Top 20 things to do on Big Island for Feb. 15-21: Pana‘ewa Stampede Rodeo, Streetlight Cadence, pancake breakfast and so much more

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Sure, Valentine’s Day was officially on Wednesday, but that doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate with your sweetheart this weekend, too. There are plenty of activities and events happening around the Big Island that would make for a great date or outing with family and friends.

The annual Pana‘ewa Stampede Rodeo returns to Hilo on Saturday and Sunday, featuring popular events such as cattle roping, double mugging and bull riding. There’s also a chance to enjoy art in the great outdoors with Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park Artist in Residence Diana Miller.

If you’re more musically inclined, there are several concerts and live shows around the island, including an event at ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center in Hilo celebrating the 50th anniversary of Pink Floyd’s “The Dark Side Of The Moon,” busking band Streetlight Cadence returns to the Kahilu Theatre stage in Waimea and “9 to 5: The Musical” opens this Friday at the Aloha Theatre in Kealakekua.

There’s also a stop motion workshop for keiki starting next week at the East Hawai‘i Cultural Center in Hilo, a pancake breakfast Sunday to raise funds for the Daifukuji Soto Zen Buddhist Temple in Kona and a community garage sale in Kealakekua.

You could even get some cat yoga or qigong in, too.

Here are our top 20 things to do on the Big Island for the week of Feb. 15-21.


No. 1 — Pana‘ewa Stampede Rodeo (Hilo, Feb. 17-18)

Image from Panaʻewa Stampede Rodeo website.

Get ready for two days of rodeo action, rain or shine, at the Pana‘ewa Equestrian Center’s Al Cabral Arena, located at 800 Stainback Highway, in Hilo.

Filled with wonderful shows, vendors and more, this annual event features po’o wai u, a favorite paniolo (Hawaiian cowboy) steer-capturing technique, and other popular rodeo sports such as cattle roping, double mugging and bull riding throughout Presidents’ Day weekend. There’s even a funny rodeo clown.

Gates open at 6 a.m. on both days. The rodeo action starts at 11 a.m. Sunday Cowboy Church is at 9 a.m. For more information or to purchase tickets, click here.

No. 2 — Art in the Park: Painting Demonstration and Talk Story with Artist in Residence Diana Miller (Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, Feb. 17)

Courtesy image of a portion of a painting by Diana Miller

Learn from a master artist and park ranger Diana Miller during this free painting demonstration from noon to 3 p.m. at the Kahuku Visitor Contact Station in the park’s Kahuku Unit, located between mile markers 70 and 71 on Highway 11 in Kaʻū, about an hour’s drive south of the park’s main entrance.

Miller will also share her insights into painting the dynamic landscapes of Kahuku. No registration required.

No. 3 — The Dark Side Of The Moon: 50 Years In A Heartbeat (Hilo, Feb. 16)

Image from Facebook

Don’t miss this special program created to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Pink Floyd’s “The Dark Side Of The Moon” album and the first planetarium experience sanctioned and approved by this groundbreaking and timeless band.

The program returns to ʻImiloa Astronomy Center’s newly enhanced planetarium at 5:30 and 6:45 p.m. Admission is $12 for members or $18 for the general public.


For tickets, call 808-932-8901 or visit the front desk at ʻImiloa, located at 600 ʻImiloa Place, during regular business hours from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday.

No. 4 — Red Dragonfly Music Series concert (Hilo, Feb. 19)

Image from Facebook

Join the East Hawai‘i Cultural Center, located at 141 Kalākaua St., for one evening only of chamber music with musicians from the Hawai‘i Symphony, The Knights chamber orchestra and the Big Island’s Cheryl “Quack” Moore.

The program begins at 7:30 p.m. and will include movements of Handel’s “Water Music,” Mendelssohn’s “Piano Trio in d minor,” J.S. Bach cantatas and recent works by Colin Jacobsen and songs of Christina Courtin.

Advance tickets are $25 general admission and $10 for students and teachers. Tickets at the door are $30 general admission and $15 for students and seniors. Children 10 years old and younger are free. To purchase tickets in advance or for additional information, click here.

No. 5 — Meet Artist in Residence Diana Miller (Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, Feb. 20)

Screenshot of image from Friends of Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park website

Miller was born in France, traveled the world and retired as a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Air Force before becoming a park ranger. Her artwork embraces the native landscapes of her Hawai‘i home and provides a hopeful vision for their continued protection.

The public has the chance to meet and talk with Miller during this After Dark in the Park event at 7 p.m. in the auditorium at Kīlauea Visitor Center. It is free to attend, but park entrance fees apply.

