Willie K and Rodney V at the Crown Room

Willie K and comedian Rodney Villanueva are bringing their holiday tour to the Crown Room! It’s going to be funny and entertaining, and will be the only show you will be able to hear Willie K’s “Oh Holy Night”… show starts at 7PM.
Willie K at Crown Room

Hilo Folks are Big Spenders During the Holidays

Yep… us folks in Hilo are big spenders come Christmas time.  According to Nerdwallet, Hilo ranks 2nd in the most expensive places for holiday spending.

The average family in Hilo spends about $1,172.02 during the holidays.  The national average for a family of four is $877.22.

spending

County Inviting Public to Two Holiday Events

The County of Hawai‘i invites the public to two special holiday events this year – the fourth annual Magic Of The Season open house at the Hawai‘i County Building in Hilo, and the inaugural A Holiday Family Affair at the West Hawai‘i Civic Center in Kona.

Hilo’s Magic Of The Season will run weeknights December 8 – 19 from 5:30 – 8 p.m. at the Hawai‘i County Building.

magic of the season 2014

County volunteers will decorate dozens of trees and offer holiday cheer so families may enjoy a safe, community-oriented event. Members of the public may view the exciting decorations weekdays starting at 8 a.m. Live entertainment and holiday activities will be available weeknights between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m.

Kuana Torres Kahele, Lehua Kalima, Henry Kapono, Cyril Pahinui, Darlene Ahuna, and Mark Yamanaka will be among the Nā Hōkū Hanohano award-winning performers joining local favorites, hula groups, and the Hawai‘i County Band to entertain audiences.

Kona’s inaugural event, A Holiday Family Affair, will take place on Friday, December 12 from 5 – 6:30 p.m. in the courtyard of the West Hawai‘i Civic Center.

holiday family affair

The program will consist of a pule by Kumu Keala Ching and performances by Ka Pā Hula Nā Wai Iwi Ola and the Kealakehe Intermediate School Chorus & ‘Ukulele Ensemble. Bring a towel or mat for seating on the courtyard lawn.

At both events, non-perishable food items will be accepted for the Hawai‘i Island Food Basket. Please kōkua. For more details on either event, please contact the Office of Mayor Billy Kenoi in Hilo at 961-8211 or Kona at 323-4444.

9th Annual Moku O Keawe International Hula Festival Winners Announced

Winners of the 9th Annual Moku O Keawe International Hula Festival were announced Saturday to an enthusiastic audience at the Hilton Waikoloa Village in Waikoloa Beach Resort.

Pākahi (solo) Awards were presented for Wahine (age 13 to 45), as well as and Wahine Hālau divisions. Wahine Hālau and Pākahi performed the ancient Hula Kahiko on Thursday, and modern Hula ‘Auwana on Saturday, and scores were combined to determine overall winners.

Makua (women age 36-54) competed as soloists in ‘Auwana only. Kupuna Group and Solo winners (age 46 or older) were announced on Friday, following the Kupuna competition.

The top-scoring Wahine Hālau was Hālau Hi‘iakaināmakalehua, Nā Kumu Hula Robert Ka‘upu and Lono Padilla. From the same hālau, Caitlin Ka‘ōpūiki was named Miss Hula Pākahi, and Pristina Louis took the Makua solo honor.

 Moku O Keawe International Festival judges and advisory committee, with 2014 winning wahine group, Hālau Hi‘iakaināmakalehua, Nā Kumu Hula Robert Ka‘upu and Lono Padil


Moku O Keawe International Festival judges and advisory committee, with 2014 winning wahine group, Hālau Hi‘iakaināmakalehua, Nā Kumu Hula Robert Ka‘upu and Lono Padil

Altogether, fifteen hālau from Hawai‘i and Japan competed in the three-day event, which also featured Hawaiian cultural workshops and and extensive Made-in-Hawai‘i Market Place.

Kupuna group winners, from Kealakekua, Hālau Hula O Kawaimaluhia, Kumu Hula Keoni Jenny, with MOK President Sig Zane, and judges Nalani Kanaka'ole, Olana Ai, Cy Bridges and Iliahi Paredes

Kupuna group winners, from Kealakekua, Hālau Hula O Kawaimaluhia, Kumu Hula Keoni Jenny, with MOK President Sig Zane, and judges Nalani Kanaka’ole, Olana Ai, Cy Bridges and Iliahi Paredes

WINNERS of the 2014 Moku O Keawe International Hula Festival:

Kupuna Wahine Pākahi Waikoloa:

1st Place
Hula Studio Malulani, Sayuri Ito Sensei
Kupuna Wahine: Setsuko Fukushima
Mele: “Mahina O Hōkū”

2nd Place
Ku‘u Pua Lehua Nani, Keiko Ito Sensei
Kupuna Wahine: Sanami Hayashi
Mele: “Ka Nohona Pilikai”

