What to do in Hawaii in April

Lei Culture Events Hawaii April

Surf lessons, tanning on the sand, and snorkeling above Pacific reefs are sure bets in Hawai‘i. Once you’ve gotten your fill, these community events, performances, and parties are perfect outings for the socialite or curious traveler.

Image by Rachel Halemanu

Ru Paul’s Drag Race | Hula’s Bar & Lei Stand (O‘ahu) | Every Monday, 9:30 p.m.

Host Cocoa Chandelier sets the stage for Hula’s weekly viewing party of Ru Paul’s Drag Race. Enjoy drink specials and the beautiful faces you are sure to see at the show.



Upcountry Farmers Market | Kulamalu Town Center (Maui) | Saturdays, 7 to 11 a.m.

Drive out to this eclectic market complete with crafters, farmers, and bakers. If you want to get a taste of local produce, this is for you! Expect fun treats ranging from the classic to the innovative, including Maui Cones (We recommend the mochiko chicken.). If you can’t make it, don’t stress—there are markets all around the islands on various days.



Chitty Chitty Bang Bang | The Republik, Honolulu (O‘ahu) | April 2, 10:30 p.m. | $5

Party down with emcee Roxy on the Mic, DJ Tittabyte, and many beautiful people from Honolulu. This month, it’s also an event for the 2015 Honolulu AIDs Walk.



Wailuku First Friday | Wailuku Town (Maui) | April 3, 6 p.m.

Enjoy ono food, live entertainment, and dance at this street party. A variety of street vendors sell goods throughout the event.



34th Annual Mac-A-Thon | Keoua Canoe Club Halau (Hawai‘i Island) | April 4, 7 a.m.

Take part in Hawai‘i Island’s longest-running annual foot race with a 5k or 10k race. Then, stick around for a silent auction and macadamia nut pancake breakfast!



Amy Hanaiali‘i & Willie K. … Hana Hou! | Castle Theater at Maui Arts and Cultural Center, Kahului (Maui) | April 4, 7:30 p.m. | $12-$55

These two Hawaii music stars, Amy Hanaiali‘i and Willie Kahaiali‘i, have created magical albums both independently and together. Join them on Maui as they reunite once more.



The 52nd Annual Merrie Monarch Festival | Edith Kanaka‘ole Stadium (Hawai‘i Island) | April 5 – 11, various times | Prices vary

Merrie Monarch is more than just a festival. It is the beating heart at the center of Hawai’i’s hula world. Celebrate the art of hula during this weeklong affair with a parade, free events, and much more.



‘Ohana Slack Key Guitar & Ukulele Concert | Hanalei Community Center, Hanalei (Kaua‘i) | April 10, 4 –  6 p.m. | $20

Enjoy the sounds of Hawaiian slack key guitar, a tradition that originated when vaqueros (cowboys) from Mexico and Spain came to Hawai‘i Island to pass on knowledge of sustainable cattle ranching to paniolo (Hawaiian cowboys). They left behind guitars, and the paniolo came up with their own style of playing. Today, its sound is synonymous with the islands.



Hawaii International Film Festival | Regal Dole Cannery Stadium 18, Honolulu (Oahu) | April 10 – 19

This spring festival is a showcase of amazing films, from ones debuted at Sundance to others that wowwed in Asia. Headed by Lei profile Robert Lambeth, HIFF is an amazing source for film and inspiration. Films play throughout the ten day festival.



Maui GLBT & Friends Hiking Group | La Perouse Bay Hike (Maui), Meet at Café La Plage | April 11, 8 a.m.

Mark your calendars and take part on this gorgeous hike. This bay is a beautiful location for swimming, snorkeling, and hiking.



Digital Wonderland Music Festival | Hawaii Country Club, Wahiawa (O‘ahu) | April 11, 6 p.m. | $55

Party the night away to electronic dance music at the beautiful Hawaii Country Club. If EDM is your thing, this is a setting and scene you won’t forget.



Jack White | Blaisdell Arena | April 15, 8 p.m. | $30 – $55

Musician and producer Jack White, who got his name as half of the White Stripes duo, is playing only one show at Blaisdell Arena, and it’s sure to be a rock and roll affair.



Kaua’i Open Studios Art Tour | Artists’ studios around Kaua‘i | April 18 and April 26 | Free

Pick up a tour guidebook for this two-weekend event at the Kauai Art Tour studio at Kukui Grove Center and then head out around Kauai to visit artists at work in their studios. Weekend one covers ground from Lihue to Waimea; weekend two covers Wailua to Hanalei.



Maui Pride 321 Karaoke | Moose McGillycuddys (Maui) | April 18, 8 – 11 p.m.

If you’re looking for a fun way to experience karaoke with your friends, you won’t want to miss this party!



Kanikapila Community Concert & Picnic | Hale Halawai, Kailua-Kona (Hawai‘i Island) | April 18, 4 p.m. to sunset

Kanikapila is Hawaiian for a musical jam session, roughly. Tradition at luau and community gatherings, kanikapila are also a chance for visitors and locals to gather around with picnics, a nice sunset view, and soak up the tunes.



Chinese Kite Festival | Wo Hing Museum, Lahaina and Keka‘a North Beach Open Space, Ka’anapali (Maui) | April 17, 1 – 8 p.m. in Lahaina; April 18, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Ka’anapali

Learn about the history of kites in China, and how to make your own kite on Friday, then take it out for a spin Saturday in Ka’anapali and watch incredible aerial sport kits in action.



Kokua Kailua Village Stroll and Hulile`e Palace Performance | Kailua Village (Hawai‘i Island) | April 19, 1 – 6 p.m.

Enjoy free Hawaiian tunes performed by Merrie Monarch’s Men’s Glee Club accompanied by hula by Kumu Hula Etua Lopes and his halau Na Pua U`i O Hawai’i on the Palace’s South Lawn at 4 p.m. (Bring your own beach mat or chair!) Before and after the performance, enjoy the sights and sounds of the village.



Rainbow Dine-Out Group | Frida’s Mexican Beach House (Maui) | April 21, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. | $12 and up

Enjoy good food and great company at Maui’s monthly Rainbow Dine-Out. Come prepared to make new friends and don’t be afraid to bring some old ones too!



22nd Annual Haiku Ho’olaule’a and Flower Festival | Haiku Community Center, Haiku (Maui) | April 25, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. | Free

This is a good one if you have keiki (Hawaiian for children), or want to learn more about those beautiful lei that are a symbol of the aloha spirit. Expect live entertainment, keiki activities, tasty dishes, a bake sale, and floral and lei making design.