2011 Aloha Festivals Parade

Here are some photo higlights from this year’s Aloha Festivals Parade in Honolulu.

2011 Aloha Festival Parade Highlights

Hawaiian Airlines always has one of the best looking floats in the parade. This year was no exception.

2011 Aloha Festival Parade Highlights

The Polynesian Cultural Center student workers marched down the parade route in lively style that highlighted the place’s international make-up.

2011 Aloha Festival Parade Highlights

The float of the Aloha Festivals Royal Court.


This year I decided to stay under cover from the harsh Hawaiian sunlight and heat. The annual Aloha Festivals floral parade was shot from the second floor parking garage at Ala Moana Shopping Center overlooking the makai lanes of Ala Moana Blvd.

I used my Minolta X7A 35mm camera to shoot these photo with a Minolta 35 – 105mm MD zoom lens, set mostly to the longest telephoto position. I should have used my long 70 – 210 zoom to get to the action or shot this at street level as I did in past years.

One thing I have noticed about recent parades. Lack of large floats. Years ago there used to be about a dozen (and maybe more) elaborately decorated floats at these parades, many using custom platforms to glide down the parade route. Today most floats are pulled by tractor trailer trucks or placed on smaller vehicles.

The cost and time to construct a float are probably the biggest factor in their relative scarceness. The fact that this parade no longer gets national network TV attention is probably another factor too. Making up for the lack of floats are of course many marching units including bands, businesses and non-profit organizaitons. The pa’u riders remain a stalwart of this and the annual Kamehameha Day parades. That is a good thing. Throw in the usual gaggle of politicians, dignitaries, beauty queens and car clubs, and you still get a decent parade…. but not like the ones I remember from before.

Still the “Aloha” is there and people come out to view the parades. That is the main thing. This parade and others throughout the state keep Hawaii’s tradition on the map and offers a lasting legacy for generations to come.

Slideshow from photos I shot at the parade (above).

This guy has a fine looking 97 photo set on Flickr:


Photo stream by David.

Video Segments From Channel 808:


Video streaming by Ustream

Segment 1


Video streaming by Ustream

Segment 2
September 24, 2011.

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Melvin Ah Ching is a photographer, consultant, blogger, desktop publisher, and computer enthusiast living and working in Hawaii. The Hawaii Files have been online since 2006.