3rd Place
Hula Studio Nā Lei O Hōkū, Mineko Ichihara Sensei
Kupuna Wahine: Toshiko Toshi
Mele: “Lei Ana O Mānoa”

Kupuna Wahine Hālau:

1st Place
Hālau Hula O Kawaimaluhia, Kumu Hula Keoni Jenny
Mele: “Kapi‘olani Pāka”

2nd Place
Ke Ala O Ke Ao Cultural Arts Studio, Nā Kumu Hula Kahikina Ah Sing and Kalani Ah Sing
Mele: “Kau‘ionālani”

3rd Place
Hālau Hula O Makalapua, Mutsuko Fujimaki Sensei
Mele: “Lei Ko‘ele”

Makua Pākahi Waikoloa:

1st Place
Hālau Hi‘iakaināmakalehua, Nā Kumu Hula Robert Kaupu and Lono Padilla
Prestina Louis

2nd Place
Hālau O Kawaimaluhia, Kumu Hula Keoni Jenny
Heidi Hart

3rd Place
Hālau O Makalapua, Mutsuko Fujimaki Sensei
Yukari Takahashi

Wahine Solo, Miss Hula Pākahi Waikoloa:

1st Place
Hālau Hi‘iakaināmakalehua, Nā Kumu Hula Robert Ka‘upu and Lono Padilla
Caitlin Ka‘ōpūiki

2nd Place
Hālau O Ka Hanu Lehua, Kumu Hula Kamaka Kukona
Aleahnani Makuakāne

3rd Place
Hālau Pukamaikalā, Yukiko Toyama Sensei
Fumi Hirakata

Wahine Hālau:

1st Place
Hālau Hi‘iakaināmakalehua, Nā Kumu Hula Robert Ka‘upu and Lono Padilla

2nd Place
Hālau O Ka Hanu Lehua, Kumu Hula Kamaka Kukona

3rd Place
Ke Ala O Ke Ao Cultural Arts Studio, Nā Kumu Hula Kahikina Ah Sing and Kalani Ah Sing

The Moku O Keawe International Festival is sponsored by the Moku O Keawe Foundation, a private nonprofit organization dedicated to enhancing, enriching and educating the practice and development of hula and its associated arts. Mahalo to generous sponsors, Waikoloa Beach Resort, Hilton Waikoloa Village, Waimea Music Center, Sig Zane Designs, Na Makua Designs, Traditions Hawai‘i, Big Island Candies, Sushi Shiono, Waiola, KAPA Radio and others. For more information, visit www.MOKIF.com.

HELCO Cancels Hilo Arbor Day Tree Giveaway Due to Unavailability of Plants

Hawaii Electric Light regrets to inform the community that the Arbor Day Tree Giveaway scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 8, at its office in Hilo has been postponed due to the unavailability of plants.

My son assisting last year at Amy Greenwell's.

My son assisting last year at Amy Greenwell’s.

In West Hawai‘i, the Amy B.H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden in Captain Cook will hold a three-day Arbor Day Celebration from Nov. 7-9. A limited number of trees will be distributed across the three days from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. while supplies last.

The company apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause.

New Screenplay Contest for Big Island Film Festival

Long before the lights and cameras come to life, movie action starts on paper, with a fine-tuned craft of screenwriting. In celebration of the screenplay, Big Island Film Festival at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i (BIFF) has announced its first feature film script contest, with top entries saluted at the tenth annual festival, May21-25, 2015. The winning script will be submitted to the Paradigm Agency in Hollywood for possible representation.

Some of the winners that were present to receive their awards.

Some of the 2014 Big Island Film Festival award winners.

With a signature focus on narrative films, BIFF has nurtured the art of storytelling, both on the big screen and off, presenting screenwriting and filmmaking workshops, networking and social opportunities, and audience feedback in a casual, creative setting. The new screenplay contest is a natural outgrowth of inspiration and education planted over the last decade.

Celebrity Portia Doubleday and Consultant Jen Grisanti

Celebrity Portia Doubleday and Consultant Jen Grisanti

“Because we have writers who come to our workshops every year, we know that their film ideas are taking shape, if not actually completed,” said BIFF Executive Director Leo Sears. “This could give the right motivation to actually sit down and polish, fine-tune, give your project its best shot. Paradigm is one of the top five talent agencies in the business, and, although we can’t guarantee anything, just to have them consider representing your script is a tremendous opportunity; it’s priceless.”

BIFF Director Leo Sears gives actor Tom Berrenger the "Golden Honu" award at the 2010 BIFF

BIFF Director Leo Sears gives actor Tom Berrenger the “Golden Honu” award at the 2010 BIFF

Scripts must be submitted no later than February 1, 2015, and must be between 60 and 140 pages in standard screenplay format. Professional readers will screen all submissions, by reviewing the first ten pages, to select nine semi-finalists. Of those, three finalists will be evaluated by veteran screenwriters, instructors and consultants and one winner selected.

