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Navy Re-Sodding High School Football Field After Military Debris Discovered

Naval Facilities Engineering Command announced this week it is ready to begin re-sodding Radford High School football field.  The field has been the site of remediation actions by the Navy after decades-old military debris was discovered there two years ago.
Radford High Navy
The Navy has worked closely with the state Department of Education and Department of Health on required remediation actions at the school.

“On behalf of the Navy, I offer a big thank you to the parents, teachers and especially the students of Radford High School for their patience and understanding,” said Rear Adm. John Fuller, commander, Navy Region Hawaii and Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific.

“We were and are committed to doing a careful and thorough job in restoring the Radford track and field. Our highest priority continues to be the safety, health and welfare of people, especially young people,” Fuller said.

“We appreciate that this project is moving forward. The Hawaii State Department of Education is grateful for the patience of the Radford High School community throughout the delays,” Office of School Facilities and Support Services Assistant Superintendent Dann Carlson said.

The Navy contractor began site work this week, which includes scraping vegetation and weeds from the field area, placing new top soil, and shaping the field for drainage. Over the next two weeks, the Navy will continue field preparations and begin installing fresh sod.

“Special thanks goes to the Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Hawaii teams – environmental, contracting, engineers and other support. NAVFAC got the funding, ensured contractor availability, and worked closely with the Department of Education and the school administration to ensure the track and field will be ready for the 2016 football season,” Fuller said.

“By the way, congratulations again to Coach Fred Salanoa and the Radford Rams for winning the Hawaii High School Athletic Association Division II football championship last November at Aloha Stadium. Go Rams!”

9 Year-Old Charter Student Brings Pipe Bomb to Hawaii School

Hawaiʻi Island police are investigating a suspicious device found Wednesday (February 10) at a charter school in Kaʻū.

Kau Learning Academy

Kau Learning Academy

At 10:15 a.m. police received a call reporting a “pipe bomb” found in the possession of a student at the Kaʻū Learning Academy on the 94-1500 block of Kalua Circle in Discovery Harbor. Responding officers learned that school officials had found the suspicious device in the backpack of a 9-year-old boy.

The boy was arrested on suspicion of possessing an explosive device and then released to a family member while police continue the investigation.

Police notified the FBI, the U.S. Army’s Explosive Ordinance Detail on Oahu, the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the Hawaiʻi County Fire Department.

The school was evacuated for the rest of the day.

Hawaii Parks and Recreation Seeks to Hire Adults for Temporary Summer Fun Jobs

The Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation is seeking to hire adults for temporary summer jobs working with keiki who attend its 2016 Summer Fun Program.

Summer Fun

Summer Fun activity aides and activity technicians will earn $11 per hour and $14 per hour, respectively. Applicants will be asked in which districts they prefer to work, although enrollment levels and program needs will determine the recreation sites used for 2016 Summer Fun activities.

Applicants must be at least 18 years old at the time of employment, possess current First Aid certification, submit a completed Summer Fun application, and be available to work May 31 through July 15, 2016. Summer Fun starts June 6 following a mandatory four-day training period for all temporary employees.

Summer Fun applications are available online at http://www.hawaiicounty.gov/pr-recreation, the Department’s main office at 101 Pauahi Street, Suite 6 in Hilo, the Recreation Division Office at 799 Pi‘ilani Street in Hilo, and various County gymnasiums located around the island.

Completed applications must be filed with the Recreation Division or postmarked by Tuesday, February 16.  For more information about the Department of Parks and Recreation’s 2016 Summer Fun Program job opportunities, please contact the Recreation Division at 961-8740.

Hikianalia Sails to Hilo – Local Schools Invited to Participate (Must RSVP)

As legendary traditional sailing vessel Hokulea travels around the world, sister voyaging canoe Hikianalia continues to make her impact in Hawaii by delivering the Malama Honua message of taking care of Island Earth – this time on Hawaii Island- with the help of Polynesian Voyaging Society (PVS) crew members, Hawaii’s Ohana Waa (canoe family), and Imiloa Astronomy Center.

Vaka Sail - Oahu to Kauai - July 2011

Vaka Sail – Oahu to Kauai – July 2011

“It’s very important to PVS that Hikianalia continue engaging our local communities by offering opportunities for the public to interact with crew members and learn more about the Malama Honua Worldwide Voyage,” stated Miki Tomita, director of the Polynesian Voyaging Society’s Learning Center. “As an organization, we’re always striving to ensure that the public, especially our islands’ schoolchildren, are engaged in the educational aspects of the voyage at home as well as abroad,” Tomita added.

Between Feb. 15-25, weather-permitting, Hikianalia, Ohana Waa, and partner organizations will be hosting community outreach events in Hilo, with some events open to the general public.

Hilo Day

A welcome ceremony in Palekai, Keaukaha will be held on Monday, Feb. 15, with the time to be determined. Local schools are invited to participate in the momentous occasion and will need to RSVP.

On Friday, Feb. 19 from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., Hawaii Island teachers and students will have the opportunity to take part in Hikianalia Education Day – again, schools will need to make reservations to participate.

Hikianalia Community Day will be held on Saturday, Feb. 20 from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. The event will be at Suisan Pier, and all of the Hawaii Island community is invited – no reservations are required.

Imiloa Astronomy Center celebrates its tenth anniversary on Sunday, Feb. 21 from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. The public is invited to enjoy the day by visiting the astronomy center for free, meeting PVS crew members, and learning more about Hikianalia, Hokulea and the Worldwide Voyage.

For more information or to participate in events that require reservations, visit http://www.hokulea.com/hikianalia/.

Puna Legislative Town Hall Meeting with Sen. San Buenventura and Sen. Ruderman

Rep. Joy San Buenaventura (Puna) and Senator Russell Ruderman (Puna, Kau) will host a Town Hall Meeting on Monday, Feb. 29, 2016 at 5 p.m. at the Pahoa Community Center on Hawaii Island to discuss bills and issues for the 2016 session.

They will also honor the students and faculty who built a replica of the space shuttle Challenger in honor of Ellison Onizuka and the 30th anniversary of the tragic loss of the space shuttle and its crew.

The Keaau High School students that built the replica of the space shuttle.

The Keaau High School students that built the replica of the space shuttle.

The Town Hall Meeting will provide updates on bills along with other issues that may be heard during this session.  Questions, concerns and/or new ideas from those in attendance will be entertained.

  • WHO: Representative Joy San Buenaventura (Puna) and Senator Russell Ruderman (Puna, Kau)
  • WHAT:  Town Hall Meeting to Discuss the 2016 Legislative Session
  • WHEN: Monday, February 29, 2016, 5:00 – 7:00 p.m.
  • WHERE: Pahoa Community Center, 15-2910 Puna Road, Pahoa, HI, 96778

Breakdancing, Hip Hop, and Gender Roles in Opposing Forces

Kahilu Theatre presents AmyO’Neal’s Opposing Forces.

