LIHUE — Traffic slowed as Rice Street fronting the Kauai Museum was coned off to just a single westbound lane to accommodate the overflow crowd at the museum.
Hundreds of people braved the threat of rain and the passage of the weather front to witness the royal unveiling of the depiction of Ali‘i ‘Aimoku Kaumuali‘i and Mo‘i Waihine Kekaiha‘akulou, created by sculptor Chris Fowler.
The Royal Hawaiian Guard from Maui was a key part of the ceremony narrated and guided by Chucky Boy Chock, Kauai Museum executive director.
The guard, opening the protocol by escorting the Royal Order of Kamehameha Chapter No. 3 Kaumuali‘i and its wahine, and stood guard through the processional that included other prominent Hawaiian organizations as well as moku representatives presenting ho‘okupu.
It also presented its own ho‘okupu as well as a special military drill presentation.
Keiki from Ke Kula Ni‘ihau o Kekaha and the Punana Leo preschool offered the doxology, and the audience was thrilled with the protocol presentation from Halau Ka Lei Mokihana O Leina‘ala under the direction of Kumu Hula Leina‘ala Pavao Jardin, who recently returned from the Merrie Monarch Hula Festival with fifth-place wahine honors in the auana (modern) hula division.
Under the watchful eyes of the Kauai Museum Board of Trustees and government dignitaries including Mayor Derek S.K. Kawakami, County Councilmember Felicia Cowden, Mark Perriello of the Kauai Chamber of Commerce, and Sue Kanoho, executive director of the Kauai Visitors Bureau, more protocol saw moku representatives bestow more lei on the depictions.
More than 300 people adjourned to the post-ceremony paina that was hosted in the back parking lot of the museum, led by the Royal Hawaiian Guard escorting the Royal Order of Kamehameha during the recessional.
Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-0453 or firstname.lastname@example.org.