Saturday Night Live's Kate McGinnon received a Golden Honu Award.

Saturday Night Live’s Kate McGinnon received a Golden Honu Award.

All semifinalists will receive filmmaker passes to BIFF 2015 and finalists will receive a Golden Honu Award plate and listing on Variety.com. Only the winning screenplay, announced at the Awards Brunch on May 25, will be submitted to Paradigm Agency in Hollywood for possible representation.

Jackson Rathbone at the 2014 BIFF.

Jackson Rathbone at the 2014 BIFF.

Films may be submitted by mail or email, or on line via www.FilmFreeway.com, an easy and affordable entry service for screenwriting contests and film festivals. Deadlines are January 1, 2015 (Early Bird) and February 1, 2015 (Regular). Complete rules, fee information and entry forms are available at www.bigislandfilmfestival.com.

Kristina Anapau was another Golden Honu recipient.

Kristina Anapau was another Golden Honu recipient.

Big Island Film Festival at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i is a celebration of independent narrative films and filmmaking, taking place May 21-25, 2015. Major sponsors include The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i, The Shops at Mauna Lani and Hawaii Tourism Authority/Hawai‘i County CPEP.  For more information, visit www.BigIslandFilmFestival.com or call (808) 883-0394.

Taste of the Hawaiian Range Opens One Hour Earlier

Fresh and nutritious Hawai’i Island food and the people who produce it are the stars of Mealani’s Taste of the Hawaiian Range Friday, Sept. 26 at the Hilton Waikoloa Village.

The Taste of the Hawaiian Range is one of my sons favorite events!

The Taste of the Hawaiian Range is one of my sons favorite events!

This year’s annual event that promotes agricultural sustainability is 5-8 p.m. to offer an extra hour for grazing among tasty culinary stations, food producer booths and agricultural-themed displays. The fun sprawls both inside the Hilton’s recently renovated ballroom and outside on the scenic Lagoon Lanai.

Pre-sale tickets are available at a dozen islandwide locations and online for $45 through September 25; they are $60 on event day. Details: www.TasteoftheHawaiianRange.com.

New this year, seven of the 30 culinary stations will showcase a chef using local products from a specific rancher and farmer out on the Lagoon Lanai. These stations will identify those who contributed to the dish for attendees, as well as the meat cut used. In addition, participating ranchers and farmers are also invited to talk story with attendees at each station. Event chair Jeri Moniz says the purpose for the pairings “is to foster more communication between food producers and chefs,” one of the event’s goals.

Doesn't this look good?

Doesn’t this look good?

Each Taste chef is assigned to prepare a whopping 100 pounds of a specific cut of pasture-raised beef—or locally sourced pork, lamb, mutton, goat or USDA-inspected wild boar—and the result is a festive adventure of tasting everything from tongue to tail. All the beef cuts are utilized so chefs and attendees can get acquainted with not-so-familiar cuts while having fun. The pasture-raised beef is sourced from local, humanely raised cattle that are free of antibiotics and hormones.

In addition to “grazing” on prepared top round or Rocky Mountain Oysters—aka bull’s testicles—attendees can taste samples at local food product booths and view compelling educational displays on sustainability and agriculture.

Those wanting to learn first-hand how to use and prepare 100 percent pasture-raised beef can attend the event’s annual Pasture-Raised Beef Cooking 101 culinary demonstration. This year’s guest presenter is Peter Abarcar Jr, executive chef of the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel, who is preparing Chinese Style Oxtail with Radish and Salt Fish Fried Rice plus Grass-Fed Chuck Steak Pipikaula with “Killachurri” Sauce The 3 p.m. presentation includes sampling and is $10; tix available online or at the door.

Also open to the public is a free 1:30 p.m. seminar, “A Primer on Local Beef” by local livestock extension agent and long-time researcher, Glen Fukumoto. “A Primer on Local Beef” will delve into the history of the beef industry in Hawai‘i and look at the product’s supply and demand issues. Fukumoto will also examine meat quality for the grass-finished market through the years, based on his 30 years of research.

Hawai‘i residents eager to savor the flavors of fresh, local cuisine can take advantage of Hilton Waikoloa Village’s Taste of the Hawaiian Range Package with rates starting at $239 + tax per room on Friday, September 26, 2014. The kama’aina special 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 accommodations start at $149 per room, per night, based on availability. To book the exclusive package, (code TSH), visit www.hiltonwaikoloavillage.com/kamaaina, or call 1-800-HILTONS.

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

A free parking and shuttle service to Taste is available from ‘Anaeho‘omalu Bay noon-10 p.m. For general event information, phone (808) 969-8228.

