LIHU‘E — Na kane, or the gentlemen, of Ka Lei Mokihana O Leina‘ala are on a climb after sweeping the 37th Annual Queen Lili‘uokalani Keiki Hula Competition over the weekend at the Blaisdell Center Arena on O‘ahu.
Presented by the Kalihi-Palama Culture and Arts Society with help from the Hawai‘i State Foundation on Culture and the Arts and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, the hula halau led by Kumu Hula Leina‘ala Pavao-Jardin finished with hardware in both the kaikamahine, or young girls, and keiki kane, or young men, divisions.
Jonah Sandal started the flow Thursday when he placed third in the Master Keiki competition, which opened the three-day competition.
“Emily Melchor, our Miss Keiki Hula entrant, didn’t place, this year,” one of the parents said Sunday while greeting the halau at the Island Air baggage claim.
Kumu Leina‘ala said this year was a reversal of how the halau did during the 2011 competition, Na Kaikamahine finishing fourth in the kahiko competition Friday night and ending in third place during the ‘auana competition Saturday.
On the other hand, na keiki kane added to Sandal’s accomplishment, ending first place in both the kahiko and ‘auana en route to being named Best Overall in keiki kane.
Both the kahiko and ‘auana performances will be aired on KITV4 on Aug. 3 and 4 due to the sponsorship of OHA.
The Kalihi-Palama Culture and Arts Association was also one of seven organizations to receive a gift contribution from Disney in honor of the opening of the Aulani Resort and Spa on O‘ahu, the KPCA website states.
The selection was made to organizations, which enrich the lives of children and support the Hawaiian culture and conservation.
Both the Queen Lili‘uokalani Keiki Hula Competition and Disney share in the belief that it is important to malama the children and provide learning opportunities in the traditions of Hawai‘i, the website states.
Earlier this year, Ka Lei Mokihana O Leina‘ala participated in the 49th Merrie Monarch Festival where its wahine missed third place in the hula ‘auana by one point to Ka La ‘Onohi Mai O Ha‘eha‘e of O‘ahu.