Hawaii Residents Can Spot the Space Station Tonight

Hawaii residents can spot the International Space Station tonight (depending on clouds).

International Space StationIt will be visible beginning tonight, Monday, August 24 at 7:46 PM. It will be visible for approximately 3 minutes.  Maximum Height: 64 degrees and it will appear in the Northwest part of the sky and disappear to the South Southeast.

Big Island State Champs Heading to Washington D.C. – Seeking Sponsor

Hawaii’s defending girls basketball state champs are headed to Washington D.C.

WildcatsThe Konawaena Wildcats, six-time state champions in the last dozen years, are one of 48 teams across the nation that have been invited to participate in the prestigious Title IX Tournament  and Conference to be held Dec. 27-30 at the D.C. Armory  in our nation’s capital.

This three-day, four-bracket tournament widens opportunities for female student-athletes as teams with highly recruited players compete against local talent before a wide range of coaches and scouts seeking to award scholarships  — scholarships made possible because of the passage of Title IX.

Konawaena returns a strong lineup of six returnees who were part of the team that defeated Lahainaluna of Maui 51-41 to win the Hawaii High School Athletic Association state tournament in March. The wildcats feature Chanelle Molina, the state’s top player and the most recruited girls basketball player in Hawaii high school history.

Also returning are starters Mercedes “Ihi” Victor, Mikayla Tablit, and sisters Celena Molina and Cherilyn Molina. They are joined by returnee Mahie Kaawa and newcomer Jenny Fong. The Wildcats, who were ranked 20th in the nation last year, are favored to repeat as state champions in 2015.

While participating in the tournament and conference in D.C., the team will also tour important institutions, monuments and sites within the District of Columbia. The event is sponsored by the Sankofa Project, a non-profit organization dedicated to raising the bar of expectations for girls, particularly as scholar-athletes. It also seeks to raise the expectations of the systems and communities that support them.

The team is seeking a title sponsor for this event in return for any type of marketing opportunities for the sponsor as amateur athletics will allow. If a title sponsor cannot be identified, the committee hopes to seek smaller donations by businesses and individuals who have supported the program in the past and see the value of the Konawaena girls basketball program. Many of Coach Bobbie Awa’s players have had the opportunity to receive college educations, and some of them have returned to Kona and Hawaii and become role models to new generations of scholar athletes.

The companion conference will allow participants to learn about Title IX, but more importantly. the girls will be empowered to self advocate in the area of sports, STEM careers, leadership, public speaking, financial literacy, citizenship and civics.

“This experience will last a life time for some of our girls,” said Awa. “We’ve been invited to other good tournaments, but this is an opportunity for them to learn about Title IX, where their opportunities came from.”

A committee has been formed by Athletic Director Bill Trumbo to come up with donations to defray the cost of this trip for the team and coaches. This committee is made up of Trumbo, head coach Awa and Bobby Command, Konawaena booster and deputy planning director for the County of Hawaii. Separate travel packages will also be available for basketball fans who would like to accompany the team to Washington D.C.

“The success at Konawaena doesn’t just happen,” said Trumbo. “It takes the passion and commitment of someone like Coach Awa. I see this trip as recognition for all her years of  building this program.”

There is reason to believe that the Kona girls have a shot at faring well in this tournament. The 2014 version of the Wildcats gained national prominence during the Iolani Classic by defeating No. 23-ranked Miramonte 63-62 and No.  1-seeded Riverdale Baptist (Md.) 49-41, before falling to St. Mary’s of California 68-59 in what would be the team’s only loss of the season. The Wildcats finished 31-1 and ranked 23rd in the nation.

“This is just like the movie ‘Hoosiers,'” said Command. “This is a small team from a tiny school in a far off corner of an isolated state traveling to the big city miles to play some of the top teams in the nation.”

Konawaena High School is a firm supporter of equal opportunities for female scholar athletes, which were made possible by the 1972 passage of Title IX co-authored and introduced by Sen. Birch Bayh (Ind.) and Hawaii Rep. Patsy Takemoto Mink, the first Asian-American woman to serve in Congress.