No. 6 — Pancake breakfast fundraiser (Kailua-Kona, Feb. 17)

Image from Facebook

The Daifukuji Soto Zen Buddhist Temple, located at 79-7241 Māmalahoa Highway, invites the public from 7 to 10:30 a.m. to enjoy a pancake breakfast platter with coffee, tea or juice and the ever-popular miso soup included for just $10.

Proceeds will be used to fund conferences, field trips and educational activities sponsored by the Fujinkai. Monetary donations to the Daifukuji Fujinkai are also gratefully appreciated.

Tickets are available in advance through Fujinkai members and at the temple office. They also will be sold at the door. If you have questions, call the temple office at 808-322-3524 or email to [email protected].

No. 7 — “9 to 5: The Musical” (Kealakekua, opens Feb. 16)

Courtesy photo

Aloha Theatre, located at 79-7384 Hawaiʻi Belt Road, is proud to present this musical adaptation of the quintessential movie of the same name, featuring music and lyrics by the iconic Dolly Parton.

Three female coworkers, pushed to the edge by their sexist and cruel boss, take control of the office and make the changes they have always dreamed. Of course, to keep their boss out of the workplace, they do have to tie him to the ceiling of his home with a garage door opening mechanism, and his wife is supposed to be home from vacation any day now. But they’ll cross that bridge when they come to it.

The show, appropriate for ages 13 and older, runs for four weekends through March 10. Concessions, including beer and wine, will be available for purchase at the theatre. To purchase tickets or for more information, click here.

No. 8 — Stop Motion for Keiki with Renata Ballo (Hilo, begins Feb. 21)

Image from Facebook

Throughout eight classes of this Youth Art Series workshop, students ages 7 to 11 years old will build a collaborative stop-motion short. They will learn how the illusion of motion is created, working in pairs and going through the pre-production, image capture and editing processes. The class will work together to make a fun animation based on Hawaiian proverbs and short stories.

The class at the East Hawai‘i Cultural Center, located at 141 Kalākaua St., will be from 3:30 to 5 p.m. Wednesdays and runs Feb. 21 through April 17, except March 20 as it is spring break. All supplies are provided.

For more details and or to register, click here.

No. 9 — “Plug & Grow” Kratky Hydroponics class (ʻĀinaloa, Feb. 17)

Image from Facebook

Learn to grow Kratky Hydroponics with your own “Plug & Grow” system during this new and improved class from 8 to 10 a.m. at Hydroponic Hut, located at 16-2154 Rainbow Drive.

Walk away with your own growing system, too, complete with the bin, net pots, keiki and nutrient solution to successfully grow and harvest 8 heads of lettuce in just 3 weeks.

Space is limited. There are only 70 bins available. Reserve your spot today by paying the $50 fee in advance via Venmo or cash at the produce stand. Once payment is received, you will receive confirmation.

No. 10 — Christy Lassiter & Friends in concert (Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, Feb. 21)

Screenshot of image from Friends of Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park website

Enjoy a wonderful evening of Hawaiian music with this trio devoted to the perpetuation of old Hawaiian songs, playing guitar, ʻukulele, bass and singing three-part harmonies to create a memorable experience.

This event is from 7 to 8 p.m. in the auditorium at the Kīlauea Visitor Center and is part of the park’s Nā Leo Manu “Heavenly Voices of Hawaiian Music” concerts and presentations. It is free to attend, but park entrance fees apply.

No. 11 — Artist Talk with Heesoo Lee (Hōlualoa, Feb. 15)

Image from Facebook

Help the Donkey Mill Art Center, located at 78-6670 Māmalahoa Highway, welcome Lee with a potluck dinner from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.. Bring a favorite dish or beverage to share. The program starts at 5:45 p.m.

Born and raised in Seoul, South Korea, Lee earned her bachelor’s degree in art from Ewha University. In 2000, she began a full-time studio practice in Berkeley, Calif., and eventually relocated to Maui, where she established a thriving studio business. She is now a full-time studio artist in Helena, Mont.

Registration is encouraged but not required. For more information, click here.

No. 12 — Streetlight Cadence: Brighter Than Ever Tour (Waimea, Feb. 17)

Image from Facebook

The busking band that Hawai’i adores returns at 7 p.m. to the stage at Kahilu Theatre, located at 1198 Lindsey Road, for an evening of songs and stories.

An undying sense of adventure has anchored Streetlight Cadence since its humble beginnings in Honolulu. The band’s abundant energy on acoustic instruments intertwines with intimate storytelling to create music that has scored numerous placements on Billboard’s Heatseekers Chart, two Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards for Alternative Album of the Year and an Emmy nomination for its self-produced television series “Will Play For Food.”

