The Pacific Islander Festival Association invites all who wish learn about the culture and heritage of the Pacific Islands to the 12th Annual Pacific Islander Festival taking place on Saturday September 23 and Sunday September 24, 2006, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Ski Beach in Mission Bay. The event itself is free and open to the public, however, PIFA will be selling parking passes for $10 per day from 6 to 11a.m. or until lots are full. After Saturday's events there will be a PIFA after party at Cane's Bar and Grill.
This year's festival's theme is Ceremonial Arts of the Pacific. PIFA invites all of San Diego to celebrate the cultures of the Pacific Islands of Polynesia, Melanesia and Micronesia said Board of Directors Member Jasmine Cone. The festival will have more than 60 information booths, food and crafts booths and a cultural village where the culture and traditions of the islands will be on display for all to enjoy an authentic experience of the pacific islands.
"Ceremonial Arts of the Pacific is this year's theme. Each of the different cultures celebrates ceremonies where song and dance is a big part of the ceremony that takes place; it's how we tell stories and pass traditions," Cone said.
PIFA is a non-profit organization designed to educate communities about the rich cultures of the Pacific Islands with emphasis on the indigenous peoples of Polynesia, Melanesia and Micronesia. They pursue endeavors and host events designed to share the "traditional cultures, ancient historical data, languages, attitudes and values" of the pacific island cultures. The festival is one of the largest of its kind and is a non-alcoholic, non-smoking family event said Cone.
The all volunteer organization started 12 years ago in Seaport Village with the first festival and has been gaining momentum with bigger festivals and expanding its membership base, according to Cone. PIFA awards scholarships to outstanding students and community youth who show an outstanding aptitude in leadership and academics.
Miss Pacific Islander of San Diego 2006, Mahealani Kathrine Mansinon-Vicente will also be at the festival. PIFA awarded Mansinon-Vicente the title for her upstanding role in the community and her many academic accomplishments. She is a full time student as well as a first line dancer for Ka Halau Hula of Napua Ilima "˜O Kehaulani, a local traditional Polynesian dance group. The group specializes in traditional Hawaiian, Tahitian, Samoan and Maori dance.
Ka Halau Hula of Napua Ilima "˜O Kehaulani is scheduled to perform at the Pacific Islander Festival on Saturday September 23, 2006.
For more information visit www.pacificislanders.com or call (619) 699-8797.