Now known as the Patsy Mink Equal Opportunity in Education Act, it states, in part, “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.”

Big Island Police Shoot Man Attempting to Run Them Over

Hawai’i Island police are investigating a non-fatal officer-involved shooting in Puna on Thursday.

HPDBadgeAt approximately 1:48 p.m. Puna Patrol officers and State of Hawai’i Sheriff’s attempted to serve a bench warrant at a residence on Mauna Lani Tract Road when a vehicle sped towards the officers in a threatening manner.

In response, a police officer fired three shots and a deputy sheriff fired two shots towards the vehicle, striking the operator. The vehicle subsequently struck another deputy sheriff before coming to rest after running into bushes on the property.

Jomal Ford, a 27 year old male from Mountain View was arrested at the scene for suspicion of attempted murder and for the warrant of arrest. He was taken by ambulance to Hilo Medical Center for treatment of an apparent non-life threatening gunshot wound and remains in custody while detectives continue the investigation.

As is standard practice in any police involved shooting, the Police Department’s Area I Criminal Investigations Section will conduct a criminal investigation into the shooting and the Office of Professional Standards will conduct an administrative investigation.

Palace Celebration Debuts New Hawaiian Music Book/CD

Hulihe’e Palace celebrates the publication of a new Hawaiian music songbook/CD release by Aunty Noelani Mahoe at 10 a.m.-noon Friday, Aug. 28. Admission is free.

Bookcover

Join the Daughters of Hawai’i in a morning of great music with a sing-a-long. Aunty Noe will also sign her new songbook, “Ho‘ahu ‘Ana o Na Mele-Ho‘okahi Iwakalua a Hapa Kakini-One Score and Half a Dozen-A Collection of Songs, Stories & Pictures“ on the palace grounds.

Edwina Marie Noelani Kanoho Mahoe, better known as “Aunty Noe,“ offers 26 Hawaiian songs—each with lyrics, chords and professional recording—in the new release. The compilation is geared as a complete reference for musicians of all skill levels and also provides the fascinating stories behind many of the songs.

The book will be available for purchase at the palace gift shop, open 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Mondays- Saturdays, phone 808-329-6558.

Construction of New Playground Completed on Mauna Kea

Hawai‘i County Mayor Billy Kenoi, County Councilman Aaron Chung, and the Department of Parks and Recreation helped open Hawai‘i County’s newest playground Monday, August 17, by dedicating a 3,700-square-foot playground at Mauna Kea Recreation Area.

mauna kea playground

General contractor Site Engineering Inc., with assistance from Takamine Construction Inc., built the unique playground designed for keiki 5 to 12 years old. It utilizes a system of ropes, rails, spinning apparatus, and climbing ladders to emphasize balance and movement. To protect the children from falls, the playground also features a padded safety surface protected by a synthetic-turf covering that resembles natural grass.

Hawai‘i County has invested more than $4 million building new playgrounds around the island since Mayor Kenoi took office in December 2008. Additional playground construction is planned in the near future.

The playground is open daily at the park located near 34-mile marker of the Daniel K. Inouye Highway. Since assuming stewardship of the former State park on July 1, 2014, Hawai‘i County has opened new restrooms, paved the parking area, created a picnic area, installed lighted flag poles, landscaped the area, and hired security at the renamed Mauna Kea Recreation Area. Future plans call for renovating the cabins and water system to allow for overnight use.

Man in Pahoa Attempts to Siphon Gas and Steal Truck from Church Parking Lot

Former Alaska resident Shane Johnson has turned himself in to local authorities for attempting to siphon gas and attempting to steal a vehicle from a church parking lot in Pahoa this past week.

Shane Johnson

Shane Johnson

Shane Johnson turned himself in after people on social media recognized him after the victims family posted what happened on Facebook and began to give him heat online for what he had done to a very well known community member.

It has been reported that after he was caught “red-handed” and approached by the victim, he ran off into the bushes leaving his girlfriend behind to take the fall for him.

