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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Monday, November 17, 2003

Monarch's birthday celebrated

 •  Kamehameha standards debated
 •  Protesters demand justice for Hawaiians

By Peter Boylan
Advertiser Staff Writer

A sparkling blue sky and some talk story about royal card playing marked the 167th birthday memorial of King David Kalakaua at the Royal Mausoleum in Nu'uanu yesterday.

Jeanette Salvador-Blake of Waikiki turned out yesterday for a ceremony celebrating the 167th anniversary of the birth of King Kalakaua at a decorated 'Iolani Palace.

Deborah Booker • The Honolulu Advertiser

Esther Kapi'olani Kawananakoa Marignoli, the great-grand niece of the Merrie Monarch, was in attendance.

The memorial, sponsored by the Daughters and Sons of The Hawaiian Warriors began with a procession through the grounds of the Royal Mausoleum.

Dressed in decorative, ceremonial garb, the participants were led by a chanting Hailama Farden, a Hawaiian language instructor at Kamehameha Schools.

Inside the chapel at the middle of the Mausoleum's grounds, shafts of sunlight illuminated a framed picture of the king, placed on the altar to the left of the cross.

Prominent storyteller Woody Fern, a descendent of Honolulu's first mayor, told several stories about Kalakaua.

Fern ended his presentation with a tale of Kalakaua at a card game.

According to Fern, the king eyed his opponents and then laid his cards out on the table.

"Here are four kings," Kalakaua said, standing to bow to his guests. "And I am the fifth."

The ceremony ended with a procession down to the crypt where Kalakaua is buried.

"We keep the tradition alive, rain or shine," said EiRayna Adams, a member of the Daughters and Sons of The Hawaiian Warriors.

Kalakaua was born in Honolulu on Nov. 16, 1836 and was the son of the high chief Kahanu Kapa'akea and the high chiefess Analea Keohokalole. He was actively involved in restoring public performance of the hula and helped bring about a Hawaiian cultural renaissance.

Kalakaua was the last reigning king of the Hawaiian Islands. He died in San Francisco on Jan. 20, 1891.

Reach Peter Boylan at 535-8110 or pboylan@honoluluadvertiser.com.