BayFest rightly earns its reputation for the coolest Fourth of July party in Hawaii, and this year by adding a fifth day it’s bigger than ever
By Chad Pata
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The rides at BayFest offer lovely views of a blue
Kaneohe Bay — when the spinning stops
While there are many options this holiday, the Fourth of July weekend now seems to belong to BayFest at the Marine Corps Base Hawaii in Kaneohe.
Sure, there are other fireworks displays, but no others feature the world famous Grucci Brothers, who have set off their pyrotechnics at presidential inaugurations and Olympiads.
Carnival rides were available at the 50th State Fair, in the barren hotbox that is the Aloha Stadium parking lot. But would you rather ride the Ferris wheel and get a beautiful view of our Rust Bowl or the tranquil blue expanse of Kaneohe Bay?
You get the idea. This marks the 17th annual BayFest, and they have got the formula down. Last year they drew 48,000 residents to the four-day event and plan to surpass those numbers as they have added a fifth day and more entertainment.
Originally envisioned as a way to introduce the usually secluded base to the public, it has grown into a multifaceted hoolaulea. There are boat rides around Coconut Island, Island Life Expos and contests for the beautiful (BodySearch Fitness Challenge) and the bovine (Papa John’s Pizza Eating Contest).
Not lost in the festivities is the seriousness of the business in which the men and women of the base are usually entrenched. The Military Static Display allows the public to not just view but touch a variety of military equipment ranging from tanks and helicopters to communication devices and weapons.
Finally, there is the music. In a state where we sometimes go months between seeing big Mainland bands, BayFest is providing five in a row that cover the spectrum of music.
If gangsta rap is your thing, Juvenile opens the fest on Friday. Country music makes appearances with Chris Cagle and Trick Pony, while southern rock is represented by .38 Special and Molly Hatchet. Alt rock throws its hat in with New England’s own Staind.
Each night’s ticket goes for $20 for local residents, a pittance when compared with most concert prices on Oahu. They are also offering wristbands for noon to 5 p.m. for unlimited carnival rides for just $12.
For more information, you can go to http://www.bayfesthawaii.com, and for more information on the bands playing, keep reading as MidWeek caught up with Juvenile and chart topper Staind.
The old cliché of life being like a roller coaster has rarely rung truer than it has in the past year for New Orleans-based artist Juvenile.
In August he lost not only his house but the homes, and in some cases lives, of 200 relatives that inhabited the area. He was fortunate to be out of the area at the time, but as he related to MTV News, he was shaken to the core by the aftermath.
“It looked like 28 Days Later or War of the Worlds,” he said in September about returning shortly after Katrina hit.
“Everything is tore up. Cars on top of houses. It was emotional, real emotional looking at my house, ‘cause I just finished building it right before the hurricane hit. But material things for me, I don’t
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