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.”

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.

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.

 

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.

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.

West Hawaii Community Health Center Opens Newest Location

The doors of the new West Hawaii Community Health Center – Kealakehe opened for patients on Monday, July 13, 2015. The 10,500-square-foot custom-built facility is located just south of Kealakehe High School at 74-5214 Keanalehu Drive.
West Hawaii Community Health Center

West Hawaii Community Health Center built the new Kealakehe facility in response to community needs and provides excellent patient care, minimizes critical wait time for appointments, enhances coordination and referral for specialty care, and promotes programs aimed at improving health outcomes. The opening of the Kealakehe facility marks the fifth location for West Hawaii Community Health Center.

“With ten years of service behind us, West Hawaii Community Health Center – Kealakehe adds to our capacity to meet the demand for health care in Kailua-Kona,” stated Richard Taaffe, West Hawaii Community Health Center CEO. “Our experienced and highly qualified team members are ready and excited to welcome new patients.”

West Hawaii Community Health Center – Kealakehe is open Monday through Friday from 8 am to 5 pm., and offers primary health care for patients of all ages, provided by a Family Physician, a Physician Assistant, two Board Certified Pediatric Dentists and one general Dentist.

West Hawaii Community Health Center – Kealakehe accepts most private insurances, as well as Medicare and Medicaid, and uninsured patients are offered a sliding fee scale. Staff assistance is available to help patients enroll in health insurance plans.

West Hawaii Community Health Center Kealakehe is planning for its Grand Opening community celebration on Saturday, August 15, 2015.

For more information, call: (808) 355-5600 (medical) or (808) 355-5650 (dental) or visit: www.westhawaiichc.org

Wordless Wednesday – Food and Art?

Famous Hawaii Chef Sam Choy was spotted at the Kona Airport with artist Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker earlier today.

Renowned Tiki Artist Brad Parker seen chatting up & travelling with Celebrity Chef Sam Choy today at Kona Airport.

Renowned Tiki Artist Brad Parker seen chatting up & travelling with Celebrity Chef Sam Choy today at Kona Airport.

Parker’s agent Abbas Hassan said, “Big local news story is to follow next month”.

Chef Sam Choy was also seen traveling today with Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker’s well connected agent Abbas Hassan at Kona Airport

Chef Sam Choy was also seen traveling today with Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker’s well connected agent Abbas Hassan at Kona Airport

Anyone know what’s cooking?

33rd Annual Kona Daifukuji Orchid Club Show

Find out how “You Can Grow Orchids” at the 33rd annual Kona Daifukuji Orchid Club (KDOC) show and sale Sunday, July 19 at the Daifukuji Soto Mission Hall. In conjunction with this year’s theme, find informative displays illustrating what is needed to successfully nurture orchids.

Orchid Show

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 www.kdoc.us, get club updates at www.facebook.com/orchidsinparadise or phone 808-325-3261.

 

Man Goes Ballistic at WalMart and Smashes 12 TV’s

A 48-year-old man has been charged with a felony after a dozen televisions were smashed while customers shopped at a “big box” store in Kailua-Kona.

Alexander Springer

Alexander Springer

At 6:49 p.m. Monday (June 15), Kona Patrol officers responded to a report of a disturbance at a store on Henry Street. They arrived to find a suspect outside the store with another customer.

Witnesses reported that the suspect, Alexander Springer, had grabbed a bat from the store and used it to destroy 12 televisions. One of the store’s customers stopped him and took him outside while waiting for police to arrive. Damages were estimated at $4,081.

Police arrested Springer, who has no permanent address, and charged him with second-degree criminal property damage, a Class C felony. His bail was set at $2,000. He was held at the Kona police cellblock until his initial court appearance on Tuesday (June 16).

Big Island Chocolate Festival Announces Winners

Culinary entries from across the state were tapped winners at last night’s Big Island Chocolate Festival. Chefs, chocolatiers and students were critiqued on taste, texture, appearance and creativity by a team of celebrity judges during the three-day festival.

