In 2012, Henry and Sherron Allen asked Mele for the first time to participate in the annual Henry Allen Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival held April 20-22 at Kaanapali Beach Hotel. We setup a booth in the courtyard with our new slogan “Are UKE having fun yet?” and sold first edition song booklets with DVD/CD and taught free ukulele lessons. Kris, a teacher from California bought a book to take back with him.
In 2013, Alan Akaka took over the event with the new name “Maui Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival.” On Saturday after giving a 2-hour workshop at the Bailey House, Mele gave two ukulele workshops in the hotel’s air conditioned ballroom. The hotel provided 10 instruments but 30 people came. The Hawaiian Serenaders performed for the first time during the hotel’s Sunday Brunch. We were so pleased when we got a standing ovation for “Flying.”
In 2014, Mele gave two ukulele workshops at the Chapel Hut on Saturday. On Sunday, The Hawaiian Serenaders performed for the second time at the hotel’s Sunday Brunch. Afterwards, we took a photo with Alan’s parents, retired Hawaii U.S. Senator Daniel Akaka and his wife Millie whom we knew during our Washington D.C. days.
In 2015, Mele gave three ukulele workshops at the Chapel Hut on Saturday.
(Photo taken at Kaanapali Beach Hotel’s Sunday Brunch during the Maui Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival on 13 April 2014)