Aloha Friday Picks: Eat Gao, Eat Shave Ice and Stargaze on Oʻahu

Celebrate Lunar New Year, Matsumoto Shave Ice and Valentine’s Day—all in one weekend.
Young Woman Loving Sunset On Beach, Waikiki, Hawaii
Photo: Getty Images

Aloha Friday Picks is a weekly news blog that will run every Friday and features three things we recommend you do, try or experience over the weekend. Send us tips at

Today is Lunar New Year, Saturday is the 70th anniversary of Matsumoto Shave Ice opening in Haleʻiwa and Sunday is Valentine’s Day. You can’t say there’s nothing to do! Here are our Top 3 picks for what to do this weekend on Oʻahu.

Eat Gao

Nian Gao

Photo: Getty Images

The best part of Lunar New Year? The food, of course! Our sister publication, Frolic Hawaiʻi, published a handy list of Chinese New Year foods—such as gao, above—and where to get them in Chinatown. Or follow this recipe for steamed shrimp and chives dumplings, courtesy of Tim Ho Wan in Waikīkī.

Matsumoto Shave Ice Turns 70

Matsumotoshaveice Ka

Photo: Kevin Allen

The iconic shave ice shop in Haleʻiwa celebrates its 70th anniversary on Saturday with $1 small shave ice (with up to three flavors) and other promotions and giveaways. The event runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The North Shore landmark started as a grocery store and quickly gained a following for its popular rainbow shave ice. The third generation of the family continues the tradition. 66-111 Kamehameha Highway, Hale‘iwa, (808) 637-4827,

Stargaze with Your Valentine in Waikīkī

Milky Way Galaxy At Waikiki Beach Hawaii

Photo: Getty Images

What’s more romantic than stargazing on Valentine’s Day? Stargazers of Hawaiʻi will be hosting an exclusive viewing of the night’s sky on Sunday at the top of the parking structure at the International Market Place. From 7 to 9 p.m. a local astronomer with more than 20 years of experience will guide guests through the night sky through the lens of a large telescope. Guests can bring their own chairs and beverages. (Alcohol and outside food are not allowed.) Cost is $80 per person. Online reservations are required. Visit

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