HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Students from St. Anthony Junior-Senior School in Wailuku, Maui are the winners of this year's Honolulu Festival Maui Mikoshi Design Contest.
A mikoshi is a decorative float unique to specific prefectures in Japan that is carried by groups of celebrants during festivals. For the past nine years, the Honolulu Festival has been extending its reach to the Valley Isle by asking Maui high schools to submit a mikoshi design based on its theme. This year's Festival theme is "Bonding together, hand in hand."
Under the guidance of Sensei (teacher) Tokie Sidney, 20 St. Anthony's students won the competition among Maui high schools to earn a trip to Oahu sponsored by the Honolulu Festival Foundation, Hawaiian Airlines, Outrigger Hotels & Resorts and Kahili Golf Course, to showcase their mikoshi at the 18th Annual Honolulu Festival.
The students will display the mikoshi at the Hawaii Convention Center on Saturday, March 3, and then carry it in the Waikiki Grand Parade along Kalakaua Avenue on Sunday, March 4.
Keiichi Tsujino, president of the Honolulu Festival Foundation, commented, "St. Anthony has designed an outstanding mikoshi that perfectly exemplifies this year's theme. We applaud the students and Sensei Sidney for their commitment to perpetuating the Japanese culture."
The students of St. Anthony School designed a colorful mikoshi with a world culture theme that incorporated motifs showcasing world unity. Principal Patricia L. Rickard said, "We are excited and humbled to have our small school be part of the Honolulu Festival Parade. Our students, with the guidance of Sensei Sidney, worked diligently on their design for the Mikoshi Design Contest. We are truly blessed to be a part of this wonderful festival."
The 18th Annual Honolulu Festival is a three-day celebration, March 2-4, highlighting the people and diversity of the Pacific and Asia through a showcase of arts and culture. The Festival is free and open to the public on March 3 - 4 at three locations, before concluding with the Grand Parade and a fireworks show over Waikiki.
The Honolulu Festival was initiated in 1995 to help promote cultural understanding and harmony between the people of Hawaii and Asia-Pacific. The Honolulu Festival is supported by the Honolulu Festival Foundation, a non-profit organization formed in 2000 to administer Festival activities and perpetuate the cultures, customs and traditions of Asians and Pacific Islanders through community outreach and charitable efforts.
For more information and a schedule of events and performers click HERE.