Inspired by the accomplishments of Hoklea navigator Nainoa Thompson and Challenger astronaut Ellison Onizuka, Aloha Festivals in 2001 has selected "Hoohanohano I Na Hokokai (Honor the Voyagers)" as its theme.
Thompson will serve as this years ambassador of aloha and Claude Onizuka, representing the family of his late brother Ellison, will serve as floral parade grand marshal.
Attorney Gilbert Butson, 2001 Aloha Festivals president, chose the theme to honor the ancient voyagers who navigated the vast Polynesian Triangle, as well as modern explorers of sea and space. "Hoohanohano" also recognizes the pioneering spirit of ancestors who left their homeland to journey to an unknown land now known as Hawaii.
The theme will be reflected in the ribbon design and keepsake Aloha Festivals T-shirts.
Thompson is also a trustee of Bishop Estate and a member of the University of Hawaii Board of Regents. Onizuka is assistant vice president of the American Savings Banks Kailua-Kona branch.
Events on Oahu include:
Downtown Hoolaulea, 6:30 p.m. Sept. 14, downtown Honolulu.
Floral parade, 9 a.m. Sept. 15, from Ala Moana Park to Kapiolani Park.
Waikiki Hoolaulea, 7 p.m. Sept. 21.