Hawaii House Honors Merrie Monarch Festival 50th Anniversary – Tickets Sold Out

On Friday the House honored the Merrie Monarch on the historic occasion of its 50th Anniversary.  In the early 1960s the late Helene Hale, along with George Naope and Gene Wilhelm created the Merrie Monarch as a way to attract tourists after a devastating tidal wave and resulting economic downturn. In 1968, the late “Auntie Dottie” Thompson became the Executive Director and inspired by King David Kalakaua’s example brought the best hula dancers throughout the islands to perform in Hilo.

Photo from the Merrie Monarch Site

Photo from the Merrie Monarch Site

Since then the festival has grown to include a parade, art exhibits, craft fairs, demonstrations and performances as well as the hula competition, and has received worldwide recognition for its historic and cultural significance. The Merrie Monarch festival was a cornerstone of the Hawaiian Renaissance of the 1970s and continues to be a catalyst to draw together those committed to the hula and the advancement of the Hawaiian culture.

Photos from the Merrie Monarch site

Photos from the Merrie Monarch site

“Auntie Dottie’s” daughter, Luana Kawelu, current President of the Merrie Monarch Festival, was presented a resolution on the House floor in celebration of this momentous occasion.

Tickets to the 50th Anniversary Merrie Monarch have been sold out:

The Merrie Monarch Festival announced that all tickets are sold out for the 2013 Hōʻike, Miss Aloha Hula, Hula Kahiko and Hula ʻAuana shows.  Due to the overwhelming volume of requests for tickets, many of you did not receive tickets this year.  We send our aloha to you, and appreciate your support of the festival.  We wish that everyone could have gotten a ticket.

There is a waiting list for returned tickets.  But not many are expected, because of the high demand for the 50th year celebration.

Please watch the KFVE-5 television programs on April 3rd through 6th, including the entire hula competition and the special Wednesday preview, “Backstage:  Live at the Merrie Monarch”.  Live streaming will be on kfve.com.  Videos and daily photo updates on merriemonarch.com.


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