Tropical Storm Darby Update: Tropical Storm Strength Through the Weekend

High clouds have been streaming toward the northeast which indicates the cyclone is beginning to feel an approaching upper level trough. One of the later passes through Darby by the 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron’s WC-130J helped confirm the center position of the system toward the end of the morning mission though the aircraft had to fly lower to find it. Based on the morning recon mission and the maintenance of deep convection, the initial intensity has been held at 50 kt. Note that this is higher than the subjective Dvorak estimates of 45 kt from PHFO and SAB, and 30 kt from JTWC. The next aircraft mission into Darby is scheduled for this evening.

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

Darby is estimated to be moving at 280/11 kt to the south of a ridge. This ridge is forecast to weaken due to a low pressure system digging southward to the north of cyclone. This weakness is expected to decrease Darby’s forward motion over the next day, and increase the amount of vertical shear affecting the system this weekend.

The trusted dynamical models have remained largely consistent today, bringing Darby over the Big Island on Saturday. Thus, the current forecast has been nudged southward closer to the dynamical consensus with a landfall on the Big Island, followed by a path over Maui County and near Oahu. The latter part of this path assumes that Darby survives its impact on the Big Island which is not a certainty.

ProbabilityThe intensity forecast rationale remains the same since the last package. The main factors affecting the intensity forecast include marginal sea surface temperatures, the amount and timing of vertical wind shear, and the effects of any potential interactions with the Hawaiian Islands.

Sea surface temperatures will remain marginal near 26.5C over the next couple of days but vertical shear is expected to increase as the previously mentioned upper level trough digs farther south. This shear increase is not expected to become strong until later this weekend.

The forecast calls for only slow weakening with Darby maintaining tropical storm strength through the weekend. This is consistent with the previous package but slightly lower than the intensity consensus. Interactions with the Big Island may cause significant disruptions to Darby so the intensity forecast confidence is not high at this time.

Fee-Free Weekend of Hawaiian Music, Culture & Science at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park invites everyone to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service through music, culture and science on Friday and Saturday, August 26 and 27…absolutely free!

Hālau Hula o Akaunu & Kumu Hula Manaikalani Kalua in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. NPS Photo/Sami Steinkamp

Hālau Hula o Akaunu & Kumu Hula Manaikalani Kalua in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. NPS Photo/Sami Steinkamp

A Nā Leo Manu (“Heavenly Voices”) Hawaiian concert series kicks off the special weekend festivities Friday evening, Aug. 26 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Kīlauea Military Camp’s Kīlauea Theater – and celebrates the 100th anniversary of Kīlauea Military Camp.

At 6 p.m., Kumu Hula Manaiakalani Kalua and Hālau Hula o Akaunu perform ‘oli (chant) and hula that follow the Pele migration from Kahiki to Hawai‘i. Manai, who teaches for the Center for Hawai‘i Life Styles at Hawai‘i Community College, will also discuss how Hawaiian culture and science intersect.

Renowned musician Kenneth Makuakāne follows, and performs his beautiful mele (songs) until 8 p.m., then singer and songwriter Mark Yamanaka caps off the evening with his original and classic Hawaiian songs until 9 p.m.

In addition, the new Mele Ho‘oheno-Songs of Kīlauea and Mauna Loa CD will be released and available for sale. This collection of original Hawaiian songs was created by participants of the Haku Mele Hawaiian songwriting workshops this summer, under the guidance of Kaliko Trapp-Beamer and Kenneth Makuakāne.

Saturday, August 27 is the free Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park Cultural Festival & BioBlitz. This year’s festival honors the park’s centennial anniversary and connects visitors and the community to the culture, biology and geology of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and International Biosphere Reserve.

“We are so excited to celebrate the centennial anniversaries of the National Park Service and Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park the Hawaiian way, with music, culture and community,” said Park Superintendent Cindy Orlando. “Hawaiians have lived as stewards of this treasured landscape for centuries, and we hope everyone can join us for a festive weekend of fun, learning and camaraderie,” she said.

Themed E Ho‘omau (to perpetuate; to continue in a way that causes good to be long-lasting), the 36th annual cultural festival will be held near Kīlauea Visitor Center, and is all about sharing authentic Hawaiian cultural practices. More than a dozen cultural practitioners will demonstrate how native Hawaiians integrate the natural world into their traditions. Interactive demonstrations include lei wili (lei making); mākau (Hawaiian fishhook); pala‘ie (loop and ball game); how to make and play the ‘ohe hano ihu (Hawaiian nose flute); ulana niu (coconut frond weaving), and much more.

Festival performers include Kumu Hula Mamo Brown and Hālau Ulumamo o Hilo Palikū; Kenneth Makuakāne; Hālau o Akaunu and Kumu Hula Manaiakalani Kalua;  Kai Ho‘opi‘i; Haunani Medeiros and kupuna (elders) of Haunani’s Hula Expressions, and Diana Aki.

