This weekend we have been kicking back, relaxing, and enjoying the Merrie Monarch Festival broadcast in HD on channel 5!
The Merrie Monarch Festival is "the super bowl of hula" and it's held every year in Hilo. This year, 28 halau, or hula troops, came from all over the place to compete. But, more than just dancing, the festival also includes parades, crafts, exhibits, etc. that perpetuate Hawaiian culture and are just plain interesting. One of these years I am going to brave the traffic/parking and take the family to experience Merrie Monarch live!
I love how on TV they not only show the dances but also explain the costumes, translate the lyrics, and put hula in a modern context so that it's relevant to the people watching at home. Although, it doesn't take an expert eye to appreciate the intricate dances, beautiful hand-crafted flower lei, and the delightful live music.
Heres a link to some great pictures from the festival!