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3 | Weddings | 2017

An Unforgettable Wedding


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Publisher, Marketing, Operations    Barbara Garcia Bowman, 808.329.1711 x1,

Editor    Shana Wailana Logan, 808.329.1711 x 2,

Table Of Contents 6 Feeling the Touch of Aloha with Aunty Tutu By Karen Valentine

General Manager   Gayle Greco, 808.315.7887,

Advertising Sales, Business Development   Barbara Garcia Bowman, 808.345.2017,

13 Exotic Wedding Recipes By Sonia R. Martinez

Bookkeeping    Eric Bowman, 808.329.1711 x 3,

Customer Service, Distribution, Subscriptions    Sharon Bowling, 808.557.8703,

21 A Royal Wedding By Leilehua Yuen

Creative Design & Production    Aaron Miyasato, Creative Director, 4Digital, Inc. 808.961.2697     Noren Irie, Graphics & Networking, 808.938.7120

Advertising Design     Alicia Hanson,     Stephanie Schreiber, 808.315.7182,


22 Planning Your Wedding Day A Timeline 24 Wedding Planner

   Eric Bowman, Sharon Bowling

Ambassadors   Denise Laitinen • Dianne Curtis • Emily T Gail Fern Gavelek • WavenDean Fernandes Ke Ola recognizes the use of the ‘okina [‘] or glottal stop, as one of the eight consonants of (modern) Hawaiian language; and the kahakö[ä] or macron (e.g., in place names of Hawai‘i such as Häna). Ke Ola respects the individual use of these markings for names of organizations and businesses.

Hawai‘i Island Weddings, Honeymoons, and Special Occasions is the official magazine of the

31 2017 Sunrise and Sunset times 31 Guidelines and Etiquette 32 Unusual Places to Get Married on Hawai‘i Waterfall & Garden Sites By Denise Laitinen

37 Wedding Lei By Leilehua Yuen

43 Celebrating the Traditional Hawaiian Lu‘au By Shana Wailana Logan

Reserve your space in the 2018 Hawai‘i Island Weddings magazine by October 20, 2017. See advertising contact information above.

47 Resource Directory 48 Featured Cover Photographer: Demian Barrios

Ke Ola Magazine’s regular bi-monthly issues which celebrate the arts, culture, and sustainability of Hawai‘i Island are available for reading on our website, in addition to ordering back issues and subscriptions. Ke Ola Publishing, Inc. utilizes recycled paper with soy-based inks. © 2017, Ke Ola Publishing, Inc. All rights reserved

Maile is one of the oldest and most popular lei used in ancient Hawaiÿi. It was commonly worn for the worship of the god of hula and even used as a peace offering in times of battle. Its leaves are said to protect the wearer, bring good luck, and even possess healing powers. This lei is commonly worn by males for weddings and special occasions. Also commonly used to drape over a doorway of a grand opening of a business to bring good luck. Hawaiÿi Island’s Hilo Maile is known for its long leaves, sweet aroma and can be dried. It will last for years. Hawaiÿi Island Weddings, Honeymoons, and Special Occassions is now bound with the traditional maile lei holding precious island mo‘olelo (stories), artful images, wedding industry professionals and business services for you. | Weddings | 2017

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5 | Weddings | 2017

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Aloha! Welcome to the 2017 Hawaiÿi Island Weddings, Honeymoons, and Special Occasions magazine! Whether you’re planning your wedding, a vow renewal ceremony, baby lüÿau or any other special occasion, we know you’ll find helpful information within these pages… in the stories, advertisements and planner, too. The members of Hawaiÿi Island Wedding Association are passionate about our love for Hawaiÿi Island, also known as the Big Island, and the island we call home. With its multiple climatic zones on this 4,028-square-mile landmass, which is the largest of the Hawaiian island chain, you will truly find any environment you can imagine for hosting your ceremony and reception. Whether it’s lava, sand, rainforest, ocean, waterfall, ranchland or snow-topped mountains, Hawaiÿi Island offers it all. With the exception of New Zealand, no other place in the world offers the diversity that is here on the “Big” Island of Hawaiÿi. Hawaiÿi Island is also home to the annual Merrie Monarch International Hula Festival (in Hilo), as well as The IRONMAN® World Championship (in Kona), and plays host to some of the world’s best golf courses and other outdoor attractions. Whether you live here in Hawaiÿi or are a visitor, we invite you to peruse the pages of this magazine, which is provided to help you with your planning. The wedding professionals highlighted in this magazine are all people we know and work with, and we’re confident they will provide excellent service and follow-through. We would like to wish you Hoÿomaikaÿi, Congratulations! We look forward to helping you plan your Hawaiÿi Island wedding and wish you a lifetime of happiness.

Hawaiÿi Island Wedding Association Board of Directors Jase Takeya Margaret Stanley Barbara Garcia Maria Short Sarah Costello Lily McVey Andrea Toci | Weddings | 2017

Aloha pumehana (Warm aloha),

7 | Weddings | 2017



he rich, deep tones resounding forth from a conch shell announce the beginning of the ceremony—like the first strains of “Here Comes the Bride,” or the ringing of a church bell. This is the Hawaiian way, with the pū (conch shell), being wielded by the officiant herself. She chants a Hawaiian welcome, picks up her ‘ukulele and smiles sweetly as she begins to serenade the bride and groom with a traditional song, “I Love You,” or another melody of the couple’s choosing. This is the “Aunty Tutu way,” as the lucky bride and groom enter into an enchanted space created as if in a magical dream world. Although she has created the persona of Aunty Tutu for this stage in her life, the name belies the force of nature that is this wahine, whose given name is Stephanie Lindsey. Perhaps others who hear that name (also, “Aunty Steph”), can recall when she was once the executive director and emcee of the famous Germaine’s Luau on | Weddings | 2017

A traditional Hawaiian water blessing is part of every ceremony. Š David O. Baldwin Photography


O‘ahu back in the day, or that she was part of the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel’s Tahitian show. They might recognize her as the big sister of Leabert Lindsey, famous Hawaiian singer/ entertainer, and their equally talented brother, Kaleo Lindsey. Her family genealogy contains a string of famous ancestors, including her great-grandfather on her mother’s side, entertainment impresario E.K. Fernandez and on her father’s side, Hawai‘i Island rancher and great-grandfather, James Fay Lindsey, Sr. Her family were kumu hula and hula dancers, all the way back to her great grandmother, Minerva Fernandez, who was the lady-in-waiting to Queen Lili‘uokalani. Lindsey can even trace her genealogy as far back as the origins of Hawaiians in oral history tradition. At the Haleo Lū‘au, an Island Breeze production at the | Weddings | 2017

Aunty Tutu blows the pü announcing the beginning of the ceremony.


Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay, you will see her at center stage as the emcee and orchestrator of one of Kona’s most popular lū‘au events. She works closely with the hotel as their Ambassador of Aloha and Cultural Kupuna. “I tell the hotel, you need your kūpuna to be successful. They bind you to the land” she proclaims. Aunty Tutu walks among the gods as she strolls through the grounds of the Sheraton, greeting guests as if they were long-lost friends, spreading so much aloha it catches them offguard, their faces lit up with a smile as they walk away from this chance encounter. She lives the persona of Aunty Tutu, not just in her ceremonies or while on stage, but at all times. Let us not digress, however, as the wedding ceremony is about to continue. Oh, wait—we have to step backward in time once more to Aunty’s preparation of the sacred ground upon which the couple and their family will gather. She has visited it in advance to pray and bless the space, removing not only stray leavings of others but old energies that may have been inadvertently left by some troubled person walking there. Being Hawaiian, she incorporates her cultural beliefs and protocol into her ceremonies. As she stands there, she imagines in her mind the setting with the ceremony taking place: which way the light falls so the photographer gets the best shot or which way the wind will be blowing so the bride’s hair falls just so and doesn’t hide her eyes as they gaze upon her beloved.

We then backtrack a few more days or weeks to her first conversation with the bride and groom, either on the phone or in person, as they became acquainted. Aunty Tutu listens to her own heart and to the couple’s vision of the wedding. What are their colors? That determines what the kahu (minister) will wear. Her traditional Hawaiian mu‘umu‘u must not be too flashy and must coordinate. She wears a small, ministeriallooking, lace-trimmed cape overlaying her bosom and shoulders. She affectionately calls it a “bosom buddy” and chooses one from different coordinating colors. “We talk story and email back and forth,” Aunty says. “I say, ‘How are you wearing your hair?’ and make suggestions that will put her in the best light. The bride always gets the last word,” she adds.

A lei greeting of the guests by Joy Rothe-Omundson and music by Kaleo Lindsey, brother of Aunty Tutu

Your Wedding & Event Experts • (808) 885-3534 | Weddings | 2017



One of the famous Lindsey brothers may also be suggested for additional music. The ceremony site has been chosen from among several possibilities, perhaps on the grounds of the hotel where a wedding planner has assisted in putting together a package, or perhaps it’s at another private or public space with which Aunty is familiar. She is one of the kahu referred for weddings by the Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa, the Hilton Waikoloa Village, King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel and Lava Lava Beach Club, as well as through direct contact or referrals.