The Cultural Festival also showcases the intersection of culture and science in Hawai‘i. The “BioBlitz” is a fun and hands-on opportunity for families and individuals to observe and document the biodiversity that thrives in the lava flows and native rainforests of Kīlauea and Mauna Loa volcanoes. Meet and work alongside scientists and alaka‘i (experts) and discover an exciting array of life the park protects.

Choose from more than two dozen field inventories like “Six Legs at the Summit,” a birding excursion called “That Thing with Feathers,” and “Bebop Botany Walk on Crater Rim Trail.” The field inventories are free, and are led by experts at the forefront of conservation, science and traditional Hawaiian culture. Registration is required; sign up on the Friends of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park website.

Families and visitors can further discover how science and culture combine by visiting the BioBlitz science and cultural booths at the festival. Meet representatives of the ‘Alalā Project, Mokupāpapa Discovery Center, and others, to learn about important conservation efforts statewide. Visit Hale Ho‘ike, the BioBlitz “living laboratory” where Saturday’s discoveries will be documented, and look through a microscope at some of the tiniest but important findings.

The BioBlitz field inventories run from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m., and the Cultural Festival/BioBlitz is from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., on Sat., Aug. 27. Entrance and all events Friday and Saturday are free and family-friendly. Please, no coolers, pets or alcohol.

The Nā Leo Manu (“Heavenly Voices”) Hawaiian concert series and the Hawaiian Cultural Festival & BioBlitz are generously supported by the park’s nonprofit partners, the Friends of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park and the Hawaii Pacific Parks Association.

In addition, the National Park Service (NPS) invites everyone to enjoy all 412 national parks to celebrate its 100th birthday for free. All fee-charging parks, including Hawai‘i Volcanoes, Pu‘uhonua o Hōnaunau National Historical Park in West Hawai‘i, and Haleakalā National Park on Maui, are free from Thurs., Aug. 25 (the centennial anniversary of the NPS) through Sun., Aug. 28. That’s four fee-free days!

2016 is the 100th anniversary for Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. To find out what’s happening throughout 2016, visit the park website. It’s also the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service, and to learn about centennial events at other national parks, visit FindYourPark.

Meet 90-Year-Old Dancer Dorothy Williams from America’s Got Talent #AGTDorothy

Hawaii has a new celebrity on their hands and she is 90-year-old Dorothy Williams.


90-year-old Dorothy Williams in her home in the Kaumana area of Hilo on the Big Island of Hawaii.

Williams gained international fame last week as the 90-year-old stripper on America’s Got Talent that was awarded the “Golden Buzzer Award” from Nick Cannon and is now moving on to the “LIVE” show.

Williams is also known around the Big Island as "Yummy the Clown".

Williams is also known around the Big Island as “Yummy the Clown”.

Today, I had the chance to ask her a few questions over a few interviews and without revealing too much about her next appearance, this is what I’m able to release at this time.

Part I:

Part II:

Dorothy Williams 059

Williams can still be seen driving this car around town!

Williams leaves again for Hollywood this Sunday and she is scheduled to appear on the live show on NBC on Tuesday, July 26th at 7:00 pm.

It will be up to the audience and judges to decide if she goes on further but we all know that no matter how she does on the show… she will always be a part of our “Welcome Wagon” here on the Big Island of Hawaii.

Hawaii Island Festival of Birds Adds Events

The Hawai’i Island Festival of Birds has added more events and speakers to its plans. The Festival, scheduled for the weekend of September 24-25 at the Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay, includes on site events on Saturday and field trips on Sunday.

Photo by Jack Jeffrey

Photo by Jack Jeffrey

Saturday’s workshops, including special programs for children, will be highlighted by talks from Brian Sullivan, project leader for the Cornell Lab of Ornithology for, Dr. Chris Farmer, Hawaii program director for the American Bird Conservancy, and a panel discussion by the Hawaii Forest Bird Survey crew. Noah Gomes, park ranger at Volcanoes National Park will also speak about traditional Hawaiian featherwork.

Saturday’s program options include a hands-on Photography Workshop with professional photographer Jack Jeffrey and a block-printing workshop with artist Gretchen Grove. Materials will be provided.

Saturday night’s Gala Dinner will be headlined by Dr. Sam Gon III speaking on the cultural and biological significance of Hawaii’s unique bird life.

A highlight of the first-ever Festival is Sunday’s “sneak peek” of the newly created Hawai’i Island Coast to Coast Birding Trail with field-trip van departures from the east end, at Hilo, or from the west, Kailua-Kona. Other options are a pelagic (sea) birding trip with biologist guides Brian Sullivan, Mike Scott and Lance Tanino, or a bird photography field trip with Jack Jeffrey.

