Festival in Liliuokalani Park Honors the Queen
The He Hali’a Aloha No Lili’uokalani Festival, Queen’s Birthday Celebration has been set for Saturday, Sept. 6, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Hilo’s Lili’uokalani Gardens Park.
The 15th Annual Queen Lili’uokalani Festival celebrates the Queen’s Birthday and pays tribute to the historical significance of the Lili’uokalani Gardens.
The daylong festival includes music, hula, arts, crafts, food, demonstrations, children’s games and cultural activities. Entertainment throughout the day will include Darlene Ahuna, Kukulu Kumuhana, Taishoji Taiko, Komakakino with Halau Ha’akea A Kala, the Waiakea Ukulele Band, Lito Archangel, and the Keawe Trio + one.
Hula is the major focus of the Festival and each year festivities are kicked off with a mass hula featuring more than 400 hula dancers scattered throughout the Park performing “E Lili’u E”, Hilo My Home Town, and the Aloha Week Hula.
Dancers from throughout the state dance together symbolizing the Queen’s vision to share the Hawaiian culture with the rest of the world. During this performance, more than 50,000 orchid blossoms rain from the skies above the park.
Four people who have made significant contributions of time and knowledge to the Festival are being recognized this year. Aunty Kuulei Badua, Aunty Lucille Chung, Kumu Hula Iwalani Kalima and Skylark Rosetti have served on the coordinating committee for many years and through their efforts the Festival has continued to grow and thrive, said a County of Hawaii release.
Other special activities and demonstrations include a Japanese Tea Ceremony, a Jumping Castle and Water slide, Nose Flute Making, Coconut Weaving, Hawaiian Printing & Stamp Pads, Portuguese Horse Shoe, Konani Game, Hawaiian Herbs and Lomi Lomi.
A bountiful variety of local foods will be available for purchase along with gourmet hot dogs, sandwiches, all kind mouth-watering plate lunches, baked goods, shave ice, pop corn, cotton candy, smoothies and floats.
A craft fair will offer one-of-a-kind creations for sale, and the event will showcase Community and Educational booths offering information for families.
Admission is free. Additional public parking is available at the Afook Chinen Civic Auditorium and Hawaii County Mass Transit will be providing free shuttle service from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The County of Hawai’i is partnering with the Queen Lili’uokalani Children’s Center, Pacific Media Group, Hilo Fire Extinguishers, Blue Hawaiian Helicopters, Hilo Naniloa Hotel, KWXX, Hilo Hawaiian Hotel, Honolulu Skylark Productions and the Hawaii Tropical Flowers Council to present this “cultural experience” as a gift to the residents and visitors of Hawaii Island, the release said.
Call the Hawai’i County Culture & Education Section, 961-8706.