“We the Powerful” Legislative Workshops on Big Island

Suzanne Marinelli explains information about the legislature last year in the Pahoa Library

Between December 11 and December 16, the Public Access Room (the “PAR”) will conduct a series of free neighborhood workshops entitled, “We the Powerful!”  These workshops are designed to demystify the State lawmaking process and will demonstrate ways that people can speak out at the legislature without ever having to leave the Big Island. All are welcome.  No registration or prior experience is required.

The PAR, a division of the State of Hawaii’s non-partisan Legislative Reference Bureau, is the public’s office at the State Capitol and has long been devoted to assisting residents as they engage in State legislative government. There is never a fee for services.

PAR’s workshops are designed to be useful to both newcomers and veterans of the legislative process.  Covered topics will include delivering effective testimony, making sense of deadlines, and using the latest innovations on the Legislature’s website.  Renewed inspiration to be part of the solution will be the overriding theme.

Here is the schedule of PAR workshops for December:

Thursday          December 10 5:30 p.m.        Honokaa Public Library

Monday           December 14 6:00 p.m.        Naalehu School Cafeteria

Tuesday           December 15 5:30 p.m.        Hilo Public Library

Wednesday      December 16 5:30 p.m.        Kailua-Kona Liquor Control Conference Room,

75-5722 Hanama Place, Room 1107

For additional information, or to arrange for individual tutorials or group workshops, residents are invited to contact the Public Access Room toll free from Hawaii Island at 974 4000 ext.7-0478 or via email at par@capitol.hawaii.gov. Please contact PAR directly to make arrangements if special assistance or services such as sign language interpreters are needed.

Medal of Honor Recipient Captain Thomas J. Hudner, Jr., USN (Ret.) To Be Honored at Pacific Aviation Museum

Media Release:  Medal of Honor Recipient Captain Thomas J. Hudner, Jr., USN (Ret.) To Be Honored at Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor’s 3rd Anniversary This Thursday, December 3, 2009, 5:30 to 9:30pm

One of America’s most celebrated military heroes, CAPT Thomas J. Hudner, Jr., USN (Ret.) will arrive Tuesday from Concord, Massachusetts to be honored as Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor celebrates its 3rd Anniversary, this Thursday, December 3, 5:30 to 9:30pm. Over 400 guests will attend the annual fundraiser, which marks the third anniversary of the Museum. The Museum is located on Ford Island, in battlefield hangars that withstood the December 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor.

During the Korean War, Captain Hudner was assigned to Fighter Squadron 32 (VF-32) aboard USS Leyte (CV-32). On 4 December 1950, while serving with that unit, he crash-landed his plane near the Chosin Reservoir in a brave effort to rescue Ensign Jesse L. Brown, another VF-32 pilot whose plane had been shot down. For his heroism, (then) Lieutenant (Junior Grade) Hudner was awarded the Medal of Honor.

The event’s Honorary Chair is celebrity Jim Nabors. Comedian Bo Irvine is emcee.

Comedian Bo Irvine

Hangar 37’s Gallery will be the scene of music and entertainment, with the 1940s-style singing group the Liberty Belles and celebrity Jim Nabors featured. A major focus of the evening will be over $50,000 in donated prizes, which guests can enter to win. The evening’s cuisine is being specially prepared and catered by Chef Chai of Chai’s Island Bistro.

Two of the Museum’s latest aircraft acquisitions: a MiG-15 and an F-86 Sabre, along with the F-14 Tomcat and F-15 Eagle will greet visitors in front of the museum for the cocktail reception.

Pacific Aviation Museum is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. Its mission is to develop and maintain an internationally recognized aviation museum on historic Ford Island that educates young and old alike, honors aviators and their support personnel who defended freedom in The Pacific Region, and preserves Pacific aviation history.

Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor is located at 319 Lexington Boulevard in Hangars 37 and 79 on Ford Island at Pearl Harbor. www.PacificAviationMuseum.org, www.twitter.com/PacificAviation

Margaret Wille Joins Twitter… And Grandma Florence of Maui

I’m pretty stoked to announce that The Kohala Blog founder Margarette Wille has joined twitter.