“We are very pleased with the excellent reception we’ve had so far,” said Rob Pacheco (Hawaii Forest & Trail). “Not only are we enrolling participants from Hawaii, but birders from across the U.S. Mainland have expressed great interest in our program. The Festival is a boon to Hawai’i tourism, and it also will give our keiki (children) a chance to learn more about the nature of Hawai’i, with the help of experts who will be joining us to teach at the Festival. ”

Festival sponsors include Hawaii Tourism Authority, County of Hawaii, Alaska Airlines, Audubon Magazine, Hawaii Forest and Trail, Destination Marketing and others.

For more information and Festival registration, please visit the website Book before August 1st to take advantage of early-bird pricing for all Festival components.

HPP’s Loss is Pahoa’s Gain – $22.3 Million Dollar Pahoa Park “In a Nutshell”

Mahalo to Councilman Paleka’s Assistant Nadia Malloe for following up on my question as to why the Pahoa Park has inflated from $5 million dollars to $22.3 million dollars and she got this answer:

Pahoa Park ExpansionAfter inquiring with Hawaii County Parks and Recreation (P&R), the following was shared:

P&R designs 4 types of parks, listed by size/capacity:

  • NEIGHBORHOOD Park – typically designed to meet the needs of neighborhood, such as University Heights
  • COMMUNITY Park – typically designed for small neighborhood communities, such as Isaac Hale and Hawaiian Beaches
  • DISTRICT Park* – typically designed to meet the needs of an entire district population capable for islandwide attractions, such as Pāhoa Park
  • REGIONAL Park* – typically designed to meet the needs of a specific region, usually a larger scale in comparison to a district park, such as Old Ace Park in Kona
    *Swimming pools are only allowed in DISTRICT and REGIONAL Parks.

Approximately 10 years ago, it became very apparent that Puna is a rapidly growing community. Thus, in efforts to meet the recreational needs in this geographic area, the administration of P&R proposed building a 20-acre community park in Hawaiian Paradise Park, with an estimated cost of $5.5 million.

At the time this $5.5 million project was being proposed in 2010-2012, area residents were strongly in opposition of this project due to concerns relating to traffic, safety and privacy of area residents, fee simple ownership, etc. P&R did not want to impose this project where it was not wanted. Thus, P&R began to look at other solutions to our rapidly growing Puna community.

In Pāhoa, the geographical heart of Puna, a district park already existed with 56 acres of land not yet developed. Since County P&R already had an established district park, it would ease the process as no land acquisition nor eminent domain was necessary to move forward.

This district park expansion is the most expensive project in P&R history and its being granted to not just Puna, but the geographical heart and center of Puna. There will be multiple benefits such as reducing criminal activity, promoting healthy living, creating a safer community, potential revenue for Puna, area residents and vendors.

P&R can offer more programs, engaging families, elderly, and persons with disabilities as well. In fact, according to the Office of the Prosecuting Attorney, in the past 4 years, juvenile crime decreased approximately 52%, thanks to the hard work and dedication from our County Parks and Recreation Dept. The projected completion of this project is as soon as next month or early September.

In a nutshell, basically the proposed project went from a small community park in HPP to a large district park in Pāhoa. For a price comparison, the amount of money the State spent to build the ONE new gym at Pāhoa High School, can build FIVE of our County gyms.

Nan Inc. provided me with the following aerial footage of the park being built:

Ohana Shoreline Fishing Tournament Aug. 19-21

The Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation invites anglers to register for the 20th Annual ‘Ohana Shoreline Fishing Tournament that will be held August 19-21.

Fishing Tournament Fish

Separate divisions are offered for keiki 5 to 12 years old, teens, men, women, kūpuna at least 55 years old, and ‘ohana or families. There also will be a barbless circle hook challenge. Entry fee is either $25 or $30 per person or family, depending on the division entered. Please make checks payable to “County Director of Finance.”

Weigh-ins will be conducted from noon until 1:30 p.m. Sunday, August 21, at Honoka‘a Gymnasium.

Completed registration forms must be turned in to the Department’s Recreation Division office at 799 Pi‘ilani Street in Hilo or postmarked by Friday, July 29. Registration forms, along with tournament rules, are available at County Parks and Recreation facilities island-wide, S. Tokunaga Store in Hilo and J. Hara Store in Kurtistown. The forms also can be found online at:

For more information about the ‘Ohana Shoreline Fishing Tournament, please call Jayme Carvalho at 962-2109 or 936-4285.

BISAC Summer Jam 2016 – Saturday, July 30

BISAC Summer Jam 2016

KDEN Presents “The Music Man” – Opens This Weekend

Kilauea Drama & Entertainment Network (KDEN) presents for their annual summer musical Meredith Willson’s “The Music Man” July 8 – 24 at KMC’s Kilauea Theater in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

Music Man Poster

“The Music Man” follows fast-talking traveling salesman Harold Hill, who poses as a boys’ band organizer and leader and sells band instruments and uniforms to the naive Iowa townsfolk, promising to train the members of the new band. But Harold is no musician and plans to skip town without giving any music lessons. His plans are foiled when he falls for Marian the librarian. Musical favorites include “Seventy-six Trombones”, “Trouble”, “’Till There Was You”, and “Gary, Indiana”.

