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“Queen Ka’ahumanu and Prince Kuhio”photo

March is a special month in the Hawaiian Islands as we honor the memory of two cherished ali’i (royalty).

The Power Behind the Monarchy

March 17 is Queen Ka’ahumanu’s birthday. She was the favorite wife of King Kamehameha, the legendary warrior who united all the islands under the Kingdom of Hawaii and eventually becoming its first king. Born in our island home of Maui, Queen Ka’ahumanu played a significant role in the Hawaiian monarchy.

She was the first Kuhina Nui (prime minister) of the kingdom. Her legacy includes the creation of the written language for the Hawaiian people, and the elimination of the sacred kapu system, a code of conduct that included restrictions on women who could not dine with men or eat certain foods like banana, coconut or pork. She continued to rule as Kuhina Nui with King Kamehameha II and King Kamehameha III cementing her role of influence in the Kingdom.

Once a year, we pay respect to her memory and celebrate her contributions in the Queen Ka’ahumanu Mall to hear chants and drape her statue with lei.  

The People’s Prince

March 26 is Prince Kuhio Day. Prince Jonah Kūhiō Kalanianaʻole Piʻikoi was the last prince of the Kingdom of Hawaii. In 1893, the Hawaiian monarchy was overthrown and replaced with the Republic of Hawaii.

To maintain and fight for the welfare, prosperity, preservation and respect of the Hawaiian people, Prince Kuhio became member of the United States Congress, representing the Territory of Hawaii, for 10 consecutive terms. Prince Kuhio sponsored and led the passage of the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act – setting aside 200,000 acres of land to establish a permanent homeland for native Hawaiians.  His role in keeping land, taken from the Kingdom of Hawaii at annexation, for his people earned him the title “Prince of our People” by the Hawaiians. Several of our Destination Resorts Hawaii team members are proud Hawaiian homeowners on these lands.  

Every year, on March 30, the Prince Kuhio Maui Hoolaulea Planning Committee honors his memory and legacy of taking care of people with festivities that are free to the public Lahaina Banyan Tree Park. Exhibits, keiki games, food booths, Maui made crafters and local entertainment are plentiful for everyone’s enjoyment.

 




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