Our Mele & Lei event was a celebration of music and song along with an abundance of pua (flowers). Fragrant plumeria leis, intricately woven ti-leaf and an array of beautiful flower leis were offered by Halau Ka Lei Mokihana O Leinaala to raise funds for Kahena to travel to Oahu to represent the halau in the Miss Keiki Hula Competition. All performers were adorned with a lei, courtesy of BEHawaiʻi’s other initiative, the Lei Poinaʻole Project. In recent years, the popularity of the lei industry has caused Hawaiʻi to outsource flowers, therefore outsourcing the income of the local farming industry. The Lei Poinaʻole Project works with local growers in an effort to rebuild the sustainability of the lei industry and keep it here on the islands. “The goal is to get plants in the ground,” explained Reilly. BEHawaiʻi is working with existing and new growers throughout the island to achieve this goal.
The event also featured a stunning collection of lei hulu (feather lei) and kahili offered by Maile Keawe Bryan, who graced the audience with an impromptu beautiful hula to a special song performed by Kamahaʻo.
We look forward to celebrating Make Music Day in Hawaiʻi next year on the summer solstice!