HONOLULU (KHON2) — After heavy consideration, organizers and sponsors of the 2020 Merrie Monarch Festival announced that the event will not be held.

The event was supposed to kick off on Sunday, April 12 and end on Saturday, April 18.

“This was such a hard decision to make,” said Merrie Monarch Festivals President Luana Kawelu, “but we could not risk the health and wellbeing of our community, halau participants, vendors and the thousands of people who attend Merrie Monarch every year. In the end, we believe that keeping people healthy and safe must be the highest priority, and we all need to take on this kuleana in the face of the threat posed by COVID-19.”

As for visitor accommodations and transportation, Kawelu added that they will update their own festival information when more details become available.

“Please give our airlines and hotels a day or so to sort out details. This is such an undertaking for all of them – their willingness and cooperation to work with us is a saving grace.”

All participating kumu hula and judges have been notified of the cancellation.