HONOLULU (KHON2) — What started off as an initiative to show aloha turned into a winter wonderland in 2020 at the Aloha Stadium by setting up millions of LED lights. One year later, in 2021, the wonderland returns — bigger and better.
When it comes to “showing aloha,” this event really has a lot of that to share from keiki to kupuna. To find out more, KHON2 spoke with the founder of the Show Aloha Challenge Foundation, Michael Gangloff: How was the reaction from families who came in 2020?
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“Happiness, joy, laughter, rejuvenation in spirit, mind, body and soul. It was beautiful, was beautiful to watch,” explained Michael Gangloff, founder of Show Aloha Challenge Foundation.
KHON2 then asked Gangloff: What are you trying to encompass or share with families as they pass through with these 2.5 million LED lights — you have tunnels, Christmas trees and you really have joy. What are you trying to pass on to the families who come through here?
Speaking of “making it better,” KHON2 asked Gangloff: What is better for 2021? What can we expect as we come through?
“Two times bigger, two times better,” Gangloff said.
“We have three times as many trees, we got twice as long on the tunnels and we have a walk-in tunnel. People got out last year when they weren’t supposed to. So I was like ‘oh man, how do I stop this?’ So, I build a walk-in tunnel; in the restaurant area, you can walk safely, one way in, one way out. The tent area — because some days we had rain — so it’s all wide open to the breeze. And we got four trees in the middle of the mega tree area. We’re doing Santa pictures this year, we got two trains that are coming. I hope they get here in time — keiki trains. The shipping is a problem, but as soon as they get in, we will put them into the show. The food is phenomenal. We just had tasties last night. Chef is doing a great job on that. It’s just bigger, better and still the same amount of love.”Michael Gangloff, founder of the Show Aloha Challenge Foundation
On the note of love — Gangloff’s foundation is Show Aloha Challenge. It is all about aloha. KHON2 asked Gangloff: What is aloha and why bring this now?
“Why not?” Gangloff stated. “Because what we are all seeing right now with everything that is happening with the virus — that’s just the beginning. What about the domestic violence, what about child abuse, what about divorces, what about families breaking apart? There is a lot more going on to that. I cannot stop the virus but I can show aloha.”
With every ticket purchased, how does that go back into the community? Gangloff said it was simple as all of the show’s proceed’s will go directly back to the community as they did in 2020.
“I take nothing from the show, I only give. I’ve been working 20 hours a day for the last five days, and I don’t get paid a cent. It’s all about doing what’s right and showing aloha,” Gangloff added.
The one element that adds the cherry on top of this show is that all of these millions of lights are synchronized to Christmas music that plays directly into the car’s FM radio.
Show Aloha Lands’ 2nd annual “A Winter Wonderland” by MIRA Image Construction kicks off Friday, Nov. 19, and lasts for more than 40 days — every single day all the way up to Jan. 1, 2022.