Mealani’s Taste of the Hawaiian Range and Agriculture Festival provides a venue for sustainable agricultural education, 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, UH-Hilo CAFNRM, County of Hawaii Dept. on Environmental Management and community volunteers. Sponsorship also includes the Hawaii Tourism Authority, the Hawaii County Research and Development, Hawaii Community College Food Service & Culinary Program, KTA SuperStores, West Hawaii Today, KBIG, KAPA and Native FM. The quality and growth of this event are rooted in small business participation, sponsorship and in-kind donations. For more information, visit http://www.TasteOfTheHawaiianRange.com.

Pacific Edge Magazine Announces New Gala Date and Updated Nomination Deadline

Hawaii’s best and brightest companies and business leaders to be honored at red-carpet awards gala on September 25

Pacific Edge Magazine (PEM) announced today it has moved the Fourth Annual Pacific Edge Magazine Business Achievement Awards to September 25, 2014. Element Media, Inc., Hawaii’s premier custom publishing firm, will host the exclusive red-carpet soiree to recognize the state’s most influential business leaders, organizations and non-profits while celebrating the company’s eighth anniversary.

pacific Edge

Local business and community leaders are encouraged to submit nominations for the Fourth Annual Pacific Edge Magazine Business Achievement Awards by August 14, 2014 at www.pacificedgeawards.com. Self-nominations are encouraged.

“Since our very first issue in 2005, we’ve been passionate about highlighting the individuals, companies and organizations that inspire and innovate our local business community through our monthly networking events, in-depth articles and online presence,” said Jamie Giambrone, co-founder of Element Media, Inc. and co-publisher of Pacific Edge Magazine. “This awards gala will provide the opportunity to shine the spotlight on those most deserving of their achievements, while also celebrating the eighth anniversary of Pacific Edge.”

Nomination categories include:

  • Lifetime Achievement Award
  • Young Professional of the Year
  • Business Executive of the Year
  • Educator of the Year
  • Commitment to Green Award
  • Corporate Social Responsibility Award
  • Best New Business
  • Best Family-Run Business
  • Best Social Media Campaign

All submissions are evaluated by an independent panel of judges comprised of respected local community leaders.  Detailed information about the gala and award nomination submissions are available at www.pacificedgeawards.com.

Last year’s gala attracted an esteemed crowd of more than 350 guests in which the following individuals, businesses and organizations were recognized:

  • Lifetime Achievement Award – Mel Tanioka, Founder & President, Tanioka’s Seafoods & Catering
  • Young Professional of the Year Award – Ina Chang, President, Aloha Data Services
  • Business Executive of the Year Award – Shelley Wilson, President & CEO, Wilson Care Group
  • Commitment to Green Award – Oceanit
  • Educator of the Year Award – Matt Lawrence, Teacher, Waikiki Elementary School
  • Corporate Social Responsibility Award – Pop-A-Lock of Honolulu
  • Best Social Media Campaign Award – W.M. Keck Observatory
  • Best Family-Run Business Award – Kamaka Hawaii
  • Best New Business Award – Mojo Barbershop
  • Best Non-Profit Impact – The Pacific Alliance to Stop Slavery

Inquiries about corporate sponsorship or nominations can be directed to Jamie Giambrone at (808) 737-8711 or Jamie@elementmediahi.com

Receive updates and the latest awards news by following Pacific Edge Magazine on Twitter at @PacificEdge and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/PacificEdge.

Groundbreaking Held for $22.3 Million Pahoa District Park

The biggest single investment in recreational opportunity in Hawai‘i County history is coming to Lower Puna, following a groundbreaking ceremony this morning for the $22.3 million Pāhoa District Park.

Photo Op

Photo Op

Mayor Billy Kenoi, Councilmembers Greggor Ilagan and Zendo Kern and County officials joined members of the Puna community to kick off the project, which will provide more recreational opportunities than ever before to the fastest growing region of Hawai‘i Island.

“We are committed to giving the families of Puna access to first-class recreational opportunities,” said Mayor Kenoi. “The facilities in this park will be safe places for our kids to learn good sportsmanship and teamwork, and to stay active and healthy.”

This $22.3 million, year-long project to deliver a district-level park to Lower Puna will include a covered playcourt building, two baseball fields, two multipurpose fields, a keiki playground, concession building, new comfort station, accessible walkways, and ample parking areas. Contractor Nan, Inc. is scheduled to start clearing and grading the site immediately.

“This wonderful sports facility is going to really, truly benefit our children,” said Kel Lee, president of the Puna Panthers Pop Warner Football Association. “It’s a dream come true for Pāhoa.”

“Building this park, making this a better place for our children, is a collaborative effort,” said Councilmember Zendo Kern, who represents District 5 (Puna Mauka) and remembers playing in the existing Pāhoa Park as a youngster. “It was never a matter of if, and now it’s a matter of getting it done.”
Pahoa Park Rendering

Totaling more than 29 acres, the improvements will complement the park’s existing facilities that include the Pāhoa Community Aquatic Center, Pāhoa Neighborhood Facility, Pāhoa Senior Center, and Pāhoa Skate Park.

