Pan Pacific Festival's Grand Finale

Emily Oyadomari
Emily Oyadomari

By Mari-Ela David

WAIKIKI (KHNL) - The three-day Pan Pacific Festival wrapped up in Oahu Sunday, with a parade as the grand finale.

There were plenty of fun-filled events to enjoy, but beneath the music, dancing, and food was a lesson learned.

It's a tradition dating back to 1980, and the annual parade marched through Waikiki for its 28th year.

To this day, the event attracts crowds to town.

"For cultural awareness I guess, for the different nationalities that live here in Hawaii," says Hawaii resident David Okuma.

The parade features nationalities ranging from Japanese, to Korean, to Okinawan.

Embedded throughout all the multi-cultural festivities, including the Wind Festival at Kapiolani Park and the Japanese taiko drum show at the Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center, is a learning experience.

"My kids are half Asian so they have the Asian culture so this is really interesting for them to see some of the Asian their lives. From Las Vegas. we don't have anything so it's really wonderful here," says Hawaii visitor Emily Oyadomari.

She is one of several who has caught on to the heart of the festival - to give exposure to Hawaii's diversity and a sense of cultural awareness that can be passed on from generation to generation.

The Pan Pacific Festival was created after more people started traveling between Hawai'i and Japan.

Organizers wanted to enhance the relationship between the two, thus, Hawaii's Matsuri was born.