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  • 10/29/18 Lei Day Celebration themes selected for next four years

Lei Day Celebration themes selected for next four years

Themes coincide with flower/plant required to be used in theme lei category of lei contest


Honolulu -- The Honolulu Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) proudly announces the Lei Day Celebration themes for the next four years. While Lei Day always occurs on May 1, no matter what day of the week, each celebration has a particular theme which coincides with a specific flower/plant that must be used in lei submitted to the theme lei category of the colorful and coveted lei contest.

In addition, prior to the Lei Day Celebration, the Lei Court is selected through an official process. Every year the three court members must fall within the particular age group for that year.

The 2019 theme is Lei Kahakai -- seashore lei. The corresponding theme flower is Pōhinahina (Vitex rotundifolia). The age category for the 2019 Lei Court is 18 to 30 years of age by the date of the Lei Court Selection event held on Saturday, March 2, 2019. The other themes and age groups are as follows:

  • 2020, Lei ‘Ili -- lei of special places, (Cordyline fruticosa), 31 to 45 years of age
  • 2021, Lei Wao Nahele -- forest lei, ‘A‘ali‘i (Dodonaea viscosa), 46 to 60 years of age
  • 2022, Lei Kuahiwi -- mountain lei, ‘Ōhi‘a Lehua (Metrosideros polymorpha), 61 years of age and over

There are three lei contests: Hawaiian lei, youth lei, and lei lipine (ribbon, fabric, yarn lei). The lei contest rules, as well as information about upcoming free lei making workshops, will be made available to the public by mid to late December. Some of the classes may require early registration even though they are free.

We encourage all lei makers to plan out their lei garden for the next four years so that the materials are ready and available as the particular Lei Day Celebration approaches.

Please prevent the spread of Rapid ‘Ōhi‘a Death (ROD) by not transporting ‘ōhi‘a products between islands (the disease is currently found on Hawai‘i and Kaua‘i islands). Please refer to Hawai‘i Administrative Rules, Chapter 4-72, Section 13, ( for information on quarantine restrictions on ‘ōhi‘a and ‘ōhi‘a soil from rapid ‘ōhi‘a death infested areas. For more information on ROD and how you can help prevent its spread go to:

The first Lei Day was celebrated on May1, 1927 with a few people wearing lei in downtown Honolulu. Over time, more and more people began to wear lei on May1, and thus began the tradition of "May Day is Lei Day in Hawai‘i." The first Lei Queen, Miss Nina Bowman, was crowned by Honolulu Mayor Charles Arnold in 1928.

Source: City and County of Honolulu News Releaseb

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