Music Man coupleA cast of 36 theater veterans and newcomers are busy with rehearsals for Meredith Willson’s “The Music Man” The cast is lead by Scott Wuscher as Harold Hill and Alyssa Ishihara as Marian Paroo. Stephen Bond plays Marcellus, Harold’s old friend who has settled in River City and has started a new life with his girlfriend, Ethel Toffelmeir, played by Hayley Pereira. The Paroo family also includes Stephanie Becher as Mrs Paroo and Hayden Konanui-Tucker as Winthrop. Mayor Shinn is Steve Peyton, with Terry Sever as his wife, Eulalie and Samantha Saiki and Fiona Broward as his daughters, Zaneeta and Gracie. Chanan Lopez plays Zaneeta’s love interest, Tommy Djilas.

The schoolboard members who are the Barbershop Quartet are  Joy Sever, Joel Kelley, Dick Hershberger and Michael Kingston. Kelley’s daughter Ariana plays Amaryllis. The Pick-a-little ladies are Asia Helfrich, Carolyn Lee, and Helie Rock. Bill Chikasuye is the anvil salesman, Charlie Cowell.

Others in the cast include Sawyer Becher, Kaulima Boyer, Kamaile Carvalho, Raina Dale, Gordon and Gracelyn Greenlaw, Susie Halemano, Jalen Hook, Katie Kluzak, Joe Miyazaki, Kathy Mulliken, Dawn Pelletier, Deakon Temple, Briana Tucker-Archie, Coral Walker and Elizabeth Young. They are led by director Suzi Bond, music director Chris Tomich and choreographer Rachel Klein. Jonathan Sudler is the set designer.

Music Man LadiesShowtimes are Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 and Sundays at 2:30. Tickets are $15 general admission, $12 for seniors and students and $10 for children 12 and under. Pre-sale tickets are available at Kilauea General Store, Kea’au Natural Foods and The Most Irresistible Shop in Hilo. Tickets are also available at the door. For more information call 982-7344 or email

90-Year-Old Stripper on Americas Got Talent is From Hilo, Hawaii!!!

Spoiler alert for Hawaii folks… the 90-year-old stripper on tonight’s America’s Got Talent is Dorothy Williams from Hilo, Hawaii!  Williams has been known to many around the Big Island of Hawaii as “Yummy The Clown” entertaining children at many birthday parties over the years.

90-Year-Old stripper Dorothy Williams earned the first-ever Golden Buzzer from host Nick Cannon on America’s Got Talent 2016 on Tuesday, July 5, 2016!

90-Year-Old stripper Dorothy Williams earned the first-ever Golden Buzzer from host Nick Cannon on America’s Got Talent 2016 on Tuesday, July 5, 2016!

Dorothy was born in 1946 26, and has been dancing virtually all her life. Honestly, she looks great for being 90-years-old. She tells her story, talking about how she hadn’t become a star by 23, so she didn’t know what to do with her life. So she worked at a supermarket for 25 years until she and her husband moved to Hawaii. But she never forgot her passion for dancing, so she’s back to give it another shot. Dorothy starts out by singing “Let Me Entertain You”…and then does a strip tease!

Read more:

Renowned Big Island Artist Parker Packs Hollywood Gallery – Sam Choy and Aidan James on Hand

Renowned local Big Island Artist Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker’s highly anticipated mainland show opened to a jammed packed house in Hollywood California last night.  This year for the first time the artist was joined in his opening by legendary Chef Sam Choy and teenage Ukulele Sensation Aidan James.  Crowds lined up outside the historic La Luz De Jesus Gallery to meet the Hawaiian celebrity trio.

Brad "Tiki Shark" Parker, Celebrity Chef Sam Choy, Kid Sensation Aidan James and Agent Abbas Hassan met with folks in California last night

Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker, Celebrity Chef Sam Choy, Kid Sensation Aidan James and Agent Abbas Hassan met with folks in California last night

“It was a pleasure joining Brad to show off the original artwork of my new Hawaiian Kitchen Apparel line” commented Chef Sam Choy. “Big mahalo for those who came out to welcome us” he added.

Sam Choy Kitchen line is now available at and in many major retailers.

“What an honor it was to have the Chef and Aidan be a part of my show this year” commented Brad “Tiki Shark Parker”.  “It was a night I will always remember” he added.

Parker will be in Las Vegas for a few weeks before returning to Hawaii mid July.

Parker will be in Las Vegas for a few weeks before returning to Hawaii mid July.