Professional winners of the BICF gala were from left: Hilton Waikoloa Village Chef Dayne Tanabe, Gini Choobua of Likao Kula Farm, Nat Bletter of Madre Chocolate, Fairmont Orchid Pastry Chef Daniel Sampson and Executive Fairmont Orchid Chef Hubert Des Marais.

Professional winners of the BICF gala were from left: Hilton Waikoloa Village Chef Dayne Tanabe, Gini Choobua of Likao Kula Farm, Nat Bletter of Madre Chocolate, Fairmont Orchid Pastry Chef Daniel Sampson and Executive Fairmont Orchid Chef Hubert Des Marais.

Event host The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai’i was cited in three categories for best plated dessert, bean to bar and the People’s Choice award. The Hilton Waikoloa Village earned best savory while Madre Chocolate took top bonbons.

Likao Kula Farm of Holualoa bested 11 entries to win the inaugural cacao processing category.

“The processing of the cacao bean—its fermenting and drying—is an important step in the flavor and quality of chocolate and we’re happy our local growers competed in this new competition category,” said Farsheed Bonkadar, president of the Kona Cacao Association.

UH-Maui College won the morning community college culinary competition led by Chef Instructor Teresa Shurilla (with plaque). Students from left are Devin Galloway, Noelle Bender, Yi Song, Taylor McGraw and Clarissa Logsdon.

UH-Maui College won the morning community college culinary competition led by Chef Instructor Teresa Shurilla (with plaque). Students from left are Devin Galloway, Noelle Bender, Yi Song, Taylor McGraw and Clarissa Logsdon.

Culinary students from University of Hawai‘i-Maui College won the morning student competition besting second place Hawai‘i Community College-Hilo and third place Hawai‘i Community College-West Hawai‘i. Students prepared elaborate plated desserts using chocolate.

Commenting on the competitions, Bonkadar added, “The caliber of entries continues to improve and it’s rewarding to see how both student and professional culinarians use chocolate in both sweet and savory recipes.”

Heading the team of judges for the two competitions were celebrity chefs Stanton Ho, Guittard’s Donald Wressell, Valrhona Chocolate’s Derek Poirier and Sam Choy of Keauhou’s Kai Lanai restaurant. Other team judges included Elizabeth McDonald of Maui’s B3 A Beach Bunny Bakery; Ricky DeBoer of The Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui; Steven Arakaki of Kukio Golf & Beach Club; Chris Speere of UH-Maui College and Daniel Sampson of The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i. Teresa Shurilla of UH-Maui College oversaw the judging.

The real winners of the fourth annual festival are two beneficiaries: the Equip the Kitchens campaign for the future Hawai’i Community College-Palamanui and Kona Pacific Public Charter School.

Presented by the Kona Cacao Association, the Big Island Chocolate Festival not only heralds Hawai’i’s growing cacao industry, but also the culinarians who masterfully create foods featuring chocolate.

In addition to last night’s gala, the three-day festival offered a full lineup of chocolate decadence from planting to plating: a Kona cacao farm tour, plus growing and processing seminars and how-to culinary demonstrations.

Visit www.bigislandchocolatefestival.com for updates on next year’s event.

The mission and goal of KCA is to promote the cacao industry on the Big Island of Hawai‘i by presenting BICF as an educational and outreach opportunity for local cacao farmers, the hospitality industry and cacao enthusiasts. For information, visit www.bigislandchocolatefestival.com.

 

Two People Die in Three-Vehicle Collision on Kona Highway

A 47-year-old Kailua-Kona man and his passenger died in a three-vehicle collision Saturday evening (May 9) on Queen Kaʻahumanu Highway near the 94-mile marker.

HPDBadgeThe 47-year-old man was identified as Rick Dupont. His male passenger has not yet been identified.

