What Does Makahiki Mean?
Makahiki is a season of new beginning. It is a festive time just after the harvest and involves feasts and merriment and games. There are more detailed definitions located at the following links: Coffee Times and Wikipedia.
Makahiki is used to mean "New Year", as in "Hau'oli Makahiki Hou", for "Happy New Year" written on greeting cards.
The newspaper West Hawaii Today had an astronomy article on November 24, 2002 that defined the beginning of Makahiki as the first "hilo" moon after the appearance of the Makalii star group (Pleiades). The "hilo" moon was defined as "the tiny sliver of a crescent moon that follows the new moon".
Makahiki has several meanings to us. Our former farm is located on a private road called "Makahiki Lane" in an area known as Ka'awaloa. Ka'awaloa was a village when Captain James Cook first landed at the island. It is located at Kealakekua Bay which is just below the palisade upon which our farm is situated. Captain Cook's first landing occurred during the season of Makahiki. Makahiki is a season of peace when war is kapu and is marked by games and feasts. Captain Cook was greeted warmly and the festive atmosphere contributed to some accounts that he was thought to be a god.