Page 15 - 150th King Kamehameha Day Celebration - Kauai
P. 15

    King Kamehameha Celebra- tion Commission has a cadre of people who are trained in wrapping a pāʻū. Together, they get dozens of women properly wrapped. They use pāʻū sewn with 12 yards of fabric and include six dried and cleaned kukui nuts in the wrapping process.
This year, though, Keaulana shares that the pā‘ū units, while as beautiful as always, will be downsized due to a severe horse shortage. There will be four rid- ers in each unit rather than the customary seven, though at- tendees will still “see the color, ingenuity in floral creations and pride in the pāʻū presentations,” to hear him tell it.
“To see the pāʻū riders rise in their resilience will be amazing! I hope that the peo- ple of Hawaiʻi will turn out
and enjoy the parade in per- son,” Keaulana says.
“Without pāʻū riders, a pa- rade is just a parade. With pāʻū riders, you have a Hawaiian parade,” he says. “The Kame- hameha Day Parade is a parade that is produced by the people of Hawaiʻi and not by commer- cial interest. The Kamehameha Day Parade is the only parade in the United States that hon- ors a monarch. This parade is an important reminder that Ha- waiʻi was once an independent kingdom, the Kingdom of Ha- waiʻi, and it was Kamehameha I that united our islands under a single ruler. Everyone in Ha- waiʻi needs to be reminded and to be mindful of this.”
When it comes to his favor- ite part of the journey, he says, “From the standpoint of chair- ing the pāʻū wrapping, I love to
see riders again that I have not seen since the last parade. It’s equally delightful to see new riders and their anxious faces! I love finishing the wrapping and looking at the completely dressed pāʻū rider and telling her how beautiful she looks! I always wish them well and to enjoy a safe ride.”
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