In Amy O’Neal’s Opposing Forces, five B-Boys from different generations and cultures come together in curiosity, strength, vulnerability, and grace in this dance performance that has one foot squarely in street style dance (hip hop) and one foot in contemporary dance story telling.

In Opposing Forces, choreographer Amy O’Neal examines the paradoxical nature of B-Boy culture as it relates to femininity and the value systems of dance battling, commercial dance, stage performance, and freestyle cyphers (jam circles). How do these different environments affect expression? Where are stereotypes changing and where do they remain the same? O’Neal pries open these topics and more via conversation, collaboration, and transfixing dance moves.

Breakdancing

Opposing Forces Performers and Movement Collaborators consist of:

  • Alfredo “Free” Vergara Jr.
  • Brysen “Just Be” Angeles
  • Fever One
  • Michael O’Neal Jr.
  • Mozeslateef

Amy O’Neal is a dancer, performer, choreographer, and dance educator based in Seattle. For fifteen years, she has taught and performed throughout the US, Japan, Italy, and Mexico, and she has choreographed for stage, commercials, rock shows, galleries, dance films and music videos. Her work is an amalgam of her diverse movement and life experiences presenting social commentary with dark humor and heavy beats.

She teaches Contemporary Dance and Urban Styles at Velocity Dance Center and House dance at The Beacon: Massive Monkees studio in Seattle. She teaches dance composition and improvisation for Seattle Theater Group’s “Dance This” program. She spent seven years developing and teaching for Young Choreographer’s Lab and Seattle Youth Dance Collective. She hasworked extensively with musician/comedian Reggie Watts since 2002 both on stage and screen.

Amy O’Neal will also give a Master Class on Friday, February 12 at 4pm. Their master class will provide lessons in stylistic and cultural differences between Hip Hop (which is Breaking, Popping, Locking, and Party Dances), House, Vogue, Whacking, Commercial Hip Hop, Street Jazz, and Amy’s signature amalgam of all these things. The cost is $10, and reservations are available online.

This presentation of Opposing Forces by Amy O’Neal was made possible by the New England Foundation for the Arts’ National Dance Project, with lead funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, with additional support from the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as sponsorship by the Western Arts Federation.

Kahilu Theatre doors open at 6pm for evening shows, with food and beverages available for sale.

Tickets are $68 / $58 / $47 / $20 and available for purchase online at www.kahilutheatre.org, by calling (808) 885-6868, or at the Kahilu Theatre Box Office, at 67-1186 Lindsey Road, Kamuela, HI 96743, Monday-Friday, from 9am to 1pm.

Coming Up – Award Winning Magicians at the Honoka’a Peoples Theatre

Award-winning magicians Bruce and Jennifer Meyers will bring their amazing feats of original magic to Honoka’a Peoples Theatre on Sunday, February 28 at 4 p.m., presented in collaboration with the Peace Committee of Honoka’a Hongwanji Buddhist Temple.

Magician Bruce Meyers

Magician Bruce Meyers

Designed with keiki in mind, the creative show involves the audience in surprising ways—as Bruce might levitate children in the audience, cut a local politician in half, make dozens of roses, or chickens, appear and disappear. As a prelude to The Magic of Bruce Meyers, aerial artist Luna Sophia will “fly” above the audience in a gracefully athletic performance on the aerial silks.

“Our goal is to provide positive, affordable activities for kids and youth,” said Peace Committee Chair Miles Okumura, “We have this in common—we value the next generation, and depend on them to carry on the traditions, values and messages we share today. And that’s the magic.”

To help further that goal, the team has reached out to the Hamakua Youth Center (HYC), who will be assisting with ticket sales from their Mamane Street location. They are also recruiting business and individual sponsors to help send children and youth to the performance. A $100 donation can provide a classroom of students, a sports team or school club with tickets to attend.

Bruce Meyers Magician

In addition to performing, Bruce and Jennifer run four-day Magic Camps for keiki age 6 and up, where they learn multiple tricks and illusions, and build their own magic kit to take home and practice for a lifetime. (For information on Magic Camp, please call 982-9294.)

“For children, as with music, magic can be an inspiring and fun way to share wonder and learn about achieving goals, to build self-esteem, poise, confidence and teamwork. The mystery of magic inspires children to want to know more and to learn and to do. It inspires that thirst for knowledge. They learn that to give and share wonder is an act of kindness,” says Bruce.

Bruce continues, “We are constantly and diligently involved in providing pathways and direction for the young to carry the torch as the wonder workers and peacemakers of tomorrow. It is they who will spread happiness and joy and remind the audiences of the future that, despite all of its faults, it’s still a breathtakingly beautiful and mysterious world.”

On Bruce’s website is the Hawaiian phrase, “Aka‘aka Loko I Ka Ike A Ke Aloha,” which translates to; “The secrets within me are seen through Aloha.”

Tickets are $10 in advance, $12 at the door, available online at www.BruceMeyers.com or at Hamakua Youth Center, 775-0976. For information on sponsoring a classroom, club or team contact Miles Okumura, misterokumura@yahoo.com .

HI-PAL Elementary and Intermediate Basketball Championships Crowned

Eighty-five youths from eight teams participated in the HI-PAL “Click It or Ticket” elementary and intermediate basketball championships this past weekend at Papaʻikou Gym.

 Members of the Intermediate Champion Waiākea Titans (from left)—Dominic Rodrigues, Chance Simeona, Kiai Apele, Macmillain Aloisio, Guyson Ogata, Vergil Henry.


Members of the Intermediate Champion Waiākea Titans (from left)—Dominic Rodrigues, Chance Simeona, Kiai Apele, Macmillain Aloisio, Guyson Ogata, Vergil Henry.

In the Intermediate Division, Waiākea Titans finished the round robin event with an undefeated 4-0 record to claim the championship. Titans defeated St. Joseph Gold 57-51 led by Kiai Apele’s 20 points, Kaʻū 56-35 led by Chance Simeona with 19 points, Waiākea 49-26 led by Apele’s 18 points and St. Joseph Red 48-34 led by Apele with 14 points. St. Joseph Gold finished second with a 3-1 record. Members of the championship Titans squad included Apele, Simeona, Macmillan Aloisio, Vergil Henry, Guyson Ogata and Dominic Rodrigues.

In the Elementary Division finals, the St. Joseph Cardinals edged Kealakehe Blue 31-28 to claim the title. Jayden Villena led the Cardinals with 11 points, Forrest Mckinney added 8 points and Zayre Fuiava tallied 6 points. Second-place Kealakehe was led by Shammah Talley with 9 points and Elayo Malapit and Edward Lai who added 6 points apiece. In the third place contest, Haʻaheo defeated Kealakehe White 26-18. Zamar Brres led Haʻaheo with 15 points. Members of the champion St. Joseph squad included Villena, Mckinney, Fuiava, Tiffany Castillo, Thomas Costa, Aidyn Cruise, Kavis Davies, Blayden Grace, Landry Ishii and Stanislaw Stack.

