HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Tens of thousands of residents and visitors from around the world will line the shores of Ala Moana Beach Park to remember their lost loved ones during the annual Lantern Floating Hawaii ceremony this Memorial Day.
Under the theme "Many Rivers, One Ocean," participants will set afloat more than 6,000 candle-lit lanterns that will illuminate the waters at sunset, offering a serene moment to reflect on those who lost their lives.
The ceremony on May 30 will be held from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. and will be officiated by a leader of the Shinnyo-en Buddhist community on behalf of head priest Her Holiness Shinso Ito. The free event will also include a few words by Ito, some music and a ceremonial lighting of the Light of Harmony prior to the lantern floating.
The public can write remembrances and prayers on specially prepared paper which will be attached to the lanterns and floated by volunteers at the events. This can be done at the Shinnyo-en Hawaii temple at 2348 South Beretania Street or online by clicking here.
Those who want to personally float a lantern can pick them up on a first-come, first-served basis at the site of the event that day.
Free parking is available from 7 a.m. to 11:59 p.m. at the Hawaii Convention Center. A complimentary shuttle will be available from the Convention Center to Ala Moana Beach from 3 to 6:15 p.m. then back to the Convention Center after the ceremony through 9:30 p.m.
After the ceremony
Event organizers are looking for volunteers to gather on weekends through early July to help clean and refurbish the lanterns for future use.
The Lantern Floating ceremony, presented by Shinnyo-En Hawaii and the Na Lei Aloha Foundation, is an annual tradition held every Memorial Day since 1999.