Watch top athletes compete in the Morey World Bodyboarding Championships. Usually held in the first weeks of January, it is one of the most highly anticipated sporting events in Hawaii. It is held in the Banzai Pipeline, in the famed North Shore of Oahu. Another event is the Ala Wai Challenge is a quarter-mile canoe race that is designed to test the endurance of competitors. There are also ancient Hawaiian games as well as music to increase the festivities.
In celebration of Oahu’s diverse culture, the Chinese New Year is also held every January in Chinatown. Lion dances, a narcissus and bonsai exhibit, food and pageants are only some of the entertainment featured in this event.
The NFL Pro Bowl takes place during the first Sunday of February in the Aloha Stadium. Players from the National Football League take it to the arena to showcase their prowess. Aside from this, there is also the Great Aloha Run, which is an 8.5 mile race that runs from the Aloha Tower to the Aloha Stadium.
The Punahou School, a private school, hosts the Punahou School Carnival. For two days, rides, food and artwork from the top island artists are showcased. Also, there is the Buffalo's Big Board Classic, a surfing competition held on Makaha Beach, Oahu. See top surfers participate in a sport that is uniquely Hawaiian.
The Hawaii Challenge International Sportkite Championship is the longest-running sportkite competition in the world. Every March, the top kite pilots from all over the world troop to Kapiolani Park to showcase their skills. For those looking for a more laidback activity, there is the St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Held every March 17, the parade is a long one, running from Fort DeRussy to Kapiolani Park.
There is also the Prince Kuhio Celebrations. It is a state holiday which honors Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole. Events featuring food booths, live music, and flower parades are held all over Hawaii.
The Annual Easter Sunrise Service is held every April. People go to the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific to hear Easter Service. The Kamehameha Schools Song Festival is also held every third Friday in April. The talents of high school students are showcased through a choir competition held at the Neal Blaisdell Center.
The Annual Lei Day Celebrations are held every May in Hawaii. Lei-making contests and demonstrations, exhibits, and food booths are only some of the activities to look forward to. The main attraction in this event is a concert presenting the Brothers Cazimero, considered as the kings of Hawaiian music, at the Waikiki Band Shell.
For even more excitement, there is the World Fire-Knife Dance Championships and Samoan Festival. As part of the We Are Samoa Festival, fire-knife dancers from around the world gather at the Polynesian Cultural Center to showcase their talents.
The Memorial Day celebration is also held every May. A ceremony honoring those who gave their lives for the country is held at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Punchbowl, Oahu.
Come the first weekend of June, the entire state of Hawaii comes alive with the King Kamehameha Celebration. The highlights of the event are a flower parade, food booths, and live entertainment. There is also the King Kamehameha Hula Competition, which is one of the most prestigious hula competitions in the world.
There is nothing more beautiful that seeing the Fourth of July Fireworks against the clear Oahu sky. Leading up the excitement is day filled with games, food, and live music. There is also the Hawaii International Jazz Festival showcasing popular jazz acts. In another testament to Oahu’s love of music, the Ukulele Festival is also held on the last Sunday of July. A free concert by Hawaii’s best players highlights the event.
Another July event is the Prince Lot Hula Festival, where ancient and modern hula demonstrations are shown. There are also arts and crafts activities for those who want to get in touch with their creative side.
August sees Oahu celebrate a tradition that is undoubtedly Hawaiian. The Queen Liliuokalani Keiki Hula Competition is a dance competition with up to 500 participants. There is also the Hawaii State Farm Fair, which has agricultural products, exhibits, and entertainment. The Hawaiian Slack-Key Guitar Festival completes the appeal to the senses. People are treated to performances by some of Hawaii's best slack-key guitarists.
The Aloha Festivals are held in the month of September. The party is taken to the streets with parades, street festivals and Waikiki’s famous street party. One of Hawaii’s longest events, the Aloha Festival runs from mid-September to October, with each island holding its own roster of activities.
One of the most prestigious sporting events in the world is the Molokai Hoe, a 40-mile outrigger contest. Spectators can see the endurance and prowess of the athletes as they maneuver across the channel from Molokai to Oahu.
Film enthusiasts are treated with the Hawaii International Film Festival. Movie makers from as far away as Asia gather in Oahu to show their masterpieces. The movies are screened all over Hawaii. For those who want to experience something more distinctly Hawaiian, there is also the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing series. Professional big-wave surfers from around the world head to the famous North Shore to compete for more than $1 million in prize money and the chance to be champion in this prestigious event.
With more than 30,000 participants, the Honolulu Marathon is one of the biggest events on the island. Get the chance to watch or even join in one of the most grueling sporting events in the country. Then there is also the Festival of Lights, which is held during early December. To welcome the holiday season, there is an Electric Light Parade as well as 40-foot Christmas tree that usher in the festivities.