“Click It or Ticket” is a national education and enforcement campaign to increase seat belt usage and decrease traffic fatalities and injuries. The Hawaiʻi Police Department encourages all youths, teens and adults to use their seat belts.

Open Application Period Begins Today for Preschool Open Doors Program 2017 Assistance

The Department of Human Services encourages families to apply for its Preschool Open Doors (POD) program between Monday, February 1 and March 31, 2016.  Applications received during this period will be considered for preschool participation between July 1, 2016 and June 30, 2017.

Patch HawaiiThis program, which is currently serving more than 1,100 children statewide, provides child care subsidies to eligible low- and moderate-income families to pay preschool tuition. POD aims to provide children whose families might otherwise not be able to afford preschool the opportunity to gain essential skills to be successful in school and in life.

To qualify for the program, children must be eligible to enter kindergarten in the 2017-2018 school year (born between August 1, 2011 and July 31, 2012). Families are reminded that a child must be 5 years old on or before July 31 to enter kindergarten. Families may choose any one of the 438 state-licensed preschools. Underserved or at-risk children receive priority consideration for the POD program, and funds are limited.

Interested families may request an application beginning February 1, 2016 from the Department’s POD contractor, PATCH, by visiting www.patchhawaii.org or calling 791-2130 or toll free 1-800-746-5620.  PATCH can also help families locate a preschool convenient for them.

Applications must be received by March 31, 2016 to be considered for the July 1, 2016-June 30, 2017 program period. Applications should be dropped off, mailed or faxed to the following:

PATCH – POD
560 N. Nimitz Hwy, Suite 218
Honolulu, HI 96817
Fax: (808) 694-3066

Eligibility and priorities for POD program selection are detailed online in HAR §17-799, which is available online at humanservices.hawaii.gov/admin-rules-2/admin-rules-for-programs.  For more information about other DHS programs and services, visit humanservices.hawaii.gov

Parents Encouraged to Provide Feedback on Their Child’s Public School

​ The Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) begins its annual School Quality Survey (SQS) this week to gather important feedback from students, parents/guardians and staff about our public schools. The deadline to complete and return the SQS is March 15, 2016.

Photo Credit: Department of Education

Photo Credit: Department of Education

The survey provides information on how schools are doing with respect to school culture, satisfaction and engagement. The feedback gathered is used to support school planning and improvement efforts, and meet legislative and Board of Education requirements.​

Students in grades 4, 5, 7, 8, 9 and 11 will take the survey online at school, as will teachers, administrative office staff, and instructional support staff.

A parent or guardian of the students in the surveyed grades will have the option to take the survey online or via a paper format. Each school communicates to parents on how to complete the SQS whether digital and/or hard copy.

“We’re hoping for more parents to respond this year since last year’s return rate was 24 percent,”said Tammi Chun, assistant superintendent, Office of Strategy, Innovation and Performance. “This feedback is very important to us as we continue to work on ways to improve learning experiences for our children.”

Responses will remain anonymous. The SQS deadline is March 15, 2016.

The public can view the SQS for their community schools and statewide results via the Report Finder on HIDOE’s website: bit.ly/ReportFinder. Search for “School Quality Survey”and add the name of a school for school-level results.

Anyone with questions about the survey is encouraged to contact HIDOE at 808-733-4008 (Neighbor Island toll-free at 855-276-5801), or via email: SQS@notes.k12.hi.us.

 

84 Hawaii Public Schools to be Awarded for Wellness

The Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) is announcing a record number of Hawaii public schools that will be receiving “Excellence in Wellness” awards this spring.

Since 2013, public schools have received the award based on their outstanding implementation of the Department of Education’s Wellness Guidelines. The Guidelines are a set of standards for foods and beverages provided to students that include goals for school-based wellness committees, health and physical education, and other practices that support student health.

Click to view the report

Click to view the report

According to the annual Safety and Wellness Survey (SAWS), a total of 84 Hawaii public elementary, middle, and high schools met over 90 percent of the Wellness Guidelines during the 2014-2015 school year, up from 45 schools in 2013-2014.

“Excellence in Wellness” banners will be presented to school principals during annual fitness meets and at recognition events statewide. The awards are co-sponsored by the Hawaii Department of Health and Action for Healthy Kids.

“The increase in support for wellness in our schools is notable and we hope that this momentum will continue” said Director of Health Virginia Pressler, M.D. “This data demonstrates the successful partnership we have with the DOE to strengthen implementation and monitor the Wellness Guidelines as we move forward.”

The Hawaii Departments of Education and Health jointly administer the SAWS annually to track implementation of the Guidelines. Results indicate a consistently high level of achievement with survey respondents meeting an average of 82 percent of the DOE Wellness Guidelines in 2014-2015.

Highlights from the 2014-2015 SAWS include:

  • All school meals (100 percent) continue to meet or exceed federal nutrient standards;
  • Health and Physical Education classes align with the Hawaii Content and Performance Standards III at 94 percent and 97 percent of schools, respectively;
  • Students have at least 20 minutes a day of supervised recess, during which they are encouraged to be physically active at 84 percent of schools.

“Healthy habits not only result in a student’s physical wellness but also contribute to a successful pathway in college and career readiness,” said Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi. “Implementing wellness practices is an important element to ensuring that students are prepared for life after high school. Congratulations to all the schools that have made this a priority.”

The Wellness Guidelines, SAWS, and public reporting of SAWS data fulfills requirements of the Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act (2004) and the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act (2010).

The Safety and Wellness Survey Data Report for School Year 2014-15 is available at: http://bit.ly/1QeM3HY.

More information about the Wellness Guidelines, visit: http://www.hawaiipublicschools.org/TeachingAndLearning/HealthAndNutrition/WellnessGuidelines/Pages/home.aspx

Schools Achieving Excellence in Wellnessin School Year 2014-2015(SAWS score of 90 percent or higher):

