La Ho‘o-mana‘o O Kamehameha I (Day in Commemoration of Kamehameha I) was first proclaimed by Kamehameha V as a day to honor his grandfather, Kamehameha I, and was first celebrated on December 11, 1871 (Kamehameha V’s birthday.) It later changed to June 11 – it boils down to having a celebration when the weather is better (6-months from King Kamehameha V’s birthday.) The date does not have any direct connection to Kamehameha I. In 1978 the legislature renamed this holiday King Kamehameha I Day.
On February 14, 1883, the Kamehameha statue was unveiled at Aliʻiōlani Hale during the coronation ceremonies for King Kalākaua (it’s a replica, the original is in Kapa‘au, Kohala – look closely, there is an error in the sash arrangement.) The customary draping of the Kamehameha Statue with lei dates back to 1901. As far as the parade goes, the Mid-Pacific Carnival, held in February as a celebration in honor of Washington’s birthday, held its first Floral Parade in 1906. In 1916, Mid-Pacific Carnival merged into the Kamehameha Day Parade.