Parker’s show titled Hawaiian Night in Hollywood runs through July 31, most of the artwork was sold on opening night but is definitely a must see for all in the area.  For a sneak peak see

About La Luz De Jesus Gallery – Easily one of the most important, significant and ground-breaking galleries on the Mainland. La Luz De Jesus, quickly garnered a considerable reputation with Collectors, Galleries, & Artists around the world; & gave birth to a genre of an Art movement that would come to be known as “Lowbrow Art”.


Introduction to Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) for Remote Sensing and Resource Management

The College of Continuing Education and Community Service (CCECS) at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo is accepting registration for a workshop entitled Introduction to Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) for Remote Sensing and Resource Management. Classes will be held on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, July 11, 12 and 13, from 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. at UH Hilo’s Edith Kanaka’ole Hall, Room 274. Tuition is $750 and includes all training materials.

Aerial Photography

Aerial Photography

The course will be taught by Dr. Ryan Perroy, assistant professor, geography and principal investigator, Spatial Data Analysis and Visualization Lab in the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies at UH Hilo. Participants will gain the essential knowledge and organization required to safely and legally integrate UAS operations into their daily work activities through live demonstrations, hands-on UAS simulations, and computer processing techniques working with UAS-derived data.

Topics will include mission planning and execution, choosing the right fixed wing or copter platform, applying for a FAA Certificate of Authorization application (COA), creating high resolution orthorectified imagery, using Structure from Motion technology to create 3D digital surface models, and change detection applications.

Due to federal export laws, enrollment is limited to U.S. citizens only. A USB is recommended. For more information and to register, contact CCECS at 932-7830 or email

Hilo Fourth of July Parking Restrictions

The County of Hawai‘i Department of Parks and Recreation announces that motorists may not park on Downtown Hilo playing fields between 4 p.m. and 11 p.m. Monday, July 4.

fireworksThe temporary parking ban is being implemented to provide for the safety of people attending the Fourth of July Hilo Bay Blast celebration.

The temporary parking ban will apply to all County of Hawai‘i athletic fields located along Kamehameha Avenue in the downtown Hilo area. Signs and barricades will designate the areas where parking is prohibited.

For more information, please contact Jason Armstrong, Public Information Officer, at 961-8311 or

Hawaii Belly Dance Convention to Showcase Middle Eastern Dance

Now in its 12th year, the 2016 Hawai‘i Belly Dance Convention will bring performers and teachers from near and far to Honolulu to share the beauty and drama of Middle Eastern dance October 13-17.

Belly Dancing

“We’re so excited to announce the twelfth annual Hawai‘i Belly Dance Convention. This year our amazing instructors will be taking a deeper dive into the history and culture of belly dance,” said convention founder Malia Delapenia. “We hope you’ll join us this October with some of the best belly dancers in the world sharing their knowledge and passion with dancers and dance lovers alike.”

This year’s featured visiting performers and instructors include tribal fusion belly dance pioneer Mira Betz, belly dance superstar and instructor Petite Jamilla, and pioneering male fusionist Frank Farinaro.

In a new event for this year’s convention, enjoy Cultural Seminars followed by the Reflection performance review on Thursday, October 13 at the Honolulu Museum of Arts. Cultural seminars begin at 5 p.m. Following the seminars is an intimate session of performances and commentary, an opportunity for professional feedback from HBDC’s visiting instructors. Beginning at 6:30 p.m., dancers can participate in a question and answer session and get feedback on their own performances. The evening is open to the public. General admission is $15, with discounted admission for museum members and military.

On Friday, October 14, join us for the crowd favorite Shimmy Showcase Gala at the Honolulu Museum of Art’s Doris Duke Theatre (900 S. Beretania Street). The Shimmy Showcase is an opportunity for convention participants to see their teachers in action, and for everyone to appreciate the enchanting art of Middle Eastern dance. The two shows will be preceded by a no-host reception with special preview performances. “Essence” the 6:30 p.m. show, will be a family-friendly show that traces the once traditional movements of belly dance to its contemporary existence. “The Reveal” will continue the modern exploration with more edgy, sensual, fusion performances for an audience 18 years and older at 9:30 p.m. Doors open an hour and a half before each show. General tickets for each show begin at $30 with VIP available and discounted admission for museum members, military, or for those enjoying both shows.

The Shimmy with Aloha Workshops, now in their ninth year, will be held at the Neal Blaisdell Center on Saturday and Sunday, October 15 and 16. Workshop teachers bring decades of experience to each workshop, and offerings will be available for belly dancers at all levels of experience.

Individual workshops are $30-$75, or day passes to all workshops are available from $200-265. A free Beginners of Belly Dance class will be taught on Sunday from 12:30-1:15 p.m. by Turkish belly dance artist Jin from Japan. All ages and levels of experience are welcome and encouraged to share in the love of the art.

Just outside the Shimmy with Aloha Workshops at the Neal Blaisdell Center, a marketplace will be set up with belly dance costumes, dance wear, and other Middle Eastern artisans from around the world. Many of these products are not available locally most of the year. The Middle Eastern Marketplace will be open to the public from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Following the Sunday workshops, the hotly anticipated official HBDC VIP After Party will be held at an exciting location to be announced soon.  The final day of this year’s HBDC, Monday, October 17 will begin with a day of outdoor adventures with friends old and new.

