In an effort to bring higher visibility to local artists, the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development offered assistance to help artists display their work at the three-day Made in Hawaii Festival going on this weekend at the Neal S. Blaisdell Exhibition Hall & Arena on Oahu.
The Maui County OED, along with Innovate Hawaii, selected Molokai artist Yoellah Yohudah to display her artwork at festival from Aug. 16-18.
Yoellah’s products include hand blown Italian glass bead works of Saint Damien rosaries, necklaces, bracelets and earrings. She will also have ceramic vessels and two oil paintings available at the show. Be sure to stop by her booth to say hello if you are on Oahu.
The festival is a showcase of “Made in Hawaii” products including food, books, art, gifts, fashions, plants, crafts, produce and more. The festival provides high visibility to producers of local products, and regularly attracts over 30,000 attendees each year. This year marks the 19th annual festival and is expected to be another record year for attendance.
This year the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development (OED) and INNOVATE Hawaii are offering assistance for all Maui County-made product companies to exhibit at the festival. Packages include free booth space plus a minimum stipend of $1,000 for companies that meet the festival qualifications.
“Approximately 38,000 people attend the show and are ready to buy,” said Teena Rasmussen, director of the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development. “In addition, there are many buyers and distributors who come to find new products. Our neighbor island companies deserve to be represented in this show, which can be very expensive. This program will help make it affordable for them to participate.”
Mark Ausbeck, of Innovate Hawaii, noted that the Made In Hawaii Festival is a great way for companies to gain market exposure and test new products with much lower risk and expense than trying to reach individual customers directly. “Exhibitors often make long-term customer relationships at these events and secure recurring orders,” he said. “We are excited to partner with Maui County to help companies showcase their products at this great event.”
Innovate Hawaii is a program of the High Technology Development Corporation (HTDC), an agency of the State of Hawaii. For more information, visit www.htdc.org/innovatehawaii.