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Love Lahaina Luau offers a feast for the soul, raises funds for those impacted by Maui wildfires

Author and philanthropist Larry J. Snyder is combining music, comedy and a festival of flavors to help support the Maui Food Bank and Maui Strong.

SEATTLE — The sounds and flavors of Hawaii are being celebrated in Seattle for a unique fundraiser featuring music, comedy and a festival of flavors, held live at Xtadium in Seattle Thursday, Aug. 31 until 9 p.m.  

The fundraising auction even includes a Lamborghini. 

 “We want everyone to be able to support the cause whether you’re in the market for an exotic sports car or just have a few dollars to share,” said author and philanthropist Larry J. Snyder. 

He’s hoping the virtual audience will join the fun and make contributions online. Snyder says four generations of his family have considered Lahaina their “happy place” and honoring the memories and celebrating the culture is a good way to combat the sadness after wildfires devastated the area earlier in August. 

Love Lahaina Luau has only been in the works for about 10 days and Snyder says he’s been overwhelmed with the community support and volunteers who are dedicated to making tonight a success. 

“Love Lahaina Luau is a chance for us to bring the magic of Hawaii to Seattle and in turn to raise money for the people affected by the wildfire devastation," Synder said.   

Snyder teamed up with chef Luam Wersom who owns Mojito in North Seattle. Chef Wersom said giving back is a major part of his business model and this luau is personal.  

“This is a special thing for me.  I got to take my daughter to Maui, specifically the Lahaina area, last year for the first time," Wersom said. 

Wersom and some volunteers like Snyder spent hours in the kitchen preparing foods like Kalua pork, chicken, macaroni salad and more. “Even Kelly Cannoli stepped up and is making trays of Cannoli’s for our guests," said Snyder, adding that the Hawaiian artistic community has also shown up in force. 

Elias Kauhane Jr. was born in Hawaii and has become one of the most in demand ukulele artists in the Pacific Northwest. He will share the stage with native Hawaiian comedian Kermet Apio and all proceeds from Love Lahaina Luau will go directly to Maui Strong and The Maui Food Bank, who will share a special message at the event. 

 “The Maui Food Bank is needing to provide 10,000 meals a day right now,“ said Snyder. 

Love Lahaina Luau hopes to provide some financial support and a showing of solidarity for the island that so many people love. 

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