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Lots of buzz around Hawaii’s highly caffeinated Kona Coffee Cultural Festival

One of Hawaii’s biggest food-focused festivals, the Kona Coffee Cultural Festival, is celebrating its 45th anniversary. It’s about one of America’s favorite drinks, of course, but it’s so much more. Think of it as the ultimate caffeine buzz.

The Kona Coffee Cultural Festival begins Friday and continues through Nov. 15 with events throughout the Kailua-Kona region of Hawaii Island.

The activity listings are plentiful and varied, but here’s a taste of what’s in store — besides, of course, savoring a cup or two of locally produced coffee:

— Kona Coffee Cultural Festival Art Show at the Donkey Mill Art Center in Holualoa. Artists working in various media will showcase works celebrating coffee. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Friday and Saturday and Nov. 10-14.

— Tours of the Kona Coffee Living History Farm in Captain Cook. The farm showcases the lives of Japanese immigrants who worked the coffee plantations between 1920 and 1945. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Friday and Nov. 9-13.

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— Try your hand at picking coffee berries during the harvest at UCC Ueshima Coffee Co. in Holualoa. Open to both kids and grown-ups. 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Sunday.

— Amateur and professional chefs will create dishes featuring coffee — what else? — during the Kona Coffee Recipe Contest. The public can taste the results after the judging. 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Sunday at the Sheraton Kona Resort.

— The Lantern Parade will wind its way through Historic Kailua Village beginning at 5:30 p.m. Nov. 13. It will be followed by a floating lantern celebration at Kamakahonu Bay.

A festival button available at numerous Big Island businesses for $3 provides admission to many of the activities.

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