Epic Origami Exhibit at Imiloa Astronomy Center

From miniature folds to life-size sculptures, the Japanese art of origami can come in a variety of unique shapes, sizes and materials.

“Great White Shark” by origami artist Nguyen Hung Cuong

“Great White Shark” by origami artist Nguyen Hung Cuong

The ʻImiloa Astronomy Center of the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo presents Epic Origami, a new temporary exhibit that will explore the art and science of origami and how the ancient craft is making advances in astronomy, medicine and the automotive industry. The exhibit, which runs from July 5 through September 27, will feature origami artists from around the world.

Featured artists:

Bonnie Cherni is an avid student of origami artist John Montroll’s designs and was inspired to fold origami from age of fifteen. She is the leading artist for this exhibit and has collaborated with guest artists from around the world, creating everything from miniature to life-sized sculptures, in mediums ranging from paper, aluminum, copper and canvas. Her art embodies the idea of “folding sturdy sculptures that can live out in the real world.”

Vietnamese artist Nguyen Hung Cuong lives in Hanoi and folds many of his expressive designs using a Vietnamese paper with a waxy finish called do. He has been folding since the young age of five and has been featured in many origami books with his incredibly detailed pieces.

Terry Nicolas is a professional origami artist who resides in Paris, France. He is an accomplished author and creator of origami-shop.us, one of the most popular origami sites in the world.

Steven Epstein resides on Hawaiʻi Island. With a degree in computer science and minor in math, Epstein has fun bringing math to life with his intricate modular origami pieces.

Local artist Shannon Nakaya is a highly recognized bird surgeon and veterinarian who applies her understanding of anatomical structure and function to folding complex origami.

Between the Folds

In conjunction with this exhibit, the award-winning film Between the Folds will be shown daily in the planetarium at 11 a.m. (not full dome, but letterbox format).

This documentary paints a striking portrait of the remarkable artistic and scientific creativity that fuels the ever-changing art of origami, fusing science and sculpture, form and function and ancient and new.

Epic Origami

Exhibit details

The exhibit will officially open on Sunday, July 5 at 9 a.m. with two showings of Between the Folds at 10 a.m and 11 a.m. and origami folding stations available throughout the day. From 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. ʻImiloa members are invited to a private pizza lunch and exclusive origami folding activities with Cherni.

Regular exhibit guests are also encouraged to participate in the origami scavenger hunt and try their hand at creating their own origami at the origami folding station.

Admission to Epic Origami and Between the Folds is included in the general admission fee of $17.50 for adults and $9.50 for children. Kamaʻaina prices are available and ʻImiloa members receive free admission.

Cherni will be back at ʻImiloa to teach special workshops on July 11 and September 19, 10-11:30 a.m. Admission is $25.00 for members and $35.00 for non-members. Space is very limited so early registration is suggested. An adult must accompany children under 10. To sign-up, visit ʻImiloa’s front desk or call (808) 969-9703.

27-Year-Old Dies in Two-Vehicle Collision

A 27-year-old Laupāhoehoe man died Saturday (August 15, 2015) from injuries he received in a two-vehicle collision on Route 19 (Hawaii Belt Road) in the area of the 9-mile-marker.

Daven Dolan

Daven Dolan

The man was identified as Daven Dolan of a Laupāhoehoe address.

Responding to a 4:11 a.m. call, South Hilo Patrol officers determined that Dolan was operating a 2006 Lexus four-sedan and traveling north on Route 19 when he crossed the centerline and collided with a 2008 GMC Master delivery truck traveling south.

The driver of the GMC truck, a 37-year-old man from Hilo, was transported to the Hilo Medical Center by Fire Rescue personnel and later flown to The Queen’s Medical Center for further treatment.

Dolan was also transported to the Hilo Medical Center where he was pronounced dead at 6:40 a.m.

Police believe that alcohol may be a contributing factor in this crash.