“This park will be a place for our community to play, bond, and build memories for generations to come,” said Councilmember Greggor Ilagan, who represents District 4 (Puna Makai).

The Puna Community Development Plan, adopted by the Hawai‘i County Council in 2008, identified the need for a district park in Lower Puna. A comprehensive planning process involving the community, the County, and project designers WCIT Architecture began in 2012 to ensure these new facilities reflect the recreational needs of Puna’s residents.

Tonight at the Akebono Theater – Willie K and YOZA

YOZA and WillieK

Tours and Film Share History of World War II Detention Site at Kīlauea Military Camp

Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park will offer guided tours of the former World War II detention camp site at Kīlauea Military Camp on Tuesday, July 29, and show the documentary, The Untold Story: Internment of Japanese Americans in Hawai‘i.

Drawing of KMC detention camp by Japanese-American Yoshio "George" Hoshida, courtesy of the Japanese National Museum

Drawing of KMC detention camp by Japanese-American Yoshio “George” Hoshida, courtesy of the Japanese National Museum

The tours and film are free, but park entrance fees apply.

The one-hour tour is at 10:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m., and will focus on the Japanese residents of Hawai‘i who were detained at Kīlauea Military Camp during World War II. No registration is required. Meet at the check-in area at Kīlauea Military Camp (KMC), near the flagpole. Park archeologist Dr. Jadelyn Moniz-Nakamura and archive technician Geoff Mowrer will lead the tours. Limited copies of the new National Park Service cultural resources report, A Silent Farewell, will be available.

Photo of the U.S. Army Signal Corps standing in formation in front of Building 34 at Kilauea Military Camp. Today, the building houses the U.S. Post Office, Crater Rim Cafe and Lava Lounge. NPS Photo Archives.

Photo of the U.S. Army Signal Corps standing in formation in front of Building 34 at Kilauea Military Camp. Today, the building houses the U.S. Post Office, Crater Rim Cafe and Lava Lounge. NPS Photo Archives.

At 1 p.m., the documentary The Untold Story: Internment of Japanese Americans in Hawai‘i, will be shown at the Lava Lounge, located adjacent to the post office at KMC. That evening, the park will show the film as part of its After Dark in the Park series at 7 p.m. in the Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium. Filmmaker Ryan Kawamoto and Carole Hayashino, president and director of the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‘i, will present both showings of the documentary.

While the story of the 1942 mass round-up, eviction and imprisonment of Japanese Americans in California, Oregon and Washington has been well documented, very little is known about the Hawai‘i internees and their unique experience during World War II. This is the first full-length documentary to chronicle this untold story in Hawai‘i’s history.

Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce Participates in “Hawaii on the Hill” Initiative

The Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce participated in the first-ever Hawaii on the Hill initiative July 22 and 23 at the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C. Co-chaired by Senator Mazie Hirono and the rest of the Hawaii delegation, this event highlighted the State’s businesses, food and culture on Capitol Hill. The two-day affair included a Hawaii Policy Summit, tours of the White House and Capitol, and concluded with a “Taste of Hawaii” reception with over 700 invited guests experiencing the sights, sounds and tastes of Hawaii.

Colette Masunaga prepares to greet attendees at the Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce and County of Hawaii product table at “Taste of Hawaii.”

Colette Masunaga prepares to greet attendees at the Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce and County of Hawaii product table at “Taste of Hawaii.”

Over 30 Hawaii businesses and organizations were welcomed on the “Hill.” Hawaii Policy Summit discussions included Senator Charles Schumer of New York, Senators Mark Begich and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Senator Chris Coons of Delaware, Director Patricia Loui with the Export-Import Bank of the U.S., Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Daniel Russel, U.S. Trade and Development Agency Director for Export Promotion Leila Aridi Afas, and Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs Margaret Cummisky. Hawaii attendees were able to share issues and concerns, as well as promote Hawaii as a place to do business.

Senator Hirono asked the Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii to spearhead this event, with neighbor island chambers and statewide industry associations invited to participate. The Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce, the County of Hawaii and Tiki Shark Art represented the Island of Hawaii in Washington, D.C. Products offered at the KKCC/County table for the “Taste of Hawaii” reception included ohia lehua honey from The Big Island Bee Company, Spirolina and BioAstin samples from Cyanotech, over 600 anthuriums from Green Point Nursery, chocolate samples from Kona Mountain Coffee Company, and macadamia nuts from Mauna Loa. Tiki Shark Art shared their unique, local Hawaiian style art designs and beach apparel by Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker.

Brad holding his original art piece "Forbidden Island".

Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker holding his original art piece “Forbidden Island”.

The Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce provides leadership and advocacy for a successful business environment in West Hawai‘i. The result of KKCC’s work is a community of choice as reflected in our quality of life, business and individual opportunity and manifest respect for our culture and our natural resources. For info, 329-1758 or visit kona-kohala.com.

