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Celebrating Mele Kalikimaka in Hawaii


Celebrating Mele Kalikimaka in Hawaii, in translation it means “Merry Christmas.” It’s that time of year where friends and families will reunite to celebrate what we are thankful for, the gift of life! These last few years have been hard on many folks, including myself. But the economy is improving and we can now start seeing light at the end of the tunnel.

Celebrating Mele Kalikimaka in HawaiiWith my thoughts running wild concerning Christmas in Hawaii, I decided to look up Christmas in Hawaii on the Internet. I began by searching for what I thought meant Merry Christmas. The thing is I didn’t know how to spell it. My search came up with nothing.

I kept trying, and finally, after a long search, I came up with Mele Kalikimaka, which means Merry Christmas. I thought it was one word, and I had searched for Malekalekimaka, or some such word. I had heard the words when our son had sent us a Christmas greeting from Hawaii, on a small tape. But that was all I could remember.

I found out quite a few things about Christmas in Hawaii on the Internet.

Christmas was not celebrated by the Hawaiian people before the arrival of Captain Cook in 1778. The Protestant missionaries who arrived from New England in 1820 were the first to introduce Christmas to the Hawaiian people. The Hawaiians traditionally honored the Earth for giving them plenty to eat. This period was called Makahiki, and it lasted for four months. No work, wars or conflicts were allowed during this time.

When I read that, I got to thinking about World War II. I wondered if the Japanese knew that about that time the people of Hawaii didn’t allow work, wars or conflicts because of the celebrations that were going on. Christmas fell at the same time as when the Hawaiians traditionally honored the Earth.

At the same time I wondered if perhaps the celebrations honoring the Earth had gone by the wayside, so there was no need for Japan to honor Hawaii’s holidays. If those holidays were still being observed, what better time to attack if wars and conflicts were not allowed?

Celebrating Mele Kalikimaka in Hawaii

It seems to me that would have been the perfect time for a sneak attack. I guess I’ll never know.

In order to understand the importance of the Christmas season, the Protestant missionaries translated the Hawaiian language from oral to written. Some things had to be translated phonetically.

I also read that Santa does not use reindeer to pull his sleigh in Hawaii; instead he can be seen using a dolphin and a huge surfboard. Interesting, yes.

Here are some of the words that can be heard during the Christmas season in Hawaii:

Angel — Anela; Candy – Kanake; Christmas Eve – Ahiahi Kalikimaka; Christmas Tree – La’au Kalikimaka; Snow – Hau Kea; Star – Hoku. My favorite is Popohau for Snowball. Most of us already know the Lei is for garland or wreath.

I’ve been told that you can’t believe everything you see or read on the Internet. So, let me say this as a disclaimer. I don’t know if this is all correct and true or if it is only partially correct and perhaps less than true. I can only say I found it very interesting, and I also found the language to be beautiful.

Also, I thought it would be nice for the folks who didn’t know. At Santa’s Candyland you can have pictures taken with Santa “Young and Old.” Below is the information and specifics.

Santa’s Candyland at the Kahala Mall

Take photos with Santa!

Hours of Operation

(Santa takes a break daily from 1pm – 2pm and 5pm – 6pm)

December 14 – December 23 Monday – Sunday     9am – 8pm

December 24 Sunday      9am – 5pm

Hello Kitty will make a special appearance on the below date: (Please note Santa will not be here when Hello Kitty is here)

Sunday, December 16   4pm – 6pm

$20 Photo Packages (price includes tax)

Package A    (1) 5×7 & (4) Wallets Package B    (2) 5×7 Package C    (8) Wallets Package D    (1) 8×10

Celebrating Mele Kalikimaka in Hawaii and I want to wish everyone, everywhere a very Happy Holiday Season here in Hawaii and around the World…

~~Aloha Nui Loa


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