Traffic Enforcement Unit officers have initiated a negligent homicide case and have ordered an autopsy to determine the exact cause of death.

Anyone with information regarding this collision is asked to call Officer Casey Cabral at 961-8889.

This is the 15th traffic fatality on the Big Island this year compared to 8 at the same time last year.

Award Winning Comedian Paul Ogata Coming to Hilo

PAUL OGATA on the Big Island!!!

Paul Ogata is an award-winning comedian, part-time porn star and quite possibly America’s leading comedy export and he is coming to the Big Island to put on a show at Hilo Town Tavern on August 29, 2015.
Ogata in Hilo
The Hawaii-born Ogata left his island home for Los Angeles in 2006 after a successful career as a top-rated morning radio personality. Shortly thereafter, Paul won the prestigious 32nd Annual San Francisco International Comedy Competition, putting him in an exclusive club with the likes of Dana Carvey, Sinbad, Doug Stanhope and other comedy greats.

Paul’s victory propelled him to numerous television appearances including The Late Late Show, Comedy Central’s Live at Gotham, Comics Unleashed and his show stealing set on Showtime’s groundbreaking “Pacific Rim Comedy.” Paul was also tapped to co-star along with various adult film stars in the cult fave motion picture, “Porndogs.”

While Paul performs across the United States, his tour schedule also includes regular stops across six continents. Paul headlines shows from Times Square to Tokyo and from Sydney to San Antonio. On stage, Paul Ogata lays bare his insecurities, recounts his marital foibles and hammers on world events.

Paul’s show is an edgy, often-improvised, always hilarious wild ride through the corners of his mind. Buckle up and come along for the ride!

Also performing will be Jose Dynamite & Other Guests

Doors open at 7pm, Showtime 8pm. 18 & Over until 10pm
(Minors must be accompanied by an adult)

Tickets are $15 and available at:

Blanes Drive Inn – Industrial
150 Wiwoole St | Hilo, HI
(808) 935-2259

Hilo Town Tavern
168 Keawe St | Hilo, HI 96720
(808) 935-2171

Hawaii Good Government Groups Announce 2015 “Rusty Scalpel” Winner

The League of Women Voters and Common Cause Hawaii have identified HB 15, CD 1 (Act 173, Session Laws of Hawaii 2015) “Relating to Elections” as their 2015 “Rusty Scalpel” winner.  The “Rusty Scalpel” recognizes enactment of a bill whose subject has been substantially amended without opportunity for public input and legislative review as required by the Hawaii Constitution.

Click to view bill

Click to view bill

The Hawaii Constitution sets procedures for enactment of new laws.  The purpose of these procedures is to facilitate public participation and to discourage “fraud” and “logrolling”.  Article III, Section 14 provides “Each law shall embrace but one subject which shall be expressed in its title.”

In plain English, our Legislature is NOT supposed to pass a bill which addresses 2 or more unrelated subjects.  Article III, Section 15 provides that “No bill shall become law unless it shall pass three readings in each house on separate days.”  In plain English, our Legislature is NOT supposed to pass a bill whose subject has not had three separate readings in the State House and three separate readings in the State Senate.

During the 2015 session, the League of Women Voters and Common Cause Hawaii identified more than 20 bills which did not comply with Article III, Section 14 and/or Article III, Section 15.  The 2015 Legislature actually passed seven bills whose subjects did not receive 3 readings in both the House and Senate. (These are Acts 104, 118, 126, 142, 173, 186 and HB 540, CD 1 which was vetoed.) From these seven “candidates”, the League and Common Cause Hawaii have selected Act 173, Session Laws of Hawaii 2015, for our 2015 “Rusty Scalpel” award because:

  1. Act 173 addresses three unrelated subjects (absentee ballot procedures, terms of Election Commission Chair, evaluation of Chief Elections Officer).
  2. One subject of Act 173 (terms of Election Commission) did not have either 3 readings or      a public hearing in the House.
  3. Another subject of Act 173 (evaluation of Chief Elections Officer) did not have 3 readings or a public hearing in either the House or the Senate.