Tahiti Fete of Hilo Returns to the Big Island

The drums will be pounding and hips will again be gyrating as the Tahiti Fete of Hilo returns to Hawaii Island on Saturday and Sunday July 26 and 27, thanks to founding producer Pua Tokumoto. “The last year we did it in Hilo was 2008 and so many performers and audience members kept asking us to bring it back, I just decided we’d try again,” said Tokumoto.

tahitiTahitian halau and individual performers are invited to sign up for the dance competition for this year’s event that takes place at the Afook-Chinen Civic Auditorium. Several halau have already signed up from around Hawaii, the mainland and Mexico with a few inquiries from Japan so residency in Hawaii is not mandatory. “We have fantastic prizes that attract very high quality performers,” said Tokumoto.

Tahiti2

At the fete, it isn’t all about the dancers and drummers. To help create the right festival atmosphere, arts, crafts, food and product vendors are also being sought.

With over two decades of producing the much larger Tahiti Fete of San Jose (largest of its kind in the US), Tokumoto brought the fete to Hilo in 2000, where she and award-winning steel guitarist husband Dwight Tokumoto call home. “There is such a wide interest in and connection to Tahitian culture in Hawaii, it was a natural to start a fete here,” she said. “Actually Tahitian culture is global and since we started the Hilo fete, we established a smaller No Te Here i Tahiti Mexico in Mexico City that includes workshops on ori (Tahitian dance) and hula” as well as a mini-fete.

Tahiti3

Sponsors are being sought to help to keep ticket prices reasonable and insure quality prizes while providing experiential marketing opportunities for corporations and businesses. Benefits of sponsorship include branding in advertising materials, logo placement in the program and VIP seating at the fete, among others. For general information go to FACEBOOK: Tahiti Fete of San Jose & Hilo or to www.tahitifete.com. For more sponsor or vendor information or to sign up for the dance competition, contact Pua at 935-3002 or pua@tahitifete.com.

Meet Lava – Hawaii’s Tweeting Two-Colored-Faced Cat

Ok… well every once in a while I come across something pretty strange.  Tonight I think I out did myself.  Meet “Lava” the Tweeting Two-Colored-Face Cat from Honolulu, Hawaii:

Lava's Twitter "Profile" picture

Lava’s Twitter “Profile” picture

Lava tweets about everything a normal cat would… things like the thing she tweeted today:
Lava Tweet 1Lava bills herself as a “Hot Hawaiian Adventure Cat” and seems to live quite the lifestyle:
Lava Tweet 2The owner of the cat said that she named her “Lava” because she looked like lava pouring.  You can check out her entire series of tweets here @ohmylava.

Her first tweets were on Valentines day.

Her first tweets were on Valentines day.

She is only followed by 54 folks at this time… but I expect her to soon beat out Justin Bieber for followers… LOL!

19th Annual Huggo’s Wahine Tournament Coming Up

The 19th Annual Huggo’s Wahine Tournament is coming up Saturday, July 26, 2014.

Click for more information

Click for more information

This year’s theme, The Great Gatsby, celebrates the Roaring Twenties, when jazz, gin and fun loving flapper women captured America’s heart. This entertaining and competitive fishing tournament is a summer tradition in Kona and is limited to 75 lady angler teams, so women are encouraged to sign up early. Festivities kick off with a party on Friday, July 25, at Huggo’s On the Rocks, and fishing starts in Kailua Bay, Saturday, July 26 starting at 8:00 am.  4:00 PM is the end of the fishing day, and weigh-ins of the days catch can be seen at Honokohau Harbor, Charter Desk.

Proceeds from the tournament are donated to Family Support Hawaii (FSH), a Hawaii Island United Way agency.

“We always look forward to July when we host our annual Wahine Tournament,” said Huggo’s owner Eric von Platen Luder. “For almost 20 years, this fun, charity-focused tournament has donated nearly $150,000 to Family Support Hawaii. We’re thankful that through the community’s support of the event, Family Support Hawaii can make a difference in people’s lives.”

All-women anglers are competing for cash prizes that will be awarded to the teams with the biggest marlin/billfish weighing more than 300 pounds. Separate categories for most released marlin, ahi, ono, and mahi mahi will receive trophies for the largest catch.

The Huggo’s Wahine Tournament also rewards style and panache with prizes and cash awarded to the best decorated boat and team costumes. Awards will be announced at a special presentation Sunday evening, July 27 at On the Rocks. For tournament information including registration, visit Huggos.com

Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park Offers Free Hawaiian Music Songwriting Retreat

Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park is offering a two-day Hawaiian music songwriting retreat for beginners on Saturday, August 16 and Sunday, August 17. Hawaiian music, language and haku mele (Hawaiian song) experts Kenneth Makuakāne and Kaliko Trapp-Beamer will lead the workshops.

