Every year, Hawaii celebrates the birthday of its only queen and last reigning monarch with a day of festivities. Song, dance and cultural demonstrations take place on the lawn of Iolani Palace; however, on her 175th birthday, Queen Liliuokalani had been honored with a different kind of gift.

A new bronze plaque graces her six-foot-tall statue outside of the Hawaii State Capitol. It was unveiled during a rededication ceremony in her honor. Beautiful strands of pikake flower adorned the length of her statue, while ti leaf lei and other flower lei hung from her wrists. Everyone who stopped by made it a point to read the new plaque as well.

I personally enjoy watching the musical performance by the Royal Hawaiian Band and children from a local school. It’s nice to see different parts of the community come together for a good cause, especially one involving local music. The queen is most known as an accomplished composer. She composed Hawaii’s state song, “Aloha Oe,” a copy of which can be found on her statue.

Queen Liliuokalani served as monarch for almost two years in the early 1890s. However, a coalition of U.S. businessmen and military forces deposed the queen; thereby, overthrowing the Hawaiian Kingdom all together.

Now, if you ever walk by the statue of the queen, you will have a better understanding of how much history it holds. History that will forever be a part of Hawaii and its people.

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