King Kamehameha Day was proclaimed in 1871 by King Kamehameha V, to honor his grandfather, King Kamehameha I. The first King Kamehameha Day was on June 11, 1872, and it was one of the first holidays to be proclaimed when Hawaii became a state in 1959. June 11, 2011 will be the 95th annual King Kamehameha Day in Hawaii.
June 11, 2016 marks the 100th Annual King Kamehameha Celebration Floral Parade. It will begin at 9 am in downtown Honolulu. Floats, horse riding units and vehicles, all decorated with flowers, will procession their colorful way to Queen Kapʻiolani Park at the base of Diamond Head, at the end of Kalakaua Avenue in Waikiki. An all-day Hoʻolaulea (really big party) begins at 11 am, filling the park bandstand with entertainment until 4 pm.
Many monarchs are honored in Hawaii. King Kamehameha is the most celebrated monarch of all, with multiple statues. The sculpture in Honolulu is one of the most photographed landmarks. Photos were used in the opening scenes of the original 1970’s Hawaii Five-O and in the new Five-O series, possibly hundreds of travel magazine pages and an un-counted number of Trip to Hawaii story-line sit-coms and television commercials.
The Original Kamehameha Statue How the king’s likeness got to the spot is interesting. In 1878 Walter M. Gibson, a member of the Hawaiian government wanted to commemorate the 100-year arrival of Captain Cook to the Hawaiian Islands. The legislature appropriated $10,000 for the project. Gibson contracted Thomas R. Gould, a Boston sculptor who had never been to Hawaii, Gibson sent photos of Polynesians. Still, the face came out a bit Roman. In 1880 the sculpture was sent to Paris to be cast in bronze, too late for the 100th anniversary of Cook’s arrival.
The Original Kamehameha Statue resides in Kohala on Hawaii Island.
A Second Statue Was Quickly Re-castCompleted In 1883, the statue was on its way to Hawaii when the ship sunk off the Falkland Islands and the statue assumed lost. A second statue was quickly re-cast. Meanwhile, some Falkland-islanders found the original and sold it to the captain of the wrecked ship. He, in turn, sold it to Gibson for $875. Both statues arrived. The first stands on Hawaii Island in the king’s birthplace, Kohala. The second is in Downtown Honolulu.
The second Kamehameha statue resides in Downtown Honolulu.
A Third Statue for StatehoodThe third statue was commissioned when Hawaii became a state. It was unveiled in 1969 and stood in the United States Capitol beside the Father Damien of Molokai statue. It was the heaviest of all the statues, weighing in at 15,000 pounds. When Barack Obama was nominated as a candidate for president the statue was moved from a dark back corner of Statuary Hall to a very prominent position in Emancipation Hall in the new visitor center.
The third Kamehameha statue proudly stands in Washington D.C.
Hilo, Grand Wailea Resort and Las VegasThree more castings are located in Hilo on Hawaii Island, at the Grand Waialea Resort on Maui and, finally, there is a statue in what is often called the 9th Hawaiian Island, located at the Las Vegas Hawaiian Marketplace.
Do you know where any other statues are? Have you been to a Kamehameha Day parade? Share your experience with us below in the comments. King Kamehameha conquered all islands except one, name that island?
Wakinikona Hawaiian club has a founding member that hails from the Big Island of Hawai'i named Larry Kamehele. Larry has been with our club for 53 years and is a master story teller of Hawaiiana and a master lei maker in his prime. He is a wealth of cultural knowledge and an asset to our club. Every month Larry write a newsletter sharing his knowledge of Hawaiiana. Please enjoy the read and post comments if you are so endeared to below!