Kenneth Makuakane teaching ukulele.

Kenneth Makuakane teaching ukulele.

Both workshops run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and will be held at the park’s Education Center. Advance registration is required. To register, call (808) 985-6166. Leave your name, email address, and best contact number no later than August 8. Space is limited. The park will contact you by email to confirm your reservation.

The retreat will be held in the park at the summit of Kīlauea. Budding songwriters will find inspiration in this wahi kapu (sacred place), among the towering koa and ‘ōhi‘a lehua trees, over fields of ropy pāhoehoe lava, and in the awe-inspiring eruptive glow from Halema‘uma‘u Crater.

Also inspirational are the retreat’s accomplished teachers. Kenneth Makuakāne is a multiple Nā Hōkū Hanohano award winner, along with his group, The Pandanus Club. He’s a prolific songwriter (1,500-plus songs), producer of more than 100 albums, and collaborator who has worked with virtually all of the stars of Hawaiian music over the years.

Kaliko

Kaliko Trapp-Beamer

Kaliko was raised as the hānai son of Hawaiian cultural expert Aunty Nona Beamer (1923-2008), learning Hawaiian chant, storytelling, traditional protocol, family songs, and stories. He currently teaches Hawaiian language courses at the University of Hawai‘i in Hilo, and helps coordinate the Beamer Family Aloha Music Camp. He is the President of the Mohala Hou Foundation dedicated to “preserve and perpetuate Hawaiian culture through education and the arts.”

The two-day Hawaiian songwriting retreat is sponsored by Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park and Hawai‘i Pacific Parks Association. Park entrance fees apply.

BISAC Inviting Public to Its 50th Anniversary at Summer Jam 2014

The Big Island Substance Abuse Council is inviting the public to celebrate its 50th Anniversary at Summer Jam 2014. The free event will be at the Waiākea High Campus located on 155 W. Kawili Street in Hilo on July 26 from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm with the strongman competition starting at 7:00 am.

Summer Jam

The Summer Jam will feature a strongman contest as well as ‘ono food like roasted corn on the cob, Hawaiian Nachos from Aloha Lehua Cafe, wood fire pizza from @islandwoodfired, mochiko chicken from the Po‘okela Vocational Program, poke bowls from the Waiākea High School Athletic Booster Club, the Snow Factory and sweets from Hilo Bake Company. There will be crafts, a silent auction featuring an opportunity to bid on a car, free keiki activities including the Zoo Choo and an incredible entertainment line up featuring New Zealand pop sensations, J-Geeks.

Since 1964, the Big Island Substance Abuse Council has been inspiring individuals and families to reclaim and enrich their lives in the wake of the ravages of substance abuse. They offer a continuum of services that are culturally appropriate and aligned with the ever-changing behavioral health field.

“We are so grateful to have been able to serve the community for so many years. And we are incredibly grateful to all our sponsors, especially our title sponsors KTA and the Olson Trust, for making the event possible,” said BISAC CEO Hannah Preston-Pita.

Money raised from food and craft booths and the silent auction will go to support BISAC’s Po‘okela Vocational Program, which is in the process of creating a food truck business as part of its training program.

For more information about Summer Jam 2014 go to summerjamhawaii.com.

Cosplayers Invited to Enter Epic Bowling Battle and Costume Contest at KBXtreme for Glory and Big Prizes

HawaiiCon is partnering with KBXtreme for the Big Island’s first cosplay event, ever.

HawaiiConCosplayers from around the Big Island are invited to the KBXtreme Kona Bowl on July 19th, 2014, from 5pm until closing for a family-friendly event full of bowling, tabletop gaming, and costume contests. Those looking to participate in the cosplay events can register that night. The cosplay event is free for all ages. The bowling contest is available for $6.25 or less depending on age.

For the costume contest, outfits will be judged based on originality, craftsmanship, and accuracy. The top cosplayers will win passes to HawaiiCon and other prizes. The cosplayer with the most points in bowling will also win a day pass.

All passes will allow winners to participate in the main cosplay contest at HawaiiCon in front of stars Holly Conrad and Jessica Merizan from Syfy’s Heroes of Cosplay to compete for even bigger prizes.

“Our desire is to strengthen the local cosplay community on the Big Island,” says HawaiiCon CEO, GB Hajim. “This is something the Big Island has wanted for a long time, and we want HawaiiCon to be a catalyst that keeps the cosplay community connected and involved.”

The Royal Kona Resort is supporting the event by offering rooms for $105 with single and double occupancy for those traveling. Game demos provided by Lava Top.

No weapons, including cosplay weapons, are allowed at this event.

About HawaiiCon:
HawaiiCon is a non-profit organization whose mission is to increase public awareness of science, the science fiction genre, and mythologies, past and present, which guide humanity. HawaiiCon will emphasize education and uniquely Hawaiian contributions to science, including navigation, and ensure that Native Hawaiian culture is accorded an honored place in the conversation of science and science fiction.

