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Free Chinese New Year Event at The Shops at Mauna Lani

The Shops at Mauna Lani invites the community to its third annual Fortune Festival on Friday, February 19, 5-8 p.m. To ring in the Year of the Monkey, the colorful Lion Dancers of Big Island Shaolin Arts will perform, and participants can “feed” the lions with  red lai envelopes for new year’s blessings.

Lion Dance

Other highlights include martial arts performances, fire blowing, I Ching fortune telling, relaxing Chinese acupressure, and a Chinese Dragon display where visitors can pose for photos. In addition, the shopping center will offer a good luck “Hang Sau Zung Grab Bag” and various Chinese New Year sales at participating locations.

A variety of foods will be available for purchase during the festival including Chinese chicken salad, Dragon Bowls and Chinese snacks to support Hālau Manaola, plus favorite local flavors from Miranda’s Malasadas, Kona Ice Truck, specialty hot dogs from Kona Dogs, and more.

The Fortune Festival at The Shops at Mauna Lani is free, and all are welcome. Additional event parking will be available with continuous shuttle service during the event. For more information, visit www.shopsatmaunalani.com, or call (808) 885-9501.

Big Island Chocolate Festival Salutes Hawaii Volcanoes National Park Centennial

With the theme, “Lavalicious – A Chocolate Salute to the 100th Birthday of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park,” the fifth annual Big Island Chocolate Festival is May 13-14 with events headquartered from the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel. Indulge in the alluring, rich taste of chocolate—in both its sweet and savory forms—while participating in a host of delicious, fun and informative chocolate-themed activities.

Chocolate fest 2013 a

The two-day chocolate extravaganza includes a cacao plantation tour at Original Hawaiian Chocolate Factory, a college culinary competition and several public foodie and agriculture-themed seminars. Activities culminate 5:30-9 p.m. Saturday, May 14 with the indoor-outdoor festival gala—enjoy a host of sweet and savory culinary stations presented by top isle chefs, chocolatiers and confectioners.

General admission tickets to the gala are $75 and VIP tickets are $100 and include early event access at 5 p.m., table seating and specialty wines.

This year’s event celebrates the 100th birthday of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park and culinary booths will be judged on how they best depict the event theme that could include Kilauea and Mauna Loa volcanoes, Hawaiian culture and the park’s native plants and animals. Biology, geology and culture define the 333,086-acre national park, which was established August 1, 1916.

Chocolate Demo

Culinary stations will also be vying for awards in a variety of categories judged by a panel of celebrity chefs: “best” bonbon, savory, bean-to-bar, plated dessert and Hawaiian cacao. Attendees can get in on the friendly voting by casting a ballot for two People’s Choice Awards: Best Savory and Best Sweet.

Festivities will include fine wines and handcrafted ales, chocolate sculptures—including one of the largest volcanoes ever created using fine chocolate, chocolate body painting, live entertainment, dancing and a silent auction.

Presented by the Kona Cacao Association (KCA), event proceeds benefit the ACF Kona Kohala Chefs Assn./University of Hawai‘i endowment fund for the culinary program at Hawai‘i Community College-Palamanui and programs at Kona Pacific Public Charter School in Kealakekua.

Chocolate Festival Chefs

“We are happy to commemorate the centennial of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park at the Big Island Chocolate Festival,” says KCA President Farsheed Bonakdar. “We look forward to the new booth decorating contest and how our theme will inspire participants.”

Find ticket info at www.BigIslandChocolateFestival.com. Special room/ticket packages for two start at $396.20 at the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel and can be conveniently booked through the Festival website under “Tickets.” Special room rates can be reserved directly at the hotel at www.HapunaBeachPrinceHotel.com/events or calling 1-888-977-4622 and mentioning “Big Island Chocolate Festival Group Rate.”

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.

Waipi‘o Valley Stakeholders Alliance Offers United Voice on Bishop Museums Announcement to Sell Its Waipi‘o Valley Lands

On January 8, 2016, Bishop Museum issued a public announcement they are moving forward with the sale of the Amy Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden in Capt. Cook and 537 acres of land in Waipi‘o Valley.

Green areas represent Bishop Museum Land.

Green areas represent Bishop Museum Land.

While the news has taken most of Hawai‘i by surprise, it is not the case for the Waipi‘o Valley community. Over the past 20 years, the Museum has periodically considered selling it’s Valley holdings, and there have been several proposals by State legislators for the state to purchase the lands, the most recent in 2014.

Since 2013, the Waipi‘o community has undergone major changes, with three of the most committed groups becoming more organized and actively seeking ways to work together collaboratively on matters that impact the Valley and surrounding communities.

In late 2015 the Waipi‘o Taro Farmers Association, the Waipi‘o Community Circle and Ha Ola o Waipi‘o Valley formed the Waipi‘o Valley Stakeholders Alliance as a mechanism to reach general consensus and provide a unified voice when communicating with government officials, Bishop Museum and the general community.

Founded in 1989, the Waipi‘o Taro Farmers Association (WTFA) is the oldest active organization in Waipi‘o Valley. The Association is made up of generational taro farming families who lease the majority of Bishop Museum ’s lands in the Valley. WTFA represents the surviving edge of the Native Hawaiian culture in Waipi‘o Valley and serves as Bishop Museum ’s primary land managers and local community advisors.

