Bigger Plans for 2nd Annual Made in Maui County Festival
The upcoming Made in Maui County Festival boasts a larger format with more products, vendors food trucks, “and more reasons to buy local,” event organizers said.
The 2nd annual event is scheduled to take place on Nov. 6 and 7, 2015 at the Maui Arts and Cultural Center in Kahului.
This week, the Festival’s presenters – the County of Maui Mayor’s Office of Economic Development and the Maui Chamber of Commerce – announced the final list of 150 vendors and food trucks who will be participating in the 2015 event. More than 40 businesses are new to the list this year.
Product vendors had to meet certain criteria in order to participate, including having their business based in Maui County.
Products also had to meet a minimum 51% requirement of their value added in Hawaiʻi. The product mix, quality and creativity value of products were also considered during the selection process.
Last year, the inaugural event drew a crowd of more than 9,500, with a total of 130 vendors participating. During the 2014 event, vendors reported more than $300,000 in product sales transactions, more than 180 new accounts and wholesale orders closed, and more than 1,000 leads for future sales and wholesale accounts generated. “This year, the Festival is focused on expanding the event’s impact,” organizers said.
“Improving the business environment in Maui County is important to us, and this Festival has been very successful at doing just that,” said Maui Mayor Alan Arakawa in an event press release. “It was a great success last year and it is poised to be an even bigger event this year. It’s all part of our efforts to strengthen and diversify our local economy and I encourage everyone to stop by and check out all of our vendors,” he said.
“This Festival is more than an annual event – it’s all about creating opportunities for our small businesses here at home,” said Teena Rasmussen, Director of the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development.
“In an effort to accommodate more shoppers this year, we’ve expanded the show to include additional vendors. We also opened the Festival for the first time to the general public on Friday with our Shoppers Preview. Not only will these efforts provide vendors with additional opportunities to promote their products to potential consumers, but it will also help them to connect with potential wholesale and retailer buyers,” said Rasmussen.
Michelle Jones, co-owner of Two Chicks In A Hammock said, “Prior to the 2014 Made in Maui County Festival, our chili pepper water was sold in approximately 28 stores on Maui and Lānaʻi and I worked full-time at another business to make ends meet. After the exposure we received at last year’s festival, our products are now carried in 128 stores statewide including one store in Canada and we picked up a distributor. I now work full-time on the business. The Made in Maui County Festival gave us the kick-start we needed to grow our company.”
Companies like Matsumoto Studio were also able to showcase their notecards and stationery to new wholesale clients at the festival. Their products are now sold in T.J. Maxx, Marshalls and Home Goods.
“The Made in Maui County Festival was not only an absolute success in direct sales and revenue for the day, it was also a fantastic opportunity to bring more brand awareness for our products which allowed us to connect with new and existing customers, and helped us establish further credibility that we are truly a made in Hawaiʻi product,” said Shaun Bayles, co-owner of Chic Naturals.
The Shoppers Preview event takes place from 2 to 6 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 6, and will give shoppers a one-day head start. Attendees will also enjoy the festival’s opening ceremonies and VIP reception. A limited 500 tickets will be sold to the general public for Friday’s event. Tickets are $35 per person and are available at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center Box Office or (808) 242-SHOW (7469) or MauiArts.org.
On Saturday, Nov. 7, the Made in Maui County Festival will be open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Public admission is $5 at the gate; children 12 and under get in free. Saturday’s festivities will include demonstrations, a fashion show, food trucks and prize drawings. The first 2,000 attendees will also receive a free festival tote bag.
“The 2014 event reaffirmed what we already knew, that there is a tremendous demand for made in Hawaiʻi products produced by Maui County businesses,” said Pamela Tumpap, President of the Maui Chamber of Commerce. “Those who attend this year’s event are in for a real treat with the opportunity to shop for a myriad of products produced by talented entrepreneurs. Best of all, you’ll be helping to grow these businesses while investing in our islands’ economy,” she said.