  • Ahuimanu Elementary
  • Kamalii Elementary
  • Nanakuli Elementary
  • Aiea High
  • Kaneohe Elementary
  • Nanakuli High & Intermediate
  • Aiea Intermediate
  • Kanoelani Elementary
  • Noelani Elementary
  • Aina Haina Elementary
  • Kapolei Elementary
  • Olomana
  • Ala Wai Elementary
  • Kapunahala Elementary
  • Paauilo Elementary & Intermediate
  • Aliiolani Elementary
  • Keaau High
  • Pahoa High & Intermediate
  • August Ahrens Elementary
  • King Intermediate
  • Palisades Elementary
  • Castle High
  • Kipapa Elementary
  • Pearl City Elementary
  • de Silva Elementary
  • Kohala High
  • Pearl Harbor Elementary
  • Hahaione Elementary
  • Koloa Elementary
  • Pope Elementary
  • Hana High and Elementary
  • Kuhio Elementary
  • Pu’u Kukui Elementary
  • Hauula Elementary
  • Laie Elementary
  • Red Hill Elementary
  • Hawaii Center for the Deaf and the Blind
  • Lehua Elementary
  • Salt Lake Elementary
  • Heeia Elementary
  • Liholiho Elementary
  • Scott Elementary
  • Helemano Elementary
  • Lokelani Intermediate
  • Solomon Elementary
  • Highlands Intermediate
  • Lunalilo Elementary
  • Sunset Beach Elementary
  • Hilo Intermediate
  • Maemae Elementary
  • Waialua Elementary
  • Honaunau Elementary
  • Makaha Elementary
  • Waianae Elementary
  • Iliahi Elementary
  • Makakilo Elementary
  • Waimea Canyon Middle
  • Kaaawa Elementary
  • Maunawili Elementary
  • Waipahu Intermediate
  • Kaahumanu Elementary
  • Mililani Ike Elementary
  • Webling Elementary
  • Kaala Elementary
  • Mililani Mauka Elementary
  • William McKinley High
  • Kahala Elementary
  • Mililani Uka Elementary
  • Wilson Elementary
  • Kahuku Elementary
  • Moanalua Middle
  • Waianae High
  • Kailua Elementary
  • Mokapu Elementary
  • Waikele Elementary
  • Kailua Intermediate
  • Molokai High
  • Waikiki Elementary
  • Kaimiloa Elementary
  • Momilani Elementary
  • Waikoloa School
  • Kalihi-uka Elementary
  • Nanaikapono Elementary
  • Waimanalo Elementary & Intermediate

 

UH Hilo Offers Youth Basketball Teams Free Admission to Home Basketball Games

Hawai‘i Island’s youth basketball players can show their support for the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo’s basketball teams by taking advantage of free admission Vulcan Athletics is offering for remaining men’s and women’s home games.

UH Hilo 2016 mens team

All registered keiki basketball players and coaches, including those participating in Department of Parks and Recreation’s leagues and Hawai‘i Police Activities League (HI-PAL) tournaments, are eligible for free home game general admission. The offer covers each team’s players, head coach, one assistant coach, and the coaches’ significant other for the remainder of the 2015-2016 UH Hilo basketball season.

Due to recruiting restrictions for high school athletes, the free admission can be offered only to keiki currently attending kindergarten through the eighth grade.

Games will be played at Hawai‘i County’s Afook-Chinen Civic Auditorium located in Hilo. The following is the remaining schedule, starting times (women play first) and opponent:

  • Monday, January 25 (5 p.m./7:30 p.m.) – California Baptist University
  • Saturday, February 13 (11 a.m./1 p.m.) – Chaminade University
  • Monday, February 15 (5 p.m./7:30 p.m.) – Notre Dame de Namur University
  • Thursday, February 18 (6 p.m.) – Brigham Young University-Hawai‘i
  • Tuesday, February 23 (5 p.m./7:30 p.m.) – Point Loma Nazarene
  • Saturday, February 27 (5 p.m./7:30 p.m.) – Azusa Pacific University

Coaches wishing to participate in the program must provide their team’s name, roster, players’ ages, and coaches’ contact information. Coaches of multiple youth teams must submit separate rosters.

For more information, please contact Kelly Leong, UH-Hilo sports information director, at 932-7177, 895-0929 or kellyl@hawaii.edu.

Keaau High School Students to Unveil Space Shuttle Replica… Public Invited

During the 2014-2015 school year, many students at Keaau High School had their lives turned upside down when the lava flow threatened their community. After overcoming adversity, the Cougars are soaring to new heights with a reconstruction of a space shuttle replica, which will be unveiled to the public on Jan. 28, 2016 at 4 p.m.

KHS Space Shuttle

Keaau High School Principal Dean Cevalos explains, “I’m extremely proud of our students for their maturity and hard work in overcoming a stressful situation and turning it into something positive,” said Principal Dean Cevallos. “The space shuttle project, which was possible through our community partners, is something that not only our island, but also our state can be proud of. Our students’ talents and abilities are really highlighted in this reconstruction and show how much they have matured and grown.”

Last semester, 25 automotive and construction academy restored a one-of-a-kind space shuttle replica. This project, in conjunction with the Pacific International Space Center for Exploration Systems (PISCES), Hawaii Community College, and the Hawaii Civil Air Patrol was made possible with the support of many community donors including K. Taniguchi Ltd., KTA Super Stores, Isemoto Contracting, W.H Shipman, Big Island Toyota/De Luz Chevrolet and Young Brother’s Shipping Company.

This project unveiling is open to the public on Thursday, Jan. 28 at 4 p.m. at Keaau High School’s Automotive and Construction Academy. The event marks the 30th anniversary of the NASA Space Shuttle Orbiter Challenger mission and will honor NASA astronaut, hero, and Big Island native Ellison Onizuka, who lost his life with other crewmembers when the spacecraft failed to launch into outer space.

To RSVP please email khs.restoringhistory@gmail.com

UH Hilo College of Arts and Sciences Dean’s List for Fall 2015

UH Hilo Moniker

The following students in the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo College of Arts and Sciences have been named to the Dean’s List for the fall 2015 semester:

Jozie Acasio, Shelie M. Acoba, Anthony Actouka, Charlemagne Adams, Kendra Adams, Sebastian Afaga, Alexandria Agdeppa, Brandon Aguiar, Chelsea Ahsing, Rhonda Akano, Leahi Akao, Eric Alabanza, Daryl Albano, Losalia Aloisio, Alia Alvarez, Tyler Amaral, Victoria E. Amundsen, Erica Amundson, Lauren Anczak, Madeleine Andersen, Stina E. M. Andersson, Paul Ang Sheng, Shantel Antonio, Zion Apao, Shaylyn Arakaki,

David Arakawa, Justin Araki-Kwee, Jerome Arellano, Keanu Arke, Riley Arroyo, Yuki Asama, Leslie Asato, Scott Ashida, Cameron Atsumi, Lyle Auld, Salamasina Aumua, Dennis Ayap, Hunter Bailey, Jessica Bailey, Michael Bailey, Jim Baker, Sharlene Bala, Jamae Balagot, Landon Ballesteros, Zoe Banfield, Kaitlin Barcoma, Abigail Barhite, Ashley Barhite, Benedick Baris, Tiana Barrios, Ruth Bascar-Sellars, Crystal-lynn Baysa,

Conor M. Beaton, Laa Pi Bell, Chase Benbow, Justine Bernard, Lealoha Bernardo, Anthony Berson, Aspen Billiet, Ida Bing, Allexandria Blacksmith, Julianna Blair, Henry Blake, Kalaiakea Blakemore, Casey Blanchette, Thomas Bolton, Stephen Bond, Rebecca Boutin, Tyler Jo Branco Hedke, Courtney A. Brock, Veronica Brockway, Matthew Brown, BreAnna Brown, Harley Broyles, Kailah Buchanan, Ashlee Burbano, Merritt Burch, Ridge Cabaccang, Sydney Cabanas, Cheyrub Cabarloc, Jerold A. Cabel, Alexis Cabrera, Rachelle A. Cabrillas, Aldrin Calilao, Leischene Calingangan, Joseph Camara,

