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Ka Po’e … The People

Beneficiary ApplicationThe Kona Brewers Festival is truly a heartfelt event in Hawaii. People from all walks of life come together at this event. People meet, catch up on each others lives, work hard together, celebrate success, promise to support each others initiatives and then go back, energized, to continue to deliver their diverse programs.

The Kona Brewers Festival organizers are humbled by the generosity and amazing talents of our island community. It is with great pleasure to note that over the past 26 years, the Kona Brewers Festival has become one of Kailua Kona’s premier events and raised $1,400,000 for well-deserving non-profit organizations.

All of the beneficiaries contribute to the success of the Kona Brewers Festival by recruiting volunteers and professional expertise. Careful evaluation is made to ensure that these organizations effectively achieve their goals and meet critical needs in our community. Priority is given to groups that share resources as well as continually strive to improve and create collaborative programs.

Beneficiary Application

The following organizations are past Beneficiaries of the Kona Brewers Festival. We encourage you to check out these websites and continue to support their good work throughout the year.

Kohala Elementary Discover Garden

The KES Discovery Garden, located in Kapaau, Hawaii, is a learning garden for 354 students from Pre-Kindergarten to 5th grade, their teachers, staff, and families, as well as the greater community of North Kohala. It encompasses two acres of vegetable and herb beds, canoe crops, a fruit tree orchard, pollination gardens, and traditional Hawaiian plants. The garden is a place for outdoor learning and discovery, where all students can excel and are welcomed. Through land stewardship, citizenship, and experiential learning, students form healthy habits and learn valuable skills that can be applied to all academic subjects.

Ka’u High and Pahala Elementary School

Ka’u High & Pahala Elementary School is seeking to create an educational garden that will engage pre-K through 6th grade students in hands-on, garden-based learning. As of this year, students at Pahala Elementary will attend weekly gardening classes, during which they will have a chance to connect to their food and the āina. As the school’s FoodCorps Service Member, my hope is to engage Pahala Elementary students in a variety of activities, ranging from vermicomposting, growing vegetables hydroponically, making natural plant dyes, and learning how to grow and cook local foods.

Kahaki Elementary School Garden

The goals of the Kahakai School garden is to build an area for students to actively engage in “getting their hands dirty” by learning about gardening and sustainability at an early age. By working together in this garden area, students will develop a strong sense of place, responsibility and ownership. In addition, this program will support good nutrition, physical exercise, sustainability and sense of community be working collaboratively.

Kealakehe Culinary Program

The Kealakehe High School Culinary Arts Program focuses on preparing students for careers and college readiness.  Students begin with a broad overview of Public and Human Services, developing skills in communication, team leadership, and academic basics. Students learn culinary techniques and demonstrate proficiency in food handling and safety, knife skills and the operation of a fully equipped commercial kitchen.  Through a combination of hands-on training with Guest Chefs and industry partners, students begin to develop real life abilities and career readiness. Hands on learning projects engage students in healthy eating, while sharing with the community concepts in living purposefully.  The Culinary Program provides field trips to private and public operations, exposing students to practices in sustainability, food security, and professional, ethical practices.

Keoua Honaunau Canoe Club

Our programs are open to all members and include Youth and Novice programs. Membership is open to the public. Our programs promote environmental awareness; Hawaiian cultural concepts of family (‘ohana), cooperation (laulima) and making things right (ho‘oponopono); and include instruction in Hawaiian language associated with traditional outrigger canoe paddling, construction, operation, maintenance, and repair.

Kona Dance & Performing Arts

Kona Dance & Performing Arts strives to provide high quality instruction and education in dance and performing arts to the local youth and the Big Island community. Some of the prominent dance genre offered range from ballet, jazz, tap, musical theatre, hip hop and contemporary. During community performances, the depth of the lessons our students learn extend far beyond pliés and pointing their toes. They learn self-discipline, self-awareness, perseverance, and collaboration skills. They learn essential skills as they become career and/or college ready. Each performance helps the dancers build confidence and gives them opportunities to learn more about themselves as well as an opportunity to grow as a person.

