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Honolulu ‘Pasko, Parol at Perlas’ on Sunday, Dec. 17

HONOLULU — Parol-making and other Christmas-themed activities will be part of the Bank of Hawaii’s (BOH) Family Sunday on December 17 at the Honolulu Museum of Art (HMoA).

The event will be hosted by the Filipino Association of University Women (FAUW) to commemorate its 30th, or Pearl, anniversary.

Called “Pasko, Parol at Perlas” the FAUW will reprise this annual project of demonstrating how to make Filipino star lanterns called parol—from the traditional bamboo-framed lanterns to others using different materials.  Bamboo kits for the parol frames will be available to all who wish to make their own traditional parol.

Since 2004, Bank of Hawaii has made it possible for the Honolulu Museum of Art to offer a program of activities, entertainment and film on the third Sunday of every month.  On this day, admission is free and open to the public from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., but the activities of the Family Sunday only run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

BOH Family Sundays feature entertainment and activities suitable for families and people of all ages.  The HMoA galleries are also showcased through art hunts, art activities and demonstrations. Themes change each month with December focused on Christmas, or Pasko!.

This year, aside from parol demonstrations, other art activities will be held at the Palm Courtyard.  Traditional Filipino sweets such as pastillas, yema and pulvoron usually are intricately wrapped; demonstrations on how the cut-out wrappers are prepared will be shown.  Children’s games such as pabitin, and pukpuk palayok will also be   demonstrated.

In keeping with the Christmas theme, large colorful parols made of various materials will be on display, together with Christmas trees decorated with indigenous Filipino materials.  A noche buena table display is also being planned that is evocative of the traditional Filipino Christmas.

AUW event chair Bey Lontoc notes that “Pasko to me is the celebration of the birth of Christ. In the Philippines, known for having the world’s longest Christmas season, it is an occasion for family gatherings, and a celebratory tradition with rich cultural heritage that’s very unique to Filipinos. Celebrating Pasko is our way of declaring how we value our culture of hospitality through food and customs, and most importantly — love for the family!”

She adds that these events serve as “the bridge that connects us to our country, our homeland. It becomes a significant tradition that effectively helps in perpetuating our rich Filipino heritage and tradition to the next generation.”

The HMoA is also the only museum outside of the Philippines to have a gallery dedicated to Philippine art. Tours of the Philippine Gallery led by trained docents will start by 11:00 a.m. and will repeat every half an hour. All tours are free and open to all.  If large groups are interested, email at <fauw1987@gmail.com> so arrangements can be made.

Entertainment will start at 10:00 a.m. and will feature dance numbers from the Bulacan Circle & Associates, guitarist Buddy Gendrano and other local talents.

Lauren May, Program Director at HoMA summarizes the activities — “Let’s celebrate The Most Wonderful Time of the Year at Bank of Hawaii Family Sunday at the Honolulu Museum of Art. Kids will get into the holiday spirit by decorating star shaped cookies, creating wreaths from felt, and making Parols to celebrate Pasko! Learn about the Filipino holiday, Pasko, and explore the Arts of the Philippines on a docent-led tour. Families can explore the museum galleries, enjoy live entertainment, and learn about Filipino culture.”

The Honolulu Museum of Art (honolulumuseum.org) is located at 900 Beretania Street.  Galleries are open from 10 a.m until 4:30 p.m. with the December 17 BOH Family Sunday activities starts at 10 a.m and ends at 2 p.m.  All on-street parking are free on Sundays.  For inquiries regarding the “Parol, Pasko at Perlas” activities please email <fauw1987@gmail.com>.

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