She had some difficulty setting up her initial account and removed them and I noticed in her blog posting today she has made the formal announcement:

…As many of you know, lately Damon has been pushing twitter. So with difficulty and problems I have taken that leap. My twitter username is @Himargaretwille – in case you are interested.

This is great news… and I hope she starts using it effectively to find folks from through out the world that are interested in her issues she blogs about.

Some folks think that Twitter is only for younger folks… but believe it or not Florence Hasegawa over on Maui is 101 years old and tweets daily.

101 Year old Maui Tweeter Florence Hasegawa @grandmaflorence

You can check her account at @Grandmaflorence

Her most recent tweet to the world:

My grandsons arriving for Patty’s b’day and bringing food here tomorrow. I need to put on some weight so I’ll just eat like a grandma pig! 8:41 AM Nov 28th from web

What in the World is This?

My wife has  a pretty extensive bug collection, however I have never seen this bug I saw today.

I went outside and this weird looking bug that looked like a huge mosquito was flying around me and it finally landed.  I grabbed my camera and got the following pictures.

Upon closer review of this bug… it had two white front feet or arms or what ever you want to call them but it was rubbing them together.

It just sat there for awhile and didn’t seem to be bothered by me putting the camera in front of it’s face.  A typical fly would have flown away as I got within about 3 inches from it.

So does anyone know what this buggah is?

One Year Ago Today… The Day We Lost a Hunter to Our Mayor

One of the persons that inspired me to start my blog was former Hawaii Tribune Journalist turned blogger Hunter Bishop.

Public Information Specialist Hunter Bishop and the Mayor at the Puna Geothermal 15 Year Anniversary Celebration

A year ago today, he announced on his blog that he would no longer be blogging and would be accepting a job as Mayor Kenoi’s Public Information Specialist.

Many folks were suspicious of Mayor Kenoi’s choices initially at who he brought in on his Mayoral “Team” as many of his closest aides were former journalists.

I openly supported Angel Pilago in his Mayoral race against Mr. Kenoi and some folks often said that Mr. Bishop was an adamant supporter of Mr. Kenoi.  I never saw it that  way.

Mr. Bishop always used his blog to tell the story as he saw it and he based his blog with facts and investigative research, something that many of us bloggers no longer seem to think is important.

Within a week or so after Mayor Kenoi took office and Mr. Bishop assumed his duties, I started receiving Press Releases directly from their office as well as other folks throughout the State that I guess Mayor Kenoi and his cabinet felt would do a decent job of getting the news out.

This surprised me, as I was a supporter of Mayor Kenoi’s opponent but I knew from that point on… that the selection of Hunter Bishop as the Public Information Specialist was one of the smartest decisions that Mayor Kenoi made.

I said the following a year ago and I will still say the same today:

Congrats Hunter!

The Blogging worlds loss is the islands gain!

Pictures From the Punatic Auction

I mentioned the other day that the Punatic Cyber Cafe was closing and having an auction today.

Here are some random pictures from the auction:

And of course it wouldn’t be a Punatic event without Jon the “Chicken Man” Chicks in attendance:

They were selling their “GOODS” as well:

County of Kauai to Get Hybrid Vehicles

Well it looks like the County of Kauai is going to be getting Hybrid Vehicles for some of it’s county agencies.

Pursuant to Chapter 103D, H.R.S., SEALED OFFERS will be received up to 2:00 P.M., HST, on December 17, 2009, and opened in the Office of the Division of Purchasing, Department of Finance, 4444 Rice Street, Room 303, Lihue, Kauai, Hawaii, 96766, for the Furnishing and Delivery of VARIOUS HYBRID VEHICLES for the County of Kauai…

More info here: Invitation for Bids

2009 Pahoa Holiday Ho’olaulea Next Saturday

The 2009 Pahoa Holiday Ho’olaulea will be held next Saturday, December 5th in the cafeteria of the Pahoa High School.

So come watch the Pahoa Holiday Parade and then check out the Ho’olaulea happening at the end of the parade route.