Formed in 2000, at the request of 13 community members, the Waipi‘o Community Circle (the Circle), serves as a general community forum. The Waipi‘o Valley Information & Education Officer Program was created by the Circle, as were the five large interpretive signs at the rock wall near the pavilion. A small group of Circle volunteers provided general oversight of the Information & Education Officer program from 2007 until 2014 when the program moved to the Department of Parks & Recreation. This group also represents the efforts of Auntie Ku’ulei Badua who was responsible for initiating “Friends of the Waipi‘o Community Park ” (the former Rice/Thomas property, at the Waipi’o lookout).

Founded in 2014 Ha Ola o Waipi‘o Valley (Ha Ola) is a membership organization of Valley residents, farmers, cultural educators and practitioners, and Waipi‘o tour operators. The organization is guided by elected Officers with support from the County of Hawaii , the State of Hawaii , Kamehameha Schools and Friends of the Future. Ha Ola was formed to provide representation for Valley stakeholders who were not recognized in the State’s 2013 proposed Senate Bill to purchase Bishop Museum’s lands in Waipi‘o. Among Ha Ola’s current projects are River Maintenance in collaboration with WTFA, stewardship of Kamehameha Schools Valley beach parcels, eradication of Little Fire Ants in the Valley and a 2016 Kalo Festival.

The Waipi‘o Valley Stakeholders Alliance, combines the strengths of all available community and advisory resources and is committed to protecting current lessees and ensuring the community has a lead voice in proactively engaging Bishop Museum in discussions about the future stewardship of its’ Waipi‘o Valley lands.

For more information about the Alliance contact:

Alliance Community Liaison: Jim Cain, Cell: 333-0457 kinglaulau@hotmail.com

Alliance Culture & Education Liaison: Ka‘iulani Pahio, Cell: 960-5272 kaiulani@kalo.org

Honolulu Selected for “Local Foods, Local Places” Federal Initiative

On behalf of the White House Rural Council, six federal agencies joined to announce 27 communities selected to participate in Local Foods, Local Places, a federal initiative that helps communities increase economic opportunities for local farmers and related businesses, create vibrant places, and promote childhood wellness by improving access to healthy local food.

Local Foods Local Places

“Local Foods, Local Places helps people access healthy local food and supports new businesses in neighborhoods that need investment,” said EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy. “The program is good for the environment, public health and the economy. By helping bring healthy local food to market and offering new walking and biking options, Local Foods, Local Places can help improve air quality, support local economies, and protect undeveloped green space.”

Honolulu was one of the cities selected in 2016 from EPA’s Pacific Southwest Region:

Honolulu, Hawaii – The Hawaii Community Development Authority will focus their Local Foods, Local Places efforts on plans to identify food-based projects that will spur greater investment and stewardship in the Kakaako Makai community; enhance local food production; integrate food security initiatives with community and transit-oriented development planning; and reduce stormwater runoff and vulnerability to sea level rise.

The selected communities were chosen from more than 300 applicants.

Each Local Foods, Local Places partner community works with a team of experts who help community members recognize local assets and opportunities, set goals for revitalizing downtowns and neighborhoods, develop an implementation plan, and identify targeted resources from the participating federal agencies to help implement those plans.

Local Foods, Local Places is a partnership among the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of Transportation, the Appalachian Regional Commission, and the Delta Regional Authority. The initiative was launched in 2014 and has already helped 26 communities make a difference in people’s lives.

Local Food, Local Places is one of the administration’s community-based initiatives in action across the country. In these places federal experts are working side by side with residents and local leaders to create customized solutions; bolstering coordination across agencies and improving how we interact with communities as a ‘one Government’ partner; and relying on valuable data to help inform solutions and evaluate what is working and what is not.

A complete list of communities participating in the Local Food, Local Places Initiative can be found at http://www.epa.gov/smartgrowth/local-foods-local-places-summary-reports

Building and Design Expo Feb. 12-14 – Live Cooking Demo and Book Signing with Sam Choy

The Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce presents the 11th annual Building & Design Expo February 12 – 14 at the Sheraton Kona Resort at Keauhou Bay‘s Kaleiopapa Convention Center.

Celebrity Chef Sam Choy, known for his Hawaiian cuisine, will feature his newest kitchen accessories line, Sam Choy’s Hawaiian Kitchen. He will also do a live cooking demo and book-signing.

Abbas Hassan of Tiki Shark Art, Sam Choy and Kirstin Kahaloa, Executive Director of the Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce

Abbas Hassan of Tiki Shark Art, Sam Choy and Kirstin Kahaloa, Executive Director of the Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce

Touted as “Hawai‘i Island’s largest home show,” more than 40 vendor booths will exhibit their goods and services in the three-day event. From general contracting and materials to home design and décor including fine art, the expo often features furnishings, blinds and shutters, window-tinting, kitchen countertops, cabinets and flooring, pest control PC solar and financing.

