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Kaiser Cougar Swim Season
February 16, 2024

Hawaii Kai Holiday Parade 2023

Kaiser Cougars and other local groups participate in festive parade.
Kaiser+High+School+Marching+Band+playing+Christmas+music+as+they+walk+down+Hawaii+Kai+Drive
Jane McCallister
Kaiser High School Marching Band playing Christmas music as they walk down Hawaii Kai Drive

“Band, attention!” Drum Major Misa Kuroyanagi’s command rang out as the Kaiser High School Marching Band snapped into formation, ready to march in this year’s Hawaii Kai Holiday Parade.

Year after year, the Cougar Marching Band has been in the holiday parade, which this year took place at 10 am on Nov. 25.

Since 1969, the Hawaii Kai Lions Club has sponsored and participated in this festive parade, along with Koko Marina Shopping Center, on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. Many different groups and people contribute to the parade every year, including the Royal Hawaiian Band, which has been active since 1836.

The Kaiser High School JROTC started and led the parade. Annaleigh Calton, a Kaiser High Freshman and JROTC member stated that, “The 1.5 mile parade route didn’t feel that long, and the only real hard part was keeping my marching in time with the people around me.”

Even all the local elementary schools were represented at the parade: the Kamiloiki Cougar Cubs, the Hahaione Hawks, the Koko Head Cobras, and the Aina Haina Jaguars all participated in the event. The Niu Valley Middle School Lancers also had students and faculty walk the parade route.

Local politicians, including Mayor Blangiardi, Council member Tommy Waters, and Representative Gene Ward brought their own holiday cheer as they walked in the parade, or in Ward’s case, rode a Segway down the street.

The Grinch was also spotted driving a large truck, but even his small heart couldn’t keep the festive spirit from prevailing. Local sports teams, clubs, and dancers all brought a lot of cheer to Hawaii Kai. The best part of the parade, of course, was Santa Claus, who took time out of his busy schedule to ride a sleigh down Lunalilo Road.

Besides all of the other festive parade participants, “(the Hawaii Kai parade) is a great way to see your fellow classmates perform,” Koa Tigley , a member of the Kaiser band who participated in the parade.

The Kaiser band and color guard worked hard to prepare for the parade. They practiced and even marched up and down behind the school in the rain to make sure their steps and music were down.

Percussion Section Leader Timothy Hager’s favorite part of the Hawaii Kai parade was “seeing our band’s hard work pay off while we perform and watching the joy it brings to the faces of everyone that is watching.”

Tigley agrees with Hager. “I also enjoy seeing the reactions of everyone watching, especially the little kids, and seeing everybody laughing and dancing.”

All in all it was an incredibly festive experience for everyone watching and participating in the Hawaii Kai Holiday Parade.

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About the Contributor
Andy McCallister, Staff Writer
Andy McCallister is a freshman at Kaiser High School. He enjoys reading, surfing, playing video games and watching black-and-white movies with his grandparents. Andy also enjoys paddling, and is currently on the Kaiser Paddling Team. He is a percussionist and plays the bass drum for the Kaiser High School Marching Band.
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