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Big Island Music Academy

The Big Island Music and Arts Academy is an institution dedicated to educating and empowering people to excel in music, especially popular music and improvisational music, and the arts. Our mission is to provide a safe place for all people, with a focus on ages 10-18 years old, to experience various outlets of healthy, positive self-expression, and to grow in confidence and self-awareness. Our purpose is to teach people, through the experience of participating in multi-faceted group performances, the powerful role that every citizen plays within the greater community.

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Kai Opua Canoe Club

Kai ‘Opua Canoe Club offers outrigger canoe racing to people of all ages, from keiki (children) to seniors. With teams ranging in ability from groups of novices to world champions, we provide activities for enthusiasts of all levels.
Kai ‘Opua Canoe Club is also host to the World’s Largest Long Distance Outrigger Canoe Races – “The Queen Lili’uokalani”, now in it’s 43rd year. Crews from around the world converge on Kona for this prestigious event every Labor Day weekend.

Hawaii Wildlife Fund

HAWAI’I WILDLIFE FUND (HWF) is a non-profit organization dedicated to the conservation of Hawaii’s native wildlife through research, education and advocacy. HWF Team is made up of educators, conservationists, researchers, naturalists, communities, volunteers and donors devoted to the protection of Hawaii’s fragile marine ecosystem and inhabitants. We bring a variety of experiences together to serve a common goal.

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Keauhou Canoe Club

The mission of the Keauhou Canoe Club is to educate our youth, our membership, and the community at large about Hawaiian culture, values, and traditions and to promote competitive and recreational outrigger canoe paddling and other water sports in historic Keauhou Bay.

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Kahilu Theatre

Kahilu Theatre is a not-for-profit community arts and education center dedicated to serving our diverse Hawai’i Island community. Kahilu Theatre presents world-class artists from Hawai’i and beyond, sustains a youth arts education program, provides performance space for community based productions, and showcases local visual artists in its two galleries. Kahilu is a place where the community comes together and the arts come alive. http//

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Ke Kai Ola: Saving the Hawaiian Monk Seal

Ke Kai Ola (“The Healing Sea”) is a state-of-the-art hospital dedicated to rehabilitating injured, ill, and orphaned Hawaiian monk seals and returning them healthy to their ocean home. The hospital, which opened in Kailua-Kona in 2014, is a “pu’uhonua,” a place of safety and peace for the seals. And a place where children and youth will learn to take care for this beautiful marine mammal. Working together to promote monk seal conservation will ensure the future of the Hawaiian monk seal.  Ke Kai Ola is a program of The Marine Mammal Center, a 501c3 nonprofit whose mission is to expand knowledge about marine mammals-their health and that of their ocean environment-and inspire their global conservation. Visit to learn more.

Family Support Hawaii

Family Support Hawai’i was founded in 1979 by members of the community who were concerned about the life-long consequences of child abuse and neglect. They began providing prevention and early intervention services through Kapi’olani Women’s and Children’s Center until 1985, when FSH incorporated and became an independent, community based, not for profit organization.

Being community based is a fundamental principle for Family Support Hawaii. To us that means many things: that our staff work in the communities in which they live; that we have a council of advisors who live in each district who help staff set program priorities for their area and their home community.

Family Support Hawaii now provides supportive services to more than 3,500 Hawai’i Island individuals and families each year.

Ke Kula ‘o ‘Ehunuikamalino

Mele Murals is a youth development, arts education, cultural preservation, and community-building project.  Over a five-year period, starting in late 2013, local artists, youth, and other members of communities spanning the eight major islands of Hawai`i will create a series of large-scale outdoor murals focusing on Hawaiian lyrics (mele) that explore mo`olelo `aina (stories of place) and cultural and historical heritage.

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Keahole Center for Sustainability

Keahole Center for Sustainability, a nonprofit organization, aims to inspire a positive public perception of aquaculture, ocean research, renewable energy (including deep, cold ocean water), and other activities related to a sustainable future. We provide presentation/tours daily at 10 am. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday is Ocean Matters; focused on innovative ocean science and technology. Wednesday and Friday we do our NELHA Grand Tour, including on-site visitation of several aquaculture facilities, and a visit to the Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion facility. Grand Tours are from 10 am-12:30 pm. Reservations are suggested, and can be made online at

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Society for Kona’s Education and Art (SKEA)

The Society for Kona’s Education & Art (SKEA) has been serving the South Kona area for over 30 years with events and programs that contribute to a vibrant community. The organization occupies two historic buildings in Honaunau that was once the Japanese Language School. This site provides plenty of space for events such as Music on the Lawn, the Mauka Talent Show, the Annual Membership Meeting, Quilt Show, lectures, and small musical events. A primary focus of the organization are two children’s programs: the Art of Learning, an innovative arts education program in the public schools; and Art Camps, week-long day camps during the school breaks that immerse students in a variety of art mediums. SKEA is proud of its long partnership with the Kona Brewers’ Festival and we are honored to be a grantee again this year. Funds will be used for the Art of Learning in the South Kona schools and for the 2014 Spring and Summer Art Camps.

