June 02, 2016

A Bit of Polynesia In Utah

This past weekend was the Pasifika Festival in Utah. They hold it annually in Provo and we were so excited to go. It felt like we were home (minus the beach, of course).

As we walked up we could hear the drums beating a rhythm from the Cook Islands and the smell of Huli-huli chicken wafted our way. We took our time wandering past all of the tents selling delicious foods trying to see what we want to try. We started out with some Malasadas (Clark's is really good, not quite Leonard's but hey, it is here in Utah!) and some Mango Otai!

Lucky Dragon, our little music man, loved all of the sounds throughout the day. We were right up in front for the fire-knife dancers. (Really, we were so close the MC told us to back up a few times...hahaha). He was mesmerized though. When the dancers came out to perform he jumped right up to dance with them.

The focus this year was on Polynesian mental health. Between performers they would get up and talk about the signs of mental diseases and what resources there are to get help. Sadly, this is not something more people are willing to talk about. It was especially good to hear them focus on it right now because according to the Salt Lake Tribune, Utha has one of the largest Tongan population concentrations outside of Tonga. The Samoan concentration is also high in Utah. So it is good they are focusing on health and being healthy in many ways.

Tau'aho liked the bouncing houses. He really liked the large ball you could get in and roll around. I paid to have him do it, but then he didn't want to get in, he only wanted to push it around. 

The evening ended with a concert by the Jets. That, too, was really fun to hear. It was a flashback to the 80s and great to sing-a-long to some songs we all know by heart.

The next day we came back to enjoy some more food and Mango Otai.You have to enjoy good things while they are around ! Tau'aho was able to meet BYU's mascot, Cosmo. He had met him with Madre and Kell at a BYU Baseball game a few weeks ago and was so excited to see, "THE CAT" again. We went to have Cosmo autograph some photos for Lucky Dragon but Cosmo was not happy to see I had a UofU hat on. He took it off my head and threw it. For the next three days that is all Tau'aho talked about is how "Cosmo, the cat, threw Daddy's hat." The things this guy remembers.

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