Last year the League and Common Cause chose Act 81, SLH 2014, for our 2014 “Rusty Scalpel” award.  The subject of Act 81 (which authorized the Hawaii Tourism Authority to acquire a conservation easement at Turtle Bay using revenue bonds amortized with hotel tax revenues) did not have 3 readings or a public hearing in either the House or the Senate.  This year the League and Common Cause are pleased to report that the Legislature followed appropriate procedures, and held numerous public hearings, before passing legislation to clarify, replace, and “fix” Act 81.

Coast Guard Seeking Help Locating Big Island Resident

The Coast Guard is seeking the public’s help in locating Gregory Voight, mid 40s and resident of the island of Hawai’i.

Pahoehoe Beach

Watchstanders at the Coast Guard Sector Honolulu Command Center received a report Tuesday from a good Samaritan, stating she witnessed a man depart his vehicle with a large bag, a brown wooden kayak with metal oars and enter the ocean at Pahoehoe Beach just south of Kailua-Kona Sunday about 6:45 p.m.

The Coast Guard contacted the Hawaii Police Department and determined the vehicle is registered to Gregory Voight. The police have checked Voight’s residence but have not located him on land and his car is still parked at Pahoehoe Beach.

The Coast Guard has no reports of missing persons or distress in the area but is asking for assistance from the public to locate Voight and verify his safety.

Anyone with information on Voight’s whereabouts or anyone who has seen a brown wooden kayak is requested to contact the Coast Guard Sector Honolulu Command Center at (808) 842-2600.

The Coast Guard encourages boaters and waterway users to always file a float plan and leave it with a reliable person who can be depended upon to notify the Coast Guard, or other rescue agency, should you not return or check‐in as planned.

The Coast Guard reminds boaters to exercise caution over the next few days as Tropical Storm Hilda passes south of the Main Hawaiian Islands and creating a tremulous sea state with 8 to fifteen foot seas and East winds gusting between twenty and thirty knots.

 

Big Island Property Owners Encouraged To Attend Informational Meetings on Preliminary FEMA Flood Maps

The Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR), Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and County of Hawai‘i are inviting Big Island residents and property owners to attend important upcoming public information meetings next week on changes in the new FEMA Digital Flood Insurance Rate Maps (DFIRMs) for Hawai‘i County.

Flood Insurance

Click to view study

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is nearing the end of a multi-year effort to update and modernize the Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM) for Hawai‘i County. The updated maps will help community officials and local residents better identify known flood risks and when finalized, will be used for flood insurance, land use and development decisions.

Flooding is one of the major natural disasters in the United States. These maps can help residents make informed decisions about flood insurance options and flood protection measures.

The preliminary FIRM maps serve to revise and update information on the existence and severity of flood hazards in Hawai‘i County. The revised maps reflect the combined efforts of FEMA and Hawai‘i County.

The maps will be available for viewing beginning August 14 at the Hawai‘i County Department of Public Works Engineering offices at either 101 Pauahi St., Suite 7 in Hilo, (808) 961-8327, or 74-5044 Ane Keohokalole Hwy, Building D, 1st floor of the West Hawai‘i Civic Center in Kona (808) 323-4850\. They will also be available for online viewing on the State of Hawai‘i’s Flood Hazard Assessment Tool (FHAT) at http://gis.hawaiinfip.org/fhat. To learn how to view the preliminary maps using the FHAT, click on the tutorial link provided on the Hawai‘i NFIP website www.hawaiinfip.org.