Responding to a 7:32 p.m. call, police determined that a 2014 Nissan Altima was being operated by a 23-year-old woman traveling south on Queen Kaʻahumanu Highway when her car crossed left of center and side-swiped a 2010 Ford Fusion heading north, then struck head-on with a 2013 Honda CRF 250L motorcycle, also heading north, which was operated by Dupont. Dupont and his passenger were thrown from the motorcycle upon impact.

Both were taken to Kona Community Hospital, where Dupont was pronounced dead at 11:55 p.m. and his passenger was pronounced dead at 11:56 p.m.

An autopsy has been ordered to determine the exact cause of death.

The operator of the Nissan, 23-year-old Rebecca Vetter of Honolulu, was taken to Kona Community Hospital for treatment and was later released. She was arrested on suspicion of first-degree negligent homicide. She was released pending further investigation.

The operator of the Ford, a 60-year-old Kamuela woman, refused treatment and was released by medics at the scene.

Food Basket Receives Generous Donation from Artist Parker and Author Grogan

Renowned local artist Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker along with award winning author S.P. Grogan and surf giant Body Glove International hosted a book signing event last March. The illustrated novel titled – Atomic Dreams at The Red Tiki Lounge is a fast paced historical fantasy adventure set in post World War II Hawaii.

Parker and Grogan sign books while Aiden James performs in the background at the Kona Oceanfront Gallery

Parker and Grogan sign books while Aiden James performs in the background at the Kona Oceanfront Gallery

Part of sales proceeds generated from this high profile two day event were donated today to The Food Basket, Hawai’i Island’s Food Bank. “We are so fortunate to have an artist like Brad on our Island, his flamboyant and outgoing style of art matches his generosity” quoted En Young – Executive Director of the Food Basket.

Food Basket Check

Today’s presentation at the Kona Oceanfront Gallery – Brad’s home gallery was also attended by Kristin Kahaloa the new Executive Director of the Kona Kohala Chamber of Commerce and Mark Hanna the owner of Kona Oceanfront Gallery.

“The Chamber encourages philanthropy and collaboration with small businesses and non-profits to make The Hawaii Island a better place” stated the newly appointed Executive Director.

Brad also designs Beach Towels and other accessories for Body Glove International that sells its products in over 55 countries worldwide.

About Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker – (www.tikishark.com)
After working for Marvel & DC Comics for many years, he gave it all up and moved to the Big Island of Hawaii over a decade ago. Through his Kailua Kona based company Tiki Shark Art Inc., Parker sells his art though galleries in the USA and around the world. His unmistakable, lurid style of art reflects influences as diverse as the Flemish masters, comic books, and Hawaiian tourist kitsch. His designs can be seen on products from surfboards to skate boards to beach towels and calendars.

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

Big Island Police Searching for Missing 60-Year-Old Kona Man

Hawaii Island police are searching for a 60-year-old Kailua-Kona man who was reported missing.

Fabian Heald

Fabian Heald

Fabian Heald was last seen April 13 in Kailua-Kona. He is described as 5-foot-9, 205 pounds with white hair and green eyes.

His family is concerned about his well-being.

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

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call the islandwide Crime Stoppers number at 961-8300 and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000. Crime Stoppers is a volunteer program run by ordinary citizens who want to keep their community safe. Crime Stoppers doesn’t record calls or subscribe to caller ID. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

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

Hawaiʻi Island police are searching for 17-year-old Kailua-Kona boy who was reported missing.

Jonah Xavier

Jonah Xavier

Jonah Xavier was last seen in Kailua-Kona on December, 2014.

He is described as Caucasian, 5-foot-2, 105 pounds with blue eyes and medium-length blond hair.

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

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

Ulu Wini Playground Project Breaks Ground

HOPE Services Hawaii joined residents of Na Kahua Hale O Ulu Wini (The Homes at Ulu Wini) to break ground on a brand-new outdoor playspace at the Ulu Wini housing complex in Kailua-Kona on February 25.

ulu wini blessing

The $180,000 state-of-the-art Miracle Mega Tower is a first for Ulu Wini and was made possible through a donation from the Roberts Foundation. Anne Bailey from the Office of Housing and Community Development was present on behalf the County of Hawaii administration.

