MAKAWAO MERRIMENT. . . Get in the holiday groove this Saturday with the annual Christmas in Makawao event.
"Makawao Town has a wonderful tradition of providing an old-style family Christmas party on the first Saturday in December, with entertainment in the streets, its finest shops and galleries offering pre-holiday promotions, and all the Makawao restaurants presenting breakfast, lunch and dinner specials," says volunteer Shay Chan Hodges of Maui Child Toys and Books store.
In addition, there will be carolers, a farmer's market and Santa and his sleigh. At dusk, Cowgirl Hall of Famer Auntie Rose Freitas will ride into town on horseback to light up the star set atop the giant Norfolk Pine across from Komoda Bakery. Earlier in the day, make sure to buy some famous, freshly baked doughnuts.
JUDY MERTENS photo
Polli’s Mexican Restaurant owner Tim Ellison serves eggnog Upcountry at the 2007 Christmas in Makawao event. This year, it will be held Saturday with food, fun, music and shopping specials all day.
Attendees are encouraged to bring a canned food item or a wrapped children's gift, which will be distributed to those in need. Drop-off will be at Upcountry Fine Art across from the library on Makawao Avenue. Makawao restaurants will also be doing their part:
The landmark Makawao Steak House will open its doors all day so revelers may enjoy free cookies and lemonade as they view five different Christmas trees and kick back and relax by the fireplaces.
Casanova Italian Restaurant will give 10 percent off to those showing proof of $100 in purchases from Makawao merchants that day. . . Makawao Garden Cafe will present a barbecue chicken plate with rice and salad . . . and just like last year, Polli's Mexican Restaurant will give away free eggnog on the street. "Come inside and we'll be mixing mango margaritas and making our great Mexican lunches," says longtime owner Tim Ellison.
StopWatch Sports Bar will do lunch and dinner specials such as fresh ahi sandwiches and wild salmon, opakapaka or mahi plates with garlic mashed potatoes.
BITS AND PIECES . . . Speaking of towns getting in the groove for the holidays, Wailuku will hold its first Friday event tomorrow. Cafe O'Lei Wailuku will be in the spirit and we hear it will debut dinner service tonight and continue it Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays . . . Cafe Marc Aurel on Market Street also now offers to-go style lunches Monday to Saturday.
Actor Mike Myers of "Austin Powers" fame dined three times last week at Mala Wailea. "He kept coming back for the coconut shrimp," says owner Shep Gordon. "It was just added to the menu." In addition, Mala Wailea will be doing a special New Year's Eve event with Dr. Nat performing. "Alice Cooper will do a few songs with them and maybe there will be a few special guests. A portion of proceeds will benefit Maui Food Bank."
Looking for some meal deals? Valley Isle Seafood Deli at 475 Hukilike St.in Kahului is dishing up $3.99 plate lunches featuring choice of shoyu chicken, kalua turkey, roast pork and gravy, fried ahi poke, panko mahimahi and pineapple spare ribs.
"These recession-proof meals all come with rice and a side of corn," says owner John Keanaaina. "We also offer a 10 percent discount to seniors over 62 years of age. And our fresh fish is cut to order at great prices with no middleman mark-up."
Old Lahaina Luau is offering a special kamaaina holiday party promotional rate. You get one free ticket for every 15 guests confirmed any day; and one for 10 guests confirmed on a weekday.
In Waikapu, Maui Tropical Plantation can set quite the holiday stage for business and other functions with its views of the West Maui Mountains and beautiful lagoon. Buffet lunches cost only $15 per person and dinner buffets are set at $29. The dining room is HUGE.
* Carla Tracy is the dining editor of the Maui Scene.