Mahalo for an incredible David Malo Day Ho‘olaule‘a
It may be the technology of today that broadens our view and increases our awareness of current events, but it nevertheless feels as though we are experiencing a renaissance in appreciation of our host Hawaiian culture.
There are contentious issues as seen in the Mauna Kea telescope controversy and water rights legislation; artful competitions with the Merrie Monarch Festival; educational avenues in the Hawaiian Language Immersion Program in our schools; and deepening appreciation and awareness of the ocean with surfing, canoe paddling and the Polynesian Voyaging Society.
And then there are the grassroots community events that nurture and grow the history and richness of the Hawaiian culture.
Here in Lahaina, we have been blessed with the Lahainaluna High School David Malo Day Ho’olaule’a to deepen our knowledge of the island culture.
This event annually brings together several generations of Lahainaluna graduates from across the state and the Mainland, their families, school staff, administrators past and present, political dignitaries and community leaders to enjoy an evening of traditional food, music, song and dance to honor the legacy of one of the school’s first graduates, David Malo, as well as all those who followed his pathway.
This year’s crowd included the Lahainaluna Class of 1965, celebrating their 50th anniversary, along with a packed Boarders’ Field crowd that included graduates that walked the historic campus over 60 years ago. And all were treated to an evening that touched their deepest sensitivities.
The Boarders’ Field landscape in the heart of the campus was trimmed and cleaned to immaculate standards; the traditional lau lau supper was a mouthwatering delight; and the music, song and dance choreography was a memorable, breathtaking experience of Hawaiian culture.
Old and young alike could be heard lauding the production and performance of the Boarders Chorus and Hawaiiana Club, as well as the musicians and organizers of the 45th running of the event as they made their way home.
In church, in grocery stores, across the fence with neighbors and over the dinner tables throughout our village of Lahaina in the days that followed, you heard the compliments flow: “That was the best show ever.”
Mahalo to Lori Gomez Karinen, Ilima Greig Hong, Pomai Krueger, Kahala Greig, Ray Camacho, Bobby Watson, Alan Yamamoto and also the choreographers, music directors, cultural consultants, the students and the staff for your noble effort as peaceful, artful warriors of the cherished Hawaiian philosophy of malama pono-to nurture in a motherly way that which is good and righteous.
Indeed, the David Malo Day philosophy of giving back to the host community was manifested in this presentation.
Near the end of the evening, a refreshing wind offered life to the gathering – as in past years when a white owl would hover above the venue-in recognition of the host culture of our home. The powerful breeze created a natural applause as it rustled through the limbs, leaves and seed pods of the venerable guardian trees that line Boarders’ Field. Could it be that David Malo sent a breath of aloha from where he rests high above the campus at Pu’u Pa’u Pa’u?