Attendees can save over $100 and gain admission to all HBDC events with the Ku‘uipo Package. The $480 pass includes VIP access to the Cultural Seminars & Reflection, Shimmy Showcase Gala, Shimmy with Aloha Workshops, and the HBDC VIP After Party. This package, which saves $120 over purchasing individual events, is only available until August 31.

For more information, to purchase tickets for the Shimmy Showcase, or to register for workshops or other convention events, visit or call (808) 234-1006.

Lava Flows Over the Pali – Tour Company Begins Taking Reservations

This satellite image was captured on Monday, June 27, by the Advanced Land Imager instrument onboard NASA’s Earth Observing 1 satellite.

The image is provided courtesy of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Although this is a false-color image, the color map has been chosen to mimic what the human eye would expect to see. Bright red pixels depict areas of very high temperatures and show active lava. White areas are clouds.

The image is provided courtesy of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Although this is a false-color image, the color map has been chosen to mimic what the human eye would expect to see. Bright red pixels depict areas of very high temperatures and show active lava. White areas are clouds.

The image shows continued advancement of the flow towards the southeast. The flow front is progressing down the pali, along the western portion of the abandoned Royal Gardens subdivision and along the eastern boundary of Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park. Over the past few days, the flow has moved at a rate of about 300 meters per day (0.2 miles per day) – an increase over the rate last week and likely due to the steeper slope on the pali.

Back in business baby. Who wants to see Lava. Come check us out at Kalapana Cultural-Tours and we can get you there. Lava is pumping right now.  "Ikaika Marzo"

“Back in business baby. Who wants to see lava. Come check us out at Kalapana Cultural-Tours and we can get you there. Lava is pumping right now.” ~Ikaika Marzo

Kalapana Cultural-Tours is now accepting reservations to take visitors out to see the lava safely with an experienced guide.

Hawaii is 2016’s 6th Most Patriotic State

Hilton Fireworks

With the Fourth of July just days away, the personal-finance website WalletHub today released its list of 2016’s Most Patriotic States as a follow-up to its recent look at the Best & Worst Fourth of July Destinations.

Hawaii ranked 6th in patriotism.

To identify the country’s patriotic hotspots, WalletHub compared the 50 states across 12 key metrics such as military engagement, voting habits and civic education.

Patriotism in Hawaii (1=Most; 25=Avg.):

  • 10th – Percent of Residents Who Enlisted in the Military
  • 1st – Number of Active-Duty Military Personnel per Capita
  • 28th – Number of Peace Corps Volunteers per Capita
  • 9th – Number of Veterans per Capita
  • 22nd – Civics Education Requirement
  • 9th – Number of Americorps Volunteers per Capita

For the full report, please visit:

DBEDT Releases Data on Big Island and Kauai Consumer Spending

The state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT) released two reports today that provides data and analysis on spending patterns of Big Island and Kauai households in 2014.

Click to view report

Click to view report

The reports summarizes data obtained through household surveys conducted by DBEDT in 2015 and covers spending in 2014. DBEDT’s Research and Economic Analysis Division created the report.

Historically, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) published the consumer expenditure data for Honolulu County, which was compiled from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Consumer Expenditure Survey.  The BLS survey only included Oahu residents and excluded neighbor island residents.  Data on consumer spending patterns for neighbor islands did not exist before DBEDT compiled the data through household surveys.

Some of the findings in the Hawaii County report include the following:

  • An average household in Hawaii County spent an average of $51,700 in 2014. Of the 14 major spending categories, 71.2 percent of the expenditures went towards the three basic needs categories of housing, transportation, and food.H
  • Housing was the largest expenditure category, comprising an average of 40.5 percent of total expenditures or $20,921 in 2014. Housing was followed by transportation (16.3 percent or $8,405), food (14.4 percent or $7,420), and personal insurance & retirement savings (7.8 percent or $4,046).
  • In 2014, a typical Hawaii County household spent about $10,000 less than its Honolulu counterpart, who spent $62,280 on average. Compared with Honolulu County, Hawaii County consumers spent slightly less on housing and more on transportation and food, though the total shares allocated to these three basic needs categories are rather similar, both between 71 percent and 72 percent of total expenditures.
  • Hawaii County household’s annual expenditures were slightly lower than the U.S. average in 2014, with Hawaii County at $51,700 and the U.S. at $53,495.  Housing comprised a larger portion in Hawaii County consumers’ spending (40.5 percent for Hawaii County and 33.3 percent for U.S.). Hawaii County consumers spent relatively more on food (14.4 percent for Hawaii County and 12.6 percent for U.S.) and less on transportation (16.3 percent for Hawaii County and 17 percent for U.S.).
  • Lower income households spent relatively larger shares on the three basic needs categories, 78.3 percent for the lowest-income households compared with 65.5 percent for the highest-income households. Furthermore, higher income households spent both a greater amount and share of their expenditures on entertainment and insurance and retirement savings.
  • Homeowners with mortgages spent $65,911 in 2014, which was more than $20,000 higher than the annual expenditures of home renters and home owners without mortgages. Both homeowners with mortgages and renters spent a large share on housing, 42.2 percent and 44.8 percent, respectively, resulting in comparably smaller shares on most other spending categories, relative to home owners without mortgages.

