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Party for a Good Cause at Stella Blues

Dance with Halemanu and the Hui at The Maui Farm benefit.

August 15, 2013
Celeste Keele - Contributing Writer , Maui Weekly

Consider this your personal invitation to a fabulous and fun party for a good cause. Put on your dancing shoes for jazz-infused rock 'n' roll with Hawaiian soul, courtesy of Halemanu and the Hui, who are rockin' for The Maui Farm at Kihei's own Stella Blues, Wednesday evening, Aug. 21, at 6:30 p.m.

The admission charge of $25 all goes to The Maui Farm, a nonprofit organization working hard and holistically to heal and help single mothers, families and at-risk children. This great cause is local, directly helping our neighbors, our friends, our community and our island. The Maui Farm is a standout program worth fighting for--and partying for. It's something to be proud of here on Maui.

That's why Halemanu Villiarimo, local musician, recording artist and audio engineer (his recording studio is Sounds Like Hale in Kahului), and his wife and partner, Lisa, are donating their time and talent to put on an evening event for The Maui Farm.

Article Photos

Halemanu Villiarimo and his wife and partner, Lisa, love giving back to the community.
Photo: Lynn Piccoli

"We like doing community service, and we like giving back," said Hale. "And this [The Maui Farm] is something we can get behind."

"We can't write a check, but this is something we can do," added Lisa. "It promises to be a fun party and a sweet evening, with door prizes, dancing, food and 'bevvies' for purchase, and a dedication and introduction to The Maui Farm."

To protect the innocent and vulnerable members of our society in its care, The Maui Farm retains a low profile. You may not have even heard of The Maui Farm, working quietly under the radar to heal the whole person and whole family, and benefiting our entire community in the process.

Located Upcountry off of Baldwin Avenue, The Maui Farm is a model 'ohana and working farm, where families (often single mothers and their children, many referred from Women Helping Women as survivors of domestic violence) can work the farm, tend the animals (especially helpful for children), acquire basic life skills, get tutoring, take parenting classes, find new housing and employment, and prepare for the transition back to society outside of the farm.

They are taught everything they need to know, so they don't go back to where or how they lived before, explained Emily Sullivan, board member of The Maui Farm. Families generally stay six months to a year, leave the farm as success stories and often return years later to share their progress and how they've grown, she added.

Hale was moved to help a couple years ago when he visited The Maui Farm. He quickly became aware of all the successes, and he was especially struck by the fact that these are his neighbors on this island who reminded him of families he knew growing up, where abuse and poverty wrecked lives. And he saw that the program was making a difference.

"They can't help everyone, but they have such a high success rate for the ones they do help," explained Hale.

Emily's reasons for joining up with The Maui Farm are also personal. She grew up working on her family's Christmas tree farm on the Mainland. When their kids left home, her parents discontinued the tree farm to consider other uses for the land. Later, when Emily saw The Maui Farm, she felt at home, but also deeply moved.

"I saw a really useful way to use such beautiful land--what a great way to heal the whole human," said Emily. "Plus, the people there--especially the directors--are stellar, inspiring life mentors. I just had to work with them."

"This is happening--right here--right in your backyard," said a smiling Hale.

The Maui Farm is actually making a big difference, and that is worth celebrating--and supporting, explained Lisa, who added, having visited The Maui Farm many times herself, "You can actually see the sparkle--the life--return to these women's eyes."

Come dance your heart out, support a truly good cause and make a night of it! But get your tickets now--they want to pre-sell as many tickets as possible, so Stella Blues (a community-oriented and supportive business) can know how many servers to have on-hand. It's easy to do online at or call Lisa at (808) 871-2400.

To learn more about The Maui Farm, go to



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