HILO, Hawaii – Thousands gathered at Hilo’s Afook-Chinen Civic Auditorium on Easter Sunday to witness the traditional opening of the Merrie Monarch Festival.
The week-long hula and Hawaiian cultural event always begins with the free Ho’olaule’a. Various halau put on a thrilling exhibition.
Halau Na Pua O Uluhaimalama, a local group under the direction of kumu Emery Aceret, took the stage at 11 a.m.
We also recorded highlights of Johnny Lum Ho’s Halau O Ka Ua Kani Lehua, which followed this one.
The 2017 Merrie Monarch Festival events are being held all over Hilo town this week. Following Wednesday’s free-Ho’ike night at the Edith Kanaka’ole Stadium, three nights of hula competition begin. The festival culminates with the Royal Parade on Saturday, the final day of the competition.