Some of the findings in the Kauai County report include the following:

  • A typical household in Kauai County spent an average of $64,651 in 2014. Of the 14 major spending categories, nearly 73.2 percent of the expenditures went towards the three basic needs categories of housing, transportation, and food.
  • Housing was the largest expenditure category, comprising an average of 41.5 percent of total expenditures or $26,819 in 2014. Housing was followed by transportation (16.8 percent or $10,836), food (14.9 percent or $9,638), and personal insurance & retirement savings (6.8 percent or $4,398).
  • In 2014, a typical Kauai household spent more than $2,000 more than its Honolulu counterpart, who spent $62,280 on average. Compared with Honolulu County, Kauai consumers spent slightly less on housing and more on transportation and food, though the total shares allocated to these three basic needs categories are rather close, both at around 73 percent of total expenditures.  Kauai household’s annual expenditures were 21 percent higher than the U.S. average in 2014, with Kauai at $64,651 and the U.S. at $53,495.   Housing comprised a larger portion in Kauai consumers’ spending (41.5 percent for Kauai and 33.3 percent for U.S.). Kauai consumers spent relatively more on food (14.9 percent for Kauai and 12.6 percent for U.S.) and slightly less on transportation (16.8 percent for Kauai and 17 percent for U.S.).
  • Lower income households spent relatively larger shares on the three basic needs categories, 80 percent for the lowest-income households compared with 69.8 percent for the highest-income households. Furthermore, higher income households spent both a greater amount and share of their expenditures on transportation, insurance and retirement savings, and entertainment.
  • Homeowners with mortgages and renters had comparable shares for housing related expenses (44.5 percent versus 44 percent). However, homeowners’ annual expenditure amount was much higher than renters, with $87,460 for home owners with mortgages versus $54,139 for home renters.

The Hawaii County results are based on 554 completed surveys from the Big Island, and the Kauai County results are based on 337 completed surveys from the islands of Kauai and Lanai.

The full reports are available at:

Free Orchid Show – 34th Annual Kona Daifukuji Orchid Club Show

It’s an “Eruption of Orchids” at the 34th annual Kona Daifukuji Orchid Club (KDOC) show and sale Sunday, July 17 at the Daifukuji Soto Mission Hall. This year’s theme salutes the centennial of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park with a central blooming display backdropped by a volcano.


The free event offers attendees complimentary refreshments, plus an orchid boutonniere corsage—while they last.  Time is 8 a.m.-2 p.m. with the Daifukuji Taiko Drummers performing at 10 a.m.

Enjoy an elaborate and colorful display of live blooming cattleya, cymbidium, dendrobium, phalaenopsis, miltonia, vanda and more. Cameras are welcome. In addition this year’s show will have a display of orchids appearing on “Plates, Platters and Plaques.”

Got growing questions? Veteran members will staff a Question and Answer Booth where attendees can get expert advice on caring for orchids. The club boasts eight charter members who each have been growing orchids at least 30 years at different Kona elevations.

In addition to the other displays, the annual event offers an outdoor sale of high-quality orchid species and hybrids grown by club members and Big Isle commercial growers.

The Kona Daifukuji Orchid Club is West Hawai‘i’s oldest orchidaceae organization with a mission to learn and foster orchid culture and promote fellowship among orchid collectors. The club meets the second Wednesday of every month at the Daifukuji Soto Mission Hall on Hwy. 11 at mile marker 114, just north of Kainaliu. For information, visit, get club updates at or phone 808-325-3261.

25th Annual Great Waikoloa Rubber Duckie Race

Kings’ Shops is celebrating the 25th year of the Great Waikoloa Rubber Duckie Race, which benefits the United Cerebral Palsy Association of Hawai’i.

rubber duck

The festivities at Kings’ Shops start at 10:00 am on Monday, July 4, and will include food booths, children’s entertainment, live music on the stage, and special promotions at participating stores including Tiffany & Co., Sunglass Hut, Jourabchi, Crazy Shirts, Genesis Gallery, Macy’s, Na Hoku, Da Big Bags, and Tori Richard. The Rubber Duckie race will begin at 3:00 pm on Kings’ Lake followed by a special performance by Anuhea at 3:30 pm on the stage. The evening will end with the awards ceremony at 5:00 pm at the Kings’ Shops stage and then a fireworks extravaganza at the Waikoloa Bowl at 8:00 pm.