Personnel from FEMA, the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, and Hawai‘i County will be available to answer questions, concerns, and provide information on the mapping timeline and appeals process. The meeting schedule is as follows:

Monday. August 17, 2015
Aupuni Center (101 Pauahi Street, Hilo 96720)
Doors open 4:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. presentation 6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015
West Hawai‘i Civic Center (75-5044 Ane Keohokalole Highway, Bldg. G, Kailua Kona 96740)
Doors open 4:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. presentation 6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Hilda to Swing South of the Big Island of Hawaii

Hurricane Hilda was downgraded to a Tropical Storm and now appears that it will go south of the Big Island of Hawaii missing the entire Hawaii chain of islands.
Hilda7

Volcanoes National Park Closures for Hilda

In anticipation of the heavy rain and wind forecast with the arrival of Hurricane Hilda, all backcountry areas in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park will be closed as of 5 p.m. on Wed., Aug. 12 until it is safe to reopen them. No backcountry permits will be issued until park staff reassess the storm’s impact.
Hilda6
In addition, Mauna Loa Road from Kīpukapuaulu to the Mauna Loa Lookout, and Nāmakanipaio Campgrounds and A-frame cabins, will close as of 5 p.m. Wednesday.

Much of the park will remain open, including Jaggar Museum, Kīlauea Visitor Center, restrooms, lava tube, front-country trails, steam vents, and other popular features. Visitors should be prepared for heavy rain and wind.

Park staff will continue to monitor the storm and assess conditions in the park. The public will be kept informed via news releases, social media, and the park website, nps.gov/havo.

Update on Hurricane Hilda – Flights Into Eye to Begin on Regular Basis

DATA COLLECTED BY U.S. 53RD WEATHER RECONNAISSANCE AIRCRAFT WAS CRITICAL IN DETERMINING THE INITIAL INTENSITY AND WIND STRUCTURE OF HILDA THIS EVENING.

Hilda5

ALTHOUGH HILDA IS ENCOUNTERING A PROVERBIAL WALL OF SHEAR…WITH ANALYSES FROM UW-CIMSS INDICATING AROUND 35 KT OF SOUTHWESTERLY SHEAR…HILDA HAS THUS FAR BEEN ABLE TO MAINTAIN AN INNER CORE.

Hilda SatMAXIMUM SFMR WINDS ON THE INITIAL PENETRATION WERE NEAR 80 KT…AND A REDUCTION OF MAXIMUM FLIGHT LEVEL WINDS YIELDS SURFACE WINDS 0F 77 KT…THUS THE INITIAL INTENSITY WILL BE MAINTAINED AT 80 KT FOR THIS ADVISORY.

A 25 TO 30 NM WIDE EYE WAS NOTED BY THE FLIGHT CREW TO BE OPEN TO THE SOUTHWEST…WHICH WAS NICELY HIGHLIGHTED BY 0405Z SSMI/S AND 0411Z GPM MICROWAVE OVERPASSES.

IN COORDINATION WITH CHIEF…AERIAL RECONNAISSANCE COORDINATION…ALL HURRICANES /CARCAH/…FLIGHTS INTO HILDA WILL BEGIN AT 6 HOURLY INTERVALS STARTING TUESDAY EVENING…WITH THE NEXT MISSION SLATED FOR TUESDAY MORNING.

THE AIRCRAFT CENTER FIXES INDICATED THAT HILDA WAS MOVING VERY SLOWLY…HAVING MOVED ABOUT 7 NM TOWARD THE NORTH-NORTHWEST IN 2 HOURS. A SLIGHTLY LONGER TERM INITIAL MOTION ESTIMATE FOR THIS ADVISORY IS DETERMINED TO BE 315/04 KT. ALTHOUGH THE UPPER LEVEL FLOW OVER HILDA FEATURES RELATIVELY STRONG WESTERLY WINDS…THE CYCLONE IS CURRENTLY IN AN AREA OF LIGHT STEERING WINDS.

OVER THE NEXT 36 HOURS…HILDA IS FORECAST TO MOVE SLOWLY TOWARD THE NORTHWEST…STEERED BY THE WEAK CURRENTS BETWEEN A LOW ALOFT NORTH OF HAWAII…AND A HIGH TO THE DISTANT EAST. THIS WILL LEAD TO GRADUAL WEAKENING…DUE TO STRONG UPPER LEVEL WESTERLIES SHEARING AT LEAST THE UPPER PORTIONS OF THE CYCLONE NORTHEASTWARD. A TURN TOWARD THE WEST-NORTHWEST AND A SLIGHT ACCELERATION ARE EXPECTED THEREAFTER AS HILDA BECOMES INCREASINGLY SHALLOW AND THE VERTICAL STRUCTURE OF THE CYCLONE BECOMES INCREASINGLY COMPROMISED.

