150th Anniversary of King Kamehameha Day in Hawai‘i Nei
Kamehameha Day is a state holiday in Hawai‘i celebrated annually on June 11th to honor King Kamehameha the Great (aka Pai‘ea aka Kamehameha 1) who unified the Hawaiian Islands in 1810.
What is The History Of Kamehameha Day
Kamehameha was destined to unite the Hawaiian Islands since birth by an ancient prophecy that spoke of a light in the sky with feathers like a bird which would be the sign that a great chief was born.
Historians believe that Pai‘ea was born in 1758 when Halleyʻs Comet passed over the Hawaiian Islands. Kamehameha grew to become a great warrior and leader who used Western technology to gain strategic advantages over his opponents on the battlefield.He is celebrated as a Mō‘ī (King) who ruled with compassion and intelligence, embracing foreigners and technology.
Pai‘eaʻs grandson, Kamehameha V (Lot Kapuāiwa), instituted the first Kamehameha Day with a royal decree on June 11, 1872. This first celebration included carnivals, fairs, and races—both by horse and foot. In 1959, when Hawai‘i became the 50th State of the U.S., Kamehameha Day was one of the first holidays to be adopted.
Celebrating Modern Day Kamehameha Day
In modern times, Kamehameha Day is celebrated with a state holiday that features parades, lei-draping ceremonies at the four Kamehameha statues, hula performances, free street parking, and a day off for many businesses. We look forward to celebrating the 150th anniversary of Kamehameha Day in-person.