Video by David Corrigan
HILO, Hawaii – The upcoming worldwide voyage of Hōkūleʻa and Hikianala was celebrated on Saturday in Hilo.
Early in the morning, the crew partook in a private cultural ceremony. Afterwards, the community gathered at Palekai in Keaukaha, where the two legendary wa’a are docked, in order to see, photograph, and honor the traditional voyaging canoe. Some were even able to board.
During the public portion of Saturday’s events, the Royal Order of Kamehameha presented offerings in a ho’okupu ceremony. Keaukaha leader Patrick Kahawaiola’a served as an MC, and Pwo navigator Bruce Blankenfeld addressed the crowd shortly before the noon kapu period of “rest, reflection, and emotional and spiritual preparation for the journey ahead.”
Hōkūleʻa and Hikianala expect to depart for Tahiti, the first leg of the long journey, on Tuesday when the appropriate winds are forecast to appear. Hilo will not see the wa’a again until 2017.
You can follow the worldwide voyage the whole way around the globe on the official website: hokulea.com/worldwide-voyage.