30 years of Honolulu City Lights
News Release from City and County of Honolulu
Honolulu – Honolulu City Lights will celebrate three decades of tree lightings and holiday fun on Saturday, Dec. 6, starting at 6 p.m. at Honolulu Hale.
Joining in this milestone celebration is Hello Kitty, the famous character created by Sanrio who is celebrating her 40th anniversary. As a part of the Macy’s parade contingent, Hello Kitty will be riding in the Electric Light Parade waving to all her fans along King Street.
Opening night festivities will feature Mayor Kirk Caldwell unveiling several new displays and other surprises to mark the 30th year. Every 3-4 years, a new 10-15 foot tall outdoor display is added to the celebration, making City Lights unique among American cities that mark the holiday.
“We are pleased that Emme Tomimbang, one of the early City Lights emcees, will return to the podium to emcee the 30th tree lighting,” Mayor Caldwell said.
Performing “Honolulu City Lights” and several other holiday songs during the tree lighting will be the Kamehameha Middle School Choral Group.
When the 50-foot Norfolk Pine tree is illuminated, it will be covered with large versions of the signature ornaments sold by the Friends of Honolulu City Lights. These ornaments depict outdoor scenes associated with the event and the Shaka Santa’s holoholo journeys around town.
Then at 6:30 p.m., the all-new Enchanted Forest home for Santa in the Honolulu Hale Courtyard will be opened along with a display of 24 Christmas trees decorated by City employees and a public wreath contest in the Lane Gallery.
Also at 6:30 p.m., the Electric Light Parade will pass by Honolulu Hale after traveling through Chinatown and downtown. Hello Kitty fans should arrive early to find a good spot along the King Street parade route which starts at Aala Park.
This year’s parade is dedicated to the late Parade Man Nelson Fujio who coordinated the parade since 1991. Parade sponsors are Macy’s and Hawaiian Electric Company. Look for the Clowns of Aloha in the Kraft Foods Hawaii entry. For more information on the Electric Light Parade, please visit: http://www1.honolulu.gov/csd/electriclightparade.htm.
By 7:30 p.m., all the sponsor floats and decorated City work vehicles will be parked between Honolulu Hale and Alapai/South streets so families can see the floats up close and meet the City workers until 8:30 p.m..
Along with the sponsor floats, take a look inside the decorated City vehicles which will include an ambulance, refuse truck, the antique La France Fire Pumper truck, street lighting vehicle, dump trucks, TheBus, vector sewer cleaning truck and so much more.
On opening night, Santa will be in the Mission Memorial Auditorium next to Honolulu Hale until 9 pm. Free photos with Santa will be made possible by Hawaiian Telcom.
Then at 7:30 p.m. the Tom Moffatt Productions holiday concert will start on the big stage by Sky Gate. The concert headliner for the 30th celebration will be Willie K and his band.
Willie is scheduled to perform at 9:15 pm.
Also appearing between 7:30-9 p.m. will be the Sounds of Aloha Barbershop Chorus, the keiki from Joan S. Lindsey’s Hula Studio and Ka Pa Nani O Lilinoe, Maunalua and Hawaii singer Ciana Pelekai from America’s Got Talent.
The Friends of Honolulu City Lights will be selling 2000-2014 ornaments from a booth on King Street. All proceeds from the sale of the ornaments, and the 30th anniversary t-shirt, will go toward insuring that Honolulu City Lights remains free to the public.
If a visit to the Civic Center on opening night Dec. 6 is not possible, tune in to Olelo Channel 54 at 6 p.m. to watch the tree lighting and parade live. Then at 7:30 p.m., HMTV will cablecast the three hour concert live on Olelo Channel 53.
Honolulu City Lights is sponsored by the City and County of Honolulu in partnership with the Friends of Honolulu City Lights. Key sponsors include: Macy’s, Hawaiian Electric Company, First Hawaiian Bank, Young Brothers, Kraft Foods Hawaii, Cutter Ford, Outrigger Enterprises Group, 7-Eleven, Aloha Pacific Federal Credit Union, Hawaiian Airlines, Sam’s Club, Papa John’s Pizza, Summit Media and Tom Moffatt Productions.
Island families should arrive between 4-5 p.m. to take advantage of the free parking in the Civic Center Parking Structure. No need to bring food as a dozen food booths will be open in the Sky Gate area along with several Xtreme Fun keiki rides such as mini Ferris wheel, turbo tubs and the twister.
Honolulu City Lights will be open daily, including Christmas Day and New Year’s Day, from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. The holiday celebration will close on Jan. 4, 2015.
OPENING NIGHT TIMELINE – HONOLULU HALE/GROUNDS
SATURDAY, DEC. 6, 2014
4:00 pm Food booths and keiki rides open
6:00 pm Mayor’s tree lighting ceremony begins on steps of Honolulu Hale
Electric Light Parade leaves Aala Park and proceeds down King Street
6:30 pm 50-foot Norfolk tree is illuminated triggering the “corridor of lights”
Parade reaches King and Punchbowl streets
Decorated trees and wreath displays open in Honolulu Hale Courtyard
Santa visits with children in Mission Memorial Auditorium
7:30 pm Holiday concert, headlined by Willie K., gets underway at Sky Gate stage
Parade vehicles park on King Street for one hour
11:00 pm Courtyard closes, reopens at 8 a.m. through New Year’s Day
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