Event sponsors include Hawaii Community Federal Credit Union, Hawaii Gas, P.A. Harris Electric, Renewable Energy Services, Sam Choy & Tiki Shark Art and West Hawaii Today. Contact the Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce office at marketing@kona-kohala.com or 808.329.1758.

Celebrity Chef Sam Choy and “Tiki Shark” Parker Host VIP Party at the Trump Hotel in Waikiki

Celebrity Chef Sam Choy along with renowned local Big Island artist Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker held a VIP by invitation only party at The Trump International Hotel – Waikiki Beach Walk last week. This event was an extension to the 2 day public celebration held in Kailua Kona last November where Chef Choy and Artist Parker introduced their collaboration and the new Sam Choy in The Kitchen line.

Sam Choy along with Brad Parker and Agent Abbas with KHON2 Executives

Sam Choy along with Brad Parker and Agent Abbas with KHON2 Executives

The A Lister’s party was attended by close friends and buyers of several large retail chains. In addition Tiki Shark’s financial backers, State of Hawaii representative Nicole Lowen, President & CEO of Hawaii Chamber of Commerce Sherry Menor McNamara, owners of Surf Giant Body Glove International and high ranking executives from KHON Channel 2 also dropped in to wish the Chef and Artist well.

“We are excited with teaming up with Chef Choy for the exclusive distribution of his new Hawaiian Kitchen line for the Islands, Guam and Saipan” quoted Tina Kagoshima – President of “HIC” Hawaii Intercontinental Corp.  “Looking forward to getting these beautiful towels into every kitchen” she added.

Sam with HIC President Tina

Sam with HIC President Tina Kagoshima

“What a great group of local folks, I feel my brand is in very good hands and will get the exposure it deserves in Hawaii with Tiki Shark Art Inc and HIC Corp behind it” said Chef Sam Choy. “Plus I love Brad’s art” he quoted.

Sam Choy Cooking Line Beach

For more information and availability about Sam Choy Hawaiian Kitchen Line please contact:

Nick Corish – Sales Manager HIC Corp, 808 216 9324 ncorish@hi-corp.com chefsamchoy.com

 

Big Island Chocolate Fest Seeks Culinary Participants

The fifth annual Big Island Chocolate Festival is looking for culinary participants to share sweet and savory tastes to attendees at the event’s gala on Saturday, May 14 at the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel.

chocolate fountainTo honor the centennial anniversary of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, the festival’s theme this year is “Lavalicious-A Chocolate Salute to the 100th Birthday of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park.”

Participating chefs, chocolatiers and confectioners can enter the free culinary competition, vying in a variety of “best” judged categories: bonbon, savory, bean-to-bar, plated dessert, Hawaiian cacao, sweet people’s choice, savory people’s choice and best decorated booth.

Folks enjoying the Big Island Chocolate Festival

Folks enjoying the Big Island Chocolate Festival

Culinary participants are encouraged to decorate their booth for the centennial theme to be judged by Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park Superintendant Cindy Orlando. Booth elements could include Kilauea and Mauna Loa volcanoes, Hawaiian culture and the park’s native plants and animals.

Members of the winning culinary station will receive four tri-park passes good for free entrance to all three, fee-charging national parks in Hawai‘i for an entire year: Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, Haleakala National Park and Pu‘uhonua o Honaunau National Historic Park.

Big Island Chocolate Festival 095Presented by the Kona Cacao Association (KCA), the event benefits the ACF Kona Kohala Chefs Assn./University of Hawai‘i Foundation endowment fund for the culinary program at Hawai‘i Community College-Palamanui and programs at Kona Pacific Public Charter School in Kealakekua.

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

Big Island Chocolate Festival 089

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.

 

Asian Fest at Queens’ MarketPlace Celebrates Year of the Monkey

Sound, color, tasty food and the feeling of excitement celebrate the Year of the Monkey at Queens’ MarketPlace, Friday, February 5. The free event kicks off at 5 p.m. with the thundering drums of Ryukyukoku Matsuri Daiko (RMD), and continues until 8 p.m., with 14 different food sample booths, Filipino dancers, a dynamic Lion Dance, and much more.

Asian Fest2

A natural prelude to Saturday’s 23rd Annual Waimea Heritage Cherry Blossom Festival, Asian Fest is a unique way to experience and enjoy the music, cuisine and customs of China, Japan, Okinawa, Philippines, Thailand and other Asian cultures.

Taiko drum fans will have a chance to feel the rhythm of three different styles of the booming drummers. RMD’s style combines traditional Eisa and Karate forms with contemporary music and movement, performed by chapters across Hawai’i and around the world. Kona Daifukuji Taiko is a youth group which started in 1988 and now has 17 members of multi-ethnic backgrounds. From Hilo, Taishoji Taiko’s home base is a Zen Temple founded in 1915, and with a new and young energectic leader they have developed their own style of drumming.

Asian Fest

A centuries-old tradition with a flashy, upbeat energy, the Chinese Lion Dancers perform acrobatic feats and leaps, interacting with the audience and parading through Queens’ MarketPlace from door to door. Participants young and old can “feed” the Lion small donations in red envelopes called lycee (provided) to bring good fortune in the year ahead.

