The Ultimate Guide to the Sailor Jerry Festival 2016

Celebrate Sailor Jerry in Chinatown on Saturday, June 11.
Sailor Jerry standing in front of his old tattoo shop in Chinatown. 
Photo: Courtesy of M. Collins

Stewed, screwed and tattooed: the proud motto of sailors and soldiers stationed in Honolulu during WWII. Trendy restaurants and cozy rooftop lounge bars didn’t exist in 1940s Chinatown. In fact, Hotel Street was lined with brothels, bars and many tattoo parlors. There was one tattoo shop that stood out from the rest, Sailor Jerry Tattoo, owned by the iconic tattoo artist himself, Norman Collins aka Sailor Jerry. 


Collins setup shop in the middle of all the action on 1033 Smith St., which is now a tattoo shop called Old Ironside Tattoo (another nickname Collins had). Back then, a simple tattoo cost $3; today, a deposit for a tattoo is about $100. Collins suffered a heart attack and passed away on June 12, 1973 (he’s buried in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific). His legacy still lives on and you can celebrate him at the Second Annual Sailor Jerry Festival on Saturday, June 11 in, of course, Chinatown. This year expect to listen to a new band lineup and a headliner from Los Angeles, The Aggrolites. Two new venues will be participating this year, so you can party in seven different bars. 


Schedule of Events 

Photo: Tracy Chan/ frolic hawai‘i


Proof Public House

Location: Chaplain Lane and Bethel Street

Doors open: 6 p.m.

Event lineup: 

  • Skate demos courtesy of APB 

  • Vendor booths will be setup along Chaplain Lane 

  • Drinks and pizza 


Red Light Teaser Tours 

Location: Meet near the corner of Smith and Hotel streets by the murals of Sailor Jerry and Mike Malone 

Time: 7:30 p.m., 8:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. 

You can learn more about Chinatown’s rich history on these 15 to 20 minute versions of the full 90 minute tour. 


Downbeat Diner & Lounge 

Location: 40-42 N. Hotel St. 

Doors open: 6 p.m. 

Age: 21 and over

Live Bands: 

  • Movie screening of Hori Smoku, 6:30 to 7:45 p.m. 

  • Siire, 8:45 to 9:15 p.m. 

  • Grapefruit, 9:30 to 10 p.m. 

  • Superfuct, 10:15 to 10:45 p.m. 

  • Natas, 11 to 11:30 p.m. 

  • Dunes, 11:45 p.m. to 12:15 a.m. 

  • Ivory City, 12:30 to 1:15 a.m. 



Location: 32 N. Hotel St. 

Doors open: 5 p.m. 

Age: 18 and over from 6 to 10 p.m. and 21 and over from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. 

Live Bands: 

  • Cvltists, 6:15 to 6:35 p.m. 

  • Out of Bounds, 6:45 to 7 p.m. 

  • Nesta, 7:15 to 8 p.m. 


Bar 35

Location: 35 N. Hotel St. 

Doors open: 6 p.m. 

Age: 21 and over 

Live Bands: 

  • Discord & Rye, 8 to 10 p.m. 

  • DJ Osnizzle, 10 p.m. to midnight 

  • DJ Tittahbyte, midnight to close 

  • Hosted by RoxyOTM 



Location: 43 N. Hotel St. 

Doors open: 8 p.m. 

Age: 18 and over or all ages with a parent or guardian 

Live Bands: 

  • Pressure Down Soundsystem, 8 to 9:15 p.m. 

  • Sistah Roz & The Tresure Trones, 9:15 to 10 p.m. 

  • Smokestack, 10:15 to 11:30 p.m. 

  • The Aggrolites, 11:50 p.m. to 1 a.m.

  • Hosted by Bella Sade-Fatale 


Scarlet and Tiki Pin-Up Party

Location: Pauahi Street and Fort Street Mall 

Doors: 6 p.m. 

Age: 21 and over 

Event Lineup:

  • Standup comedy, 7 to 8:30 p.m. 

  • Burlesque show, 8:45 to 9 p.m. 

  • Fashion show, 9:05 to 9:30 p.m. 

  • Burlesque show, 9:40 to 10 p.m. 


Tattoo Shops 

Old Ironsides Tattoo (Sailor Jerry’s old shop) 

Location: 1033 Smith St. 

You can get a tattoo done at Sailor Jerry’s old shop! There will be extended hours and tattoo specials. If you’re not planning to get a tattoo, you can always check out Sailor Jerry memorabilia, see large murals of Sailor Jerry and Mike Malone and visit the “selfie wall.” 


Black Cat Tattoo 

Location: Nu‘uanu and Hotel streets

Check out the shop and the art show. There will also be tattoo specials and extended hours. 


You can get $10 all-access wristbands at Downbeat Diner or here