We’re down to the final days of the 12th Festival of Pacific Arts so if you haven’t yet checked out the exhibits, demonstrations and activities, the time to do so is now. Contrary to all the chatter on social media, I promise you there is so much more to FestPac than just Rapa Nui (but you should totally check out their booth, too).
Over the past couple of years, I had heard a little about the plans for FestPac but I truly did not grasp the enormity of the event until last week when I first looked over the festival schedules at all of the different venues. FestPac is so massive that it would be impossible to see everything, even if you went every day. Can you imagine the crazy amount of planning and coordinating that went on to make FestPac happen? There are dozens of committees and subcommittees, all of them driven by artists, cultural practitioners and volunteers, backed by a partnership between the government, community, and sponsors.
As the official telecom sponsor of FestPac, GTA has generously donated a tremendous amount of time, resources and funds in order to provide services not just for us here at home, but also for the 2,000+ visiting delegates. GTA prepared 2,500 SIM kits that included $20 prepaid load so that delegates could stay in touch with their families back home. GTA is also providing free Wi-Fi at all eight of the schools that are housing delegates, as well as free Wi-Fi at the festival grounds. GTA also set up an electronic device charging station at the festival grounds that delegates and festivalgoers can use freely. I think the charging station and free Wi-Fi are some of the most thoughtful things to offer the delegates. They’re away from home, putting in long hours at FestPac. It’s nice to know they can use and charge their phones for free.
Their contribution also included airing FestPac sponsored commercials on their digital TV network, and they provided the back haul for live streaming of the opening ceremony on KUAM. They’ll do the same for the closing ceremony. They’ll also provide a satellite uplink so people from the other islands can watch, too.
GTA is also sponsoring the Guam Art Exhibit (GAX) for FestPac, which will feature over 30 artists, including special guests Charles TMD and Janine TMD from the New Zealand delegation who will be creating a new large-scale mural. The two-week exhibit will also house several events and workshops. GAX for FestPac opens Thursday, June 2 at The Plaza Shopping Center (2nd floor above Stussy Guam and Häagen-Dazs).
All of the other FestPac sponsors have also generously donated time and resources to help bring the festival together. FestPac is one of the largest scale events that Guam has ever coordinated and hosted, and everyone is doing all they can to make sure delegates and festivalgoers have a great time.
FestPac ends this Saturday, June 4, so there’s little time left to check out this amazing historical event that only happens every four years and could possibly be the only one we see on Guam in our lifetimes, since the festival travels like the Olympics. Huge thanks and high-fives to the volunteers, artists, sponsors and community for working so hard these past few years to bring FestPac to Guam and for extending to our guests the kind of generosity and hospitality our island is famous for.
Josie Moyer is a freelance writer and GTA customer who loves technology and lives for adventure. Find her on Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat as Latitude13, and on her blog, www.latitude13.com.