Come and joint Hui Wa'a O Wakinikona for our Na Po'e o ke Kai Sprint Regatta races at Green Lake from 8-4 pm. If you never experienced outrigger canoe racing in is a great event to witness the ultimate in teamwork. Come and observe the explosive " horse power" and energy in the water to propel a outrigger canoe in a short distance with 6 people on board. Our race also features the best raffle of all the Pacific Northwest Canoe regattas! We are lucky enough to have skilled craftsmen and crafters who donate items for the raffle. Tickets are $ 1 per ticket or 6 tickets for $ 5.00 ! You could be the lucky one that wins display of a Hawaiian fish hook made by one of our members, Vern! Come meet Vern and Participate in our raffle. Raffle drawing is on or about 1:30 pm and you do not need to be present to win,
CLUB QUIETLY MARKS ITS 53RD BIRTHDAY
It was Hauoli la hanau (Happy Birthday) for the Wakinikona Hawaiian Club at our April meeting/potluck on Sat, Apr 23rd at the Newport Hills Swim & Tennis Club in Bellevue. We had about 20 members, plus guests who enjoyed dinner including a couple of Hawaiian kine food items and a big cake to celebrate this special occasion. There was some time for kanikapila involving several long-time members of the club. Most notably among the singers and musicians were Larry Kamahele, Reidar Smith and Peter Nova. It was a treat to see and then hear Peter as he has been slowed by a stroke over a year ago. It never ceases to amaze how music and good friendship can put a spark in a person’s life. Keep chugging along, Peter! See photo
Following up on an item in last month’s newsletter, a couple of WHC members attended the Hawaiian community meeting on Hawaiian Self Governance on Sun, May 1st at the APCC in Tacoma. It was a good opportunity coordinated by April Baker from the Moku Aina a Wakinekona Hawaiian Civic Club (MAWHCC) to hear a variety of differing opinions, historical perspectives, corrections and clarifications of misinformation, and some broadening of understanding on a couple of issues. We were very fortunate to have in attendance a Hawaiian who was born and educated here in the PNW who was visiting his parents. Derek Kaunoe is a lawyer serving as OHA’s governance manager and, thus has extensive knowledge about all the divisive issues surrounding Hawaiian selfgovernance. His comments were his personal insights and not speaking on behalf of OHA. Some takeaways: —If you haven’t already done so, get yourself enrolled in Kanaiolowalu at
www.kanaiolowalu.org —Go to the new website to learn more about this current effort on Hawaiian nation building-- www.HawaiianNation.com —Share all of this with your ‘ohana. Encourage them to similarly enroll, so they can vote when the time comes. We’re forming a lahui and they need to be on board to have their voices heard
Happy Mother's Day to all Mothers, grandmothers and no forget the hanai ones too! Ohana is important! Cherish it , celebrate it and take a moment today and reflect on this today. Aloha o'e !
May Day is Lei Day in Hawaii Nei.” This popular phrase in the islands prevents anyone from forgetting this special day. It was Don Blanding, a writer and poet, who first suggested that a holiday should be dedicated to the beautiful Hawaiian tradition of making and wearing lei. But it was Grace Tower Warren, also a writer, who came up with the idea that the holiday should coincide with May Day. And so since the first Lei Day on May 1, 1928, Hawaii has continued the annual celebration to this very day.
Oahu hosts the state’s largest May Day event. No matter what day of the week May 1 falls on, the Lei Day Celebration takes place at Queen Kapiolani Park in Waikiki. The event features live music, a lei contest exhibit, hula performances, demonstrations, craft and food vendors, and more. This event is free and open to the public. To check out our photos from previous years’ celebrations, click here.
This rare full color travelogue from the 1940s shows Hawaii as it looked in the era before air travel made the island a highly accessible tourist destination. The film was photographed by Walter "Butch" Resce, who served as a combat cameraman during WWII and founded Rainbow Pictures after the war. The film shows Waikiki Beach, surfing, Diamond Head, the Royal Hawaiian Hotel, and many other scenes of classic Hawaii. Floral leis are seen at the 4:30 mark, with service personnel being decorated as well as tourists. A luau is also shown, along with classic Hawaiian dancing, the Statue of King Kamehameha, and a beautiful sunset. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vh9C7lzUgOM
Wakinikona Board has committed 2016 to the year of updating our website and internet visibility . Our club's new web address will be www.wakinikonaclub.com . Please add us to your favorites and spread the word with sharing our website on your personal Facebook page. See you at the Saturday, May 21, 2016 general membership meeting at Newport Hills Swimming and Tennis Club at 5:00 pm in Bellevue, Washington. We welcome everyone - members, family and newcomers too!