HAWAII (HawaiiNewsNow) -It’s time to gather your flowers and make some lei: Memorial day 2019 is near.
Memorial Day falls on May 25 — nearly two weeks away — but preparations are already under way.
Every year, counties across the state encourage the public to “Sew a Lei for Memorial Day.” Community members are urged to either donate flowers or make lei to be laid on the graves of veterans.
On Maui, plans for the ‘Blossoms for the Brave’ lei making event have been announced.
Lei making will be held on May 24. The public is invited to join the the office of the mayor and other organizations in making lei on the front lawn of the Kalana O Maui Building in Wailuku from 9 a.m. to noon.
“This community lei-making event prepares volunteers for the placement of lei at each gravesite of the 2,920 heroes on Memorial Day at the Maui Veterans Cemetery in Makawao,” Mayor Victorino said. “We say, ‘Many hands make for light labor.’ So, the more the merrier. Please come and honor the memory of our veterans who sacrificed so much for our country.”
The county also said a free shuttle service will be available from the Ichiro “Iron” Maehara Baseball Stadium parking lot. Buses will depart every half hour from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
They’re also accepting donations of flowers. Some of the most requested items include green ti leaves (cut and frozen); crown flowers; orchids; Bozu flowers; plumeria (buds and partially open); Bougainvillea flowers and leaves and other sturdy flowers. Loose flowers are also needed for the aerial drop on Memorial Day.
Donated greenery can be dropped off after 7 a.m. on May 24 at the South High Street parking lot. Finished lei — at least 16 inches in length — are also welcome.
Details for lei drives and donations on Oahu and other islands haven’t yet been announced.
Thousands are also expected to attend the state’s largest memorial day lantern floating ceremony at Ala Moana Beach Park/Magic Island.