Vendors who will be participating in the 2nd Annual Made in Maui County Festival this November include: 808 Clothing;808 Shells; Aloha Botanicals Maui; Aloha Letterpress; Aloha Spiced Cacao; ‘Alohi Images Maui; Amata Jewelry Studio; Ark Ceramics; Art by Loyd; B Raw Bar; Barking Deer Farm; BDC Designs; Chic Naturals; Christina DeHoff Fine Art; Cool Blue Maui; Cupcake Ladies Catering Co.; Debra Lumpkins Studio; exfolicare; Fresh Local Product; Goddess Rising Perfumes; Grace Boutique; Haleakalā Creamery; Hali`i by Harriet; Hāliʻimaile Distilling Company; Hāliʻimaile Pineapple Company; Hāna Herbs & Flowers and Leila’s; Hano’s; Hapa Maui; Hawaiʻi Blown Glass; Hawaiʻi Fudge Company; HAWAIʻI Magazine *; Hawaiʻi Natural Products; Hawaiʻi Sea Spirits; Hawaiian Airlines *; Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar Company *; Hill Fine Art Photography; Hui Noʻeau Visual Arts Center; Hula Cookies; Hulunani by Leonani; Island Style Bedding & Home Decor; Jackie Pias Carlin; JB Creations; Jennifer’s Gourds; Jonerz Art & Sparrow Seas; joy’s place LIVE!; Kaha Jewelry; Kanemitsu; Kealopiko; Keaohulu; KensSu Jewelry; Kula Crafts & Flowers; Kupu Aʻe Molokaʻi; Lako Kula Design; Lanakila Designs / Kainanea; LeiAloha by Maile; Liquid Sunshine Jewelry; Lori C. Unfus; Lorraine’s; Lustrous Maui; Matsumoto Studio; Maui Breadfruit Company; Maui Brewing Company; Maui Coffee Association / Pueo Coffee; Maui Coffee Roasters; Maui Crisps; Maui Dirty Girl Art; Maui Dog Wear; Maui Drift; Maui Excellent; Maui Fruit Jewels; Maui Gourmet Popcorn; Maui Island Love; Maui J & M Photography; Maui Jelly Factory; Maui Ketchup; Maui Koa Wood Creations; Maui Mini Aloha Shirt Souvenirs; Maui Monkey Business; Maui No Ka Oi Magazine *; Maui Nui Wear; Maui Printing Company *; Maui Rainbow Tea; Maui Soap Company; Maui Sweet Cakes; Maui Tiki; Maui Visitor Channel *; Maui Wild Cultures; Maui Wine / ʻUlupalakua Vineyards; Maui Woodys; MauiTiki; Mike Carroll Gallery; Misha Seelhoff; Moku Pua; Mona Lisa Maui; Nā Kani O Hula; Nā Koa Brand; Nā Mea Molokaʻi; Nahele Designs; ʻOno Nuts; Opihi Maui; Out of the Blue LLC; Pacifica Hawaiʻi; Palapala Designs; Paradise Now; Pasha Hawaiʻi *; Pilialoha Keiki; Poi by the Pound; Queen Bee Maui; Rock Salt Plum Creations / Hattherapi; Ron L. Designs; Rosebuds; Roxanne Broadbent Surfboard Art; Sailbags Maui; Sarai Stricklin; Scott Mead Photography; Sew Kolohe; Seyana Jewelry; Shaka Pops Maui; She Shells Maui; Sherri Reeve Gallery; Snoops!; SuiKeala Jewelry; Surfing Goat Dairy; Te Hotu Mana Creations; The Mad Hatter of Maui; The Maui Closet Company; The Maui News *; Three Coconuts Maui; Tracy Lamon Designs; Treehouse Designs; Two Chicks In A Hammock; Uncle Louie Sausage Co.; Upcountry Maui Favorites; Victoria Wundram / Maui Artist; Wow-Wee Maui’s Candy Bar; and Wrappily. (*=Event sponsor)