Memorial Day events in memory of fallen soldiers and veterans are taking place this weekend around Oahu.
>> For the first time since 2019, the 25th Annual Hawaii Shinnyo Lantern Floating Ceremony will return to Ala Moana Regional Park, from 6:30 pm to 7:30 pm on Monday. This year, the ceremony will float 6,000 lanterns to honor fallen soldiers and their deceased loved ones. About 40,000 people are expected to attend, according to Nate Serota, public information officer for the Honolulu Department of Parks and Recreation.
Souvenirs submitted online by 11:59 p.m. Sunday will be placed in “collective souvenir lanterns” and released from the canoes during the ceremony. Attendees can also write souvenirs for these lanterns at the Collective Remembrance Tent from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Parking is extremely limited. Because there is no confirmed off-site parking for the event, Serota encourages ceremony attendees to arrive very early and reserve a parking space along Ala Moana Park Drive.
The ceremony will be broadcast on KHON2, KHII, and The CW from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. It will also be streamed live on the website, Facebook, and YouTube. Those unable to attend can also float a virtual lantern on the website.
>> Governor Josh Green will host his first Governor’s Memorial Day Ceremony at the Hawaii State Veterans Cemetery in Kaneohe on Monday. The theme of the event is “A Grateful Nation Never Forgets”.
The ceremony will kick off at 12:45 pm with a performance by the 111th Army Band of the Hawaii Army National Guard, followed by a parade of flags and lei presentations from various veteran organizations. Green will deliver a Memorial Day address with welcoming remarks by Maj. Gen. Kenneth S. Hara. The ceremony will also feature a rifle salute from the Hawaii National Guard Honor Guard followed by a tap performance by the 111th Army Band.
Civilian attendees are asked to wear aloha attire and military attendees are asked to dress in Class B attire or equivalent.
A shuttle service is available beginning at 11:30 am National Guard vans will pick guests up at TheBus stop parking lot on Kamehameha Expressway and drop them off at Memorial Plaza. The vans will perform a return service to the original pickup location after the ceremony is over.
>> The 72nd Mayor’s Memorial Day Ceremony at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific will begin at 8:30 am Monday at Punchbowl. About 38,000 graves will be adorned with fresh leis and an American flag by the Scouts of Hawaii. The ceremony will include oli, an escort and a flyover of F-22 aircraft. Also performing will be the Royal Hawaiian Band, Sounds of Aloha Chorus and 94th Lei Court. The ceremony will be broadcast by Olelo 49.
Pets are not allowed unless they are certified service animals, and only medically required chairs are allowed inside the cemetery. Seats will be available to the public on a first-come, first-served basis.
Parking at Punchbowl is limited, but visitors can park at Abraham Lincoln Elementary School and Robert Louis Stevenson High School starting at 7 a.m. Monday. Shuttle services, reserved Handi-Vans and taxis will run from the schools to the cemetery.
Free public parking is also available at the Civic Center Parking Structure and Fasi Municipal Parking on Beretania Street. TheBus will offer a shuttle service from the Alapa’i Transit Center to Punchbowl beginning at 7 am with three subsequent trips departing every 20 minutes until 8 am Return trips will begin at the end of the ceremony. Regular bus fares will apply.
>> The Waikiki Natatorium War Memorial will commemorate deceased soldiers at the Hawaii World War I Memorial at 10 am Sunday. The event will feature a veteran motorcycle troupe, a tapping and hula performance. Parking is limited in front of the Natatorium and along Kalakaua Avenue.
>> The US Army Hawaii Garrison will hold its Installation Memorial Day Commemoration Ceremony at 10 am Monday at Schofield Barracks Post Cemetery to honor fallen soldiers. The event will feature Col. Steve McGunegle, commander of the US Army Garrison Hawaii, as a speaker, and presentations of crowns from the Military Order of the Purple Heart, Veterans of Foreign Wars, American Veterans and Gold Star Families. American flags will be placed on each headstone.
Attendees without a military ID card may enter Schofield through the Lyman Gate, off Kunia Road, and must provide their current ID, vehicle registration, proof of insurance, and security screening.