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Maui Whale Festival Celebrates Winter Humpback Whales


MA'ALAEA, Hawaii, Feb. 1, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Humpback whales are seen off Maui's shores from November through mid-May, with the action peaking in February when the largest numbers are present to mate, give birth and care for newborn calves.

The Maui Whale Festival honors these whales and the next generation they're bringing forth. Like whale season, the festival runs November through May, and "peaks" in February with a bevy of popular events.

"During February, you can see whales in almost every direction," says Greg Kaufman, President of Pacific Whale Foundation (PWF), the nonprofit host of the Maui Whale Festival. "We honor and celebrate these remarkable animals through the Maui Whale Festival."

The signature event of the Maui Whale Festival is World Whale Day, an outdoor celebration at Kihei's Kalama Park on Saturday, February 18. Admission is free. It begins with Maui's Parade of Whales at 9:00 am, followed by live entertainment until 8:00 pm featuring popular Hawaii recording stars and hula. You'll find food booths, a children's carnival, whale displays and more. Sponsors include Hawaii Tourism Authority, County of Maui Office of Economic Development and Expedia Local Expert.

"Weekend with the Experts" takes place on February 10 -12. Whale and marine experts from across the U.S., as well as noted marine photographers from Hawaii, will share discoveries, photos and video with the public, at free evening presentations at the Westin Resort and Spa in Kaanapali and on special whalewatch cruises.

The Run and Walk for the Whales on Saturday, February 4 offers 5K and Half Marathon courses, plus a 2K kids course, starting at Makena Beach and Golf Resort. Register at

A free multi-media presentation by Greg Kaufman -- researcher, author, whale activist and President/Founder of Pacific Whale Foundation -- takes place on February 4, 6:30 to 7:30 pm at Wailea Marriott Resort and Spa.

The Great Whale Count on February 25 enlists citizen whale counters along Maui's shores. Volunteer and learn about whale research!

Other events include "Tribute to Whales" -- a free photography exhibition open daily in Ma'alaea -- plus free whalewatch hikes and free "Whale Information Stations" staffed by Pacific Whale Foundation naturalists. Check out the Whale Photo Safaris and special whalewatches offered by Pacific Whale Foundation. Learn more at or call Pacific Whale Foundation at 1-800-WHALE-1-1.

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Contact: Anne Rillero

SOURCE Pacific Whale Foundation

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