MALIHINIS AND KAMAAINAS CELEBRATE KAMEHAMEHA DAY
Leading Hawaiians Decorating the Statue of Kamehameha yesterday.
(From Wednesday’s Advertiser.)
Cloaked in leis from helmet to feet the stalwart and majestic Kamehameha looked out over city and mountains in the light of a perfect day, thousands of holiday makers shut up shop and went out to play yesterday in honor of the first king of Hawaii Nei and scores of horsemen passed before the statue keeping the old Kamehameha Day custom.
Aside from the pleasant weather, which is a traditional accompaniment of the day, the decorating of the statue and the Hawaiian races and luau at Kalihi there was not much to remind the public of Kamehameha, and it would seem that the public determined to turn the occasion into a playful Sunday. There were no pa-u riders, although a number of horsemen on all grades and classes of steeds rode about town in groups. Many of them were cowboys in full regalia.
There were a few Hawaiian flags in evidence, one or two consular flags and hundreds of bare flag-poles. Evidently the brilliant sun was relied upon to bring out the natural colors of Honolulu’s setting so the bunting was deemed unnecessary.
An enormous crowd turned out to see the marathon runners come in from Haleiwa, another enormous crowd made a pilgrimage to aquatic and other sports at the Kalihi races and luau, and it seemed that half of Honolulu crowded about the Athletic Field at Punahou and tried to climb the fence while all the youngsters in town were inside drinking pop and playing games at the Central Union Church’s picnic.
The beaches were crowded all day and the sunburn “took fine” on a thousand or more lily complexions. At nine o’clock yesterday morning the crowds began to gather along King street and by noon the police were busy keeping people off the car tracks and pulling the absent minded from in front of tooting automobiles between Kalihi and Waikiki. The bicycle and foot races stirred up as much enthusiasm and drew as big a holiday crowd as a pa-u parade in the old days when Kamehameha was honored in true Hawaiian style. The old Portuguese statue worshiper who performs his unique rites before the judiciary building daily was not in evidence yesterday. He probably got a glimpse of his old friend the king in his giddy, gaudy holiday rags at long range and thought him lacking in the dignity which should hedge a real worshipful deity.
Draping the Monarch.
The work of clothing the deep chested monarch in flowers was done yesterday morning by the Order of Kamehameha. Fifty members of the lodge marched from the Odd Fellows building to the statue about eight-thirty o’clock carrying their flowers and leis and after the decorating formed in a circle in front of the statue where they were addressed by Kaukau Alii Chung Hoon, Sr. The ceremony closed with the singing of Hawaii Ponoi. There was a large general attendance of spectators at this function.
When the mounted police squad came back from the Punahou picnic they were as weary as a force of fond mothers after getting the youngsters washed and dressed for Sunday school. For about five hours they had hopped from one corner of the athletic field to the other persuading the irrepressible small boys on the outside that they were not invited and that entrance was to be had at the gate and by ticket. The Central Union Bible class was entertaining the Kakaako and Palama mission schools and the latter were certainly entertained.
At the close of the races the big down-town crowds dispersed, the few stores that were open in the forenoon closed, Absalom stretched out in the middle of the sidewalk at Fort and King and had a snooze and a Sabbath-like calm brooded over the city of palms and poi, as the poet might say.
[Found on Chronicling America!]
(Hawaiian Gazette, 6/14/1912, p. 2)