Each detail and moment is envisioned. As they get acquainted, Aunty learns more about the family and friends who may attend and what sensitivities there may be. If there is someone who cannot attend but who is in their hearts, she even prepares a candle to represent that one. There are more surprises to come. The day arrives, and you find that Aunty Tutu has also arranged the guests. This “Impresario of Lū‘au” knows staging and

“‘Can you send me your ceremony?’ they ask me. I say no, because it changes by your history, the story you’re telling me, and what I’m feeling at the time,” says Aunty. What do the couple plan to say to each other? Do they have vows or statements already written? Do they plan to whip out cellphones to read? “Oh, no,” she responds. “They must not do that.” She will help them print their vows on parchment and wrap it around a bamboo staff tied with raffia, which they can then unroll and read. | Weddings | 2017

“I love this part of the ceremony,” she says. “I tell the couple I will allow the time for your family to stand up and give you blessings. I will then ask if they have anything to say to each other. They can read what they’ve written or just share.”


Everyone in the family participates in the creation of a special jar of sands.

As the melody of “I Love You” begins, the bride lays down the umbrella that until this time has been shielding her face, and the light appears in the eyes of the groom as he first sees her. Everyone steps into place. Aunty Tutu has no script, she says. She has but an outline of the proceeding, as she lets the spirit move her. Everything that she says is genuine and from the heart, created in the moment for only this day and for only this time. She conducts a traditional Hawaiian blessing of the couple with a ti leaf dipped in ocean water. “I say that, spiritually, we Hawaiians believe that our Pacific Ocean touches every part of the world through many currents,” she says.

Aunty. “I’m constantly gifting them with things to take home. I love the thought that that’s what they’re doing.” A very special signature piece of the ceremony is the preparation and creation of the jar of sands. A small, clear glass container that fits into the palm of the hand has been prepared. In the bottom is a layer of pure, shining black lava crystals that Aunty has collected from a secret place at the top of the volcano. Next is a layer of pure white sand, representing the bride, who pours it on top of the lava layer. After that, the groom adds his layer of colored sand, perhaps blue. In succeeding layers are placed sand from children of the bride or groom, a last bit of sand from the site of the ceremony, a scrap of ancient kapa cloth once owned by royalty, a pinch of pa‘akai, (Hawaiian salt), petals from everyone’s lei, a piece of ti leaf that was used in the water blessing, and a silk flower petal on top. At the end of the ceremony, as photos are being taken and everyone is congratulating the bride and groom, Aunty glues the glass top onto the jar and ties a bow of raffia around it. She presents it to the couple as a makana (gift) and souvenir of their union.

At the end of the ceremony, Aunty once again picks up her ‘ukulele and plays, “The Hawaiian Another feature is Wedding Song,” as the lantern that holds she invites the couple Aunty Tutu conducts this wedding at the Kona Cloud Forest Sanctuary in a candle with two to dance. Perhaps the Kaloko. Others take place by the ocean or resort setting. wicks, which signifies sky has lit up with a famous Kona sunset someone like a grandparent. “‘This candle stands for all those glow, or it has risen above Hualālai mountain if the ceremony who can’t be here,’ I say. If there are more, I suggest they has taken place at sunrise (not too many choose that time!). bring a candle for them and ask them if they would you like to Palm trees are silent witnesses and, in Hawaiian beliefs and bring a picture,” Aunty explains. culture, the stones will remember this day. Two leis are included, one for each to wear. Yet, there is a third Aunty says, “I tell them they are now ‘ohana and to stay in one as well. touch with me after they go home. I remind them that they have an aunty here in Hawai‘i. Please stay in touch. And they “I always make a ti leaf lei for draping on my calabash, then do!” I gift it to them to hang it over their doorway at home,” says | Weddings | 2017

knows her audience! The bride’s family and friends—opposing tradition—is placed on the opposite side, where they can see her face instead of the back of her head as she gazes at her husband-to-be. The groom’s retinue, as well, is on the side usually reserved for the bride’s friends, where they, too, can see his face as he looks lovingly upon his new bride. Aunty has told the photographer, either professional or amateur, that she intends to stand to the side rather than in the middle, so as not to be the center of attention in photos of the ceremony. No worries: she is right next to the groom’s shoulder.


Fittingly, Aunty Tutu’s company is Feel the Touch of Aloha. She also performs blessings and renewal of vows, as well as teaching, choreography, and emcee duties drawn from her years in the entertainment business. She says she often does five weddings and two lū‘au in a week. On Tuesdays you can find her entertaining with her brother, Kaleo, at Wyndham’s Kona Hawaiian Resort Aloha Party. Aunty Tutu, (Stephanie Lindsey), grew up on O‘ahu, where her mother was a hula dancer who once greeted the Lurline ocean liners, as well as being a bartender for Don Ho. Her father’s family history dates back to the beginning of Parker Ranch, where his grandfather, James Fay Lindsey, was instrumental in founding a large family clan. She attended Kamehameha Schools in Kapālama, where she was student body president. After graduation, she worked in the travel industry and sang in Al Harrington’s Tapa Room show at the Hilton Hawaiian Village. She then moved to Hawai‘i Island in the 1970s, opening a hālau and helping the Mauna Kea Resort start up their Tahitian show. After about five years, she says, she traveled back to O‘ahu to work for Germaine’s for 21 years. She later returned to Hawai‘i Island to be with her brothers and to finally stay. As Aunty Tutu, she began doing weddings in 2014, with the major help and assistance of her husband, “number last”, Lopaka. “He schedules for me,” says Aunty. “I would not do what I do today without this husband in my life.” | Weddings | 2017

Contact Aunty Tutu: Photos courtesy Feel The Touch of Aloha, LLC. Contact writer Karen Valentine:


Aunty Tutu holds a pü (conch shell), with other implements on a special koa wood stand, in preparation for the wedding.

Exotic WeddingRecipes I By Sonia R. Martinez

Story and photos

If you’re looking to get married in a beautiful place, where you can start your “happily ever after” in a dreamy location, look no further than Hawai‘i Island. Tropical breezes, stunning sunsets, lush, green rainforests, waterfalls, beaches, and mountain backdrops…Hawai‘i has it all, and you’re already at the world’s most desirable honeymoon location!

Hanging loose in Hawai‘i for your wedding can also have another unexpected advantage: your reception can be a relaxed affair with “free-for-the-gathering” tropical greenery, a riot of farmers’ market flowers, and fresh-from-the-farm food instead of a rigid dinner menu set by old-fashioned protocol. When planning your menu, forget your typical reception offerings. Think outside the box and consider a locally sourced, tropical menu.


Mangoes are the kings of tropical fruit, in my opinion. They can be eaten out of hand or can make a statement enhancing any dish from appetizers to desserts. Pūpū (Appetizer): Mango Sushi Roll with Coconut and Mint This recipe created by Brenda Cloutier was the “Best of Show” winner in the Big Island 6th Annual Mango Cooking Contest (2014). Yield: 4 rolls (32 pieces) | Weddings | 2017

Hawai‘i Island is a cornucopia of food, with such an amazing range that it would take a whole book to do it justice. There are so many wonderful tastes to experience!

I hope the following ideas, from pūpū to dessert, can be of help in making your reception, bridal shower, or rehearsal dinner one that neither you nor your guests will ever forget. There are many farmers’ markets able to supply your reception, or any wedding-related party, with the best and freshest ingredients.

Mango Sushi Roll with Coconut Mint


For the rolls: 1 Mango (about 1 pound, seeded and peeled) Cut into 8–1/2 x 1/2 inch sticks. Save trim for sauce. 1-1/3 cup white rice, dry 1/2 cup coconut, organic shredded 1/2 cup coconut milk 2 teaspoons sugar 1/4 teaspoon salt 2 teaspoons rice vinegar For the sauce: 1/2 cup mango, chopped (trim leftover from mango) 2 teaspoons sugar 1 tablespoon water 1 teaspoon rice vinegar or to taste 4 square rice paper summer roll wrappers Spearmint or basil leaves, 4 per roll, plus garnish, cut in half lengthwise Prepare the rice in a rice cooker. First, wash the rice. Fill the rice cooker to the appropriate line with cold water. Add grated coconut, coconut milk, sugar and salt. Reserve vinegar for mixing with the cooked rice. Spoon the cooked rice into a bowl and stir in the vinegar. Mix well. Allow to cool.

Table setting at Daylight Mind Coffee Company, Kailua-Kona

Prepare mango sauce: in a small saucepan, combine chopped mango, sugar, and water, then simmer on low until translucent—about 40 minutes. Add vinegar and blend until smooth. Adjust sugar and vinegar to taste. Chill. Put this in a squeeze bottle for easy application.

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Its picturesque wedding gazebo, oceanfront view and on-site catering will make your love story unforgettable. Large function space and special group rates available.


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Assembling the sushi: Rice wrappers—prepare one at a time. Wet 2 clean kitchen towels, then gently squeeze out most of the water. Fold in half. Lay rice wrapper on one towel and cover with the other. Allow to sit for 10 minutes or until pliable. On a plastic covered sushi mat, spread sushi rice across mat, about 3 inches wide. Add a thin line of mango sauce down center; add mango sticks end-to-end (should need 2 or 2 plus a small piece. Roll. Lay spearmint or basil leaf pieces on softened rice paper and then carefully transfer sushi to wrapper, and then roll. Cut the wrapper leaving 1/2 to overlap. Cut into 8 segments. Cover with damp towel until ready to cut and serve. If storing, wrap in waxed paper. Serve sprinkled with toasted coconut (optional) and a small side of sauce. Garnish plate with sauce and spearmint or basil leaves.


