How pa’u riders became a staple of the Kamehameha Day Parade
Sponsored by King Kamehameha Celebration Commission
These skirts used up to 21 yards of fabric and were often worn over top of other garments to protect them. In addition to the pa’u holo lio, female riders often wore ornate hats and tops.
When cars arrived in Hawaii, new laws prevented pa’u riders from participating in their usual riding. Riding clubs existed under Queen Liliuokalani, but they were rarely seen until February 1906, when the Washington Day Parade exhibited riders to the public.
That same year, the pa’u riders were also featured in the Kamehameha Day parade, and have remained a large part of the parade ever since. Today, pa’u riders are considered an integral element of Kamehameha Day festivities–– there’s no Kamehameha Day parade without the pa’u riders!
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