Keala Campbell, Amanda Canda, Alton Cantan, Jessicamae Caravalho, Frances M. Cariaga, Sheila M. Cariaga, Sheryl L. Cariaga, Imelda A.D.C. Carlos, Nicholas Carrion, Julie Carter, Micah Carter, Cjay Carvalho, Kanoeuluwehianu Case, Lily Cash, Susan Castillejos, Cibyl Chan, Roget Chan, Justin Chandler, Andy Chang, Emily Charman, Maggie Chen, Edward Cheng, Kate Chikasuye, Cheuk Wang Chiu, Adam Chong, Tahiti Chong, Christina Chow, Haylee Chung, Leilani Clark, Kobie Clarke, Rachel Clay, William Cleary, Heather Coad, Zoe Coffman, Seana Cofsky, Stefan Coney, Katherine Conners,

Taylor Contreras, Cletus Correia, Seneca Cox, Cory Craig, Tanya Craig, Leanne Crain, Trixie A. Croad, John Crommelin, Kawelina Cruz, Justin Cueva, Jasmin Curiel, Kanani Daley, Pearl Dasalla, Renee I. David, Desiree Davis, Pierre De Poyo, Kaylee Decambra, Axel Defngin, Edwina Degrood, Le’Shell Dela Cruz, Audrey Deluca, Billi Derleth, Ileana Derouin-Loando, Maluhia Desha, Erin Dewing, Amanda DiFrancesco, Cassidy Dixon,

Danielle Dodge, Amelia Dolgin, Shaylin Domingcil, Lorelei M. Domingo, Princess Dianne Domingo, Ryan Domingo, Pedro Dos Santos, Sadie Dossett, Cortney Dougherty, Mike Dowsett, James Drescher, Jayahmie Drio, Alejandra Duarte, Keanu Dudoit-Isa, Julie Duhaylongsod, Sarah Dunaway, Jennifer Eastin, Jacqueline Economy, Jamie Economy, Jon Ehrenberg, Bryce Engelland, Remedios Epp, Tiffany Erickson, Corey Eshpeter, Raynell Espaniola, Kelsie Espiritu-Tanabe, Riley Essert, Damon Ewen, Elecia Faaiuaso, Charles Fenenbock, Sarah Ferguson, Sharrylei Fernandez, Glenn Ferrier,

Misty Figueira, Taysia Figueroa, Doug Fitzpatrick, Kyla Fox, Jeena Franco, D’Jon Franklin, Ella R. Fregeau Olmstead, Lilia Fremling, Brittany Fuemmeler, Kaitlyn Fujii, Shaylyn Fujii, Kendra Fujioka, Justin Fujiwara, Trent Furuta, Dylan Gable, Sarah Gallagher, Angelina Gallegos, Philip Gamiao, Everette Ganir, Jeremy Ganir, April Gaoiran, Mary Jane Garcia, Nicole Garcia, Jessica-Ann Garett, Xue Garrett, Zachary Geisterfer, Carola Geitner, StacyMae Gelacio, Tyler Gerken, Hattie Gerrish, Tuan Giai Giang, Kahri Golden, Kassidy Gonsalves, Annabel Gonzalez, Acacia Goo, Maya Goodoni,

Samantha Gordon, Rachel Gorenflo, Beverly A. Gorospe, Alyssa Grace, Marc D. Grande, Nathan Green, Siera Green, Zechariah Greene, Lori Greenhouse, Olivia Grodzka, Kylie Grogg, Chrisovolandou Gronowski, Riana Grothmann, Rihei Grothmann, Alexander Guerrero, Juan F. Guerrero Arnaiz, Adrienne Gurbindo, Brittany Hale, Quinn Hamamoto, Yu Hamaoka, Michelle Hanson, Arielle Harnik, Jocelin Haro, Molly Harris,

Rose Hart, Bridge Hartman, Hannah Hawkins, Connor Hedrick, Dakota Helfrich, John Herman, Brad Higa, Linsie Hiraoka, Misaki Hirayama, Jaclyn Hirohama, Tyler Hoffman, Eric Holub, Tiana Honda, Lauren Hong, Trenton Hooper, Abbey Horsman, Alyssa Hoshide, Jordan Howard, Kainoa Howard, Samantha Howell, Sandra Huang, ZhiLing Huang, Adrian Huff, Brianne Huggins, Thomas Hughes, Courtney Hurt, Thien Huynh, Laura Ibbotson, Andi Igawa, Kadi Igawa, Joshua Ignacio, Derek Inaba,

Kayla Ing, Gabriela Iniguez-Isaacs, Elise Inouye, Ching Ip, Courtney Ip, Joanne Isabella, Alexa Jacobs, Rebecca Jardin, Austin Jennings, Michelle Jimenez, Lindsay Johnson, Malina Johnson, Kailani Jones, Kyle Jones, Mikayla Jones, Terrence Jordan, Jamie Josephson, Jessica J. Julian, Kahuliau Kaai, Keaolani Kaaialii, Shanise Kaaikala, Puanani Kahai, Shaylyn Kahawai, Kawena Kahui, Kelii Kailipaka, Kahoruko Kajiya,

Ellie-Jean Kalawe, Bree Kalima, Steven Kalua, Kevin Karvas, Nellie Kati, Melvalee Kaulia, Germaine Kaululaau, Angela Kauwe, Hokuto Kawashima, Tori Kaya, Jay Kayhill, Jill Keely, Joanne Keliikoa, Bianca Keohokapu, Ada Kettner, Chantelle Kiessner, Chan Gyeom Kim, Mary Louise Kimura, Andrew J. H. Kinloch, Angalee Kirby, Rachel Kishimoto, Keely Kitamura, Sheena Kobayashi, William Kobus, Rochelle Koi,

Cody Kojima, Felicia Kolb, Leina Konashi, Hyesun Kong, Kaili Kosaka, Krystle Koshiyama, Lisa Kosilla, Keisha Kotake, Maya Kottwitz, Nolan Kua, Kyle Kua-Ramirez, Johann Kuipers, Morgan Kultala, Bonnie Shuk Ping Kwok, Liezl L. Lagua, Keohikai Laikupu, Samantha Lambert, Mia Lamirand, Kailey Lapenia, Caterina LaRocca, Danielle Larson, Samantha Lathrop, Brandon Lau, Angela Laureta, Valerie Lazickas,