Dressing: (Amounts to taste) Aloha Shoyu (local brand soy sauce) Honey (or sugar, if you prefer) Chile pepper water* Grated fresh ginger Sesame oil *Chile Pepper Water The locals call it, “chile peppa wattah,” made with rice vinegar, Hawaiian sea salt, and the tiny, red hot Hawaiian chile peppers. One might also add a few crushed garlic cloves.


The avocado is a versatile tropical fruit that is usually treated as a vegetable. Wonderful served plain with a bit of salt and lemon juice, as the ultimate dip in guacamole, or the perfect refreshing soup. Avacado Soup

Warabi is the Japanese name for a tropical type of fiddlehead fern. Warabi or Hō‘i‘o, as it is called in Hawaiian, can be used in salads, soups or incorporated into an entrée. The taste is a combination of fresh asparagus and okra. Salad: Warabi and Shrimp This salad is beautifully served in glass bowls. Yield: 4 to 6 as a side dish. 1 bundle fiddlehead ferns 1 medium Maui onion, chopped in large pieces 12 cherry tomatoes, halved 1–pound shrimp Wash and snap the stalks at the breaking point and cut into 1-½ inch pieces, including the slightly unfurled frond tips. Boil in rapidly boiling water for about 3–5 minutes. Drain and cool. Shrimp & Warabi Salad

2 avocados, pitted and peeled 1 small sweet onion, chopped 1 clove garlic 1 small red Hawaiian chile pepper, seeded and deveined 1 cup chicken (or vegetable stock) 1 cup thick yogurt, cream or half & half Sea salt to taste Powdered cumin, to taste (optional, enhances flavor) 3 tablespoons lemon or lime juice 1 teaspoon lemon or lime zest—for garnish Assemble the blanched warabi, chopped onion, cherry tomato halves and the cooked, shelled and deveined shrimp in a large bowl. Toss with the dressing and serve.

Place all ingredients except for the zest in a food processor or blender. Taste and adjust seasonings, if needed. Serve in bowls, stemmed glasses or shot glasses as an amuse-bouche. Garnish with the zest if desired or use your own favorite garnishes. | Weddings | 2017

Soup: Chilled Avocado Soup Ideal to serve as an amuse-bouche (appetizer) when served in small glasses. Yield: 4–6 servings in a regular sized soup bowl, or 25 or more if served as small amuse-bouche portions.


Local Hawaiian Fish

A fun way to serve fish is wrapped in leaves and baked or steamed. For this dish, you will need one that will keep its shape and not come apart when cooked, like ‘Ōpakapaka (pink snapper), a delicately flavored fish. If not available, any other firm, white fish works well, as long as it’s not too fatty. The best leaves to use would be ti, banana, or taro. Neither ti nor banana leaves can be eaten, but taro leaves are edible. Using banana leaves cut in squares works well as a wrap. Entree: ‘Ōpakapaka and Vegetable Laulau ‘Ōpakapaka filet (1 per person) Maui sweet onion slices (2–3 per serving) Slightly wilted fresh baby spinach Carrot, very thinly julienned Fresh ginger, minced Fresh garlic, minced Lime juice Hawaiian sea salt White peppercorns, freshly ground Lime, thinly sliced (2–3 per serving) Fresh dill sprigs (1 per serving) Taro, banana or ti leaves | Weddings | 2017

‘Opakapaka with Tropical Fruit Salsa


Prepare the leaves by getting rid of the spine or stalk first, then trim, if needed. If using banana leaves, cut to size needed and trim into a square or rectangle. Place the sections of banana leaves in the oven at 350°F for just one minute to make them pliable. Instead of cutting the carrot into julienne slices, “shave” the slices with a vegetable peeler. Place the leaf or leaves on counter and place 2 or 3 overlapping onion slices in the middle; add the slightly wilted spinach and the julienned carrots and top with the fish filet. Sprinkle with the minced ginger and garlic, squirt with lime juice, sprinkle with sea salt and pepper, then top with lime slices and the dill sprig. Wrap the bundle well leaving no openings, then tie with a kitchen string or pin together with toothpicks or thin bamboo skewers. Place in bamboo steamer over boiling water and cook for about 15–20 minutes or on tray in the oven at 350°F for about 20–30 minutes; depends on thickness of the fish filet. Serve with Tropical Salsa. Other side dishes that go well with the fish are a rice medley, seaweed salad, and a couple of slices of sweet pickled Buddha fingers. | Weddings | 2017

Tropical Fruit Salsa Peel, seed, or core and chop fresh mango, papaya, pineapple, sweet Maui onion, minced young ginger, chopped red-hot Hawaiian chile


peppers, and red and green bell peppers in ¼ inch pieces; add fresh squeezed lime juice, sea salt, a smidgen of sugar, and the juice from a liliko‘i; chopped fresh mint leaves and/or fresh chopped cilantro (optional). Mix and refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving.

which can be incorporated into any dish in your menu from appetizers to desserts. Shrimp marinated in liliko‘i juice, then grilled on skewers, can be served as appetizers. Liliko‘i juice can also be added into a vinaigrette for salads, infused into a decadent dessert.

One of the most exquisite tastes to experience is that of the liliko‘i,

Dessert: Liliko‘i Crème Brûlée A classic Crème Brûlée is delicious on its own, but when paired with

Liliko'i (passionfruit) | Weddings | 2017

Liliko’i Creme Brulee


liliko‘i juice, it can reach a level that is pure heaven. Yield: 4–6 servings (depends on size of ramekins). 1/2 cup sugar 1/2 cup passionfruit juice (about 6) Dissolve the sugar in the juice over medium heat and continue to cook until you achieve a thick syrup, but before it caramelizes. Spoon at least a tablespoonful into each ramekin and set aside.

Preheat oven to 350°F Mix vanilla extract, milk, cream, eggs and sugar in a saucepan. Whisk gently (you don’t want to create froth) over heat until well combined and the mixture is hot (about 5 minutes, do not boil). Add the passionfruit pulp and cook for about 3 minutes or until slightly thickened. Fill each ramekin with the mixture. Fill a roasting pan with hot water (about halfway up the ramekins) and place ramekins carefully in the water pan. Bake for 20 minutes or until there is a slight wobble in the middle of the custard. Allow to

Wedding Favors cool slightly. Sprinkle with chopped candied ginger or crushed ginger cookies and a small drizzle of the leftover syrup (optional).

Wedding or Shower Favors

When thinking of favors for your guests, think small gift bags made with tropical printed fabrics, or small lauhala baskets filled with an assortment of food items. Small jars of locally-sourced honeys, tropical fruit-infused vinegars, fruit butters, tropical fruit-flavored marshmallows, fruit or flower-shaped mochi (small Japanese cakes made from pounded glutinous rice), or beautifully decorated tropical cookies are welcome favors. | Weddings | 2017

1 vanilla bean pod or 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 cup milk 1 cup cream 3 eggs 1/2 cup sugar 1/2 cup of passionfruit pulp (about 6) Chopped candied ginger or crushed ginger cookies for garnish (or both!)

21 | Weddings | 2017



A Royal Wedding | By Leilehua Yuen

ne of the best documented royal weddings of Hawai‘i’s monarchy is that of Alexander Liholiho (King Kamehameha IV) and Emma Na‘ea Rooke. Their wedding captures the height of that romantic era in Hawai‘i’s history. On the morning of June 19, 1856, the Hawaiian government declared a public holiday. Honolulu’s streets were covered in rushes and grass to keep down the dust. Soldiers stood at attention, lining the street’s sides. Led by a cavalry escort, several carriages drove out in procession down King Street. One carried the bride and her three bridesmaids, Victoria Kamāmalu, Lydia Kamaka‘eha (who would later be known as Lili‘uokalani), and Mary Pitman. The other carriage bore the king, his brother, Lot, and their father, Kekūanao‘a. These royal carriages were flanked by kāhili bearers on foot, protecting the mana of their charges with the stately feathered emblems of rank. Uniformed aides-de-camp on horseback followed their king. The procession closed with more of the cavalry escort. The route was thronged with spectators, and a local newspaper noted that many of the Hawaiians, in a return to ancient custom, prostrated themselves as their chief passed by, “until their foreheads touched the ground.” Arriving at Kawaiaha‘o Church, 500 people filled the building, and another 3,000 thronged outside. It was possibly the first recorded interdenominational wedding in Hawai‘i. The Anglican service was held in the Congregational church, where the Reverend Richard Armstrong performed it in Hawaiian and English. As grooms have done before and since, the young king forgot the wedding ring. Fortunately, Chief Justice Elisha Allen quietly slipped his own gold band to the king, and the ceremony continued.