HawaiiCon will take place at the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel on September 12-14th, 2014. Kama’aina rates are available starting at $50 a day. For a full list of Guests, Events, and other information please visit the website at http://www.hawaiicon.com.

Big Night in Los Angeles for Big Island Artist

Renowned local Big Island Artist Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker’s highly anticipated mainland show opened to hip Holiday crowd in Los Angeles, California last night at the historic La Luz De Jesus Galley. This Tiki Art collection has taken the beloved artist over two years to create.

Outside of Historic La Luz De Jesus Gallery.

Outside of Historic La Luz De Jesus Gallery.

“We have been patiently waiting for this night for years so we can experience and share this magical moment with our good friend Brad,” comments Ken Ruzic, fellow artist and patron, “It has been worth the wait!” he exclaimed.

“Brad is one of the few artists on our gallery’s exclusive roster who constantly has a sellout showing,” quoted Matt Kennedy – Director of La Luz De Jesus Gallery, “and tonight was no exception. We love hosting Brad here in our gallery… he is welcome anytime,” he added.

Group pic with Gallery Director Matt Kennedy and art patrons.

Group pic with Gallery Director Matt Kennedy and art patrons.

Parker’s show titled, The Red Tiki Lounge, runs through July 27 and is a must see for all in the area.

About Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker –

After working for Marvel & DC Comics for many years, he gave it all up and moved to the Big Island of Hawaii almost a decade ago. Through his Kailua Kona based company Tiki Shark Art Inc., Parker sells his work though galleries locally and around the world. His unmistakable, lurid style of art reflects influences as diverse as the Flemish masters, comic books, and Hawaiian tourist kitsch.

Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker is a truly a master and a world class, award winning creator of Polynesian Pop Surrealistic Art with a Hawaiian twist.

About La Luz De Jesus Gallery –

Easily one of the most important, significant and ground-breaking galleries in America. La Luz De Jesus quickly garnered a considerable reputation with Collectors, Galleries, & Artists around the world & gave birth to two genres of California Art that would come to be known as “Lowbrow” and “Pop Surrrealism.”

Lyman Medeiros Returns to Radio

New West Broadcasting (NWB) announced that long-time broadcaster Lyman Medeiros returns to radio, July 7, 2014, as he takes the helm for “Captain Dave,” during afternoon drive time, on B93 (93.1 FM Kona) and B97 (97.1 FM Hilo).

Lyman Medeiros

Lyman Medeiros

“Lyman is well known around the island as a radio and TV personality, and through his MC work at numerous community and business events. He understands the value of being connected to the community we serve,” said Chris Leonard, NWB President and General Manager. “The station is built on that connection; it’s the way we do business. Lyman’s long history of community involvement is right in line with ours, and we are very happy to have him on the team.”

An active voice in Hawai’i Island music and broadcasting for over 30 years, Medeiros began his radio career in 1980, after working as a musician here, in Honolulu and elsewhere. Returning home to Hilo, he found a job with KIPA radio, playing Hawaiian music and later classic rock. Along the way, he had a chance to work with  on-air personalities DC and B Free, who he will re-join at B93/B97, and the veneral Mynah Bird, early in his career. Medeiros remembers being part of the opening team for NWB’s new KWXX radio station, about the same time that the invention of music on compact disk was introduced.

With his new position, Medeiros looks forward to going back to what he calls his “radio roots,” as B97/B93 specializes in what they call “Hawaii’s classic hits”–a highly-researched mix of album cuts, baby boom anthems and local favorites.

“A lot of stations have a strictly hit song format—whether it’s country, hip-hop, or other genres,” said Medeiros. “One advantage of B93 and B97 is that they open a broader base, a wider variety in their musical format.”

“Radio has a personal touch,” he said. “In that people feel like ‘this is my station in my back yard; where I live and shop and drive.’” He said that listeners like to know and trust that when they tune in to a particular station, they are going to hear what they want to listen to at the time.

Medeiros will continue to host programming on Big Island Television and participate in community events and enterprises. His show can be heard Monday-Friday from 3-7 p.m. and Sat. from 6 a.m. to 12 p.m. on B93 (93.1 FM Kona) and B97 (97.1 FM Hilo).

Hawaii’s B93/B97, positioned solidly between Rock and a Soft Place, delivers the classics that define the new mainstream of listeners 25 to 54. For more information, please visit www.b97hawaii.com or call (808) 935-5461.

New West Broadcasting is locally owned, and operates five Big Island radio stations including: KWXX 94.7 FM Hilo, KAOY 101.5 FM (KWXX Kona), KNWB 97.1FM Hilo (B97 Hilo), KMWB 93.1FM Kona (B93 Kona) and KPUA AM 670 Hilo.