, or a coveted restaurant gift certificate for less than the face value.  The gymnasium hosts a rummage sale and is filled with donated items – clothes, household goods, furniture, books - secret treasures which may be disguised as another person’s junk.  Another building has handmade student creations, which are no less interesting than the rest of the fair outside.

For children, there is a water slide in the back of the campus, a bouncy castle or two, face painting, pony riding, and games. Food booths offer a variety of choices so there is no need to leave the fair. All day long, entertainers provide live music. Usually the weather is cooperative and sunny, with occasional mischievous gusts of wind. It’s not uncommon to see crafters grab the table cloth or the tent wall to keep their display from flying.  

For Maui residents and visitors who live on the other side of the island, the craft fair is an excuse to venture Upcountry. Upcountry Maui puts on its most beautiful finery this time of year: the hills are dotted with flowering purple jacaranda trees. Seabury Hall’s campus has several purple trees, which lend a festive air to the occasion.

A flowering purple jacaranda tree on the campus.

Time: 9 am – 4 pm
Date: Saturday, May 7, 2016
Location: Seabury Hall, Olinda, part of Makawao

Visit more posts in the Archives

Reflections on the A to Z Challenge 2016 (Was it FUN?)

Halfway through the A to Z Challenge, I realized I wasn’t having fun. I wasn’t even sure of my participation this year, despite interviewing in January with Noble Portrait about how fun, fun, fun the A to Z Challenge is. Since I hadn’t been able to glue my butt to the seat to write – and preschedule - any posts before April, my commitment was weak. My hemming and hawing continued through the end of March, when I finally decided “What the heck?” and signed up.

Why wasn't it more fun?:

Sunday, May 1, 2016

May 2016 Events At A Glance on Maui

Please visit the websites to make sure the event dates, locations and times are still correct. Event listings will be updated whenever possible.

Sunday, May 1. Last day of St. Joseph’s Feast. An Upcountry Maui tradition with crafts, food, music, and entertainment. St. Joseph’s Church, Makawao. Free!