For more information or to purchase tickets, which start at $40, click here.

No. 13 — Cat Yoga (Kailua-Kona, Feb. 17)

Image from Facebook

Happy Cat-urday! Come down to Kona Kat Cafe, located in Suite B105 at 75-5725 Ali’i Drive, from 9:45 to 10:45 a.m. Saturdays through the end of this month and enjoy yoga in a peaceful, healing environment with 15 cats to help you strike the right pose.

Adults and children older than 13 are $28. Kamaʻāina rate is $25. Bring your own yoga mat and socks. Mats can also be rented for $3 each. You can bring your own water bottle or water is also provided. Arrive at 9:30 a.m.

For more information or to register for a session, click here.

No. 14 — Qigong (Kailua-Kona, Feb. 19)

Image from Facebook

Join Unity of Kona on the beach at Old Kona Airport State Recreation Area, located at 75-5560 Kuakini Highway, for this free class from 8 to 8:45 a.m. Mondays.

Come learn and practice qigong, a holistic meditative practice of coordinated body posture, movement and breath control said to have many health benefits.

No experience necessary. All are welcome. Drop in any class to participate. Donations to support Unity of Kona sponsoring more community events are encouraged and greatly appreciated.

No. 15 — Community Garage Sale (Kealakekua, Feb. 17)

Image from Facebook

This is not an auction of unpaid units. It is an invitation to everyone to come out and sell their personal belongings from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at My Self Storage Space Kona, located at 81-934 Haleki‘i St. Gates open at 7:30 a.m. for set up. Empty drive-up units can be made available to use for the day.

It costs nothing to participate and all are welcome whether you store at the facility or not. You don’t have people coming to your home, the company handles the signage and you can invite others to join.

Call 808-322-7722 for any questions or more information.

No. 16 — Kauno‘o workshop (Kailua-Kona, Feb. 16)

Image from Facebook

Join King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel, located at 75-5660 Palani Road, from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. for free family-friendly fun at the Aloali‘i Cultural Resource Center.

Participate in cultural learning stations, play Hawaiian games and join the activities. Take time to hear the stories of aliʻi (chiefs/kings) while you visit a gallery of their portraits. You and your keiki also can spend some time in the reading corner with books featuring ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi (Hawaiian language).

For more information, call 808-326-4969 or email [email protected].

No. 17 — Silent Movie Night: “The General” (Hilo, Feb. 16)

Image from Facebook

The Palace Theater, located at 38 Haili St., and Hilo Theatre Organ Society are proud to present this Buster Keaton classic accompanied by a live score performed on the mighty Palace pipe organ. A classic short film will also precede the feature.

Doors, box office and concessions open at 6:30 p.m. The show starts at 7 p.m.

Tickets are $12 in advance or $15 the day of the show. To purchase tickets in advance, click here.

No. 18 — Bad Papa live (Kawaihae, Feb. 18)

Image from Facebook

This music duo of Big Island residents have been actively writing, producing and performing quality original music in the Hawaiian Islands since 2015. With their unique ability to merge different music styles and tunings, their sound is truly one of a kind. They also have been nominees and finalists in several categories during the 2022 and 2023 Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards.

From beautiful Hawaiian slack key instrumentals to rockin’ blues and full-on Latin productions, Bad Papa has it covered.

Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and the show is from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Blue Dragon Tavern, located at 61-3616 Kawaihae Road. Tickets are $10 in advance or $13 at the door. Children 12 and younger are free. Click here to purchase your tickets today.

No. 19 — Drag Brunch (Taylor’s Version) (Kailua-Kona, Feb. 18)

Image from Eventbrite.

Calling all Swifties! Honor the iconic eras of Taylor Swift while singing and dancing the day away beginning at 1 p.m. at My Bar Kona, located at 74-5606 Luhia St.

You’ll also get to enjoy fabulous performances, including live singing. Hosted by Palehua and Liv Lively, this is a Sunday Funday you don’t want to miss.

Must be 21 or older to attend. Tickets are just $10 and available at the My Bar Kona website.

No. 20 — Aloha Friday at Volcano Art Center Gallery: ‘Ukulele with Wes Awana (Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, Feb. 16)

Image from Volcano Art Center website

Volcano area musician Wes Awana will share his love of ‘ukulele and Hawaiian music by giving family-friendly lessons on the iconic and inviting instrument from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the porch of the Volcano Art Center Gallery in the park.

Aloha Friday cultural demonstrations are hosted every week at the gallery. The events are free to attend, but park entrance fees apply.

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