Throughout the shopping center, food samples will be available (while they last) from Charley’s Thai Cuisine, Hilton Waikoloa Village, Ippy’s Hawaiian BBQ, Island Gourmet Markets, Lemongrass Express, Marble Slab Creamery and Paradise Pizza & Grill, Sansei Seafood, Steak and Sushi Bar, Starbucks, Sushi Shiono’s, Waikoloa Beach Marriott, Roy’s Waikoloa, Mai Grille, Tropics Ale House and Dairy Queen.

Asian Fest is a complimentary event provided by Queens’ MarketPlace and its businesses as a celebratory start to the new lunar year. For more information, please call 886-8822 or visit www.queensmarketplace.net

Asian Fest Entertainment Schedule:

  • 5:00     Ryukyukoku Matsuri Daiko
  • 5:55     Hawaii Lion Dance Association
  • 6:30     Kona Daifukuji Taiko
  • 7:00     Visayan Dance Group, Filipino Dancers from University of Hilo
  • 7:20     Lion Dance begins at Island Gourmet Markets and proceeds door to door
  • 7:30     Taishoji Taiko

Since it opened in 2007, Queens’ MarketPlace in Waikoloa Beach Resort has earned a reputation among visitors and kama‘āina as “the gathering place of the Kohala Coast,” full of shopping opportunities, services and great food, along with entertainment and arts programs, movies under the stars and large-scale concerts in Waikoloa Bowl at Queens’ Gardens. For more information, visit www.QueensMarketPlace.net or call 886-8822.

Body Glove to Celebrate Tatiana-Weston’s Rookie of the Year Honor with Private Dinner Prepared by Celebrity Chef Sam Choy

Body Glove to kick off their annual trip to the North Shore by hosting a celebratory dinner for WSL Rookie of the year, Tatiana Weston-Webb, prepared by World Famous Celebrity Chef Sam Choy.

Sam Choy

The event will be filmed and aired on KHON Channel 2 in a episode of “Sam Choy’s IN THE KITCHEN” later this year. Sam will raid the Body Glove refrigerator for leftovers and use his culinary magic with whatever ingredients he can find and create a gourmet meal for all. Body Glove Athlete’s Tatiana Weston-Webb, Jamie O’Brien, Mo Freitas and Garret MacNamara and Sam’s co-host John Venri will be the Chef’s will be Sam’s official assistant’s and taste testers.

Jamie O'Brien gets ready to go on a Body Glove cruise.

Jamie O’Brien gets ready to go on a Body Glove cruise.

In the days following Tati’s celebration, Body Glove will begin hosting key retailers, sales reps and athletes throughout the waiting period of Volcom Pipe Pro, January 28th – February 7th. “We look forward to the opportunity to give back to the retailers, sales reps and athletes that support the brand”, say’s Body Glove Marketing Director, Nick Meistrell. “The trip also offers a platform for us to gather feedback on new product lines, create content for future advertising campaigns, and of course enjoy some surfing with the crew. Not to mention, all this with a world class surfing competition viewable from the house!”

Hunter Ports Women's Classic - Tatiana Weston-Webb © ASP / Robertson

Hunter Ports Women’s Classic – Tatiana Weston-Webb © ASP / Robertson

Retailers in attendance and will be joined by select athletes from the Body Glove Team including aforementioned Tatiana Weston-Webb, Jamie O’Brien, Mo Freitas and Garret MacNamaras well as Anthony Walsh, Alex Gray, and Nolan Rapoza.   In true All Things Water fashion, Wake Surf Champions, Keenan and Noah Flegal will also be on hand to attempt the challenging crossover from the wake to the waves of the North Shore.

Keenan was also featured in Body Gloves award winning film “Liquid Gold” – filmed entirely on location in Dubai.

About Body Glove International

Founded in Redondo Beach, California in 1953 by twin brothers Bill and Bob Meistrell, Body Glove is the original wetsuit company. Today, the privately-owned, family-operated company is a leading global watersports brand that specializes in wetsuits, swimwear, clothing, footwear, accessories and technology products. While Body Glove has supported surfers and the surfing industry since 1953, today Body Glove sponsors one of the most respected surf and wakeboard teams in the industry. Pro surfers Tatiana Weston-Webb, Jamie O’Brien, Anthony Walsh, Alex Gray, Guinness World Record Holder Garrett McNamara, as well as wakeboarders Harley Clifford and Bob Soven are all part of the Body Glove Team. Through Reef Check, SIMA’s environmental fund, and the Surfrider Foundation, Body Glove also works hard to preserve and protect the oceans and waterways it loves. The company’s headquarters are still based in Redondo Beach, but its products are sold all over the U.S. by a network of independent retailers, at its own Dive N’ Surf retail shop and in approximately 50 countries worldwide.

Meet Celebrity Chef Sam Choy at the 11th Annual Building & Design Expo

The Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce will hold its 11th annual Building & Design Expo February 12 – 14 at the Keauhou Convention Center at the Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay. Celebrity Chef Sam Choy will make a special appearance and demonstrate his cooking skills all three days of the Expo.