The Best Version of Bohemian Rhapsody You Will Ever Hear


Two Weeks of Palani Road Work Begins Monday

Media Release:

Roadwork on Palani Road in North Kona begins Nov. 30 and will continue through Dec. 14.

From Nov. 30 to Dec. 4, Bolton Inc., will resurface and widen Palani Road near Grace Community Church .  Night roadwork hours are 8 p.m. to 4:30 a.m.  Off-duty officers will direct traffic and motorists should expect delays. Future night roadwork is planned for later to install a turn lane.

During the week of Dec. 7-14, Bolton personnel will work on a water system for Grace Community Church . Traffic is not affected

[googlemaps http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=Palani+Road+and+Palihiolo+Street&sll=19.664614,-155.980883&sspn=0.018428,0.027595&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=Palani+Rd+%26+Palihiolo+St,+Kailua,+Hawaii,+96725&z=16&ll=19.666053,-155.981294&output=embed&w=425&h=350]

The week of Dec. 2-4, HELCO will install four concrete utility poles, at the intersection of  Palani Road , Palihiolo Street and at the new Kealaka’a Extension Street .  Phone and cable work is scheduled to begin early 2010, after the utility poles are installed.

From Dec. 7-10, traffic on Palani Road will be re-routed to the new Kealaka’a Street Extension and to Ulua‘o‘a Street. HELCO will lay the foundation to begin work on transmission lines.  Kealaka’a Street to Palihiolo Street will be closed.

One night during the week of Dec. 14, traffic on Palani Road will again be re-routed to the new Kealaka’a Street Extension and to Ulua‘o‘a Street.  HELCO will transfer power lines from Kealaka’a Street to Laimana Street .

HELCO will hire Aloha Security to direct traffic during roadwork between the hours of 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Palihiolo Street remains closed and residents of Queen Liliuokalani subdivision are asked to continue using Konalani Street .

Call the County hotline at 334-9559 for project updates for Grace Community Church and HELCO.

The Tale of the Couple Found a Drift at Sea the Other Day

This isn’t the story that I blogged about where the Cruise ship and the Coast Guard rescued the couple, this is another couple that were just found a drift this past week.

…The two placed notices stating their availability to sail boats for hire and hit paydirt when Clarke needed to get his boat, the J Bird, from Oahu to Hawaii.

Fredo, Luke and Allyson spent Sunday night on the sailboat, getting used to the vessel in preparation for Monday’s departure. Luke promised Allyson he would call often and if he couldn’t contact his parents, she would relay the duo’s status charting the Pacific Ocean…

…The duo had not made it far into the channel when the J Bird’s rudder broke. With its sails up, the boat began to spin. The big swells capsized the sailboat. Luke was washed into the cabin, then somehow flung to the edge of the bow when the weighted hull righted the boat. Fredo pulled him to safety.

The men lost their cell phones and the J Bird’s radio was destroyed when the sailboat turned over.

Fredo had the presence of mind to take down the sails and use them as a sea anchor to limit the boat’s drift. He also took the boat’s running lights off and hooked them to a generator, put them on a pole and fashioned an improvised strobe light. By the time night fell Monday, Luke and Fredo were adrift in the Pacific, engulfed in a blackness neither one had ever experienced.

Around midnight Monday a cargo ship passed the J Bird, saw the strobe and circled the boat, then moved off. In the light cast by the strobe, Luke saw sharks swimming alongside the sailboat.

Fredo remained confident they would be rescued. After the sun rose Tuesday, the two planned to ration what food they had and to catch some of the tuna following the boat.

The day passed slowly. The ocean was a vast, empty space…

Full Story:  “Galesburg couple’s son found after going a drift in the Pacific

Keiki Slippah Wish Project Well Underway

For folks that don’t know Lynn Vasques-DelCerna (AKA Auntie Pupule = Twitter @pupule ) she has run the Keiki Slippah Wish Project on a volunteer basis for the last few years now.

What started as a small gift to the kids in Mayor Wrights Housing where she used to live because she was tired of seeing the kids run around barefeet has spread across the entire Hawaii Island chain.