Da Hai Lee, Jon-Pierre Leone, Shalyn Lewis, QiXin Li, Sonia Lipka, Hannah Lipman, Eileen Liu, Sheena Lopes, Kawehi Lopez, Catherine Lord, Joyce Lovell, Kristi Lovell, Michael Lovell, Rebekah Loving, Chari-Ann Luis-Calvo, Jacob Lunz, Deanna R. Macapulay, Natasha Machado, Brandon Mahle, Desmond Mahor, Alohilani Maiava, Wilson Malone, Michael Mandaquit, Alison Mansfield, Jordyn Mansinon, Danielle Marrufo, Katherine Martinez, Lashay M. Masami, Chantelle Mashreghy, Shae Massie,

Anna C. Masuda, Carle-Ann Mata, Moriah Mathson, Rosella Mathson, Eli Matola, Nicole Matsu, Kasey Matsumoto, Kelley Matsumoto, Aspen Mauch, Shaina McEnroe, Austin McGuire, Jared McLean, Korin Medeiros, Leslie Medina, Georgette Mercado, Marina Merkulova, Anna Meyer, William Midgley, Anna B. Mikkelsen, Chelsea Miles, Bryce Miles-Leighton, Brock Miller, Brooke Miller, Amberlyn Milum, Zayin Minia, Jessica Minick, Amanda Minney, Risako Mise, Lauren Mizuba, Nicole Monette,

Ariel Moniz, Michael Moore, Ariyana Moran, Juliann Morris, Kialoa Mossman, Shane-Earl Naeole, Kenneth Nagata, Jenny Nagatori, Brandon Naihe, Lorelei Nakagawa, Tori Nakagawa, Angela Nakamura, Richard Nakamura, Blayne Nakasone Sakata, Joseph Nakoa, Kirstie Naone, Ariel Navarro, Brandon Neal, Sean Nearhoof, Christopher Nelson, Kelsey Nguyen, Sarah Nichols, Cameron Nicholson, Karen Nishimoto, Reyn Nishioka, Kelsey Noetzelmann, Eloisa Obero, Jordan Ocol,

Jasmine Oher, Shantel Okinishi, Briana Oliver, Nicole Ortiz, Sarah A. Ota, Jamie Ouye, Ryan Ozaki, John D. Padapat, Kehaulani Pakani-Tells, Keirsa Pakani-Tsukiyama, Bronson Palupe, Christiane Pang, Isaac Pang, Jessica Pang, Jannah Pante, Pauleen Pante, Ciarra-Lynn Parinas, Kirsty Parker, Stephanie Pasco, Kailey Pascoe, Ishani S. S. Patel, Michael Patterson, Breanne Patton, Christian Patton, Hannah Pavao, Tyson Pavao, Casey Pearring, Leomanaolamaikalani Peleiholani Blanenfeld, Carlota Perez Pla Urbistondo, Graham Pernell, Shaun Perry, Trevor Perry, Mark Petner, Sharon Petrosky,

Terri Pinyerd, Rhealiza Pira, Chelsea Poe, Margot Pontius, Arwen Potochney, Debra Potter, Brett T. Pruett, Kylee Quevedo, Natalie Quinajon, Misti Quintel, Alethia Quintero, Akemi Rair, Crystal Rances, Anita Randall-Packer, Kaydee Rapozo, Evangeline Raza, Robyn Rector, Keana Rees, Angela I. Reich, Samantha Reis, William Renz, Ashley A. Resurreccion, Chloe Richards, Taumie Richie, Emily Risley, Karla Robles Moreano, Kainoa Rosa, Megan Rose, Justine Rosemond, Nina Sabahi, Josiane Saccu, Melanie Sacro, Julie Anne Sagabaen, Karl Sakai, Reese Sako, Angelica Salom,

Gabriella Sanchez, Louise V. Santos, Teresinha Santos Da Costa, Chelsea Sato, Kristen Savea, Briana Savusa, Steven Sayers, Crystal Schiszler, Kimberly Schmelz, Dehrich Schmidt-Chya, Emily Schneider, Julia Schray, Kimberly Scott, Jiyoon Seo, Artem Sergeyev, Jolene Serrano De Guzman, Seth Shaikh, Marleena Sheffield, Sydney Shiigi, Albert Shim, Jaci Shinoda, Keani Shirai, Kayla Shiroma, Kathleen Shon, Keian Shon, Maria Sideleva, Malia Silva, Heather Simon, Maysyvelle Sistoza, Cheyenne Sitts, Alexa Smiley, James Smith, Kathleen Smith, Logan Snell, Kristan-Maria Snook, Kiana Soloria, Carrie Soo Hoo, Sophia P. Soriano-Castillo, Christina Sorte, Krismon Sotiangco,

India Southern, Ethan Souza, Megan Spath, Ashley Spencer, Lauren Spreen, Jacqueline St. Clair, Ashlin Stahlberg, Erin Stamper, Maria Steadmon, Angelica Steele, Phillip Steering, Emma Stevens, Taylor Stokesbary, Jeremiah Storie, Marley Strand-Nicolaisen, Cole Stremski-Borero, Paige Sumida, Taliesin Sumner, Tyler Sumner, Tanyalee Switzer, Dillon Tacdol, Dustin Tacdol, Dallas Tada, Randolph Tafua, Hazel Tagalicud, Peniamina Taii, Tara Takamori, Jolyn Takeya-Whitney, Devin Tanaka,

Yoshinori Tanaka, Morgan Tate, Reuben Tate, Patience Taylor, Zach Taylor, Temau Teikitekahioho-Wolff, Chariya Terlep-Cabatbat, Samantha Texeira, Gin Tezuka, Ginger Thomas, Nicolette Thomas, Melanie Thomason, Zachary Tman, Ashley C. Tomori, Brandon Tomota, Jianxing Tong, Ryotaro Toshima, Kyndra Trevino-Scott, Emma Tunison, Christine J. Ucol, Jenifer M. Ucol, Brenna Usher, Abigail Vandenberg, Rosella M. Vaughn, Aundrea Vidal, Joana Vierra, Lixie A. Villanueva, Rowell Villanueva, Leilani VisikoKnox-Johnson, Nelson Vo, Thomas Vogeler, Michael Voight,

Kaipoleimanu Wahinepio, George Wall, Emily Wallingford, Lucille Walsh, HeNaniNoOeKaWahineUioIkePono Wandasan, Kenton Wandasan, Donald Waner, Sondra Warren, Valerie K. Wasser, Mary Webb, Kelsea Wells, Kaira Whittington-Ramirez, John Whitworth, Ty Widhalm, Alexis Williams, Qiyamah Williams, Daisy Willis, Leah Wilson, Phillip Wilson, Skyla Wilson, Vanessa Winchester-Sye, Christina Wine, Michelle Winkler, Elijah Won, David Wong, Tiana Wong, Daniel Wright,

Chelsie Wung, Sharmaine Yacavone, Jessica Yamaguchi, Marilyn Yamamoto, Lia Yamashiro, Phillip Yawata, Shaniah Yogi, Cheyne Yonemori, Sayuri Yoshimura, Deanna Young, Kristen Young, Sable-Marie Young, Tyler Young, Anwar A. Yu, Bithiah Yuan, Trisha Yuen, Jacqueline Yuw, Marikka Zavas, Yeva Zobova, and Abcde Zoller.

