What’s Fourth of July without fireworks?

It’s a question that many island residents and visitors have been asking after finding out their favorite Fourth festivity axed the grand finale. Several communities throughout Hawaii have been forced to smother the tradition because of a lack of funding. Even naval bases, like the ones in Kaneohe and on Kauai’s west side cut back.

One show in particular, however, received a huge anonymous donation to save the fireworks portion of the event. Someone contributed $22,500 to the Hawaii Kai community. Top that off with other donations from local businesses, and the show has been saved.

The traditional July 4th Barbecue on the Bay brings together hundreds of families for food, entertainment and, of course, fireworks. The lineup includes hula, jazz and slack key guitar. Also planned, Hawaiian cultural activities, keiki bike parade and the the popular watermelon-eating contest.

Almost as notable as the spectacular show in the sky? The life-size horse statue that a local artist brings every year for kids and adults to paint. They paint it the colors of our country, the colors of freedom – red, white and blue.

HAWAII KAI FOURTH OF JULY

• July 4th from 1 to 9 p.m. at Maunalua Bay • Food, entertainment, fireworks and cultural activities

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