The Best Events and Things to Do on O‘ahu in July 2021

Summer’s still in session. Continue the season with an immersive art show, a music festival and a street art exhibition.


Beyond Van Gogh Paintings Flowers 3d Credit Katrina Valcourt

Photo: Katrina Valcourt




IMMERSE Yourself in Works of Art

Opens July 2

Since we first posted that HONOLULU Magazine would be bringing Beyond Van Gogh: The Immersive Experience to the Islands, thousands of you signed up for a chance to buy tickets, even before we announced the details of when, where or how much. Now that it opens to the public this Friday and we’ve gotten a sneak peek of how it all works, here’s everything you need to know to make the most of the experience. —Katrina Valcourt


Starting at $29.99, Hawai‘i Convention Center, 


SEE ALSO: Renowned Merrie Monarch Festival Returns to the Stage this July in Hilo


The Best Events And Things To Do On Oahu In July 2021 Chicken Wings

Chicken wings from Sam’s Delicatessen. Photo: Aaron K. Yoshino




EAT Traditional Summer Treats

Still planning more stay-at-home days? How about a little summer indulgence? Start with classic hands-on summer barbecue favorites on National Hot Dog Day (July 21) and National Chicken Wing Day (July 29), wash it all down with a smooth sip from Kasama Rum on National Rum Day (Aug. 16) and finish off with a DIY gelato cake from Via Gelato on National Ice Cream Day (July 18).


SEE ALSO: What’s Open or Closed in Honolulu for Independence Day


The Best Events And Things To Do On Oahu This Summer Pow Wow Hawaii

Photo: Courtesy of Pow! Wow! Hawai‘i




ADMIRE Artists and Athletes

When you need a siesta from the sun, here are three very good reasons to head inside: Get to the Village Books & Music store by Friends of the Library of Hawai‘i pop-up at Ward before it leaves us early this month. The collection of records, books and art (oh my goodness, the art) is too incredible to miss. Then stop by Bishop Museum for its latest exhibition, Pow! Wow! The First Decade: From Hawai‘i to the World, presented by Hawaiian Airlines, for 10 years of festival murals, installations and sculptures by notable artists from Hawai‘i and around the world. And finally, HBO will premiere 100 Foot Wave on July 18. The six-part docu-series follows local big-wave surfing pioneer (and a Guinness World Record-holder for the largest wave ever surfed) Garrett McNamara’s 10-year journey to conquer a perfect 100-foot wave.


SEE ALSO: 2020 Marks 10 Years of Pow! Wow!, the Now-Global Street-Art Festival That Originated in Hawai‘i



Daddy Long Legs

July 1–11

This two-actor musical, loosely based on Jean Webster’s 1912 novel Daddy Long Legs, tells the story of Jerusha Abbott, an 18-year-old orphan who is given an all-expenses-paid pass to a local college in Massachusetts by an unknown benefactor. A case of mistaken identities ensues, much like when this writer learned this is not the same Hollywood musical starring the legendary Fred Astaire and Leslie Caron.


$22–$40, Mānoa Valley Theatre,


SEE ALSO: 10 Restaurants Are Creating 26 New Dishes for Honolulu’s July 10 Natto Day Takeout Dine-Around 



The Mighty Merloe as it crosses the finish line in 2017. Photo: Courtesy of Sharon Green, Ultimate Sailing




Transpac 2021

Begins July 13

The Californians are coming! A brainchild of King David Kalākaua, the biennial yacht race from Long Beach to Honolulu is now in its 51st edition. So far, 60 teams have signed up for the 2,225-nautical-mile race.


SEE ALSO: The 50th California-to-Hawai‘i Transpacific Yacht Race Sets Sail For Honolulu



‘Ukulele Festival

July 18, 9 a.m.–4 p.m.

The music festival returns in 2021 with a lineup of free virtual shows (which started in April), concluding with the 51st Annual ‘Ukulele Festival Hawai‘i show featuring Jake Shimabukuro, Herb Ohta Jr., Bryan Tolentino, Brittni Paiva and more.


Free, Live on YouTube,


SEE ALSO: Live Music Returns to HiSAM on July 1 with a New Monthly Jazz Night





July 23–25, 6:30 & 9 p.m. shows

Tired of the new decade already? Why not revisit the ’90s with R&B pop group All-4-One? “I Swear” you’ll be feeling “So Much In Love” after any of the group’s six shows at the Blue Note.


$45–$55, Blue Note Hawai‘i,


The Tokyo Olympics is slated to start July 23 with the first-ever surfing competition July 25–28.



This story originally appeared as “Summer Picks” in both the June 2021 and July 2021 issues of HONOLULU Magazine. Get your copy at and subscribe to the print and digital editions now.


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