Building and Design Expo 2016

Friday evening the expo is open to the public from 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. Saturday expo hours are from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Visit numerous exhibits featuring home design, construction and remodel ideas including home decorating; fine art; windows and doors; flooring and window treatments; kitchen and baths, home energy products and more. The booths will present products, services and information relating to the building and improvement of homes, apartments and condos. Enter to win giveaways and drawings at vendor booths.

Attendees can also enter to win a grand prize: a 2-night stay at the Sheraton Keauhou Bay Resort & Spa.

For additional information regarding the Kona-Kohala Chamber of Commerce Building & Design Expo, go to www.kona-kohala.com or call the Chamber office at 329-1758.

Coming Up – Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival

The 23rd annual Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival has a full lineup of free multi-cultural performing arts and hands-on demonstrations, plus nearly 150 crafters and food booths 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 6 at various venues sprawling through town—look for pink banners identifying site locations.

Mochi Pounding

Festival parking is available at Parker Ranch Center, the soccer field across Church Row Park and Church Row Park. Festival shuttles offer free transportation among most venues 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. by Roberts Hawaii. A map of the shuttle route and festival venues is available in a detailed festival program available at each venue location February 6.

Organized by members of the upcountry community and the county’s department of parks and recreation, the festival marks the blooming of the historic cherry trees at Church Row Park and celebrates the age-old Japanese tradition of hanami, which translates to “cherry blossom viewing party.” After a seasonal winter chill, the trees typically are blooming in early February.

Mochi Sake

This year’s festival is dedicated to the Waimea Bonyu Kai Bonsai Club, which marks its 60th anniversary this year, and Waimea Arts Council, which celebrates 40 years in 2016. Honorees will be recognized at the festival’s opening ceremony. Time is 9 a.m. on the main entertainment stage at the rear of Parker Ranch Center and will be attended by Governor David Ige, Mayor Billy Kenoi, Consul General of Japan Yasushi Misawa and Hawaii Council Representative Margaret Wille

The 2016 event artwork is a photograph by Barbara Schaefer, “Imiola Church.” The photo will appear on a limited number of collector posters available for $10 at the Waimea Arts Council’s Firehouse Gallery.

Mochi Taiko

A quick rundown of festival activities at various locations follows (times are 9 a.m.-3 p.m. unless specified otherwise).

Church Row Park

  • Historical Cherry Tree Display: Waimea Lions’ Club offers a pictorial history of the cherry trees and serves as the festival’s official Lost and Found station.
  • Entertainment: Hawaii Lion Dance Association of Oahu at 9 a.m., Shamisen by Ayano Uema at 10 a.m., Beamer-Solomon Halau O Poohala with Kumu Hula Hulali Solomon Covington at 11 a.m. and Hui Okinowan Kobudo Taiko at noon.
  • Cherry Pie Cook-off: Sponsored by District 9 County Councilmember Margaret Wille, senior clubs from Waimea, Waikoloa and North Kohala vie in the 3rd Cherry Pie Bake Off with judging at noon. Club members sell pie slices, recipe books and crafts.
  • Bonsai: The Waimea Bonyu Kai Bonsai Club offers a display and sale of bonsai, ongoing demonstrations and a clinic to discuss and work on the art of bonsai.
  • Japanese Craft Lessons at Kamuela Hongwanji: Learn the time-honored art of furoshiki (gift wrapping).
  • Asian Collectibles/Food Sales at Kamuela Hongwanji: Church organizations sell Asian-themed collectibles, lanterns made from recycled beverage cans, cherry tree seedlings and cherry blossoms in mugs; plus Asian foods: Inari sushi, chicken bowl, nishime bento, andagi and prune mui.
  • Cooking Demos at Kamuela Hongwanji: Kona-Kohala chefs offer cooking demonstrations with free samples on the hour starting 9 a.m.: Chef Jason Kanekoa of Waikoloa Beach Marriott, Chef John Iha of Sansei Waikoloa, Chef Shintaro Takizawa of Shiono Sushi at the Mauna Lani Restaurant and Chef TK of the Lemongrass Express.

Parker Ranch Center- Hwy. 19

  • Festival Entertainment Stage: In the back parking lot. Opening 9 a.m. dedication ceremonies kick off continuous entertainment until 3 p.m.: Bon Odori Taiko accompanied by Kona Taiko, Kumu Hula Michael Pang’s Hula Halau O Ka Noeau, Boni & Doug, Darlene Ahuna, Michael Strand Band and Tai Shoji Taiko.
  • Craft Fair: Nearly 150 crafters inside Center and in the back parking lot.
  • Mochi Tsuki Pounding: Help pound mochi using 500 pounds of rice with the Kona Hongwanji Mission outside the Fireside Food Court starting 10 a.m.; samples.

