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  • Congratulations To The Winners Of The 2018 Lei Contest!

Congratulations to the winners of the 2018 Lei Contest!

Annual contest part of the 91st Lei Day Celebration at Kapi‘olani Park


Honolulu - The City and County of Honolulu Department of Parks and Recreation is proud to announce the results of the annual Lei Contest presented during the 91st Lei Day Celebration held today at Kapi‘olani Park.

There are three major Lei Contest categories: Hawaiian lei, youth lei, and lei lipine (ribbon, fabric, yarn lei). Amongst those categories there are separate divisions based on overall color, the Lei Day theme (Lei ‘Alohi Kea), style, and youth age group. This year there were 174 entries for the entire contest. The highest amount of entries was 219 in 2015. Mahalo to all of the talented lei-makers who entered the contest, some of whom sent in or delivered their lei from around the world.

Congratulations to Melvin Tracy Labra for winning the Mayor's Grand Prize, whose wili style lei was made of ‘ohai ali‘i, palapalai, and kukunaokalā.

The other winning lei-makers, and their corresponding categories, are as follows:


1st Place

2nd Place

3rd Place

Neck (blue/purple)

Bill W. Char

Melvin Tracy Labra

Gwendolyn H. Yakeguchi

Neck (red/pink)

Bill W. Char

Melvin Tracy Labra

Dayna-Ann Aulani Mendonca

Neck (yellow/orange)

Bill W. Char

Megumi Matsuyama

Reginald J. Dela Cruz

Neck (brown/green)

Reginald J. Dela Cruz

Joel Gaberiela Kelley

Gienah Southichack

Neck (white/gray)

Megumi Matsuyama

Gienah Southichak

Bill W. Char

Neck (mixed)

Melvin Tracy Labra

Roselani I. Oga

Bill W. Char


Mona Mie Yogi

Bill W. Char

Naoka Tsuda


Brian J. J. Choy

Melvin Tracy Labra

Bill W. Char


Naoka Tsuda

Keiko Enoki

Ann Rei Ward

Lei Lipine

Yoshihisa Takahara

Yoshiko Matsumoto

Hiromi Aoyagi

Youth (5 & under)

Abigail Masako Grace Uyesato

Brayden KeKihei O Kilinahe Kaleikini-Thompson

Chelsea Ford

Youth (6-8 years)

Lily Kehauola Akana

Bree Kili Ing-Lee

Kiele K. Ing

Youth (9-12 years)

Tiana Pualani Kuulei Lagundimao

Téa Maile Ing-Lee

Sanoe K. Kelley

Youth (13-17 years)

Kassi Shanelle-Hi‘ilani Hepfner

Chloe Nicole Kanealani Hepfner

Keala Mak

The fresh flower lei from the Lei Contest will be taken to Mauna ‘Ala (The Royal Mausoleum) and Kawaiāha‘o Church tomorrow morning, May 2. During that time, the 2018 Lei Court and members of the public can place the lei on the graves of Hawai‘i's ali‘i.

All of the events associated with the Lei Day Celebration are made possible thanks to donations from the Hawai???i Tourism Authority, Hula Grill Waikīkī, Handcrafters and Artisans Alliance, Friends of Honolulu Parks and Recreation, as well as partnerships with KFVE, Summit Media, Hawaiian Music Live, and Salon 808.

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