January 30th, 2014 / posted by paularath

The 2014 Punahou Carnival print, which incorporates iconic images from New York and Honolulu.

When we think of Punahou Carnival, we all tend to think about food: mouthwatering malasadas, potent Portugese Bean Soup, ono mango chutney. But this year’s carnival, with its theme of “New York, New York: The Carnival that Never Sleeps,” has a bit of a “fashion” focus as well.

The students (the Carnival is organized by the Junior Class and their parents) decided to go all out with the bright, bold custom design of a fabric that combines images from New York and Honolulu. You can buy yardage to make your own garment or choose a pre-made piece.


Some oldies but goodies have returned.


In addition, classic T-shirt designs from the ’80s and ’90s are being brought back for the first time. For years, Punahou volunteers James Young and Hope Holiona created gorgeous graphics depicting Carnival icons such as hake lei, malasadas, mango chutney and Portugese Bean Soup. Once the T-shirts were gone (and they always sold out), they were all pau.

The 2014 Carnival brings them back as crew necks and racer backs.

And in with the new: prints inspired by this year’s theme.

The students also adapted this year’s theme to some T-shirts featuring skylines and iconic images of New York and Honolulu. Really fun stuff! The thought occurred to me that our Honolulu skyline may look much like the New York skyline if we keep building all those high rises the developers are planning.

My sister Berta and I always go to Carnival together and we miss the days when we used to go with our parents. For many years our father traveled to the Big Island every year to help pick fruit from farmers’ trees for sale in the O Men’s (athletes’) booth. When he turned 80, Mother nixed it because Daddy was apparently climbing to the top of the trees to grab the fruit.

Daddy was devoted to Carnival because his class, the class of ’32, held the first Punahou Carnival. It was the Depression and the students and school could not afford a yearbook. Daddy and his classmates were determined to have a yearbook so they planned a Carnival with a few games and food booths. They were extremely proud that they raised  $464 and were able to publish a yearbook.

Daddy loved to take my son, Duncan, to Carnival. I remember seeing Duncan running down the hill from Kindergarten, with Daddy running right behind him. Like two excited kids.

The Carnival will be held February 7 and 8, from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on the Punahou campus. Pray for sun!

– Paula Rath



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