Kahilu Theatre – Lindsey Road/Parker Ranch Center

  • Cultural Demos: From 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Enjoy ritual Japanese tea ceremony led by Emi Wakayama, origami with Bonnie Cierni, feather lie and Japanese ikebana with Chikako Powers and hanafuda card playing.
  • Performing Arts: From 9 a.m.3 p.m. Japanese and international music led by Annu Shoko Shionoya with vocalist Kauilani Trainer and Marius Stranger, flutist Roy Kimura and dancer Shizuno Nasu; lyre harp by Miyuki Ikesue of Tokyo, flutist Yumi Kikuchi and guitar by Gen Morita. Dance concerts “Sakura Sakura” at 11 a.m. and “The Dream” at 1 p.m. Drop-in classes in hula, street jazz and circus arts.
  • Art and Film: Art displayed by Susumu Sakaguchi of Volcano and “Voyager Exhibit.” Screening of “Canefield Songs-Holehole Bushi” at 2:15 p.m.

Mana Christian Ohana Church – (Former Kahilu Town Hall) Behind Parker Ranch Center

  • Ka Hui Kapa Apana O Waimea’s Third Biennial Festival of Quilts: Extensive quilt display and craft sale, members offer a “learn how” area and pattern tracing.
  • Kamaaina Motors Car Show: New display of vehicles at Hamakua side of parking lot.
  • Minuke‘ole Park Hanam Ceremony: 11 a.m. with planting of cherry trees

Waimea Historic Corner-Hwys. 19/190 intersection

  • Firehouse Gallery Art Demos/Exhibition: Waimea Arts Council presents art with a cherry blossom theme, sidewalk chalk drawing for all ages, plus event poster sales for $10.

Waimea School Playground-Lindsey Road/Back of Post Office

  • Waimea Homestead Farmers Market: 7 a.m.-2 p.m.

Parker School-Lindsey Road

  • Waimea Town Market/Performing Arts: Outdoor market with fresh produce, food and artisan booths open 7:30 a.m.-noon with drum performances by Ryukyukoku Matsuri Daiko Kohala-Waimea at 10 and 11 a.m.

Pukalani Stables-Pukalani and Ala Ohia Roads

  • Kamuela Farmers Market: 7 a.m.-2 p.m.; cherry tree planting 9:30 a.m., museum free all day.

Kamuela Liquors-Hwy. 19

  • Sake Tasting: Noon-3 p.m.

Ginger Farm- (old Anderson Homestead) MM 55 across from Puu Nani St. on Hwy. 19

  • Japanese Home Tour/Tea Tasting/Craft: Self-guided tour through traditional Japanese-style home and garden. Cherry tea is served and art students assist attendees to make a cherry blossom-hanging scroll. Petting zoo.

Kukio Hale Hawaiian Homes-MM 55 on Hwy. 19

  • Waimea Nui Farmer’s Market: 7 a.m.-noon

The Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival is produced by the Hawaii County Parks and Recreation’s Culture and Education Section. Overseen by the park’s culture education administrator, Roxcie Waltjen, the festival is a community-wide effort by a dedicated team of volunteers, 961-8706.

Hawaii Tropical Fruit Grower Surveys Fruit Growers With Goal to Increase Production

What fruit, and how much, is being locally grown? What fruit do growers want to plant in the near future? What do growers need to help them successfully produce fruit? These questions and more were asked in a recent survey conducted by the Hawaii Tropical Fruit Growers (HTFG).

Jackfruit

Jackfruit

Funded by the County of Hawai‘i’s Department of Research and Development, the HTFG Survey of Tropical Fruit Growers collected data from HTFG member and non-member respondents from July through September, 2015.

“The purpose of the survey was to determine what actions to take and to fullfill grants to get fruit trees into the hands of growers to increase local production,” said Alyssa Cho, assistant researcher in sustainable farming systems with an emphasis in tropical fruit and nut production at University of Hawaii-Manoa.

Avocado

Avocado

Using Survey Monkey, the project found 88 percent of growers have planted citrus, followed by 83 percent cultivating avocado and 82 percent farming bananas. Other top fruit included mango, papaya and pineapple.

The survey’s 138 participants claimed a total of 42,955 planted fruit trees. Of these, 2,586 were citrus. Limes were the top type of citrus grown, at 81 percent, followed by lemons, oranges and tangerines.

Apple was the most popular banana variety with 88 percent of respondents claiming to grow them, followed by red bananas at 34 percent. Sharwil led the varieties of the 2,151 avocadoes grown followed by Yamagata and Kahaluu. Washington Navel and Valencia were the most planted types of oranges.

Top criteria used for selection of fruit trees grown on farms included cost of plant and time needed to produce crop, followed by disease resistance and value for home use. Respondents said they keep 52 percent of their crop for personal use and directly sell 30 percent to wholesalers, 24 percent at farmers markets and the rest at fruit and farm stands, retail stores and restaurants.

The “biggest barrier to planting more trees now” was lack of space according to 37 percent of respondents and not enough labor to care for trees said 24 percent. Labor was cited as the top area of assistance needed at 43 percent, followed by horticulture/production at 25 percent.

“Other specified areas of assistance requested included market access, tips for managing market over supply and pest management,” noted Mark Suiso, HTFG president who oversaw implementation of the survey.

Jaboticaba

Jaboticaba

When asked what exotic fruit trees were desired by growers in the next two years, nearly 50 percent of respondents listed fig and breadfruit, followed by dragonfruit, jackfruit, passionfruit, mangosteen, jaboticaba, pomegranate, cacao and durian.

