Maui Matsuri announces 2014 contest winners

Maui Matsuri organizers announced their contest winners from the 14th annual Maui Matsuri festival held May 10 at University of Hawaii Maui College.

The event celebrated Japanese culture with offerings of food, art, crafts and entertainment. Included in the cultural event were various contests.

2014 marked the first year that Maui Matsuri held a kendama tournament, sponsored by Kaleidoscope Maui. The winners of this year’s kendama tournament were: beginner level one – Bryson Caolle, first, and Dasiah Campos, second; intermediate level two – Aaron Casallo, first, and Michael Casallo, second; and advanced level three – Ken Vanhtha, first, and Earlie Marie Domingo, second.

The winning noodle eaters in this year’s 13th annual Sam Sato saimin contest were: adult division – Tyler Orikasa, first; Barry Kurasaki, second; and Julius Orosco, third; and children’s division – Gabriel Salazar, first; Shanyce McAvoy, second; and Kami Kutsunai, third.

The winning natto eaters of this year’s 10th annual Iwamoto Natto eating contest were: adult division – Dean Tagalan, first; Darrell Kurosawa, second; and Jonathan Forte, third; and children’s division – Devynn Kochi, first; Gabriel Salazar, second; and Jena Suzuki, third.

The fifth annual hanafuda/sakura tournament, sponsored by Hale Mahaolu, was won by Ramon Coratibo (advanced division).

The winners for the manga art contest were: 3rd-5th grade – Erin Kobashigawa, first; Josh Krueger, second; and Jaime Tirona, third; 6th-8th grade – Allison Bacay, first; Frances Cabulisan, second; and Kiki Bekkum, third; 9th-12 grade – Sabrina Futch, first; Makai Mossman, second; and Helen Chong, third.

The winners for the traditional art contest were: 3rd-5th grade – Emma Fusato, first; Aliyah Englert, second; and Emalani Kekauoha-Schultz, third; 6th-8th grade – Sarah Fusato, first; and Frances Cabulisan, second; 9th-12th grade – Aysha Nishibayashi-Rincon, first; Alyssa Fusato, second; and Kristi Kobashigawa, third.

Both the manga and traditional art contests were supported by Fred and Ann Araki.

A cosplay contest was held and sponsored by Kawaii Kon. The cosplay competition involved contestants dressing up as anime or manga characters.

The winners of the hallway cosplay contest in the student division were: Rachael Inouye, first; Jarod Julian, second; and Haley Shimada, third. In the adult division, the hallway cosplay winners were Damian Rosen, first; Amy Mathis, second; and Jasmine Lake, third.

The winners of the cosplay showcase were: Tanisha Bowker, first; Christian Harkin, second; and Devynn Kochi, third.

A video game tournament was also held and sponsored by Kawaii Kon. The video game tournament winners were: Chase Hopkins, first; Victor Le, second; and Greg Ventura, third.

The 2014 Maui Matsuri was presented by the Japanese Cultural Society of Maui. Major supporters were the County of Maui and the Hawaii Tourism Authority. Major sponsors were IBEW – Local Union 1186, Island Honda, Maui Taiko and University of Hawaii Maui College.

For more information on sponsorship opportunities for next year’s 15th annual Maui Matsuri, call 283-9999.