THE OFFICIAL TRACK AND INTENSITY FORECASTS FOR THIS PACKAGE CLOSELY FOLLOW THE PREVIOUS…WITH THE TRACK PARALLELING THE TVCN CONSENSUS…AND CLOSE TO THE LATEST HWRF GUIDANCE. AFTER ACCOUNTING FOR THE INITIAL INTENSITY…THE OFFICIAL FORECAST CLOSELY FOLLOWS THE PREVIOUS…AND IS CLOSE TO SHIPS GUIDANCE THROUGH 48 HOURS. THE RATE OF WEAKENING THEREAFTER IS CLOSE TO THE IVCN CONSENSUS…AND SLOWER THAN SHIPS GUIDANCE…AND ANTICIPATES THAT HILDA WILL BECOME A REMNANT LOW BY THE END OF THE FORECAST PERIOD.

ON THE FORECAST TRACK…A TROPICAL STORM WATCH MAY BE REQUIRED FOR THE BIG ISLAND…POSSIBLY AS EARLY AS TUESDAY MORNING. UNCERTAINTY REMAINS AS TO THE EVENTUAL IMPACTS THAT MAY BE FELT IN THE HAWAIIAN ISLANDS FROM HILDA…BUT THE POTENTIAL FOR LARGE SURF AND VERY HEAVY RAINFALL APPEARS TO BE INCREASING.

Sam Choy’s in the Kitchen with the Tiki Shark

Chef Sam Choy’s traction gaining web show “Sam Choy’s in the Kitchen” will feature Brad Tiki Shark Parker and his household for its first celebrity episode.

Brad Parker photo bombs Sam Choy!

Sam Choy drops by the Parker residence.

“We have done over 10 episodes and decided to give our viewers something special this time and also see what’s really in a local celebrities kitchen” quoted Chef Choy. “We had fun and will be visiting more celebrities kitchens in future episodes” he added.

According to Producer Richard Gonzalez “the show was totally off our regular format but extremely entertaining and will be received well by our viewers”

“Sam is welcome in my kitchen anytime” quoted Brad Tiki Shark Parker. Its always a good time getting together with a Chef who is as wacky and crazy as I am!”.

Sam Choy in the Kitchen

The Celebrity episode will debut on YouTube on August 18.

Mary Poppins at the Hilo Palace Theater

My son will be starring as “Michael” in the the Palace Theater Production of the 14th Annual Fall Musical “Mary Poppins”.
Mary Poppins PosterTickets are $15.00 in advance or $20 the day of the shows.

Brush Fire Spares Historic Heiau – Site Remains Closed

Due to a brushfire that engulfed more than 4,650 acres in the Kawaihae area over the weekend, Pu‘ukoholā Heiau National Historic Site remains closed Monday and Tuesday, Aug. 10 and 11. The park could open as early as Wednesday, once firefighters finish extinguishing smoldering hot spots in the park, and park archeologists assess any damage to cultural sites.

Scorched Heiau

Brushfire scorched the area near the Heiau’s.

Pu‘ukoholā Heiau, the massive stone temple where King Kamehameha the Great launched his successful quest to unite the Hawaiian Islands in 1810, did not sustain any damage in the fire, nor did the older Mailekini Heiau below it. The homestead site of British sailor John Young, who served as King Kamehameha’s advisor, also appears unscathed.

The brushfire, exacerbated by strong winds and dry, hot weather, came within a few feet of the visitor center and park headquarters on Saturday, but was put out by firefighters before it reached the buildings. Although both facilities are without phone service and internet, the visitor center has water and electricity.