The bride’s Parisian wedding gown showed the influence of Queen Victoria’s choice of white, which had set the fashion world on end 16 years earlier. Since Victoria of England had worn her white satin and lace to marry Albert, anyone who was someone wanted white for her wedding. Emma’s elegant choice was of lustrous heavy white silk, trimmed with three richly embroidered flounces. Her veil of Brussels point lace was affixed to her hair by a garland of roses and orange blossoms. Her jewelry was a set of diamonds. After the ceremony, the royal pair returned to the palace and were toasted by the Diplomatic and Consular Corps. That evening, a royal ball and supper was held at the palace for 500 invited guests. While the palace and its grounds were decked out in lights, the new queen shone more brightly in an evening dress of lace embroidered in white silk and silver. Marabou feathers completed the ethereal effect. The new Queen of Hawai‘i was also a queen of fashion! At the end of the evening, fireworks from the summit of Puowaena (today known as Punchbowl) lit the night sky. Yet, the festivities were not over! The Americans, the Germans, and the Chinese business communities each gave a ball in honor of the royal couple, and the king reciprocated with yet another ball, which concluded the grand state festivities. Privately, Queen Emma’s parents, Dr. Rooke and his wife Grace, wishing to acknowledge those who had been part of Emma’s life, hosted a pā‘ina for their tenants, retainers, and household servants. At last, the royal couple was well and truly wed! | Weddings | 2017



Planning Your Wedding Day . . . SIX OR MORE MONTHS PRIOR • Select a wedding date and time. • Announce your engagement in the newspaper. • Mail save the date cards. • Make a preliminary budget. • Hire a wedding consultant. • Determine your wedding style. • Decide on your color scheme. • Determine the size of the guest list. • Start compiling names and addresses of guests. • Select bridal attendants. • Have fiancé select attendants. • Select a master of ceremonies. • Select a reception venue. • Reserve your ceremony and reception locations. • Select a caterer. • Select an officiant; visit clergy and discuss ceremony.

•R  egister at a bridal registry in the towns of both families, or online with one of the many services available, including honeymoon registries. • Order invitations or announcements. • Complete the guest list. • Make transportation arrangements for the wedding day • Start planning the honeymoon and obtain a passport, if necessary.

Wedding preparations at Hulihe‘e Palace, Kailua-Kona. | Weddings | 2017

Photo courtesy: Karen Loudan Photography


• Reserve tents, rental tables and chairs, etc. • Select a professional photographer and videographer. • Select musicians. • Select a florist. • Select wedding rings. • Select your dress and head piece. • Select bridesmaids’ dresses. • Make your travel and lodging reservations. FOUR MONTHS PRIOR • Check in with wedding providers. • Make final arrangements for the ceremony (deposits should be paid, contracts signed). • Make sure all wedding attire is ordered. • Have both mothers coordinate and select their dresses. • Meet with your hair and makeup stylist.

Ha’ena Beach, Kea‘au

TWO MONTHS PRIOR • Check in with your wedding providers or consultant. • Address invitations and announcements. • Mail invitations four to six weeks before the wedding • Finalize all details with your wedding consultant, or caterer, photographer, florist, reception venue, musicians, etc. • Order the wedding cake, if not supplied by caterer. • Finalize ceremony details with the officiant. • Make rehearsal arrangements, if needed. • Finalize honeymoon plans.

ONE MONTH PRIOR • Have a final fitting for your gown and bridal attendants’ dresses. • Purchase gifts for attendants. • Purchase gift for fiance. • Have the bridesmaids’ luncheon. • Purchase going away outfit. • Keep a record of all gifts received. • Write thank you notes as gifts arrive. • Make sure you have all accessories: toasting goblets, ring pillow, garter, candles, etc. • Give musicians, or your wedding consultant, the list of music for the ceremony and reception. • Select a person to handle the guest book and determine its location.

ONE WEEK PRIOR • Give the final count to the caterer and review details. • Go over final details with all professional services you have hired. Inform them of any changes. • Reconfirm honeymoon arrangements. • Arrange for someone to assist with last minute errands and to help you dress. • Have a rehearsal with all participants and review their duties. • Enjoy your rehearsal dinner. YOUR WEDDING DAY • Make sure you bring the wedding rings and the marriage license. • Congratulations! You are ready for your wedding day! Service Contracts It is imperative to get a detailed, clearly written service contract from each vender you employ. Also get any non-standard changes to your agreements in writing. This will protect you should any problems arise with services or products and will be essential to resolving any disputes. | Weddings | 2017

Hulihe‘e Palace lawn, Kailua-Kona

Photo courtesy: the Walters Family

TWO WEEKS PRIOR • Check in with your wedding providers. Give them your cellular phone number. • Attend to business and legal details. • Get the necessary forms to change your name on your Social Security card, driver’s license, insurance, medical plans and bank accounts. • Prepare wedding announcements to be sent to the newspaper. • Give a change of address card to the post office. • Finish addressing announcements to be mailed on the wedding day. Photo courtesy: Karen Loudan Photography


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A ll beaches on Hawai'i are free and open to the public

to use for a wedding, with the proper permits required for a beach site. A permit is not available for every beach on Hawai'i Island, however, so check with your coordinator or the Hawai’i County Parks and Recreation office for more information. A permit can also be arranged by your wedding planner for a fee. This also applies to state and county beach parks and public lands. It is good to scout your site well, as you may discover beachgoers or another wedding party already using a location that you have your heart set on, so please show your utmost respect for their right to be there. To ensure that you and your wedding party have the most positive and wonderful experience possible on your very special day, the following information is provided to ensure that you, as well as all residents and guests of Hawai’i, have a truly marvelous and memorable beach experience. Select a wedding site that is realistically suitable and an appropriate size for your wedding party, including sufficient parking and facilities. Do not overcrowd the area with your event. For the protection and stewardship of Hawai’i’s treasured natural and cultural resources, please do

not make use of any archaeological or historic sites. If there are other weddings at the same beach, please keep your group contained. Position your party so that it is not placed in the other weddings’ backgrounds or close enough that the ceremonies can be overheard easily. Respect the rights of the general public. Do not reserve, restrict or rope off beach or park areas. Please do not ask beach users to move or relocate or try to impede free passage of the public by asking them to not walk behind the wedding party or ceremony setting. The use of chairs, wedding arches and amplified music are not allowed at beaches and most public areas. The consumption of any alcoholic beverage is not allowed on beaches, in parks or on state and county lands. We suggest that you use either sparkling cider or other non-alcoholic beverages for all toasts. Be mindful of the corks, which can get lost in the sand or water; please retrieve them and take away with your other ‘ōpala (rubbish). Malama ka ‘āina: To minimize a negative impact on our fragile environment, please malama, take care, and leave the site cleaner than you found it. It is your responsibility, or that of your wedding coordinator, to remove all flowers and any other ceremony-related debris. Mahalo!

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December 15 7:02 AM / 5:52 PM | Weddings | 2017

2017 Sunrise and Sunset Times


Hawaiÿi Botanical Garden Wedding © Karen Loudon Photography

Unusual Places to Get Married on Hawai‘i Island: Garden & Waterfall Sites | By Denise Laitinen In our ongoing series featuring unusual places to get married on Hawai‘i Island, we take a look at botanical gardens and waterfall sites that are perfect for that special ceremony. These unique wedding locations range from state parks such as Rainbow Falls to private vacation rentals and tropical botanical gardens.

Waterfalls: Rainbow Falls, Hilo Perhaps no other waterfall is more identified with Hilo than Rainbow Falls. Located within Wailuku River State Park, the 80-foot Rainbow Falls is just a quick drive from downtown Hilo. The viewing area for the waterfall is wheelchair accessible and there’s a small adjoining green lawn next to the parking lot. To get married here, you’ll need to request a permit from the Hawai‘i State Parks District at least 45 days before your wedding date. A detailed permit request letter must be sent by the wedding couple to the Hawai‘i Parks District Superintendent, Mr. Dean Takebayashi, providing the date, beginning and end times, number of attendees, and a detailed description of the event (see sidebar for a full list of items needed in the request letter). | Weddings | 2017

Private Kohala Waterfall If you’re looking for a private, secluded waterfall in which to hold your ceremony, Hawai‘i Forest and Trail offers their waterfall tours in North Kohala. They can also arrange for waterfall wedding locations in North Kohala and Hilo, as well.


“We set up a tent, provide the catering, and can handle weddings from 10 to 200 guests,” says Jason Cohn, marketing manager for Hawai‘i Forest and Trail. “Our North Kohala waterfall is near the rim of Pololū Valley. It’s not a named waterfall, but we refer to it as, ‘Wedding Falls.’ We can do a lot of cool stuff. We did three weddings there last year, as well as a lot of special events and luncheons,” says Jason. He is pretty knowledgeable about Hawai‘i Forest and Trail’s wedding services, since he and his fiancé, Domino Gourley, got married at the Kohala waterfall site last May, surrounded by 200 relatives and friends. “We also have access to a great property at OK Farms that

has a wonderful waterfall,” says Jason. “We’re able to set up events at OK Farms and also use an inn on a separate nearby property.”

The Falls at Reed’s Island, Hilo Just downstream from Rainbow Falls, the Wailuku River provides more, yet smaller waterfalls, such as the ones situated in the backyard of The Falls at Reed’s Island, a vacation rental situated within a historic Hilo neighborhood. “The Wailuku River runs along the north side of the property,” says owner Jack Stevenson who, along with his wife Jane, has operated the vacation rental for 13 years. “At one end of the property, we have a 25-foot waterfall with 750 feet of riverfront along the side yard.” Boasting a large, landscaped back lawn, the Falls at Reed’s Island enables you to have your ceremony and reception all in one place, with the added benefit of staying in the threebedroom house to get prepared ahead of time (as well as a mini honeymoon afterwards). It’s important to point out that, because this location is in a quiet, residential neighborhood, weddings are limited to 25 guests.

