Signs of the Season

Kapolei City Lights is a beloved community tradition.

Kapolei City lights, now in its 14th year, features an Electric light parade, festive Christmas trees at Kapolei hale and a fun-filled street party.

The Kapolei City Lights Opening Night Celebration is set for Dec. 13, 5-9 p.m.

Santa and his friends hitch a ride on TheBus.

Santa and his friends hitch a ride on TheBus.

Revel in the holiday spirit at Kapolei Hale Courtyard, festooned with wreaths created by City employees and the gorgeous trees decorated by Friends of Kapolei Hale. Also on display, artwork submitted by area students for the Keiki Art Contest. This year’s theme is “Ka‘aahi Kapolei,” which means “Kapolei Train.” The top 25 winners of this year’s contest receive a prize package that includes the honor of leading the Electric Light Parade. Keiki can visit with Santa (and get a special treat!) stroll through the Keiki Village filled with free games and activities including inflatables. Get your fill at Kau Kau Lane where an array of food trucks await along with live entertainment and—back by popular demand—the Money Grabber.

The Electric Light Parade is 6-7 p.m. The parade, complete with brightly lit vehicles, Royal Hawaiian Band, Kapolei High School Band—even Santa and his elves!—makes its way along Kapolei Parkway and ends hear Kapolei Hale. Then, at 7:30 p.m., Mayor Kirk Caldwell switches on the lights, for the Kapolei Hale Tree Lighting Ceremony.

O Tannenbaum adorns Kapolei Hale.

O Tannenbaum adorns Kapolei Hale.

Kapolei City Lights, a Christmas Extravaganza is the signature community event for Friends of Kapolei Hale in partnership with the City & County of Honolulu.

“Kapolei City Lights is one of those feel-good events that unites the community,” says Joy Wilson, executive director, Friends of Kapolei Hale. She explains that many hands in the community come together to bring the event to fruition. “Retirees with carpentry skills mentor students on measuring, cutting and assembling wood frames for parade floats,” she says. “Moms contributing their artistic talents by trimming sponsor trees. Talented City employees designing and decorating holiday wreaths. High school students who were once contest winners themselves now helping to manage and judge the Keiki Art Contest. Even kids with special needs can contribute to the event by working the assembly line filling Santa Treat bags.”

For more information on Friends of Kapolei Hale, email:

Photos: Courtesy Kapolei City Lights