Steel Trappings

Hawai‘i Island Steel Guitar Festival COVID-19

Hawai‘i Island Steel Guitar Festival Canceled

October 11, 2020 • Addison ChingFestivals and Conventions

After months of anticipation, delays and uncertainty due to COVID-19, the 2020 Hawai‘i Island Steel Guitar Festival has been canceled.

At its October 5, board meeting, HIMELE board of directors discussed the festival with regard to personnel safety and uncertainty in the areas of personnel travel and quarantine. After discussion, the HIMELE board of directors decided by vote that it was best to cancel the 2020 festival and plan for a future festival in 2021.

Both HIMELE and the Mauna Lani, Auberge Resorts Collection had hoped that restrictions implemented to address the pandemic would be somewhat relaxed by the planned festival date in December.

Based on current guidance issued by the State of Hawai‘i, the Mauna Lani will reopen its doors to guests on November 7 after being shut down since the spring due to the pandemic.

However, travel availability to Hawai‘i Island still remains sketchy while airlines ramp up their interisland and transpacific travel schedules.

A new COVID testing program will be implemented mid-October that may be an acceptable alternative to quarantining but the actual effectiveness of that program won't be known until the program is actually implemented. While the State will require testing prior to arrival in Hawai‘i, Hawai‘i Island will also require a second post-arrival test for arriving transpacific travelers.

The 14-day interisland quarantine for Hawai‘i residents remains in effect for all islands except O‘ahu.

In the meantime, HIMELE will continue to offer monthly livestreamed Hawaiian Steel Guitar Showcases featuring popular Hawaiian steel guitar masters and NextGen musicians. A list and status of Hawaiian steel guitar festivals and events appears on HIMELE's website.

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About HIMELE
HIMELE is a Hawai‘i non-profit corporation that supports music enrichment and education for people of all ages. Our purpose is to educate, promote, and perpetuate Hawaiian music, Hawaiian culture and Hawaiian musical instruments.