Hawai'i Club celebrates Polynesian cultures with local foods, dancing

by University Communications,

Willamette University's Hawai‘i Club will celebrate Polynesia’s rich history and culture at the 24th annual lu‘au on April 20.

Doors open and dinner is served at 5:30 p.m. in Cone Field House at Sparks Athletic Center, followed by the show beginning at 7 p.m.

Each year, Hawai‘i Club strives to recreate a piece of home and share diverse Polynesian cultures with the Salem community. The theme of this year’s lu‘au is “Pili Hanauna,” which means, “We Are Family.”

The lu‘au will feature a variety of dances and entertainers, including a fire knife dancer. Prior to the show, guests will be able to enjoy a meal of local dishes and purchase items unique to Hawaii.

Since September, a planning committee of 50 students has worked to organize all aspects of the lu‘au — including preparing the food, choreographing dances, collecting donations, contracting outside performers, and decorating the gymnasium.

“Many of the students who plan the lu‘au are from Hawai‘i, and we all find it very rewarding to be able to share the unique culture of the islands with our Willamette and Salem Ohana,” says Megan Oshiro ’15, one of the overall chairwomen of the lu‘au.

“I am looking forward to watching all of our hard work and preparation come together into an event for the whole community to enjoy.”


Through April 19, tickets will be sold in front of The Willamette Store in the University Center from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and in Goudy Commons from 5 to 7 p.m.

Dinner and show tickets are $15; tickets for the show only are $10. Prices increase by $5 if purchased at the door. Children aged 7 and younger are admitted free of charge, when accompanied by an adult.

With Willamette ID, advanced tickets for dinner and the show are $10, or $5 for the show only. Prices increase by $5 if purchased at the door.

For more information, contact Gordy Toyama at the Office of Multicultural Affairs at 503-370-6265.