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HONOLULU, Hawaii (August 11, 1997 PIDP/CPIS)---A week-long Samoan Flag Day Festival ended in Hawaii Saturday with the raising of United States, Hawaii, and American Samoan flags at Keehi Lagoon Park.

The flag-raising was preceded by a parade, led by a marching band and platoon from the U.S. Army's Pacific force. Joining the parade were representatives of the many Samoan groups and organizations now active in Hawaii.

Activities featured during the eight-day festival, said Samoan Flag Day Committee Chairman Ati So'o, included an arts and crafts fair, traditional singing and dancing, sports, food demonstrations, tattooing, and other cultural events.

Ati So’o says besides honoring the flag, the festival celebrated the preservation of Samoan culture and traditions.

A representative of the Governor of American Samoa, Hon. Sotoa Savali, told the gathering they should always be proud of their Samoan heritage, adding that it is their duty to be good citizens and to respect their own and others' cultures.

Hundreds of Samoans and members of other ethnic communities in Honolulu attended the flag-raising ceremony that officially ended the week-long festival.

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