Scorched 2

“We are incredibly grateful to all the agencies and volunteers who banded together to fight this fire,” said Park Superintendent Daniel Kawaiaea. “Thankfully, there were no injuries to visitors or park staff. We also appreciate the kōkua from our sister parks, Pu‘uhonua o Hōnauanau National Historical Park, Alakahakai National Historic Trail, and Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, who are providing resources and staff,” he said.

The fire burned about 90 percent of the vegetation on the park’s 80 acres, and melted temporary solar light fixtures along its main path. Large blackened swaths of ground, once covered in plants, is now exposed throughout the park. The vegetation was a mix of non-native grasses and shrubs, and native species like pili grass, pua kala (Hawaiian poppy) and ma‘o (Hawaii cotton).

Superintendent Kawaiaea said a decision whether the park will hold or cancel the 43rd annual Ho‘oku‘ikahi Establishment Day Hawaiian Cultural Festival, scheduled for this weekend, Aug. 15 and 16, will be made by Tuesday.

“Our biggest concern at this point is the safety for the public, our employees and the festival participants,” Kawaiaea said. “In addition to the fire damage, there is also a tropical storm expected to impact us later this week.”

Groundbreaking Ceremony for Hilo Municipal Golf Course Improvements

Hawai‘i County Mayor Billy Kenoi, County Councilman Dennis “Fresh” Onishi, and the Department of Parks and Recreation invite the public to a blessing and groundbreaking ceremony for improvements to the Hilo Municipal Golf Course.  It will be held at 4 p.m. Friday, August 14, at the golf course located at 340 Haihai Street.

Golf Course

Join Mayor Kenoi, Councilman Onishi, and other dignitaries in commemorating the start of construction work at the 18-hole links. Light refreshments will be served.  Jacobsen Construction has been hired to rebuild four greens, the course clubhouse, cart-storage building, rain shelters, comfort stations and a maintenance building.

Also, the contractor will replace course waterlines, perform structural repairs and install accessible walkways at the driving range, build new bridges along the cart course, replace the Kawailani Street fence, and install new fencing fronting Haihai Street.

Construction work is expected to be finished in November 2016. The Department of the Parks and Recreation and the contractor will work to minimize impacts to Hilo Municipal Golf Course users. The course will remain open through most of the construction phase. However, a modified, 9-hole course will be offered between February and May 2016 to accommodate the construction.

Improving Hawai‘i County’s only public golf course is another example of Mayor Kenoi’s commitment to upgrade park sites island wide to meet the needs of a diverse and growing population.

For more information, please contact Jason Armstrong, Public Information Officer, at 961-8311 or jarmstrong@hawaiicounty.gov.

26-Year-Old Arrested in Kona Collision that Resulted in Fatality

A 52-year-old Kailua-Kona man died following a two-vehicle collision east of the intersection of Kaiminani Drive and Laui Street in the early morning hours of Monday (August 3) in Kailua-Kona.

He has been positively identified as Robert N. Weinstock.

Responding to a 12:41 a.m. call, police determined that a green 2007 Ford pickup truck was traveling west on Kaiminani Drive before the Laui Street intersection when it crossed the centerline of the roadway and crashed head-on into a 2003 Nissan sports-utility vehicle being driven by Weinstock.

Both drivers were taken to Kona Community Hospital, where Weinstock was officially pronounced dead at 1:29 a.m. An autopsy has been ordered to determine the exact cause of death.

Justin Rohan

Justin Rohan

The driver of the Ford pickup, 26-year-old Justin Rohan of Kailua-Kona, was arrested on suspicion of operating a vehicle under the influence of an intoxicant. He was released pending further investigation while being treated for his injuries at Kona Community Hospital.

The Traffic Enforcement Unit has initiated a negligent homicide investigation and is asking anyone who witnessed the crash to call Officer Justin Hooser or Sergeant Bradley Freitas at 326-4646, Ext. 229.

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

This is the 14th traffic related fatality this year compared with eight at this time last year.

Kaiminani Drive, which had been closed to traffic for several hours, was reopened shortly after noon.