Peoples Advocacy for Trails Hawai`i (PATH)

PATH is a grassroots, bicycle and pedestrian advocacy organization formed in 1986 to promote traffic safety education, and a safe environment on roadways and trails for recreation, fitness and alternative modes of transportation. Festival funds are dedicated to bike safety programs taught to children at area schools.

Na Wai Iwi Ola Foundation

Nā Wai Iwi Ola (NWIO) Foundation is a multigenerational, community-based educational foundation, currently collaborating with organizations that focus on modeling and living the Hawaiian culture, traditions and values. Through hands-on activities, NWIO applies the knowledge shared by our kūpuna through the art of hula & chants. NWIO foundation focuses on giving students the opportunity to see the world through their own eyes. “Why did King David Kalākaua travel the world?” It is important that our students understand the PONO of existing within this world using the shoes of our kūpuna.“E Ola Mau ke Ola Pono” Let the righteousness of life live forever!

Kona Pacific Public Charter School

Our mission is to cultivate in young people the skills, knowledge, and values they need to reach their highest potential. Embodied within this mission statement is a commitment to ensure that the education we offer is both reflective of the character of our community and supportive of community aspirations. To this end, the school’s curriculum weaves three strands of focus into a seamless and inspiring education program: Waldorf curriculum and pedagogy, Hawaiian cultural studies, and sustainable agriculture.
Beyond the core mission and educational program, Kona Pacific strives towards a larger vision of community service. We operate several programs that reach far beyond our basic school operations. Above all, we seek to improve the quality of life in our community, and continuously seek to build our capacity to develop and implement educational and social support tools that will enable us to fulfill this vision.

Kealakehe Project Grad

Project Grad is comprised of parent volunteers who work to provide a safe location for graduates of Kealakehe High School to be with their friends and enjoy an all night alcohol and drug-free celebration. The group promotes safe driving, responsible behaviors and camaraderie for Kealakehe’s high school’s graduating seniors.

Innovations Public Charter School

Our vision is to educate the whole child — body, mind and spirit — through a team approach to child centered learning. As a learning ohana, we value an environment of aloha which nurtures trust, respect, self-expression without fear, open minds and hearts and continuous improvement. We believe that through quality education, students receive the assistance needed to achieve high standards. Our ohana embraces caring for the aina through school-wide garden and sustainability programs. An appreciation of the arts is fostered through school-wide arts and drama programs.

Honaunau Elementary School

Honaunau Elementary School

Honaunau Elementary School is a public school that serves 165 students, pre-kindergarten through fifth grade.  The campus is surrounded by the rural farming community of Honaunau and is a Title One School.  Approximately 25% of our students are English as a Second Language Learners.  Ninety-six percent qualify for free and reduced lunch.  Dedicated funds will be used to support the school’s garden program. The purpose of Honaunau School’s Garden Program is to cultivate appreciation, interest, and wonder in our natural world while educating and creating community through the children of Honaunau.

Explorations Foundation

West Hawaii Explorations Academy (WHEA) was founded in 1994 in partnership with the Hawaii DOE and the Natural Energy Lab of Hawaii Authority (NELHA) in Kona. WHEA’s mission is to provide learning opportunities through integrative, hands-on, self-selected projects related to authentic, real-world problems. WHEA’s motto is “No Child Left Indoors” and the curriculum focus is science and technology.

Donkey Mill Art Center

The Donkey Mill Center provides art education and experiences to people of all ages and abilities at our facility in Holualoa. This includes hands-on classes, exhibitions, and events of contemporary visual arts, crafts and culture. Funds from the Festival are dedicated to scholarships for youth art education programs. Art is life. Life is art.

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