“The residents and keiki of Ulu Wini are so excited and grateful to have a beautiful and safe outdoor play structure in their backyard,” said Brandee Menino, Chief Operating Officer of HOPE Services. “We have so much aloha for the Roberts Foundation.”

The 62’ X 52’ Mega Tower will feature four play structures including a heptagon double decker tower and water fountain, spiral and wave slides, a fish bridge, play panels and climbing apparatuses including stairs, risers, ladders and a fossil bluff climbing wall. The play structures, with the exception of the water fountain, will be covered with recycled steel roofing or commercial grade fabric umbrellas.
ulu wini renderingThe Mega Tower playspace allows access to multiple levels and is meant to encourage social inclusion and sensory play.

Volunteers from Lake Mead Christian Academy and residents from Ulu Wini will be assisting NyLawn with construction of the playground, which is expected to be complete by the end of March 2015.

Built in 2013 by the County of Hawaii’s Office of Housing & Community Development and operated by HOPE Services, The Homes at Ulu Wini provides 96 two-bedroom units—23 transitional housing for homeless families, 72 affordable housing dedicated to low-income families and one unit for the resident manager.

Palace Event Remembers Prince Kuhio and Queen Ka’ahumanu

The Daughters of Hawai‘i and Calabash Cousins present Afternoon at Hulihe’e on Sunday, Mar. 15. The 4 p.m. event on the grounds of Hulihe‘e Palace remembers the late Prince Kuhio and Queen Ka‘ahumanu.

The Daughters of Hawai‘i and the Calabash Cousins present Afternoon at Hulihe‘e 4 p.m. Sunday, Mar. 17 at Hulihe‘e Palace to remember Prince Kuhio and Queen Ka‘ahumanu.  Photo by Fern Gavalek

The Daughters of Hawai‘i and the Calabash Cousins present Afternoon at Hulihe‘e 4 p.m. Sunday, Mar. 15 at Hulihe‘e Palace to remember Prince Kuhio and Queen Ka‘ahumanu. Photo by Fern Gavalek

The event presents the Merrie Monarchs, the Hulihe‘e Palace West Hawai‘i County Band and Hawaiian performing arts by Kumu Hula Etua Lopes and his Halau Na Pua U‘i O Hawai‘i. Kindly bring a beach mat or chair as seating won’t be provided.

Known as the Citizen Prince, Kuhio was born on Kaua‘i and raised by his aunt and uncle, Queen Kapiolani and King Kalakaua, to become successor to the royal throne. After Hawai‘i became a U.S. territory, the Republican Party persuaded Kuhio to enter politics.

Kuhio was named Hawai‘i’s second delegate to the U.S. Congress in 1902 and served the post 10 times. Honored today as the father of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, Kuhio secured an area of Hawai‘i Island’s Kilauea Volcano in 1916 for public enjoyment. He was the driving force behind the development of Pearl Harbor and instituted the Hawaiian Homestead Commission.

Queen Ka‘ahumanu, who hailed from Hana, Maui, was the favorite wife of Kamehameha the Great.  Though much younger than her husband, Ka‘ahumanu was charismatic, intelligent and politically shrewd. Kamehameha granted her the title of kuhina nui (queen regent) upon his death in 1819. Tired of the Hawaiian laws of kapu that forbade women from certain activities, she convinced the throne’s successor, Liholiho, to overturn the kapu system.

Hulihe‘e Palace is open for docent-guided and self-guided tours. Museum hours are 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Saturday—with the exception of the palace open 1-4 p.m. the Monday following the monthly Kokua Kailua Village stroll.  Palace admission for a self-guided tour is $8 for adults, $6 for kama‘aina, military and seniors, and $1 for keiki 18 years and under. Docent-guided tours are available upon request. For details, contact the palace at 329-1877, the palace office at 329-9555 or visit www.daughtersofhawaii.org. The gift shop, open 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Mondays- Saturdays, can be reached by phoning 329-6558.

