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Peace Day Parade & Festival slated for Sunday (Sept 19)


Downtown Honokaa joins the United Nations International Day of Peace on Sunday, Sept. 19, for the 4th Annual “Peace Day” Parade & Festival. Stepping off at 11 a.m. from Honokaa High School, the Parade is a “moving stage” of marching bands, colorful floats, acrobats, performance artists and international dancers.

Last year’s Parade featured stilt-walkers, rock & roll music, Honokaa High School Jazz Band, award-winning taiko drum groups, marching bands, marimba music and much more, broadcast via a live webcast linked to websites of other Peace Day celebrations around the world.

“We are really looking forward to this year’s Parade and Festival,” said Chairman Miles Okumura. “Not only will we celebrate peace, compassion and global interdependence, we’re celebrating the completion of the Mamane Street construction project too! It’s a great time for everyone to come together and be proud of who we are, as a local community and a global one.”

Slots in the Parade and booth spaces for the Festival are available for a limited time. Proceeds from the events go towards community services, including educational programs, charities, environmental activism programs and various peace initiatives.

The 4th Annual Parade & Festival for the United Nations International Day of Peace is presented by the Peace Committee of the Honokaa Hongwanji Buddhist Temple in cooperation with the United Nations and numerous community organizations. Major financial support has been provided by the County of Hawaii Department of Research and Development (Tourism Division) and the Honpa Hongwanji Mission of Hawaii. For more information on how to get involved, call (808) 883-0669, email or visit

Images from the Peace Parade in 2009

Poetry Slam plus peace author Capt. Paul Chappell

The usually quiet Honokaa community will welcome a series of energized events during the week of its 4th Annual Parade & Festival for the United Nations International Day of Peace.

On tap, a live Poetry Slam for peace, with special appearance and booksigning by peace advocate and U.S. Army veteran Paul Chappell, 5-7 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 18 at Feel My Bean coffee house and restaurant in Honokaa.

In keeping with the United Nations 2010 theme of “Youth, Peace and Development,” the Honokaa events, produced by the Honokaa Hongwanji Buddhist Temple’s Peace Committee, are packed with creative opportunities, fun activities and free expression. Numerous partner projects and programs are represented in the days leading up to the main events, the “Peace Day” Parade & Festival.

Darron Cambra, Faith Angelica Pascua and Tuiaana Scanlon will represent the award-winning Youth Speaks Hawaii group – two time national Youth Poetry Slam winners and featured on HBO. Slam poetry is a freeform, upbeat style of creative writing, often performed with hip hop moves or rapid rap-style delivery.

Students can identify instantly with its powerful impact, inspiring even the shyest to get involved and perform. The poets and mentor will take “slam poetry” workshops into local schools (students only), courtesy of Truth2Youth and support from Hawaii People’s Fund.

From 1-3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 18, a free, open-to-the-public workshop will be conducted by Youth Speaks Hawaii poets at North Hawaii Education Resource Center (NHERC). At 5 p.m. a live poetry slam at Feel My Bean restaurant allows poets old and new a chance to take the stage to perform for friends and family.

Admission is free, with gourmet coffee, local organic pupus and other great menu items available for purchase.

Also at 5 p.m. Saturday, the Peace Committee is proud to present internationally-known speaker, author and peace advocate, Paul K. Chappell.

A young and dynamic West Point graduate and Iraq veteran, Chappell is appearing throughout Hawaii for statewide Peace Day events as part of his world book tour.

Chappell will talk story and sign books at Feel My Bean in collaboration with the poetry event, thanks to Dr. Jeannie Lum and the University of Hawaii at Manoa, College of Education, Educational Foundations Department and the Civic Forum for Public Schools in Hawaii.

The community is invited to come and enjoy the chance to meet him in person, and purchase autographed copies of his most recent books: “Will War Ever End?” and “The End of War,” acclaimed by Archbishop Desmond Tutu and other celebrated peacemakers.

Already underway, the Peace Poster Contest rolled out at the beginning of the school year, state- and nationwide. Entries are displayed at the Festival and will be part of an exhibition at Wailoa Center later this year.

Overall Winner and parents will receive a night’s stay at the luxurious Waianuhea Bed and Breakfast, event sponsor. Entry deadline is Friday, Sept. 10.

On Sunday at 11 a.m., stepping off from Honokaa High School, the Peace Day Parade is a “moving stage” of music, dance and more, marching down the “new” freshly-repaved Mamane Street.

The wide variety of multi-cultural performers includes ‘ukulele bands, hula, Taiko drum groups, bon dancers, break dancers, cirque performers, stilt-walkers, rock & roll, jazz, the “Peace Bubble,” superheroes and lots of surprises.

At noon, a community Festival takes place in the Honokaa Sports Complex, with food booths, crafters and community information, plus peace ceremonies, music and entertainment onstage until 3 p.m. One goal of the Festival is to be a low or no-waste event. Admission is free and the public is welcome.

The 4th Annual “Peace Day” events are presented by the Peace Committee of the Honokaa Hongwanji Buddhist Temple in cooperation with the United Nations and numerous community organizations.

Major financial support has been provided by the Hawaii Tourism Authority, the County of Hawaii’s Department of Research and Development (CPEP grant from the Tourism Division) and the Honpa Hongwanji Mission Buddhist Temples of Hawaii (Social Concerns Committee and Propagation Grant Committee).

For more information visit

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