Food Trucks At CKMS Street Fair

During the school year, student groups from Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School put on one tasty fundraiser on the second Saturday of each month. Kaua’i-based vendors and food trucks line up in the bus lane to sell their most popular menu items. There’s also music, crafts, face painting, a bounce house, keiki games and a bingo game.

Band instructor Sarah Tochiki and parent Jody McCune organized the first event, taking inspiration from Oahu’s monthly “Eat The Street.”

“We wanted to connect the community to the school,” says McCune. “Oahu’s event has about 50 trucks and 50,000 people. We hope to have 1,000 residents and visitors come to our event.”

Look for Rocco’s Pizza and chocolate-covered frozen bananas from CocoBanas. Just for the street fair, Paco’s Tacos offers its popular carnitas and fish tacos (three for $12.50). The restaurant is headquartered in Hanapepe, with food trucks in Kapa’a (makai side next to Otsuka’s Furniture), Kilauea (next to the new Healthy Hut) and a new location at Harbor Mall in Lihu’e.

Alan Van Zee of Hawaiian Island Juice normally can be found at the Saturday Kaua’i Community Market (KCM) in Puhi. Local fruit, such as navel orange, tangelo and tangerine juice, is used in fresh blend, and the smoothies contain at least seven seasonal fruits.

“The fruit makes a pretty thick smoothie,” says Van Zee, who only uses produce grown on Kaua’i. “I use fresh coconut water to thin it out. It rounds out the citrus and pineapple flavors and adds a nice, creamy texture.”

The Right Slice now offers quiche and individual servings of take-and-bake frozen pot pies at the bakery in Puhi. At the CKMS Street Fair, hot pot pies ($10) come in three flavors: chicken, shepherd’s (made with beef) and vegetarian. Deep dish fruit pies ($5 a slice or $38 whole), menehune pie bites ($2 each or three for $5) and Baby Pies ($16) also come with gluten-free crusts, but it’s best to call the bakery ahead of time if you want one ready for you at the fair.

JC’s Puerto Rican Kitchen offers its full menu at KCM, but at the monthly street fair, the menu includes beef empanada plates with arroz con gandules, chips and salsa ($8); nachos ($7); taco salad ($8); and pastele stew with white rice ($6).

Gina Vivona of Granny Feelgood’s makes fresh kettle corn ($5) in furikake, arare (rice cakes) or plain flavors. Besides the monthly street fair, you can get her kettle corn at Hanapepe Art Night, and she does parties for $75 an hour.

“We make chocolate and vanilla ice cream,” says Kalana Kaohi of Yamato’s Ice Cream truck, “but our emphasis is different, and fresh flavors like strawberry-Hawaiian chili, honey-ginger, lilikoi-orange, and brown butter.” Yamato’s Ice Cream truck is also at KCM every Saturday.

At the street fair, Hanalei Taro & Juice Co. normally serves traditional favorites such as the Kalua Pork and Poi Bowl ($4.25) made with Kaneshiro Farms pork, and specials such as Shoyu Local Pork Belly with Taro and Tofu ($7). This month they’ll be at the annual garden fair, but will return to the street fair in May. Besides locations in Hanalei and KCM, you can get their food at the Wednesday Kapa’a Market. Soon their delicious taro hummus and taro burgers will be available in grocery stores island-wide.

Money from the fair goes to fund student programs at CKMS. The production media class organized the January street fair, which was the fourth event put on by the middle school.

“The production media class used the money to attend the Student Television Network convention this March in California,” says instructor Kevin Matsunaga. “There’s lectures from industry professionals, workshops and competitions.”

Sharae Cua, Syndey Brady, Lindsey Tresler and Danica Ola won first place last year in a national video challenge.

“Starting at a young age was our topic,” says Cua. “It was fun because I got to work with my friends, and my brother was the subject. He does taiko drumming and started at a young age, but it was hard because we had to write, film and edit it in six days.”

“We are taking our concert choir to Oahu for the Hawaii Music Festival April 12,” says choir director Julianne Hiu, whose class organized the February street fair. “Two years ago, our students went to a national festival and sang. It’s not a competition; you just compete against yourself. We got a superior rating, which is the highest, and we’re trying to do that again.”

April features the Unknown Artists Faire, which includes visual, performing and media artists of all ages and backgrounds.

“The idea behind the Unknown Artists Faire was to find new talent here on Kaua’i,” says Tochiki. “This was held a couple of years ago and some of the artists are no longer unknown.”

On April 13, the street fair will benefit Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) as well as the Parent Teacher Student Association. AVID is a college prep program that gives students the skills to excel throughout their education, from middle school through college. This month’s funds will enable students to visit colleges on Oahu.

CKMS Street Fair
4431 Nohou St., Lihue
Second Saturday of each month, 5 to 8 p.m.

Marta Lane is a Kaua’i-based food writer. For more information, visit