Caretakers of Hulihe‘e Palace are the Daughters of Hawai‘i and the Calabash Cousins. The Daughters was founded in 1903 and opens membership to any woman who is directly descended from a person who lived in Hawai‘i prior to 1880. Helping the Daughters in its efforts since 1986 are the Calabash Cousins; membership is available to all.

2015 Afternoon at Hulihe‘e schedule: 4-5 p.m. on the palace grounds

All Afternoons at Hulihe’e present hula by Na Pua U‘i O Hawai‘i Hula Halau and vocals by the Merrie Monarchs. Some events also include the Hulihe’e Palace West Hawai‘i County Band and are noted below. On band dates, only kahiko hula is showcased. Other events offer a full hula show.

Big Island Police Looking to Question Man Caught on Tape at Scene of Suspicious Fire

Hawaiʻi Island police want to question a man whose image was captured on a surveillance video at the scene of a suspicious fire.

arson suspectAt 6:10 a.m. Thursday (February 26), Kona Patrol officers responded to a report of a fire at the Seventh Day Adventist Church in Captain Cook. When they arrived, firefighters were on the scene and the north rear entrance was fully engulfed in flames.

Firefighters extinguished the fire and determined that it was deliberately set. Damages, estimated at more than $80,000, were limited to the north side of the building.

Detectives from the Area II Criminal Investigations Section are investigating the case as arson. They recovered a photograph from a surveillance video that shows a Caucasian man in his 50s who appears to be tall with a large build and who has light hair with a receding hairline and a mustache. He was wearing dark shorts, a long-sleeved shirt light in color, and rubber slippers.

Police ask anyone who knows the identity of the man in the photo or who has any information about the fire to call the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311 or contact Detective Sean Smith at 326-4646, extension 262, or ssmith@co.hawaii.hi.us, or Detective Walter Ah Mow at 326-4646, extension 238, or wahmow@co.hawaii.hi.us.

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call the islandwide Crime Stoppers number at 961-8300 and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000. Crime Stoppers is a volunteer program run by ordinary citizens who want to keep their community safe. Crime Stoppers doesn’t record calls or subscribe to caller ID. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

Lunch With Mayor Kenoi and Select Cabinet Members

Mayor Billy Kenoi and select cabinet members discuss opportunities and challenges for West Hawaii’s economy at the Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce 2015 Focus Luncheon 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 24 at the Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay.

The Manta Ray Super Pool & Slide is a centerpiece at Sheraton Keauhou Bay Resort & Spa.

The Manta Ray Super Pool & Slide is a centerpiece at Sheraton Keauhou Bay Resort & Spa.

Sponsored by the Hawaii Community Federal Credit Union, the annual luncheon offers a unique opportunity for the local community to meet with county department representatives in a casual setting.

Attendees have the chance to have lunch with members of a specific department as well as pose questions to the mayor and cabinet heads. Issues discussed may include update of the Keauhou Aquifer; the county’s solid waste management plan; and the quest to reopen the Kona International Airport international arrivals facility.

Cost for the luncheon is $46 for Chamber and Rotary members, $56 for non-members. No walk-ins allowed. For more information and/or to register, visit kona-kohala.com or call the Chamber office at 808-329-1758.

Big Island Chocolate Fest Seeks Culinary Participants

The fourth annual Big Island Chocolate Festival is looking for culinary participants to share sweet and savory tastes at the event’s gala on Saturday, May 9 at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai’i.

Folks enjoying the 2014 Big Island Chocolate Festival

Folks enjoying the 2014 Big Island Chocolate Festival

Participating chefs, chocolatiers and confectioners can also enter the free culinary competition, vying in a variety of judged categories.

Big Island Chocolate Festival 020Presented by the Kona Cacao Association (KCA), the event benefits the “Equip the Kitchens” campaign for the future Hawai‘i Community College-Palamanui and construction of a community kitchen at the Waldorf-inspired Kona Pacific Public Charter School in Kealakekua.

