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Library luau cheers 50 years of Hawaii statehood, 365 days too early

Library_celebrates_Hawaii_statehoodFor one night this month Centerville, Ohio, will be the epicenter of aloha.

On August 18th, the Centerville Public Library commemorates Hawaii’s 50th anniversary of statehood. There’ll be a luau filled with activities and games, bringing a little bit of the islands to the small town of 23,000.

But hold on a second. We’re certain Hawaii became a state in 1959 … 49 years ago.

I’m always down for a party, especially when it takes place in a library. But something wasn't quite right here.

I called the Centerville Library. When I asked about the event, the woman at the front desk had no idea what I was talking about. Was I dealing with a phantom luau?

I was transferred to Ms. Amy Purkey in the youth services department, who gave me the information I was looking for: the luau was a children’s program, free and open to the public and featured activities like a hula hoop contest, limbo challenge and face painting.

“The library wanted to do a program for the end of the summer,” Amy explained, about the library’s intent behind the luau. “And we noticed that Hawaii’s 50th year of statehood was coming up.”

I broke the sad news to her—Hawaii won’t commemorate its 50th anniversary as a state until next year. The other end of the phone grew silent.

“Oh,” Amy said.

“I didn’t mean to burst your bubble,” I told her.

“Well you kind of did,” she said, laughing.

An innocent enough mistake. Whether commemorating statehood’s 49th or 50th anniversary, the luau sounds like a good time for the keiki. And we certainly appreciate their enthusiasm for our state … even if it came a year early.

For more information on the library bash, click here or call them at (937) 433-8091.

Photo of Hawaii keiki dancing hula: Reuters

Check out these related HawaiiMagazine.com posts:
Hawaii became a state 49 years ago today
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Hawaii celebrates 50th anniversary of statehood, sort of

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