HHS ‘Dragon Jazz’ Band to play with Marcia Ball and Johnny Nicholas in Four-Island Concert Tour

The Honokaʻa High School Jazz Band has created a musical legacy during the last four decades, under the award-winning direction of teacher Gary Washburn. This month, members of the Band will perform onstage with soulful blues storyteller Marcia Ball and career R&B bandsman Johnny Nicholas and his band Hellbent, in an unprecedented four-island concert tour.

honokaa Jazz Band 2016

Dragon Jazz Band photo by Sarah Anderson

“Johnny got in touch with me through a friend, said Washburn. “He’s been working with kids, involving kids in the music business—and he invited the band to play with them. I said OK,” said Washburn, himself winner of the Claes Nobel Educator of Distinction Award by the National Society of High School Scholars.

“So, on this island, the Band will play a 30-minute warm-up set for them at their two shows in Waimea and Hilo, and then we’ll play a few tunes with Johnny, and with Marcia, including ‘Foreclosed on the House of Love,’ which is on our CD,” said Washburn.

After a kickoff concert January 24 at Waimea’s Kahilu Theatre, eight young musicians will travel to Hilo, Kauai, Maui and Oahu, to perform with Ball and Nicholas (see schedule below). The new Dragon Jazz Band includes: Kamea Phenicie on tenor sax, Elliot Reddekopp on trumpet, Emma Reddekopp on piano, Kamaehu Arraujo-Duldulao on trumpet, Andrew Connors on trombone, Nick Rohfeld on drums, Ron-Jon Pira on bass, and Lexi Dalmacia on guitar.

This unique performance opportunity tops an already impressive list for the Band. They’ve played on National Public Radio’s “From the Top,” and opened for the Royal Hawaiian Band at Iolani Palace where they were recognized by the State Legislature. They do a yearly multi-concert tour of Oahu to celebrate National Jazz Appreciation Month, and their 14th CD (an annual fundraiser) has just been released. In 2011, they received a national Grammy Signature Schools Award.

Marcia Ball, courtesy Marcia Ball

Marcia Ball, courtesy Marcia Ball

Marcia Ball’s signature Gulf Coast blues is a sound described as “a one-of-a kind-musical gumbo.” Known as a musical storyteller, the New York Times says, “Marcia Ball plays two-fisted New Orleans barrelhouse piano and sings in a husky, knowing voice about all the trouble men and women can get into on the way to a good time.”

Four of her previous five releases received Grammy Award nominations. In 2014, Ball received the Blues Music Award (BMA) for the Pinetop Perkins Piano Player Of The Year, for a total of 10 BMAs and 44 nominations. She recently received a 2015 Living Blues Readers’ Poll Award for Most Outstanding Musician (Keyboard) and now holds eight Living Blues Awards in all. She was inducted into the Gulf Coast Hall of Fame in 2010 and into the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame in 2012.

Since the 60’s, Johnny Nicholas has played rhythm and blues with great bands from Rhode Island to Chicago, Louisiana and Texas. After some time off to raise a family, he returned to music in 1991, teaming up with Johnny Shines and Snooky Pryor on the album “Back to the Country.” Nichols has kept the momentum going with a studio album and three live albums on Topcat Records in addition to regular live shows.

The kickoff concert is Sunday, January 24, 2016 at 6 p.m., at the Kahilu Theatre in Waimea. Projected to be a sell-out, tickets for the show are available online at www.kahilutheatre.org.

The inter-island schedule for Marcia Ball, Johnny Nicholas and Dragon Jazz is:

  • January 24, 2016, Kahilu Theatre in Waimea
  • January 27, Hilo Palace Theater
  • January 28, Charley’s Restaurant and Saloon, Maui
  • January 29, Kauai Beach Resort, Lihue, Kauai
  • February 2, Hawaii Theatre Center, Honolulu

The Honokaʻa High School Jazz Band and their boosters have set up a GoFundMe account to help with travel costs. Contributions can be made online, https://www.gofundme.com/dragonjazz.

Big Island Police Searching for 17-Year-Old Girl Missing Since December

Hawaiʻi Island police are searching for a 17-year-old Mountain View girl who was reported missing.

Zaxsalyn Guerpo, also known as “Missy,” was last seen in Kona on December 2. She is described as 5-foot-3, 135 pounds with black shoulder-length hair and brown eyes.

Zaxsalyn Guerpo

Zaxsalyn Guerpo

Police ask anyone with information on her whereabouts to call the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311.

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call the islandwide Crime Stoppers number at 961-8300. Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

Two Hawaii Prep Stars Nominated to Play in 2016 McDonald’s All American Games

Chanelle Molina of Konawaena High School and Keala Quinlan of Roosevelt High School have been chosen as nominees for the 2016 McDonald’s All American Games High School Girls Basketball Team. Molina and Quinlan are among 755 high school seniors from 49 states and the District of Columbia who have been culled by high school coaches, athletic directors, principals and members of the McDonald’s All American Games Selection Committee.

Chanelle Molina

Chanelle Molina

Konawaena guard and five-star recruit Molina led the Wildcats to an HHSAA Div. I state championship last season, a title they are favored to win again under her leadership this year.  Meanwhile, Roosevelt forward Quinlan is a four-year letter winner helping the Roughriders capture the OIA East Division Championship in both 2014 and 2015. This is the first time a player from Konawaena or Roosevelt High School has been nominated for the McDonald’s All American Games.

“We are so proud of Keala,” said Roosevelt head girls’ basketball coach Hinano Higa. “She is our go-to person and an all-around team player going out of her way to make sure her teammates are involved and comfortable.”

“Chanelle represents the state of Hawaii so well. This nomination is not only great for our school, but for the entire state,” said Konawaena head girls’ basketball coach Bobbie Awa. “She is helping put our kids on the map.”

A complete list of 2016 McDonald’s All American Games Nominees is available at www.mcdaag.com. McDonald’s will name the final roster of 24 boys and 24 girls who will be selected to play in the 2016 Games during the McDonald’s All American Games Selection Show on ESPNU, airing Sunday, January 17 at 9:30 p.m. CT; 5:30 p.m. Hawaii Time.

The 39th Annual Boys Game will tip-off on Wednesday, March 30, at 8:00 p.m. CT; 4:00 p.m. Hawaii Time from Chicago’s United Center and will be broadcast on ESPN. The 15th Annual Girls Game will precede the Boys Game, beginning at 5:30 p.m. CT; 1:30 p.m. Hawaii Time and will broadcast live on ESPNU. Information regarding tickets for the 2016 McDonald’s All American Games is available at Ticketmaster. Tickets for the 2016 Games go on sale Saturday, February 6. Tickets start as low as $10 and include free parking. There is also the popular family four-pack option that includes four tickets, four soft drinks and four hot dogs – all for $53.

