Hawaiian Culture Event - July

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Hawaiian Culture Event - Hawaiian Sledding with Keone Kalawe
Wednesday, July 25, 2012 - 7:30pm - 10:00pm
Keone Halawe

Kalani's series of Hawaiian Culture Events feature a different Hawaiian cultural practitioner who speaks and shares 'ike (wisdom) through talk story, hō`ike`ike (demonstration), or hana`ana (performances).

These Hawaiian Culture Events provide a unique forum where Hawai`i and its peoples can come together and share cultural knowledge, customs, and aloha to all willing to receive.

This month's theme: Hōlua (Hawaiian Sledding) 

Facilitator Bio: Keone Kalawe is a modern kahuna kuhikuhipu‘uone, the term for heiau (Hawaiian temple) architect.  He is Hawaii’s premiere archealogist, cultural-activist, and steward of Kahuwai, an ancient Hawaiian village in Puna.  Kalawe’s family has deep roots in the ahupua‘a (land division) of Kahuwai. His grandfather’s grandmother was born at the site, raised there and is buried there as well.  

Among his many kuleana (responsibilities) has been reviving the ancient art of Papahōlua, or Hawaiian sledding.  Papahōlua refers to the ancient art of surfing mountain slopes and lava fields on a specialized Hawaiian sled, a papahōlua , constructed of wood lashed together with coconut fiber that is capable of attaining speeds up to 50 mph+ over rock lightly covered with pili, a grass native to Hawai'i.

It is a traditional form of ritualized athleticism unique to the Hawaiian Islands as a means to honor "Pele ", the mythical Hawaiian goddess of the volcano. Hōlua with its abundant architectural features, monumental in scale, reminiscent to lava flowing down a mountain slope or cliff side emphasizes a religious practice significant to the native culture of these islands. He'ehölua is a unique athletic performance of cultural expression and self-sacrifice of the Hawaiian willing to risk his or her life in an attempt to successfully ride the waves of Pele (Hawaiian Boarding Company).

Admission: Free - Donations welcome and appreciated