Mililani Town Celebrates its 50th Year With Fireworks, Music, Food Vendors

Mililani Town Celebrates its 50th Year With Fireworks, Music, Food Vendors

Taylor Ann Ono

     On April 21, Mililani High School’s John Kauinana Stadium will be hosting Mililani Town Association (MTA) 50th Anniversary Celebration; celebrating 50 years since the founding of the Mililani community. The celebration features a variety of activities, including a fireworks show, musical entertainment, food vendors and inflatable bouncers. Mililani Town is home to over twenty seven thousand people, with Mililani Mauka housing over twenty one thousand, making the 50th Anniversary a major marker to reminisce on memories, as well as to make new ones.

    “Mililani has a very special place in my heart. It is where we raised our son. It is where our son spent his entire school life. We have family that live four blocks away and I would not trade the neighbors on my cul-de-sac for anything in the world. I have the best neighbors anyone could ask for. I feel so blessed to call Mililani home because it feels like home to me,” said MTA President Bob Barrett.

    Mililani Town is owned by Castle & Cooke, Inc., who started developing Mililani in the 1960s, eventually selling the first Mililani Town houses in 1968. In 1973, Mililani High School was established. In 1992, the first homes in Mililani Mauka were sold, expanding Mililani Town. 50 years later, Mililani is still thriving, with the addition of multiple schools and shopping centers that have changed the environment. “I first moved to Mililani in 1973, when our first son was born, to work at a Real Estate Office called Real Estate One. Mililani was just five years old at that time, so I’ve been lucky enough to see Mililani grow into the great town it is now with four shopping centers, seven recreation centers, nine schools and 19 parks,” said Castle & Cooke Hawaii President Harry Saunders. “I feel old and yet appreciate that Mililani is ageing well and only getting better.” Barrett added, “When I look at what Mililani has to offer these days, it’s amazing to me. The Town Center is a fabulous place to be and the seven recreation centers of MTA are just magnificent. The green spaces, the tot lots and the pride of ownership people have and the manner in which people take care of their homes makes me proud. No doubt, Mililani has come a long way from its humble beginnings.”

    Mililani’s growth and prosperity over the last half of a century is a cause for celebration that many people in the community, and outside the community, are looking forward to. “I’m happy to be a part of the Mililani Anniversary Celebration. Mililani has a lot of Cecilio and Kapono fans and I plan on bringing the C&K music to the celebration,” said professional entertainer Henry Kapono, one of many performers that will attend the celebration. “I always say that time flies when you’re having a good time. I hope that all of the residents have had a good time and come out for a great celebration with us.” Barrett added, “I am humbled and honored to be able to participate in the 50th anniversary event. There are some people that have lived here all their lives. How special is that going to be that they will see Mililani grow to be 50?”

    Other than the growth and change of Mililani since the beginning of its establishment, everyone loves the town for their own reasons. “I love the people of Mililani, I love our weather and I just love the family atmosphere here,” said Barrett. “Mililani means ‘to look skyward’ and that can have spiritual meaning if you look at it from that perspective. I look at it from that angle but I also look at it from a governance perspective. How MTA manages to create policy, add and enhance amenities and put on family oriented events. Those are the things I think of (when I think about Mililani).” Kapono added, “Driving to the beauty of the North Shore for me begins when you come into Mililani. It is the perfect meld of town and country.”

    Celebrating the anniversary of Mililani is also a reminder of other goals and future wishes for the town to continue with its grandeur. “I’m very optimistic for the future of Mililani because of all the great families and people that live in Mililani. They have made Mililani a real community that will continue to improve the quality of life for all that live, work, and play there,” said Saunders. Barrett added, “My hope for Mililani is that we stay on this course and constantly strive to improve. Improve MTA’s level and quality of service. Improve the amenities we offer to our members and continue to enjoy the quality of family life we have come to know here. While I am very pleased with where we are now as an association, it is a good thing to strive to be better. Never stop pushing forward.”

    The anniversary will run from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. on April 21. Tickets are being sold for $20, and for MTA Members, can be bought at Recreation Center 3 and Recreation Center 7; for the public, Recreation Center 3 only.