Free activities will also be available including photo booths, airbrush tattoos, balloon sculpting, lei making, bouncy houses, and EMS and fire trucks to explore. Restaurant booths will include featured menu items from The Three Fat Pigs and A-Bay’s Island Grill. Local Big Island beers will also be available at the beer garden located at The Three Fat Pigs’ front lanai.

Adoption certificates for the Rubber Duckie race are on sale until 3:00 pm on race day (July 4) and offer a chance to win over $37,000 in prizes. Individual duckie adoptions are $5 each and Quack Packs are $25 each and include four adoption certificates and one event T-shirt (while supplies last).

For a complete list of entertainment, promotions and activities, please visit


Food Producers Invited to Exhibit at Taste of the Hawaiian Range

Local food producers are invited to display and sample their product at the 21st annual Mealani’s Taste of the Hawaiian Range and Agricultural Festival on Friday, Sept. 9 at the Hilton Waikoloa Village.

Taste Kam Item

The state’s premiere ag showcase again offers a free opportunity for Hawai‘i farmers, ranchers and food producers to hookup with participating chefs and attendees during the 6-8 p.m. Taste.

The event is also open for agricultural and sustainability-themed organizations wanting to present informational displays.

Producers and ag-related educational organizations interested in participating may signup online at or by contacting Jill Beaton at or 808-937-0314. The deadline is July 31.

Taste headlines 30-some statewide chefs who dazzle diners using various cuts of forage-fed meats and a cornucopia of island fruits, vegetables and other farm products. Also on tap is a 3 p.m. culinary activity, “Cooking Pasture-Raised Beef 101,” presented by chefs Kevin Hanney and Jason Schoonover of the award-winning 12th Ave. Grill.

taste2Pre-sale tickets for Taste are $45 and $60 at the door. Entry to Cooking 101 is $10. Tickets are for sale online and available starting July 1 at Kuhio Grille in Hilo, Kamuela Liquors and Parker Ranch Store in Waimea, Kona Wine Market in Kailua-Kona and Kohala Essence Shop at the Hilton Waikoloa Village. Purchase tickets online at

Watch for ticket giveaways on Facebook at Taste of the Hawaiian Range and Twitter #TasteHI.

For general event information, phone 808-322-4892.

Anyone who requires an auxiliary aid or service for effective communication or a modification of policies and procedures to participate in this event should contact 808-322-4892 no later than August 9, 2016.

Taste Hayden

Hawai‘i residents eager to savor the flavors of the Taste can take advantage of Hilton Waikoloa Village’s Taste of the Hawaiian Range Package with rates starting at $239 + tax per room on Friday, Sept. 9, 2016. This Kama‘aina Special also includes two tickets to the Taste of the Hawaiian Range. Guests must show valid Hawai‘i state ID at checkin and must have Hawai‘i address in reservation. Pre- and post-event hotel room prices start at $149 plus tax per room, per night, based on availability. To book an overnight stay at Hilton Waikoloa Village under an exclusive Taste of the Hawaiian Range room package (code TSH), visit, or or call 1-800-HILTONS.

Mealani’s Taste of the Hawaiian Range and Agriculture Festival provides a venue for sustainable agricultural education, plus encouragement and support of locally produced ag products. The premiere ag-tourism event is a partnership between CTAHR, Hawaii Cattlemen’s Association, Hawaii Cattlemen’s Council, Kulana Foods, Hawaii Beef Producers, UH-Hilo CAFNRM, County of Hawaii Dept. on Environmental Management and community volunteers. Sponsorship also includes Hawaii County Research and Development, Hawaii Community College Food Service & Culinary Program, Kamehameha Schools, KTA SuperStores, West Hawaii Today and Pacific Radio Group. The quality and growth of this event are rooted in business participation, sponsorship and in-kind donations. For more information, visit

Kohala Mountain Educational Farm Summer Festival

The Kohala Mountain Educational Farm (KMEF) invites the public to celebrate at its 1st Annual Summer Farm Festival, July 23 – 31, from 10am to 6pm daily.

Kohala MountainCome to the Kohala Mountain Educational Farm for an incredible fun-filled event featuring tractor-pulled hayrides, a jumping pad, a petting zoo, pony rides, face painting, and carnival games. There will be you-pick vegetables in the field for harvest – fun for the whole family!

The festival will host a line-up of local musicians, including Mikey Hooser. Delicious foods including hot off the grill burgers & hot dogs and shave ice will be available for sale. Admission & Parking is Free. Activities are priced per activity with prices ranging from $5 – $9 per activity. Picnics are welcome.

Directions: Take Kohala Mountain Road (Highway 250) from Waimea towards Hawi. The farm is between Mile Marker 12 and 13 on Kohala Mountain Road. Farm entrance is on the left side of the road. For more information and event updates, visit or KMEF’s Facebook Page at