Big Island Chocolate Festival 012

Culinarians interested in participating can signup for free now by filling out the Culinary Participant form at www.bigislandchocolatefestival.com. Questions? Phone 808-324-6100.

The Big Island Chocolate Festival is presented by the Kona Cacao Association, Inc. The mission and goal of KCA is to promote the cacao industry on the Big Island of Hawai‘i by presenting BICF as an educational and outreach opportunity for local cacao farmers, the hospitality industry and cacao enthusiasts. For information, visit www.bigislandchocolatefestival.com.

Hulihe‘e Palace Remembers the Late Princess Ruth Ke‘elikolani

The Daughters of Hawai‘i and Calabash Cousins present Afternoon at Hulihe’e on Sunday, Feb. 15. The 4 p.m. event on the grounds of Hulihe‘e Palace remembers the late Princess Ruth Ke‘elikolani.

Hula Dancers dance behind Hulihe'e Palace. (Photo Fern Gavalek)

Hula Dancers dance behind Hulihe’e Palace. (Photo Fern Gavalek)

The event presents the Merrie Monarchs and Hawaiian performing arts by Kumu Hula Etua Lopes and his Halau Na Pua U‘i O Hawai‘i. Kindly bring a beach mat or chair as seating won’t be provided.

Princess Ruth (1826-1883) was the half-sister of King Kamehameha IV and V. She inherited Hulihe‘e after the death of her husband, William Pitt Leleiohoku; he was the adopted son of John Adams Kuakini. Kuakini built the palace in 1838 after erecting Moku‘aikaua Church, which sits directly across from the palace on Ali‘i Drive.

Hulihe‘e Palace is open for docent-guided and self-guided tours. Museum hours are 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Saturday—with the exception of the palace open 1-4 p.m. the Monday following the monthly Kokua Kailua Village stroll.  Palace admission for a self-guided tour is $8 for adults, $6 for kama‘aina, military and seniors, and $1 for keiki 18 years and under. Docent-guided tours are available upon request. For details, contact the palace at 329-1877, the palace office at 329-9555 or visit www.daughtersofhawaii.org. The gift shop, open 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Mondays- Saturdays, can be reached by phoning 329-6558.

Caretakers of Hulihe‘e Palace are the Daughters of Hawai‘i and the Calabash Cousins. The Daughters was founded in 1903 and opens membership to any woman who is directly descended from a person who lived in Hawai‘i prior to 1880. Helping the Daughters in its efforts since 1986 are the Calabash Cousins; membership is available to all.

2015 Afternoon at Hulihe‘e schedule: 4-5 p.m. on the palace grounds

All Afternoons at Hulihe’e present hula by Na Pua U‘i O Hawai‘i Hula Halau and vocals by the Merrie Monarchs. Some events also include the Hulihe’e Palace Band and are noted below. On band dates, only kahiko hula is showcased. Other events offer a full hula show.

  • Jan 18: Band appearance remembering King Charles “Lunalilo” and Aunty I‘olani Luahine
  • Feb 15: Event remembering Princess Ruth Ke‘elikolani
  • Mar 15: Band appearance remembering Queen Ka‘ahumanu and Prince Kuhio
  • Apr 19: Event remembering Prince Edward Albert
  • May 17: Event remembering King Kamehameha IV “Alexander Liholiho”
  • Jun 14: Band appearance remembering King Kamehameha I “Paiea”
  • Jul 19: Event remembering John Adams Kuakini
  • Aug 16: Event remembering King Kamehameha III “Kauikeaouli”
  • Sep 20: Band appearance remembering Queen Lili‘uokalani
  • Oct 18: Event remembering Princess Ka‘iulani
  • Nov 15: Band appearance remembering King Kalakaua, Palace Curator Aunty Lei Collins and Bandmaster Charles “Bud” Dant
  • Dec 13: Event remembering Princess Bernice Pauahi Bishop