The Paniolo Preservation Society presented a spectacular Old Hawai’i on Horseback event on September 14 at Waiki’i Ranch. The history of the introduction of horses to Hawaii and the history of ranching in the Hawaii Islands were told in a pageant with more than 100 magnificent horses and expert riders in costumes. It also celebrated the contribution of Nā Wahine Holo Lio—women horse riders—to ranching in Hawaii.
There was an elegant carriage pulled by Friesians with four passengers and a driver in their top hats, princesses on horseback wearing white gowns and white feather plumes on their hats, and even a Mexican trick roper wearing a huge sombrero and a sequined outfit. Historic characters represented included Captain Cook, King Kalakaua and Queen Lili’uokalani, Isabela Bird, John P. Parker, and many more.
There were also riders who are ranching today, including families with their children. Passing the skills and values of ranching to the new generations perpetuates a way of life and contributes to the economy of our state.