Decision to cancel Merrie Monarch Festival praised

HOLLYN JOHNSON/Tribune-Herald Halau Kekuaokala'au'ala'iliahi performs hula 'auana at the 56th Annual Merrie Monarch Festival Saturday at Edith Kanaka'ole Multi-Purpose Stadium in Hilo.


Merrie Monarch Festival President Luana Kawelu, right, with her late mother, Dorothy “Aunty Dot” Thompson, the hula competition’s founding mother.

A Kona kumu hula whose halau was set to compete at the 57th Annual Merrie Monarch Festival said he thinks the cancellation of the festival is “the best decision for our people, our culture and the safety of everybody.”