Gardens: Queen Lili‘uokalani Gardens, Hilo Long considered the crown jewel of Hilo, it’s no surprise that Queen Lili‘uokalani Gardens is an ideal and popular wedding location. In fact, in an annual newspaper survey conducted last year, this county park was named the number one place to get married in East Hawai‘i. Stroll through these picturesque grounds overlooking Hilo Bay, and it’s easy to see why. Created a century ago as a tribute to Hawai‘i’s first Japanese immigrants, the 30-acre park provides plenty of areas in which to get married, with its pagodas, rock gardens, statuary, stands of bamboo, a tea house, and bridges built over fishponds which dot the landscape. There’s even a small, covered pavilion that can be reserved through the Hawai‘i County Parks and Recreation Department on a first come, first served basis

for $25. Bear in mind, county officials do not allow you to bring any tables, chairs, balloons, or arches to the pavilion. In order to get married anywhere within Queen Lili‘uokalani Gardens, you’ll need to fill out a special request form from the Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation. County staff will need the date, time, and size of your wedding to make sure there are no scheduling conflicts with other events, since this is such a desirable wedding venue.

Nani Mau Gardens, Hilo In 1972, Makato Nitahara created a 20-acre tropical garden out of a former papaya patch, calling it Nani Mau, which means “forever beautiful”. This site has been a popular wedding venue ever since. In 2012, a new owner took over Nani Mau and has spent the past few years upgrading the facilities for future generations. Nani Mau offers a variety of amenities that make it ideal for weddings. Acres of tropical gardens provide several sites to choose from, including a white orchid pavilion, a bell tower, a bridge, a waterfall, a bamboo area, and a lookout at the top of a small hill. This property is distinct in that it offers five different indoor facilities for receptions that can accommodate up to 299 | Weddings | 2017 Courtesy: Botanical World Adventures

The Falls provides round tables, folding chairs, and linens for your event. Jack says there is no event fee for the property, however, a four-night minimum stay is required for all weddings. A $650 reservation deposit is also required to hold your specific date, along with a $2,000 security deposit prior to the wedding. The Falls at Reed’s Island handles more than 10 weddings a year, so it’s best to check early in the planning process to see if the dates you want are available.


Adventures provides both waterfall and garden venues for your nuptials. “We have four locations you can get married at on site,” says Walter Bono, director of marketing for Botanical World Adventures. “Kamae‘e waterfall, an orchard, a rainforest trail, and a large, open space we call, ‘the living room.’ They’re all unique and all unusual.”

Courtesy: Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden, View of Onomea Bay

guests. Plus, there’s plenty of parking. The facility offers customized menus, as well as wedding cakes. They also have coordinators on staff to handle all your event needs.

One of the ways Botanical World Adventures is unique is that it can accommodate large wedding parties—up to 300 guests in its avocado grove and arboretum settings.

Hawai‘i Tropical Botanical Garden, Pāpa‘ikou Tucked amidst the shoreline of Onomea Bay (seven miles north of Hilo along Old Māmalahoa Highway), lies a botanical garden wrapped in legend and beauty. Located on the 4-Mile Scenic Drive, the Hawai‘i Tropical Botanical Garden encompasses 17 acres which are open to the public and features more than 2,000 tropical plants from around the world. Here you’ll find a wide array of plants and flowers, as well as tree stands, streams, waterfalls, and even an orchid garden. Stroll down to the ocean, where you’ll find a paved circular area for ceremonies overlooking Onomea Bay.

As a botanical garden, the facility offers tropical touches to your wedding.

“People fall in love with the place and want to get married someplace special,” says David Tan, Hawai‘i Tropical Botanical Garden executive director.

“If they rent the vacation house, they have three bathrooms for the bride and groom to get ready, as well as for guests to use,” says Walter. He adds that couples can also use the home as a reception site if they want. | Weddings | 2017

Even more romantic—legend swirls around the twin rock formations protruding out into the bay called, “the Lovers of Kahali‘i.” The story is told of two lovers who were turned into stone pillars to protect the village of Kahali’i from potential invasions from the sea.


Kamae‘e waterfall is about a mile uphill from the main botanical garden and can accommodate 75-100 guests. At an elevation of 600 feet, the venue site is a grassy area overlooking the picturesque waterfall, with panoramic views of the countryside. Walter points out that Botanical World Adventures only provides the venue site, and couples are responsible for providing everything from tents to music to food and portable bathrooms.

Open to the public since 1984, David says the facility has been offering weddings for the past 10 years. As a non-profit nature preserve, the Garden typically handles only a few events a year and is meant for smaller parties. “We are for small wedding ceremonies only—30 people max,” says David. “We’ll set up a tent and pews in our paved wedding site right on the ocean.” All weddings at the Garden are subject to a $3,000 event fee, regardless of the number of guests. The Garden offers a comprehensive package, including a minister to perform the ceremony, leis for the bride and groom, a wedding cake, a musician, and more, which runs about $3,500. Botanical World Adventures, Hakalau Along the Hāmākua Coast in Hakalau, Botanical World

“We can provide the flowers,” says Walter, “we can even grow certain flowers like orchids, if given enough time. For instance, if someone wants a certain orchid, we could grow that orchid, enabling the bride to have a bouquet that’s really unique.” Botanical World also rents out a two-bedroom, three-bathroom home across the street from the botanical gardens that bridal parties can use.

In addition to weddings, Botanical World Adventures offers zip line excursions, a garden maze, and Segway off-road tours. Prices for holding your wedding here start at $2,500. Rental of the adjacent Botanical World Garden Home is around $200 per day. Pua Mau Arboretum and Botanical Garden, Kawaihae Pua Mau Arboretum and Botanical Garden is unique because it’s located on the northwest side of Hawai‘i Island within Kohala Estates, near Kawaihae. Pua Mau means, “everflowering,” and this non-profit botanical garden is dedicated to preserving plant life found in Hawai‘i’s arid environments. The garden has an aviary with peacocks, as well unique statuary placed throughout the grounds.” A two-story visitor center with a wrap-around lānai provides plenty of space for a reception and can accommodate up to 250 people. “Couples have to make their own arrangements if they want to

have a reception here,” says Irina Place, manager of Pua Mau. She explains that some wedding couples cater the event themselves while others bring in caterers from nearby restaurants or resorts. “We’ve had weddings with 300 people and weddings with 15 people,” says Irina, adding the facility is suited better for smaller affairs. Ceremony sites at Pua Mau include their “Magic Circle,” a large circle of megalithic stones that are aligned with the points of a compass. Pua Mau’s northwesterly location means it offers 180-degree ocean and sunset views. In the winter months, there is the added benefit of whale watching from the visitor center’s lānai. “We have spectacular sunset weddings here,” says Irina. Pua Mau’s visitor center is available for evening events from 4pm to 11pm for a rental fee of $1,500, plus a $200 refundable deposit. The daytime rental fee for less than 30 people is $150 per hour between 9am and 4pm, plus a $200 refundable deposit. | Weddings | 2017

Courtesy: Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden


Location resources: Rainbow Falls at Wailuku River State Park Wedding couples wanting to get married at Rainbow Falls must request a permit from the State Parks Hawai‘i Island District office at least 45 days prior to their wedding. Request letters must be submitted by the bride or groom and sent to: Mr. Dean Takebayashi Hawaii Parks District Superintendent Division of State Parks 75 Aupuni St., Rm. 204, Hilo, HI 96720 808.961.9540 | Weddings | 2017

Permit request letters must include: Your First and Last Name Postal Mailing Address Email Address Day Telephone Number Name of Park Requested to Use Date Requested (Up to a year in advance from date of letter) Start and End Time of the gathering (To include setup/cleanup) Attached Map of park area with indication of area for use Number of persons expected to be in attendance (high count) Detailed Description of the event List of any Equipment to be set up for use


Hawai‘i Forest and Trail: 73-5593 A Olowalu St., Kailua-Kona, HI, 96740 Toll Free phone: 800.464.1993 Contact: Jason Cohn, Marketing Manager The Falls at Reed’s Island 286 Ka‘iulani St, Hilo, HI 96720 Phone: 808.635.3649 Contact: Jack & Jane Stevenson, owners Queen Lili‘uokalani Gardens County of Hawai‘i Parks and Recreation Department 101 Pauahi St., Suite #6, Hilo, HI, 96720 Phone: 808.961.8311 Nani Mau Gardens 421 Makalika St, Hilo, HI, 96720 Phone: 808.959.3500 Contact: Neal Tsunezumi, Special Events/ Operations Manager

Hawai‘i Tropical Botanical Garden 27-717 Old Māmalahoa Highway (Onomea Scenic Drive), Pāpa‘ikou, HI, 96781 Mailing address; P.O. Box 80, Pāpa‘ikou, HI 96781 Phone: 808.964.5233 Contact: David Tan, Executive Director Botanical World Adventures Mile Marker 16 on Highway 19 31-240 Old Māmalahoa Highway, Hakalau, HI, 96710 Mailing address: P.O. Box 174, Hakalau, HI 96710 Toll free phone: 888.947.4753 Contact: Walter Bono, Director of Marketing Pua Mau Arboretum & Botanical Garden 10 Ala Kahua Dr., Kawaihae, HI, 96743 Mailing address: P.O. Box 44555, Kawaihae, HI, 96743 Phone 808.882.0888 Contact: Irina Place, Manager