Lynn Distributing Slippahs

I asked her about how many slippahs she has handed out and she stated:

“Last year, I stopped counting after 5,000.  The estimated amount exceeded 50,000+

I asked her if she wanted to thank anyone in particular for the help that she has received over the years and she stated:

Everyone involved deserves a SHOUTOUT!  We do from our hearts for those less fortunate than ourselves.  Christmas is a time of sharing, giving, a time for the children to be happy.

Dreams and Wishes comes true; you just gotta believe!

So if you would like to donate to this project, I’m sure she can use assistance in all forms, especially folks on outer islands with a truck.

Check it out they are non-profit:

… In Nov. 2009, with the help of another legendary local woman, Kehaulani Watson, we began the process of setting up The Slippah Foundation, a genuine 501c3 nonprofit corporation! The board consists of Lynn, Kehau and me. We have incorporated, held our first meeting of the board, and are now in the process of getting a Employer Identification Number (EIN), after which we can set up a “real” bank account, when it will become “official.” When that happens, we’ll announce it loudly to the world, right here on slippah.org – Blaine Ferguson

Rethink on Behalf of the Indigenous People

Fiu Mataese is the Executive Director of the Siosiomaga Society (OLSSI) a nature conservation organization based in Samoa.

Fiu also helped provide leadership for the Pacific delegation to the first ever Summit on climate change for Indigenous Peoples held in Anchorage Alaska during the month of April 2009.


Even Geckos Eat Well on Thanksgiving

I was gonna take a picture of this FAT Gecko but right as I clicked the picture, I realized it was in Video Mode.  By the time I switched over to Camera mode it ran off.

So you only get this 2 second clip of this Fat Thanksgiving Gecko that obviously ate like me today.


Aqua/AIRS Carbon Dioxide with Mauna Loa Carbon Dioxide Overlaid

This visualization is a time-series of the global distribution and variation of the concentration of mid-tropospheric carbon dioxide observed by the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) on the NASA Aqua spacecraft. For comparison, it is overlain by a graph of the seasonal variation and interannual increase of carbon dioxide observed at the Mauna Loa, Hawaii observatory.

Credit: NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center and NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory Scientific Visualization Studio


This Little Native American Says Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving from Plymouth Rock

Oahu Drunk Drivers Beware… Your Faces are Going on the Internet

The Honolulu Police Department is going to be starting to put faces of folks who have been arrested but not convicted of Drunk Driving offenses on it web site located here: 

I’m not sure how I feel about them putting peoples faces up before they have had their day in court.

I remember Ian Lind writing about the Police Department over on Oahu actually having a blog, the “HPD Blog“, so I actually checked it out today and it looks like that’s directly where some of our local news stations are picking up their news stories from. I won’t say it’s word for word, but reading some of the back posts sounds almost identical to what has been said on a few newscasts on different stations.

A recent entry reads like this:

…During routine questioning the male provided the officer with another person’s identification and did not produce the vehicles registration.  A sergeant asked the driver to remove the ignition key for safety reasons and extended his arm into the vehicle to take control of the keys.  But instead of handing over the keys, the suspect turned on the ignition and started driving, dragging the sergeant several feet.  The first officer saw the sergeant being dragged, pulled out his firearm and fired three rounds at the vehicle.  The vehicle fled the area and was last seen on South King Street…


…The first set of 56 photos were posted on the department’s web site (www.honolulupd.org) today around 11:30 a.m., an hour and a half later than originally scheduled. HPD officials soon discovered that the photos can only be viewed by those using Internet Explorer as their web browser. Visitors using Safari, Firefox or other browsers are only able to view the introductory text that accompanies the photos…

Browser Issues Limit access to new HPD Drunk Driver Photos

New Zealand Prime Minister “Delayed in Honolulu”

The Prime Minister’s flight to a Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting has been delayed in Honolulu…

…A spokeswoman for (Prime Minister John) Key says after arrival in Hawaii routine maintenance work uncovered a problem which is being looked at. The plane has not broken down, she says…

More Here: Key’s Plane Delayed in Honolulu

Wordless Wednesday – County Saves $24,000 on District 5 Office Relocation


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