Aina Fest 2017

What to Know Before You Arrive

Envision a living community that cherishes hard work, a joyful atmosphere, dynamic activities, clear communication, and great food.


Tropical Climate, Natural Living, Connecting to Nature

Hosting a majority of the world’s climate zones, an active volcano, and the tallest mountain in the world (from base at the seafloor to summit), the island of Hawai’i is one of the most diverse regions on the planet. The Hawaii Institute of Pacific Agriculture is located on the northern tip of the Big Island where we experience average temperatures of 68-85 degrees Fahrenheit.

The sun is strong and we recommend students come prepared for working in direct sunlight for extended periods of time. We sometimes experience tropical storms with strong winds and heavy rains, please come prepared with proper waterproof rain gear.

Living amongst nature allows us to expand beyond the luxuries of modern conveniences and empowers us to feel confident in our innate survival skills.


Hand-on projects, Community building, Permaculture

Students will have the opportunity to design, plant, and maintain gardens, orchards, and reforestation projects. As a community we harvest, process and market fresh fruits and vegetables for local farmers markets, participate in home dairy production, build with bamboo to create natural structures, preserve traditional Hawaiian planting knowledge, organize community events and workshops, and explore diverse ecosystems.

Work requires a variety of tools including hand sickles, shovels, hoes, pitchforks, pick axes, spades, loppers, machetes and hand saws. All students will be trained for proper use and safety of each tool used.

While the work we do is rewarding and uplifting, it often pushes us outside of our comfort level and challenges us physically. Please come with a willingness to work hard and a desire to increase physical strength and endurance.


Potlucks, Council, Celebration

We work together with equal responsibility to maintain our living space so that all may be comfortable and respected. You will be living and working in an intensive community environment and ask that you come with an open mind and open heart as we provide a judgment free space to share and listen with one another. We encourage students to work with staff when problems arise in the community so that constructive solutions may be reached. We hold weekly community council to encourage open, honest communication and the development of effective conflict resolution skills. Together we explore how to live and grow in community, conscious of how our individual roles affect the greater whole.


Locally Sourced, Non-GMO, Organic

We eat as much from the land as we can. We grow a bounty of delicious vegetables and greens in our year-round gardens. Our locally grown starch crops include taro, breadfruit, yams, cassava, sweet potatoes and plantains. Varying by season we celebrate fresh fruits such as lychee, mango, papaya, star fruit, soursop, jackfruit, lemons, limes, tangerines, rambutan, guava, passion fruit, dragon fruit and many other tropical delicacies.

In addition HIP Agriculture provides bulk grains, legumes, oils, spices, and tea. We also provide local milk, eggs, and meat, when available, from our animals. During courses, we also have a chef onsite who prepares lunch for all throughout the week, they are also available to support with cooking instruction

To practice and teach ecologically conscious agriculture, empowering individuals and communities to cultivate alternative systems of living that restore human and environmental health.

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