HONOLULU (KHON2) — Hawaiʻi’s royal family came to an end when Princess Kawānanakoa died in December 2022.

She was the last of a long line of innovative royals who stepped onto the international scene with a vision to protect Hawaiʻi from total colonization.

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One of those royals was His Majesty King David Kalākaua was named David  Laʻamea Kamananakapu Mahinulani Naloiaehuokalani Lumialani Kalākaua. He was born on Nov. 16, 1836; and his father was the High Chief Kapaʻakea from the powerful Royal House of Keawe of Hawaiʻi (Kalaninuiʻiamamao). 

Meanwhile his mother was the High Chiefess Keohokālole who was descended from High Chief Keaweaheulu.

On Thursday, Nov. 16, ʻIolani Palace is celebrating the birth of King Kalākaua; and the community is invited.

The event is free to the public and begins at 11:30 a.m. and runs to 2:30 p.m.

You can join the celebration at ʻIolani Palace for the birthday of Hawaiʻi’s last ruling king, David Kalākaua, who was also known as the “Merrie Monarch.” He played an instrumental role in the revitalization of Hawaiian culture during his reign.

His efforts to broaden Hawaiʻi’s capability to stand in the international system of the day led to Hawaiʻi developing a strong emphasis on international relations, technological innovation and the preservation of Hawaiian arts and language.

Kalākaua’s legacy lives, lies in his considerable musical talents. He became a prolific composer.

One of the king’s most famous compositions was “Hawaiʻi Ponoʻī”. This creation became the national anthem for the Hawaiian Kingdom.

​The program for King Kalākaua’s birthday includes:

  • From 11:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. will be a performance by Royal Hawaiian Band.
  • From 12 p.m. to 12:30 p.m.  will be a review of the Royal Guard.
  • From 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m. the Royal Guardsmen will be posted at the Gates.

The palace is also showing the new Nā Koa o Nā Mōʻī exhibit in celebration of the 60th anniversary of the Royal Guard.

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It is on display in the Bartels Gallery in the ʻIolani Palace Basement, which will be free to the public for King Kalākaua’s birthday.