Wedding Lei | By Leilehua Yuen

he lei, that iconic symbol of our islands, is actually found in many cultures. Swiss maidens, Hindu priests, Thai brides and grooms, the flower children of the 60s, and Neanderthal of 60,000 years ago all have been noted for their flower garlands. Hawaiians, however, may have developed the concept into a more diverse cultural role than many others. For traditional Hawaiians, and those who love Hawai‘i, lei grace every ceremony, celebration, and commemoration. Lei are tangible and intangible. They are form and metaphor. They are imbued with historical, cultural, and spiritual importance. In a mo‘olelo, a story, that I learned as a child, the art of the lei was brought to our islands by Kuku‘ena, a seeress, | Weddings | 2017


39 | Weddings | 2017

H E A R T S & S T A R S


Courtesy Elena Graham Photography

“Brides, this is the place for you!” Queens’ MarketPlace - Waikoloa Beach Resort “ELLE Magazine Top 100 U.S. Salons” 808-886-0600 |

a sister of Pele, and goddess of lei making. Before leaving her southern homeland, she carefully tucked the seeds of her beloved lei plants into the rolls of her pā‘ū, her beautifully crafted skirt. Arriving in her new home, she shook out her pā‘ū, scattering the seeds to the winds, which carried them throughout the islands so they would thrive and benefit humanity. It is interesting to note that lei are used in healing ceremonies, and many of the traditional plants used in lei making are also used in lā‘au lapa‘au, herbal medicine. Probably most associated with all things romantic is the lei maile. It’s heady scent evokes images of lovers wooing each other in a tropical bower. Indeed, throughout Hawaiian history, myth, and legend, it is associated with courtship and romance. Often, both the bride and groom will wear maile, either alone or with floral lei kui (strung lei) intertwined. Sometimes only the bride will add a floral lei. Sometimes the bride will wear a fragrant floral lei intertwined with the maile, and the groom will wear ‘ilima intertwined with his lei maile. There are no hard and fast rules. Just as the ceremony should reflect the individuality of the bride and groom, and their hopes and dreams together, the lei chosen to adorn them should do the same. That being said, it is nice when the lei and the attire of the wedding party compliment each other. In general, lei such as white or yellow ginger, gardenia, carnation, crown flower, loke, pīkake, and ‘ilima, would be among the more formal flower lei, roughly equivalent to wearing pearls. The momi ke‘oke‘o or lāiki ke‘oke‘o (small white shells from Ni‘ihau), and lei hulu kāmoe or poepoe (traditional styles of feather lei) would be roughly equivalent to wearing diamonds. These floral lei provide an especially lovely effect in long strands on a traditionally cut holokū. With a more modern gown, choker length would be elegant. The final decision should be made based on the actual gown and taste of the bride. Of course, if the bride is blessed with an heirloom lei hulu or lei lāiki ke‘oke‘o, she might wish to choose the gown to suit the lei. At the other end of the spectrum are the brightly colored, lushly petaled lei such as plumeria, Thai orchid, and lei of mixed flowers and colors. In general, the brighter the colors and more flamboyant the petals, the less formal the lei. These lei are ideal with informal wedding dresses, sarongs, and weddings with a bright, festive theme. The lei lā‘ī, or ti leaf lei, is always appropriate, and can be made in any number of styles, from a simple twist in the hilo style to ornate ropes of baby roses fashioned from the leaves, themselves. Some people like to make the lei an integral part of the wedding ceremony. Borrowing from the Catholic tradition of our Latin community, and blending with Hawaiian, the lazo, or wedding rosary, is sometimes replaced with a lei of maile or fragrant small white blossoms such as pīkake. Other couples choose to exchange lei in lieu of, or in addition to, rings or other symbolic gifts. Often, the lei are open style, such as maile, and then tied closed at the end of the ceremony to symbolize their unity, wholeness, and unending devotion.

Lei for the Wedding Party Generally, if the bride and groom wear lei, so does the rest of the wedding party, though their lei will be less elaborate and | Weddings | 2017

Maile with ‘ilima and five-strand pÄŤkake Photo courtesy Leilehua Yuen

41 | Weddings | 2017

either of different materials, or in different styles, from those of the bride and groom. Lana Haasenritter of Ah Lan’s Lei Stand, says, “If they are from here, normally the bride or her mother comes and orders her lei. Sometimes it’s the in-laws. The most popular is pīkake and maile. It’s nice if it’s a 3-strand because pīkake is small.” Flowers are dependent on the weather and other conditions, so sometimes crown flower will be substituted for pīkake, if they are not available. Fathers and grandfathers (or those who fill those roles) of the couple are often presented with lei maile or cigar flower lei. The maile can be worn alone, or wrapped around ‘ilima. It would not be wrapped around a cigar flower lei, because it would hide the intricate designs so carefully stitched with the tiny flowers. Cigar flowers come in a range of salmon, orange to red, and rust colors, and the designs can be fine or bold, so they can be coordinated to look well against the man’s shirt or coat. Mothers and grandmothers (or those who fill those roles) often are given mauna loa style orchid lei, carnation lei, or Micronesian style ginger lei. It’s a good idea to find out what they plan to wear and coordinate the lei with them. The carnation lei can be tinted to match or contrast with their attire. When a lei is worn, there is no need for a corsage or boutonniere. If a woman does receive a corsage when she plans to wear a lei, if it goes with her hairstyle, it can be lovely in her hair. If not, it can be pinned to a scarf or her wrap. While there are few “rules” regarding lei in weddings, since about World War II, certain customs have come into use. As a


lei is such a special gift, many people over the years probably gave them with a kiss, and it was not until World War II that this became a “custom of Hawai‘i.” The story goes that some USO entertainers were teasing each other, and encouraging one of their performers to give a kiss to a good looking young serviceman. Looking for an excuse, she gave him her lei, with a kiss, saying, “This is an ancient custom of Hawai‘i.” The new “ancient custom” caught on, and has become part of the popular culture. So, when giving a lei, many people place it over the recipient’s head and give a kiss. If everyone is comfortable with kissing each other, this is fine. Sometimes the wedding is the first meeting of many members of the bride’s and groom’s families. In that case, they may not be comfortable kissing. An older tradition for giving the lei is to hold it in both hands just above the heart, and offer it to the recipient. The recipient will then take it and put it on. This tradition avoids placing one’s hands over another’s head, which is considered disrespectful by many traditional Hawaiian people. For all fresh lei, there are a few things to remember: When choosing: Make sure none of the wedding party are allergic or sensitive to the flowers. Make sure the lei will not stain the garments you are wearing.

Maile in the lap of a kupuna. Photographer unknown

When transporting/storing: Keep them cool, not cold. Too cold can brown the blossoms. Allow the lei to breathe before putting them on. A lei fresh out of the florist bag is cold, wet, uncomfortable to wear, and can stain clothing. To Save the Wedding Lei: Many lei, such as maile, dry beautifully and keep their fragrance for a long time. They can be hung over a wedding photo, the bride and groom’s bed, or the door of their home. It can also be placed in a desiccant and then once preserved, placed in a sealed container. When it’s time to dispose of the lei: Eventually, though, all floral lei will become too fragile to keep. No lei should be casually thrown away. They should be returned to the land. Some people hang their lei in a tree in a special place, others have a kuahu (alter) or perhaps some kind of mound. Others take the lei apart and cast the crumbling petals into the wind. Whatever way preserves the memory of the meaning of that lei is the best. The most important thing to remember about lei is that they are to be made, given, and received with aloha. | Weddings | 2017

An endless variety of hawaiian lei. Photo by Chelle Pahinui.


Celebrating the Traditional

Hawaiian Lü‘au By Shana Wailana Logan

Mele Komo

Welcoming Song

E hea i ke kanaka e komo maloko, E hanai ai a hewa waha; Eia no ka uku la, o ka leo, A he leo wale no, e!

Call to the man to come in. Eat till the mouth is satisfied; This is the reward, the voice, Simply the voice!

A Traditional Greeting land and sea has to offer. In Hawai‘i, there are many lū‘au celebrations such as birthdays, graduations, and weddings which are meant to bind friends and family in the enduring spirit of aloha and lōkahi, togetherness. Historically, Hawaiians had not always eaten together, however. Governed by | Weddings | 2017

A “mele komo” is the beckoning, melodic call of a traditional Hawaiian host who receives each visitor as a guest of honor, welcomed as ‘ōhana (family) with aloha. Today, the modern lū‘au, once called ‘aha ‘āina, is a popular island gathering which still calls visitors to come, sit, and enjoy what the


Hula performance at King David Kalakaua’s Jubilee celebration. ÿIolani Palace grounds, Honolulu, Hawaiÿi, 1886. Photographer unkonown. Bishop Museum Archives.

a sacred system of ancient eating restrictions called ‘ai kapu, men and women, as well as commoner and chief ate separately, and certain foods such as bananas and pork were only eaten by men. Things changed, however, during the reign of King Kamehameha II (1819–1824), when his father, Kamehameha I (1782–1819) passed away and a period of ‘ai noa began in which everyone was permitted to openly eat together without fear.

