Fire Dancing - Maui
The fire dancing scene on Maui is brilliant! It's one of the greatest things to do on the islands after dark. Below is what I found. Notice I also have some mention of ecstatic dance events in this article. Why group them together? Well on Hawaii, it seems that the ecstatic dance community is intricately tied to fire dancing - in fact if the ecstatic dance is at night, you will probably see the fire dancers emerge with their toys after sunset.
Maui Fire Scene
Maui is an interesting use case for covid where cases are very low, because they test people coming in (see: Hawaii travel tips), but the hospital on Maui has only 200 beds and they are typically over capacity even without covid patients. As a result, the police generally don't like any dance gatherings, but they also realize that locals will form drum circles and dance regardless to blow off steam. It's part of the culture here.
There are a few little drum circle / dance events on Maui that appear to be happening.. they are:
Friday Night - Fire - Baldwin Beach Drum Circle and Fire Dancers
- What: (Informal) Baldwin Beach, Drum Circle and Fire Performers
... might be ~30 - 50 people, plus more people just out on the nearby beach enjoying the music. Unlike the (bigger) Little Beach event, cops tend to leave this one alone. (see video)
... Having said that... I've been twice, and the cops appeared the second time at around 7pm and did ticket the guy who organizes the fire-spinning and music, so I fear that part might disappear a while.
- When: Every Friday ~5 - 11pm
... the drumming starts before sunset, and people dance... then after dark the fire performers will take turns and slowly the drums get replaced with a speaker system. Depending on how many fire spinners there are it might last only 30 minutes, but hopefully it will last longer. I highly suggest arriving before sunset, if you arrive late (like most of my friends did), you'll miss the whole show. Arrive early (5pm) if you are happy to just chill on the beach as the drummers slowly arrive and it builds up.
- Where: Baldwin Beach, Paia, HI 96779 (map)
... the main parking area locks it's gates at 7pm (I think - read the sign) and they do lock cars in, so you might want to park outside if you want to stay for the fire spinners.
- What to wear: Locals are often in bathing suits, but you'll want probably want flip-flops to walk in because the little walk in and drum circle area can have prickles.
- Website: N/A
Sunday Night - Fire - Po'Olenalena Beach Drum Circle
- What: (Informal) Po'Olenalena Beach, Drum Circle and Fire Performers
... this used to be on little beach and then Secret Cove Beach, but there can be lots of people so it was pretty common for police to come down and break up the party just before sunset. The locals warned that when that happens (assume it will), you want to be very careful to have a mask around your neck, be 6 feet apart, and do NOT have any alcohol or drugs on you. People got ticketed all the time. I think it happense less on Po'Olenalena Beach though, so hopefully that's where the dacing will stay - I last went late 2021, so you might want to check the exact location.
- When: Every Sunday ~5 - ~10pm (I think)
... People should be there and drumming most of the day, a few people might dance, and if the cops don't break it up there can be fire performers after dark. When I went there were many people (>100) but very few people dancing... so you might want to bring you own dance people and dance up behind the drummers.
- Where: Po'Olenalena Beach, Kihei, HI (map)
... to get to Po'Olenalena beach you'll want to park outside the parking lot just south of the beach (if you park inside you might have to pay for parking and could get locked in after dark as per the sign!) and then walk onto the beach.. and then turn right to walk north up and over the rocks to get onto the northern side. After dark you migrate back down to the first beach that locals call "Changs" (so many beach names I know, but all pretty close) and a David there hosts fire.
- What to wear: Locals are often in bathing suits or naked (it's a naked beach), but you'll definitely want probably want flip-flops or shoes to walk over the rocks..
- Website: Fans of Little Beach, Maui Drum Circle (private Facebook group
Old Locations and Events
Sunday Morning - Ecstatic - North Side Ecstatic
- What: Email me for info... it's kept very secret, but it's amazing!! Sadly I think it doesn't happen anymore though (since 2022).
- Fans of Little Beach, Maui Drum Circle (private Facebook group
- Trial by Fire (community website)