Scarlett Hart/The Siskiyou
Hawaii Club President Page Kraker dances in a traditional Hawaiian dress during the 11th annual luau on
The Southern Oregon University Ho’opa’a Hawaii Club’s 11th Annual Luau was a smashing success last Saturday in the McNeal Pavilion. It had traditional Hawaiian food, music and dancing. The pavilion was packed with students, community members and supportive parents. Even parents from Hawaii flew from the islands just to be apart of the luau.
The luau offered an eclectic dinner full of traditional Hawaiian food. The menu included kalua pig, a slow oven-roasted shredded pork, lomi lomi salmon, vegetarian curry and potato mac salad. There was the traditional poi, a starch made from a Hawaiian root called taro, which is pounded into a smooth side dish. The menu also included fruit salad and haupia, a sweet coconut dessert. There were ice sculptures and beautiful tropical flowers ornamenting the buffet tables.
Hawaii Club President Page Kraker said the Hawaii Club had been working on organizing the luau since September with over 50 club members involved in the production itself. Many international students also took part in the luau this year.
Kraker said, “The luau is a way for the Hawaii club to share the Hawaiian culture through food, music and dance.”
The culture was expressed mainly through the show itself with lots of hip-shaking and skin showing through the first dance, called “Kane Kahiko.”
Logan Wilkin, who kept an ongoing comedy act all night, hosted the show. He hit on girls, made fun of himself and expressed his love and admiration for the Hawaiian culture. He kept the audience on their toes.
Kipu Kai and Ulupalakua dances were performed with beautiful and fun technique by the traditionally-dressed Hawaiian dancers.
There was also a guest performance from Ho’okipa Paka, a group of local dancers and a singer. They performed a Fa’ataupati (Samoan Slap Dance) which is where the percussion is intensified by slapping chest, sides thighs and stomping the feet.
This was performed to show men’s strength and keep the mosquitoes away. This dance particularly got the crowed roaring with people laughing and screaming.
The crowd was constantly yelling out their support, telling the dancers to “shake it.”
Freshman Makenzie Wells said she loved the luau.
“The girls danced really pretty but the scantily clad men were distracting,” Wells said.
The luau could not be complete without some Tahitian dance. These girls moved their hips in rhythmical movements in the Vahine O’tea. Wilkin said, “This one is for the guys.”
The dance was beautiful and fascinating to watch. There was another hot number, the Siva Afi (Samoan fire-knife dancing), which is fast rhythmic movement of the spinning fire knife. This got the little girls screaming and the audience clapping.
The luau brought the unique and beautiful culture of the Hawaiian islands to SOU through hours of hard work and energy.
Freshman Kristin Tyska said, “I’ve been to luaus in Hawaii before and absolutely loved this one.”