A Royal Lū‘au King David Kalākaua, Hawai‘i’s last ruling king (1874–1891), held a fabulous gala during his reign, inviting the entire Hawaiian Kingdom in celebration. In November of 1886, His Majesty presented a royal feast for his 50th birthday, his “Silver Jubilee,” complete with a full display of Hawaiian mele (song) and hula (dance) and an overflowing banquet of delicious island bounty. It was a historical event, on record as having over 1000 guests of all stature and backgrounds bringing gifts from near and far. Held at the famed and illustrious ‘Iolani Palace in Honolulu, the King’s Jubilee lasted for two weeks in which all of the people ate, sang, danced, and made merry, even enjoying a parade down the middle of town. Ko Hawai‘i Pae ‘Aina, one of the local newspapers of the day reported, “After 3 o’clock in the afternoon of this Tuesday, the King, the Princes and Princesses, the dignitaries, and the makaainana sat at a long table housed by a pavilion with corrugated iron roofing (lanai pili hao), which could sit an estimated 600 to 900

people at a time. There was much Hawaiian foods supplied, like laulau (puaa hoolua) and roasted pork (puaa kalua kele); fish wrapped in ti leaves and baked (lawalu) and raw (aimaka); baked beef (i‘o pipi hoolua) and all types of poi spoken of...”

‘Ōhana Means Family A family lū‘au is more than just a gathering to celebrate a special event: it is the outward showing of love, commitment and unity that the ‘ōhana brings to each individual. In Hawai‘i, the ‘ōhana is central to the perpetuation and stability of the entire community, and as a means to feed everyone, the lū‘au is key. It all starts months before the date of the event, when the hunting, fishing, gathering, and other preparations actually begin. The main menu will usually include such mea‘ai (food) as kalua pork, laulau, lū‘au stew, fried i‘a (fish), ‘opihi (limpets), crab, lomi salmon, ‘uala (sweet potato), haupia (coconut pudding), and poi (taro paste). The main dish, shredded pork, begins with a huge pig that has been hunted or raised and when cooked, is prepared in kalua style, steamed for many hours with hot lava rocks in an underground pit called, ‘imu. Laulau and lū‘au stew are both made primarily with cooked taro leaves, coconut milk and pork, chicken, fish or beef. Fried i’a is fried fish, and some local favorites include ‘ahi (tuna), ‘ono (mackerel), moi (threadfish) and kūmū (goatfish). ‘Opihi is a shellfish, collected on the rocky shores of the Islands and gathered at great personal risk, as | Weddings | 2017

King David Kalakaua honors Robert Louis Stevenson with a lüÿau in 1889. Hawaiÿi State Archives.


fisherman must deal with swelling ocean waves crashing upon large seaside boulders where they are found. The modern dish, lomi salmon is usually made from salmon shipped in from abroad, not caught locally, as this was not a traditional menu item in ancient Hawai‘i where salmon is not found. Lomi means to massage, and for this dish, the ingredients of salmon, tomatoes, and yellow and green onions are mixed together by hand and seasoned with Hawaiian salt. Sweet potato is ‘uala, usually cooked whole in the ‘imu along with the pig. A coconut pudding called haupia is the sweet compliment to this mainly salty menu, served cold and jelled in a long sheet-cake preparation, eaten along with the rest of the meal. Often in today’s lū‘au fare, one will find the pineapple, a modern island favorite with origins in South America. Finally, an authentic Hawaiian lū‘au is not complete without the island staple of kalo (taro), either steamed and cut or kneaded and pounded into the fresh, starchy paste known as poi.

Kalo: The Sacred Food For many visitors, eating poi is an acquired taste. For Hawaiians, eating any part of the kalo plant is a sacred act which dates back to a time when the early Polynesians told of the first human, Hāloa. According to the sacred Hawaiian creation chant, the Kumulipo, Hāloa was the very first human, sent down from the stars and tied closely to the earth through an elemental genealogy. This deep, historical connection to the kalo is a vivid story of creation and is the basis for the family unit. All parts of the plant work together as a family unit, each integral to the future of the other. This is why, for generations, the kalo has been the sacred food of the Hawaiian people, for it represents the perpetuation of humankind as a source of sustenance and life, and has been a part of the lū‘au for generations. | Weddings | 2017

Male ‘Ana


A wedding in old Hawai‘i was called a male ‘ana, a time to celebrate the union of two people in love. The lū‘au was known as an ‘aha ‘āina male, usually lasting days as the couple reveled in the festivities amid friends and family. The tradition lives on today, as each member of the ‘ōhana pitches in to provide the bride and groom with a happy occasion filled with cherished memories. A special hula is usually performed by the bride or a close family member, in honor of the couple. The couple will also dance to a favorite song as they are serenaded by a live band playing a beautiful, romantic ballad. Draped with maile lei, the groom will lead his bride, herself graced with a fragrant, white lei such as ginger or pīkake (jasmine). True to local customs, guests will then approach the couple and place various dollar bills on the floor nearby the duo for posterity. Following this, there is usually a moment of brevity when the bride will lift her dress just enough to reveal a garter belt around her thigh filled with money which the groom will then kneel down to remove from her leg and toss to the crowd of men who try to catch it. The throwing of the bouquet by the bride is also a significant part of the event, where single women will try to catch it for a chance to be the next bride. The love and aloha flow freely, as everyone dances and celebrates the night away.

Kalo photo by Shana Logan

Memories Timeless memories are created at a Hawaiian lū‘au, ones that will last forever. Family and friendship ties are woven tighter and stronger through this shared, joyful event. This is what attracts thousands of visitors to seek this experience, drawn to the Islands to say their wedding vows and enjoy a romantic honeymoon under balmy skies, paying to attend a commercial lū‘au, complete with tiki torches and a Polynesian dance revue. However, a genuine lū‘au offers much more than that. It is an age-old tradition that defines the authentic Hawaiian celebration and the commitment of a people to thrive despite any and all obstacles. It is a positive and real way to be as one with each other, with the land, and with the sea. The lū‘au is indeed a special moment of bringing all people together in the spirit of laulima, many hands working together, and aloha, where everyone is welcomed with open hearts.

The Authentic Hawaiian Lū‘au

“The servers were the kids, and they had it all ready to serve. That was our job as a youth: we served each dish. The serving line was filled with every dish we made – our whole entire congregation did it. Everything was done as a huge congregation. We would gather and prepare the coconuts for the haupia, cut the tomatoes and onions for lomi salmon and freeze them. Every day was a separate day of putting together a separate dish. The poi was a huge deal. We cooked the poi ourselves, so there were big pots of taro that people donated from their farms in Panaewa. We had uncles and aunties who grew it in large quantities. They cooked them in big barrels, I remember, but before they cooked it, we had to clean it (itchy, I remember). There was a kaona (deep meaning) for mixing: it had to do with the hand. Some people were chosen to mix the poi, and if the wrong person did it, the poi would sour. It is a practice never talked about, but I remember my Grandma Abby Napeahi was one of them, along with aunty Hannah Pakani. I remember them mixing the poi in big plastic containers – they were big. They had poi tables and the men would grind the poi into pa‘iai poi (thick poi), and the day of the party, the women mixed it down to a paste. Aunty Hannah always wore rubber boots, like all the women in my church, because they all were farmers. They laughed and talked in Hawaiian while they worked. Terri Napeahi poses in front of her inspirations: Great-Grandfather David Napeahi (left) and Great-Great-Grandfather Gearge Kekaula. Photo by Shana Logan

“The experience I had working with the community, we are all related somehow, so coming together was exciting. It was | Weddings | 2017

“When I was younger, our church, the Keaukaha Church of Latter Day Saints, catered lū‘au for weddings and other events, allowing the church to fundraise. When it was lū‘au time, from kupuna to youth, they all had a job to do in preparing everything,” says Terri Napeahi, owner of Papa Mū Native Hawaiian, LLC. “My father, Robert Napeahi Jr., was the one in charge of the ‘imu, waking up early in the morning. If the party started at 6pm, he would start the ‘imu at 2am in the morning so it would be timed just right, out of the ‘imu (took about 12 hours to cook). He had a big job because these lū‘au were really big. I loved getting up early with my father to do the ‘imu. Sometimes feeding 2-3,000 people, we served them, with about 5-6 pigs coming out of the ‘imu. He used ‘ōhia, and created a huge fire to heat the pōhaku (rocks).


work, but everybody enjoyed it, and their position in that work. Uncle Luka Kanaka‘ole did the grinding of the coconut, and he enjoyed his job. We all did. “The best part of the lū‘au: the young and old working together. So in the final preparation stage, the plates, the napkins and forks, the bowl poi…everything was set at a table. They didn’t stand in line, they sat at the table. The tables and chairs were covered with paper. We had to decorate it with banana stumps, laua‘e or other ferns, and also provided the entertainment. We all sang. My mother sang falsetto, and my grandfather would play with Uncle Howard Pe‘a all the old songs. “We then would pule (pray), then eat. All night, we served them, until the end. No lines. It was tiring, but we never grumble, and it was good fun. At the end, we all cleaned up and it was exciting. I miss those days and how real it was, not like today. Before, everybody was together like a family in Keaukaha. That’s why today, I started my initiative to create a space so that I could assist in raising the level of self-esteem for our people, to let our people come in and participate. Our focus is on the Hawaiian people. It’s a business, but it is not about the money. I wanted a specialized, unique product that could be competitive in the market and still be authentic. | Weddings | 2017

When I went up to live in Mountain View, I began learning about subsistence gathering and native rights from my mentor,


Palikapu Deadman, who had the idea that we should do an ‘imu, so that’s what we did. We decided to certify it so we could sell our food. The ‘imu was my first product and I started packaging my meat and selling it on the state level then on the federal level with exporting out of Hawai‘i. It’s in stores now under the Papa Mū Native Hawaiian, LLC brand. You can find it in KTA and other Hawaiʻi Island supermarkets. It costs more, but you cannot match the taste, the quality, and the authenticity of the meat, which is not liquid smoke, like the others. I am the only USDA certified company in the nation to sell food from a traditional ‘imu.” “Our ‘imu today is connecting people with the real, old style of cooking food, with that rich flavor of the pōhaku, the ti leaf, the banana…all part of the traditional way that cannot be duplicated in the oven. We are sharing our authentic culture and traditions with the world, which is what I always wanted to do,” says Terri. “Just like the old days.”

