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More than 2,000 people are gathering in Hawaiʻi this week and next for the 13th Festival of Pacific Island Arts and Culture. It’s the largest gathering of Indigenous Pacific peoples in the world. And it comes at a critical time for the island region known as Oceania as sea levels, storms, and other climate effects threaten traditional ways of life and connections to land and sea. 

Normally the festival takes place every four years and rotates between the three regions of the Pacific: Polynesia, Micronesia, and Melanesia. But because of the pandemic, the event hasn’t happened for eight years. It was last held on Guam, and this is the first time since it was established in 1972 that it’s occurring in Hawaiʻi. From now through June 16, Indigenous peoples from more than two dozen Pacific nations and territories will be sharing their weaving, tattoo creations, films, visual art, wood carvings, dances, songs, literature, music, food, and other expressions of Indigenous culture. 

Tarcisius Kabutaulaka, a University of Hawaiʻi professor from the Solomon Islands and f... Read more

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