“The results of the survey identify what trees growers want to plant over the next few years and what type of trees we should try to clone for our members,” detailed Ken Love, HTFG executive director. “It also tells HTFG what we should focus on for study and grant writing.”

Hawaii Tropical Fruit Growers

Marking its 27th year, HTFG was incorporated in 1989 to promote tropical fruit grown in Hawaii. It is a statewide association of tropical fruit growers, packers, distributors and hobbyists dedicated to tropical fruit research, education, marketing and promotion; www.htfg.org.

Hawaii Tropical Fruit Growers Names People of the Year

The Hawaii Tropical Fruit Growers (HTFG) names the recipients of its appreciation awards, given annually to supporters of the state’s local fruit industry. The five award recipients include Mark G. Wright, Ph.D.; David Frenz, Tracie Matsumoto, Ph.D; Lisa Keith, Ph.D; and Peter Follet, Ph.D.

htfg logo

“The Hawaii Tropical Fruit Growers feels it’s important to recognize those who make significant contributions to the tropical fruit industry across the state,” said Ken Love, HTFG executive director. “Past winners include chefs, growers and researchers.”

Dr. Wright of the Department of Plant and Environmental Protection Sciences at the University of Hawai‘i-Manoa was cited for his continuous support of HTFG and helping statewide growers better understand the benefits of integrated pest management.

Frenz of Birds and Budz in Hilo was recognized for “dedication to high quality propagation while helping growers realize there are many plant varieties to consider.”

Both affiliated with the USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS) and the Pacific Basin Agricultural Research Center (PBARC) in Hilo, Dr. Matsumoto and Dr. Keith were honored for continuously supporting HTFG and its programs through research.

Dr. Follet, also of USDA ARS and PBARC, was tapped for HTFG support and quarantine update education.

SAVE THE DATE

The 2016 Hawaii International Tropical Fruit Conference is September 30-October 2 at the Aqua Kauai Beach Resort on The Garden Isle.

Geared to farmers, educators, orchard managers and proponents of sustainable agriculture, the weeklong event is presented by the statewide Hawaii Tropical Fruit Growers (HTFG).

Registration forms, speaker itinerary and fee schedule will be available in April at www.htfg.org or by contacting Love at kenlove@hawaiiantel.net or Mark Suiso at suiso@aloha.net.

Hawaii Tropical Fruit Growers

Marking its 26th year, HTFG was incorporated in 1989 to promote tropical fruit grown in Hawaii. It is a statewide association of tropical fruit growers, packers, distributors and hobbyists dedicated to tropical fruit research, education, marketing and promotion; www.htfg.org.

Chef Sam Choy Partners with KHON2 on New Television Series

Chef Sam is back! Celebrity Chef Sam Choy and GIFilms Producer, Richard Gonzalez have confirmed partnering with KHON Channel 2 for their 2016 show line up.

“The debut episode of “Sam Choy’s IN THE KITCHEN” will air Sunday March 6 – 2016 at 6:30 PM” commented Kristina Lockwood – General Manager of KHON Channel 2.  “I am so excited to have Sam on board” she added.

Sam Choy KHON

The show features Sam Choy visiting families and going into their refrigerators sight unseen, creating new dishes and educating them on effectively managing and reusing their leftovers.

The Idea came to Sam after attending a party at a friends home. The host was getting ready to go out to the store to buy food when Sam checked the refrigerator and found ample amounts of leftovers. Sam took the leftovers and created enough food for all of the guests and when the host came into the kitchen they were surprised to see all of the food! Sam told them, this all came right out of your fridge!

“We want to help educate families on the importance of not wasting money on food that gets left in the fridge and eventually thrown away. This show gives the opportunity to help a lot of people and to promote family fun in the kitchen.  If we can teach our children the importance of a good healthy meal and show them how to prepare it, then we just made a difference in their future. The show is an example on how we can be good consumers by using what we have to make delicious heart healthy meals” commented Chef Sam.

In the new show, Sam Choy will be giving away products from his recently launched signature Kitchen Apparel / Towel line featured in every episode, which will be available at most major retail stores and resort shops and on-line this spring.

Producer Richard Gonzalez says, “Sam’s years of experience and expertise, along with his Aloha Spirit makes this the best formula for a family cooking show.”

Chef Sam Choy and Producer Richard Gonzales

Chef Sam Choy and Producer Richard Gonzalez

Tune in this spring as we showcase families from Hawaii, having fun and making a difference in their Kitchens with Hawaii’s best loved Chef, Sam Choy!

Hawaii State Department of Health Completes More Than 10,000 Inspections of Food Service Establishments

Consumers can have greater peace of mind this holiday season. The Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) Sanitation Branch, which launched inspections of food establishments with a color-coded placard system in July 2014, recently completed inspections of virtually all of Hawaii’s more than 10,000 food establishments statewide to ensure they are in compliance with the rules of the state’s food safety code.

This covered about 6,000 such establishments on Oahu, 1,800 on Hawaii Island, 1,700 in Maui County, and 690 on Kauai. The food code requires inspections of restaurants, hotels, caterers, food warehouses, markets, convenience stores, lunch wagons, push carts, and institutional kitchens for healthcare facilities, preschools, elementary schools, adult and child day care centers, and prisons.

