COURTESY POLYNESIAN CULTURAL CENTER
Via Tiumalu Jr., 14, wowed the judges for the second year in a row, taking first place in one of the junior brackets of the 14th Annual World Fireknife Championship at the Polynesian Cultural Center. Below, Eddie Kamae received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Pacifika 2006: New York Hawaiian Film Festival, which ran May 19 to 21 in New York City.
Florida brothers win fireknife competition
Playing with fire runs in the family for this year's winners of the 14th Annual (Junior) World Fireknife Championship held at the Polynesian Cultural Center.
Via Tiumalu Jr., 14, took the title once again, making this his second consecutive year as winner in the 12- to 17-year-old category. His brother Rex, 11, took first place in the 6- to 11-year-old category.
In a press release Via said, "I thought winning the title last year was the best moment of my life but sharing the stage with my little brother and watching him perform was really cool, too."
The brothers are from Orlando, Fla.
Runner-ups in the respective categories are: Julius Tafiti of Laie, 14, and Kahikina Moise, 7, of Tahiti, second place; and Malakai Lavatai, 16, of American Samoa, and Hale Motuapuaka, 6, of Honolulu, third place.
Mikaele Oloa, the 2005 World Fireknife Champion, who also is from Orlando, won the Masters division again.