Traditional ‘imu cooking. circa 1800. Hawai‘i State Archives.

Resource Directory Aston Kona By the Sea 866.774.2974 Oceanfront condominium resort with ocean and shoreline views from every room. Dragonfly Ranch Bed & Breakfast 808.328.2159 Hosting romantic weddings and honeymoons. Voted #1 B & B in West Hawaiʻi in 2016! Grand Naniloa Hotel – A DoubleTree by Hilton 808-969-3333 Hilo’s brand new waterfront hotel offers comfortable accommodations with panoramic views. Hale Wailele 808.339.1550 Private paradise for your wedding in a one-ofa-kind location. Hilo Hawaiian Hotel, Castle Resorts & Hotels 808.969.6475 Ocean side weddings, small to 310 guests. Voted best of East Hawai’i! Kamuela Inn 800.555.8968 Perfect for the Bride & Groom and their parties! Newly renovated rooms & suites.

Flawless Finish Airbrush Makeup 541.580.7948 Airbrush makeup and esthetician, offering a lavish VIP Experience for Brides! Nerium International, Stacy Louie Brand Partner 808.960.6299 Ready to look your best on your special day? You’ll be thrilled! Paradissimo Tropical Spa 808.217.2202 Specializing in Organic Botanical Facials, Relaxing Body Treatments & Goddess Good™ Parties. Rodan + Fields Skincare, Julie Kron Independent Consultant 808.960.2473 Contact me for all your skincare needs. Radiant skin can be yours.

Catering Food Fusion by Chef Kimberly Hall 808.854.3409 Custom catering with a personal touch. Call for free samples! Serving West Hawai’i Heart Beet Catering & Sweet Cane Cafe 808.443.1863 Organic, locally farmed gourmet cuisine and cakes with gluten-free and vegan options.

Ceremony and Reception Venues

Grand Naniloa Hotel, A DoubleTree by Hilton 808-969-3333 Hilo’s brand new waterfront hotel offers comfortable accommodations with panoramic views.

Lava Ocean Tours 808.966.4200 Daily Departures while the lava is hot! Sunrise, Daytime, Sunset, Twilight.

Hale Wailele 808.339.1550 The ultimate venue for any occasion!

4digital, Inc 808.961.2697 Custom designed wedding invitations. Photo enhancement & altering for that perfect picture.

Hawaii Forest & Trail 808.331.3656 Let us be your guide to a truly unique wedding experience! Hilo Hawaiian Hotel, Castle Resorts & Hotels 808.969.6475 Ocean side weddings, small to 310 guests. Voted best of East Hawai’i! Kamuela Inn 800.555.8968 Perfect for the Bride & Groom and their parties! Newly renovated rooms & suites. Kohala Village HUB 808.889.0404 Have it all at the HUB! Stay at the Inn, Dine & Celebrate! Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse 808.887.0800 Our events team brings the level of quality that Ruth’s Chris is known for.


Jewelry Lehua Jewelers 808.885.6448 Heirloom quality jewelry for the bride and groom. Mountain Gold Jewelers 808.882.4653 Custom-made for weddings, engagements, anniversaries, and all special occasions.

Live Entertainment Hōkū Paʻa Voyaging Partners LLC 808.756.5445 Hawaiian Music, Entertainment and Event Production Services, North and West Hawai’i.

Mobile DJ and Lighting Eclipse Effect Entertainment 808.936.3552 Hawaii’s premier DJ, MC, Sound, and Lighting Company. Specializing in Elegant Weddings.

Courtyard by Marriott King Kamehameha Hotel 808.331.6332 Beachfront historic site, recently renovated. Perfect for weddings and special events.

Anna Ranch Heritage Center 808.885.4426 Nestled amongst the hills of Waimea sits a very special place.

Kohala Village HUB 808.889.0404 Have it all at the HUB! Stay at the Inn, Dine & Celebrate!

Aston Kona by the Sea 866.774.2924 Enjoy on-site catering, customized function space and wedding coordination services.

Kui & I Florist 808.961.9143 Quality custom and traditional lei, flower arrangements, bouquets, cake flowers for all occasions

Reverend Patrick Thompson 808.322.3116 Ceremonies with aloha. Romantic weddings and vow renewal ceremonies on Kona’s beautiful beaches.

Botanical World Adventures Wedding Venues 808.963.5427 Couples choose from a variety of on-site venues filled with love and Hawaiian beauty.

Puna Kamali‘i Flowers 808.329.7593 We grow our own flowers and offer creative solutions for any budget.

Stephanie Lindsey (Aunty Tutu) Feel the Touch of Aloha, LLC 808.443.9790 Unique Hawaiian weddings, The Aunty Tutu Way.

Attire Simply Said… The Wedding Store 808.969.7936 Formal attire with an extra special touch. Inside Prince Kuhio Plaza, Hilo.

Beauty and Health Hearts & Stars Saland & Day Spa 808.886.0600 Hairstyling, Makeup, Nails, Skincare, Waxing, Massage. Women & Men – Our place or yours!

Daylight Mind Coffee Company 808.339.7824 Kona’s premier oceanfront wedding destination, offering customized wedding packages from 2 to 100. Dragonfly Ranch Bed & Breakfast 808.328.2159 Hosting romantic weddings and honeymoons. Voted #1 B & B in West Hawai’i in 2016!


Honeymoon Adventures Botanical World Adventures 808-963-5427 Experience our gardens, waterfalls, zipline, maze, and Segway on the beautiful Hāmākua Coast.


Photography and Videography Aria Studios 808.394.7989 Digital or film photography, or a hybrid of both, plus videography. | Weddings | 2017



Resource Directory Beyond the Box Photography by Debi Buck 808.313.0479 Creating photos that will stir your emotions & provide memories you can feel. Big Island Drop Zone Wedding Photography 808.345.7433 Taking your wedding to new heights! Offering aerial drone footage + traditional photography. Bob Fewell Photography 808.936.4231 I blend the beauty of the occasion and location to create a cherished memory. Demian Barrios Photography 808.756.3863 Professional photography, videography and graphic design for weddings, portraits, and families.

Kauakea Winston Photography 808.235.1400 Aloha! Photographer Kauakea and Kahu Geno offer a unique Hawaiian wedding experience.

Big Island Tents 808.885.3534 Equipment and rental supplies to make your party or wedding truly exquisite.

Sarah Anderson Photography 808.987.9076 I enjoy telling the story of the day from start to finish.

Forevermore 760-427-6511 Custom-made paper flowers and creative consulting services for elegant & unique decor.

Techy3 Video and Photography 808.987.7304 We are storytellers, dedicated to telling YOUR story on your special day.

Tela Nolo 808.937.6396 A linen rental company for all occasions.

Rentals & Decor

Wedding Cake

Aloha Kona Kids 808.329.3621 Baby equipment rentals for all the comforts of home while you travel.

Heart Beet Catering & Sweet Cane Cafe 808.443.1863 Beautiful, organic, gluten free, and vegan cakes available.

Short n Sweet Bakery Market Cafe 808.935.4446 Creating delicious edible cake art made from scratch from the freshest ingredients.

Wedding Planning Feel The Touch of Aloha LLC 808.443.9790 A planning and entertainment company specializing in weddings, lū‘au, and birthday parties. Mahinui Hawaii Island Weddings 808.238.0633 Inclusive weddings and treehouse honeymoon packages, specializing in elopements. Vintage & Lace Wedding Specialists 808.238.0742 Specializing in events that are personal and intimate, no matter the guest count. | Weddings | 2017

Featured Cover Photographer: Demian Barrios


Growing up shooting film cameras at a young age is what molded Demian Barrios’s approach to photography. Chasing light, always looking to capture the essence of a moment. It is how he approaches every aspect of his photography, whether shooting weddings, portraits, products, architecture, landscapes or lava flows. He aims to please his clients by connecting with them to understand how they want their photos portrayed, then using his unique eye to capture quality images and to bring emotion into every photo. Professionalism with integrity is his standard, with a touch of originality and humor. He lives on the Island of Hawaii with his love and business partner Stacey, and their 2 1/2 year old son, who is his top priority. Visit Damian and Stacey’s studio gallery in downtown Hilo, opening in early 2017. Please inquire about bookings, prints and other photographic services including video and drone photography. _______________________________ Logo, cover design, & digital enhancement by Aaron Miyasato

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52 | Weddings | 2017

Wedding 2017  
Wedding 2017