52nd Annual Merrie Monarch Festival

Zoe Lawrence, Reporter

April 5, 2015 marked the opening date of the 52nd annual Merrie Monarch Festival, celebrated in Hilo to honor King David Kalakaua. This festival is hailed as the most prestigious hula competition in all the world, and is also filled with non-competitive events such as parades, live entertainment and arts and crafts. On the Thursday night following the opening of the festivities, young ladies from across the state competed for a chance to be named the year’s Miss Aloha Hula. Contestants were required to perform two dances during this competition, one in hula ‘auana or contemporary style, and another in hula kahiko, the traditional hula style. This remarkable affair continues to perpetuate Hawaiian culture in a modern and respective sense.