Truth from Dare: Summer celebrations

Jun. 4, 2015 | 0 Comments

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BY DERIN DEREGO / Special to the Star-Advertiser

Summer in Hawaii is everything. The weather is even more amazing. The sun lingers around long enough to get a dip in the ocean in after work. And Waikiki is bursting at the seams with tourists and students on break.

One of the summer arrival signals is Memorial Day and the accompanying Bacardi Pool Party. This year the event was held at the Hawaiian Monarch Hotel and by all accounts it was a success. I used to be a fixture at these things but as I’ve gotten older my patience for drink mishaps and semi-dry humps by tipsy females has dwindled. Instead, I opted to attend the annual Lantern Floating Ceremony at Magic Island — a sign I’m definitely getting older.

Another sign that summer is upon us is the arrival of LGBT Pride Month. Most of the gay people I know are proud all year round, but June gets the title bestowed on it since it’s the month that major cities have their gay pride parades and celebrations. The designation stems from the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots in June 1969.

Before I get into the local celebrations around Honolulu, can I just give kudos to Caitlyn Jenner (formerly Bruce)? Unless you’ve been on a media cleanse, you know what I’m talking about. I’m in awe of how much courage Jenner has to come out on the cover of a magazine, in addition to all the television interviews. It really is inspiring.

To celebrate pride month in Honolulu, there are a plethora of parties this week. The annual Hawaii Rainbow Film Festival descends on the city starting today with the opening gala at the Honolulu Museum of Art.

I think the word gala is overused, but this one actually warrants the title as there are usually real celebrities present. Olympic diver and gay advocate Greg Louganis is just one of the confirmed attendees this year; the festival continues thru Sunday with a variety of films showing at the Doris Duke Theater and Consolidated Kahala 8 Theatres.

Also going down this weekend is the annual gay pride parade and festival. The parade starts at Magic Island and travels down Kalakaua to Kapiolani Park on Saturday morning. Following the parade there’s a daytime dance party at the Kapiolani Park Bandstand starting at noon. The crowd usually trickles over to Hula’s Bar & Lei Stand, so expect a packed house there by sunset.

If the gay way isn’t your thing, give the Ocean Fest at Turtle Bay Resort a try if you’re into keeping the country company. Whatever you get into, be sure to take advantage of this amazing weather. After all, it is one of the perks of living local.
When he’s not out and about at the hottest parties and other events in Honolulu, Derin “Dare” Derego works as an account executive at a local radio station group. Reach him via email at or follow him on Twitter.

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