Net proceeds from the Games benefit Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC). The Games have raised more than $11 million for RMHC since their inception in 1978. At RMHC, programs like the Ronald McDonald House and Ronald McDonald Family Room provide stability and vital resources to families in their time of need, allowing their child time to heal and helping to keep them healthy and happy.

Top High School Teams to Compete in LifeSmarts Hawaii State Championship

The Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs (DCCA) Office of the Securities Commissioner announces the competitors in the LifeSmarts Hawaii State Championship. The lineup for the state competition is made up of the four top scoring high school teams in the local online competition, which ran from October 26 to December 4, 2015.

Iolani Schools, 2015 State Champions represented Hawaii in the National Competition held in Seattle Washington.

Iolani Schools, 2015 State Champions represented Hawaii in the National Competition held in Seattle Washington.

The LifeSmarts Hawaii program is sponsored by the DCCA Office of the Securities Commissioner in partnership with the Hawaii Credit Union League and the National Consumers League. LifeSmarts is a consumer education program designed to teach students in grades 6-12 about personal finance, health and safety, the environment, technology, and consumer rights and responsibilities through online quizzes and in-person competitions.

“We congratulate the winning teams and thank all the students and coaches who participated in the 2015 LifeSmarts online competition,” said Securities Commissioner Ty Nohara. “We’re excited that a record 19 teams competed in the online competition this year and remain committed to growing the program to teach youth critical life skills.”

The top four teams are from Iolani, Maryknoll, Pearl City and Waiakea high schools. The teams will compete in-person 8 a.m. – 1 p.m., Saturday, February 20, 2016, at the Hawaii State Capitol Auditorium. The event is free and open to the general public.

The winner of the LifeSmarts Hawaii State Championship will be determined through written tests, a “speed dating the experts” activity, and a gameshow style buzzer round. The overall winner represents Hawaii at the National LifeSmarts Competition in Denver in April 2016.

For program information on the next competition season and/or sponsorship inquiries, please contact LifeSmarts State Coordinator, Theresa Kong Kee at 808-587-7400 or email tkongkee@dcca.hawaii.gov. For up-to-date happenings on the LifeSmarts Hawaii program, follow the Office of the Securities Commissioner on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram by searching “HISecurities”.

Hawaii’s New Tobacco and Prevention Laws Begin January 1st

The Hawaii State Department of Health wants to remind the public that, effective Jan. 1, 2016, you must be at least age 21 to buy tobacco products and electronic smoking devices (e-cigarettes) in Hawaii. Hawaii is the first state in the nation to raise the minimum age for tobacco sales to 21. A second measure, which also goes into effect on Jan. 1, incorporates e-cigarettes into Hawaii’s smoke-free laws, meaning that the use of e-cigarettes is now prohibited where smoking and/or using tobacco products is already banned.

No Smoking in Hawaii

“We are proud to once again be at the forefront of the nation in tobacco prevention and control,” said Director of Health Virginia Pressler. “While our comprehensive approach to addressing tobacco use in Hawaii has led to quantifiable decreases in deaths due to smoking, an increase in targeted marketing to our youth and young adults and new technology in the form of e-cigarettes requires our state to take additional measures to protect our young people.”

Acts 122 and 19 were passed by the State Legislature during the 2015 session and signed into law by Governor Ige. Raising the minimum age to purchase tobacco products to 21 (Act 122) is a nationally recommended strategy. In the U.S., 95 percent of adult smokers begin smoking before the age of 21. Nearly half become regular, daily smokers before age 18, and an additional 25 percent become regular, daily smokers between ages 18 and 21. The 18 to 21 year group is therefore a time when many smokers transition to regular use of cigarettes.

The use of e-cigarettes in existing smoke-free locations can expose non-smokers and vulnerable populations such as children and pregnant women to aerosolized nicotine and other toxic substances. Act 19 protects the public from unwillingly inhaling chemicals emitted by e-cigarettes that may contain nicotine and carcinogens such as formaldehyde, metals and nitrosamines.

While smoking rates have drastically decreased among Hawaii’s youth and adults, there has been a recent and rapid increase in e-cigarette use. Only 5 percent of Hawaii public high school students reported trying e-cigarettes in 2011 versus 22 percent in 2014, representing a 344 percent increase in e-cigarette use in just four years. Among middle school students, e-cigarette use jumped 542 percent during the same time period, from 2 percent in 2011 to 12 percent in 2014.

Adult e-cigarette use was 20 percent in 2014. “Acts 122 and 19 make tobacco products including e-cigarettes less accessible and less attractive to our youth,” said Lola Irvin, Administrator for the Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion Division. “Prevention is the best strategy, and youth are especially vulnerable to nicotine addiction. By prohibiting their use in public places, the new laws encourage a no-smoking norm.”

The timing of these new laws coincides with the start of 2016, an ideal time to make and keep New Year’s resolutions to quit using tobacco products and/or e-cigarettes. If you are over 18 and need help quitting tobacco or e-cigarettes, contact the Hawaii Tobacco Quitline at 1-800-QUIT-NOW or go to hawaiiquitline.org to connect with a quit coach and receive nicotine replacement therapy, free of charge.

For more information about the new tobacco control laws, including new signage for retailers, please visit: http://health.hawaii.gov/tobacco/home/retailx/.

Six Hawaii Robotic Teams Advance to VEX Worlds Championship

An alliance comprised of two robotics teams from Pearl City High School and one team from Punahou School were named the tournament champions at the 3rd annual Hawaiian Electric Companies Hawaii High School State VEX Championship held on Dec. 12.

Darcy Endo-Omoto, Hawaiian Electric vice president of government and community affairs (back row, right) is shown with the Hawaii High School State VEX tournament champions Pearl City High School (Teams 4142A and 4142B) and Punahou School (Team Buff ‘n Blue). Hawaiian Electric has been the presenting sponsor of the state VEX championships since 2013, and has supported STEM educational programs and initiatives in Hawaii for more than 30 years.

Darcy Endo-Omoto, Hawaiian Electric vice president of government and community affairs (back row, right) is shown with the Hawaii High School State VEX tournament champions Pearl City High School (Teams 4142A and 4142B) and Punahou School (Team Buff ‘n Blue). Hawaiian Electric has been the presenting sponsor of the state VEX championships since 2013, and has supported STEM educational programs and initiatives in Hawaii for more than 30 years.

The Pearl City and Punahou robotics teams are now qualified to advance to the VEX World Championship along with teams from Leilehua High, Waialua High and Kohala High.

The Pearl City High robotics team, 4142A, also captured the Excellence Award for its overall performance at the event in addition to earning the Programming Skills and the Design Awards.

The VEX Worlds Championship will be held in Louisville, KY next April 2016.

For a complete list of all team award winners, please visit http://www.robotevents.com