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Polynesian Cultural Center Marks 20th Anniversary of its World Fireknife Championship Competition and Presents Mayor with Honorary Nifo Oti in Celebration
Laie, Hawaii – May 02, 2012 – In a proclamation ceremony held at Honolulu Hale today, Mayor Peter Carlisle recognized the Polynesian Cultural Center’s (PCC) World Fireknife Championship as a competition integral to the evolution of fireknife and the perpetuation of the Samoan culture for the past 20 years and proclaimed May 6-12, 2012 as World Fireknife Week.

In appreciation, the PCC presented Mayor Carlisle a nifo oti, or “tooth of death,” hand crafted by World Fireknife Championship founder, Pulefano Galeai. The modern fireknife dance stems from the Samoan ailao, a warrior’s knife dance performed with the nifo oti, which was displayed before battle to frighten the enemy and, afterwards, to celebrate victory.

Celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, the World Fireknife Championship features the best fireknife dancers from across the globe as they battle for the title “World Fireknife Champion.”

For the first time in the competition’s 20-year history, the entire four-night event will be streamed live online. Fans from across the world can view fireknife at its best, via computer or mobile device, even if they can’t make it to Laie. Following the first night of finals on Friday, May 11, fans can also vote online for the new “People’s Choice Award,” recognizing their favorite competitor. Voting opens Friday night, immediately following the finalists’ performances, and closes at 9 p.m. (HST) Saturday with the winner announced at the championship ceremony. To view the live stream and to vote visit WorldFireknife.com.

The preliminary senior competition will take place at PCC’s Hale Aloha on Wednesday, May 9, followed by senior semi-finals, open group and Junior Pacific competitions on Thursday, May 10, in the same venue. Beginning Friday, May 11, the three finalists will move to PCC’s Pacific Theater to take part in a two-night battle for the championship during intermission of the Ha: Breath of Life evening show. The top three will battle again during the show’s intermission on Saturday, May 12. The 2012 World Fireknife Champion will be crowned immediately following the conclusion of Ha: Breath of Life with a victory ceremony held in the champion’s honor.

For more information or to make reservations, visit WorldFireknife.com, or call the PCC ticket office at 1-844-572-2347 or. On Oahu, call (808) 293-3333.

Founded in 1963 as a non-profit organization, the Polynesian Cultural Center (PCC) has entertained more than 36 million visitors, while preserving and portraying the culture, arts and crafts of Polynesia to the rest of the world. In addition, the PCC has provided financial assistance to 17,000 young people from over 70 different countries while they attend Brigham Young University-Hawaii. As a non-profit organization, 100 percent of PCC’s revenue is used for daily operations and to support education.