Preparations for Fourth still unfinished

The LahainaTown Action Committee has raised about $40,000 for this year’s Fourth of July fireworks celebration in Lahaina, though officials still are seeking additional money for security, portable toilets and other costs.

“You got that one amount for the fireworks, but you also have all of those additional costs,” Executive Director Lynn Donovan said Monday. “I’d say it costs at least another $10,000 to $12,000 on top of the fireworks.”

The 26-year-old nonprofit group has resumed its lead role of planning, coordinating and fundraising for the event on Front Street after stepping away in 2009, after about nine years in the lead. The Maui Chamber of Commerce and a few other organizations have overseen the event the past five years but returned the leadership role to the committee in February.

The committee has strengthened in the past few years, hosting the Halloween in Lahaina event for the past three years and Second Fridays for past two and a half years.

“We ran into some difficulty and had to reorganize, but we’re back and we’re just as strong, if not stronger than ever,” Donovan said. “We’re happy to have the event back.”

Since it reclaimed the event, the group has formed a fundraising team, which includes Donovan, Joan McKelvey, Fran Mitsumura, Connie Sutherland and Tambara Garrick.

The team was originally aiming to raise $50,000 to extend the fireworks show from 10 minutes to 12 to 15 minutes. However, the deadline for orders to its fireworks provider, Hawaii Explosives & Pyrotechnics, has passed, Donovan said.

“We didn’t raise the funds in time for this year, but we’re confident it will happen next year,” she said.

This year’s Fourth of July fireworks show will last 10 minutes with synchronized music playing near Hard Rock Cafe.

The committee still is asking for donations to help pay for the additional costs of police, insurance, permits, sound systems and light towers. Any leftover funds will be used to help reach the $50,000 goal for next year’s celebration, Donovan said.

“It’s a lot of money to raise, but the Lahaina community has been extremely supportive, as they always are,” she said. “The local businesses and community – everybody’s on board. It’s a nice event.

“I don’t know anybody who doesn’t like the fireworks.”

Fourth of July events begin at 2 p.m. in Campbell Park, where vendors will be selling food and the official 2014 Lahaina 4th of July T-shirts. Shirts are currently being sold at the Lahaina Visitor Center in the old Lahaina Courthouse across from Lahaina Harbor.

Slack key guitarist George Kahumoku Jr. and students from the University of Hawaii Maui College Institute of Hawaiian Music will provide music from 5 to 6:15 p.m. on the lawn outside the Lahaina Public Library.

A performance by Elvis impersonator Darren Lee of Maui Theatre’s “Burn’n Love” will follow outside the library, and the Maui Community Band will perform from 7 to 8 p.m.

KPOA 93.5 FM will be airing live, starting at 5 p.m. at Hard Rock Cafe.

The Wharf Cinema Center will host the sixth annual 4th of July Karaoke Contest, with registration to begin at 4 p.m.

For more information, call the Lahaina Town Action Committee at 667-9193 or go to

Donations may be sent to the Lahaina Visitor Center, 648 Wharf St., Lahaina 96761.

* Chris Sugidono can be reached at