Waikiki, Honolulu, Oahu Memorial Day Events 2023

Punchbowl on Memorial Day with grave sites decorated with Hawaiian lei and American flags. Photo by D. Zuls.

With Oahu’s rich military history, the island makes a perfect place to honor Memorial Day. Here’s what’s happening this Memorial Day Weekend around Oahu.

Oahu Events on Memorial Day, May 29, 2023

72nd Annual Honolulu City Mayor’s Memorial Day Ceremony

This annual event is held at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific at Punchbowl (also known as Puowaina) in Honolulu. The ceremony features color guard, wreath presentation, firearm salute, aircraft flyover and performances by the Royal Hawaiian Band and Sounds of Aloha Chorus. The ceremony begins promptly at 8:30 am. See this link for more information on this year’s ceremony.
Hawaii News Now created this nice segment summarizing the ceremony in 2023. It should give you a good idea of what to expect at this moving event.
This event is free and open to the public. Parking will be extremely limited. Courtesy shuttle service will be provided from two nearby schools: Abraham Lincoln Elementary and Robert Louis Stevenson Middle. TheBus will be providing special service. See this link for details for TheBus. Check this link for more details on parking and transportation.

Local boy scouts and girl scouts will be making and placing a lei and an American flag on gravesites on Sunday, May 28. Approximately 38,000 leis are made by by the community for this event. Even if you are unable to attend the  ceremony, it’s still special to visit Punchbowl on Memorial Day weekend.

Memorial Day Lantern Floating Ceremony at Ala Moana Beach Park

The annual Shinnyo lantern floating event at Ala Moana Beach Park will return for the first time since 2019. The lantern floating ceremony starts at 6:30 p.m.  See this link for more information. Also, see this video summary from the 2023 ceremony.

Other Oahu special events taking place on Memorial Day Weekend

50th State Fair

The 50th State Fair kicks off this weekend at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu. It features rides, games, food and entertainment as it runs this year from May 26th through July 9th. For more information, see this link.

We wish you a very safe and meaningful Memorial Day!