A total of 45 Hawaii Department of Health inspectors completed the inspections. On Oahu, there are currently 30 Hawaii Department of Health inspectors in the field; seven on Hawaii Island; four for Maui County; and three on Kauai.Health Department Placard“Consumers now look for the green placards posted as validation that their favorite eating spots are protected from foodborne illnesses and other health hazards,” said Peter Oshiro, who oversees the Hawaii Department of Health’s inspection program. “The good news is that the majority of Hawaii’s establishments are in compliance with the state’s food safety code.”

Green placards are issued for those establishments with no more than one critical violation that must be corrected at the time of inspection; yellow cards are issued to those with two or more critical violations; and red placards are used for those food establishments that need to be immediately closed because they pose an imminent health hazard to the community.

Of all the establishments that were inspected since the program began, the Hawaii Department of Health has issued only three red placards with monetary fines – all on Oahu – that required the suspension of their permit and were ordered to temporarily close their operations.

The Department of Health issued 2,105 yellow placards or conditional passes that require the establishments to address violations. “We’ve found that those establishments that received yellow placards are motivated to address any shortcomings and change their practices to come into compliance,” Oshiro said. “The average time for corrections is two to three days.”

“There has been a voluntary compliance rate of over 99.8% for those food facilities that were issued a yellow placard. This confirms that the placarding program has been a huge success in terms of influencing rapid and voluntary correction of food safety violations,” Oshiro said.

“The Department of Health has long recognized that litigating solutions through permit suspensions and the levying of fines is counter-productive and time consuming when compared with voluntary compliance, which is truly a win-win-win outcome for the regulatory agency, the food facilities, and most importantly public health, by reducing the public’s exposure to food illness risk factors,” Oshiro added.

Oshiro said there may be some mobile food service establishments or others that have not yet been inspected. If the public does not see a placard at an eatery, they are encouraged to inform the Hawaii Department of Health so that an inspection can be scheduled at that site. The public can notify the Department of Health about these sites at 586-8000.

There is more good news: The online portal that will allow the public to access the inspection results is targeted to be operational in the first quarter of 2016. The system, which also allows food establishments to apply and pay for permits, is also scheduled to be ready in the new year. These functions are now being tested before they are officially launched in 2016, Oshiro said.

Department of Health Issuing Recall on Oysters Imported from Korea

The Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) is issuing a recall notice for frozen, raw oysters imported from Korea and sold in bulk to distributors and food establishments in Hawaii. The individually quick frozen (IQF) raw oysters on the half shell are packaged under the Dai One Food Company label.

Department of Health

The shellfish harvest dates are Feb. 10, 11, 12, and 13, 2015 and are listed on the required shellfish identification tags for all bulk shellfish cases. “The department has already conducted product trace-backs and embargoed all of the suspect product on Nov. 24 at various local shellfish distributors and restaurants,” said Peter Oshiro, “Although this product is not sold directly to the public, a recall has been issued as an additional safeguard to further notify anyone who may possess the product that it is unsafe and should be destroyed.”

A product embargo prohibits businesses from using a product suspected of causing illness until a determination is made on the safety of the product. The department received reports of sporadic illnesses (11 total) in September, October, and November of this year that appeared to be linked to the consumption of raw oysters.

Samples of the suspect oysters were sent to U.S. Food and Drug Administration Gulf Coast Seafood Laboratory in Alabama for testing, and the samples tested positive for Norovirus. With the positive lab results, DOH has ordered all of the embargoed product held by distributors and restaurants to be destroyed.

Norovirus symptoms include nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, diarrhea, fever, and headaches with onset usually within 12-48 hrs after consuming contaminated food. Anyone experiencing these symptoms should consult a physician and if foodborne illness is suspected, report it to the DOH Disease Investigation Branch at (808) 586-4586.

Department of Health food rules effective February 2014 require a consumer advisory at the point of sale for any restaurant or eatery serving raw or undercooked foods.

The advisory states, “Consuming raw or undercooked meats, poultry, seafood, shellfish, or eggs may increase your risk of foodborne illness.” Pregnant or immunocompromised individuals are also advised not to consume any raw or undercooked foods.

For more information on the department’s new restaurant rules and food safety program go to http://health.hawaii.gov/san/

Parker Students Collect 4.75 Tons for Local Food Banks

Parker students, families, faculty and staff gathered on November 25, the day before Thanksgiving, to celebrate the school’s 4th Annual ‘Ohana Day.  This celebration marked the end of a month-long canned food drive by students which raised a historic total of 4.75 tons of food.

“Parker upper school students stand in an empty flat bed truck after dropping off a record 4.75 tons of canned food items which was split between Annunciation Church’s Food Bank and Kokua Ministries at New Hope Church.”

“Parker upper school students stand in an empty flat bed truck after dropping off a record 4.75 tons of canned food items which was split between Annunciation Church’s Food Bank and Kokua Ministries at New Hope Church.”

Donated items, plus $1,000 raised by Parker students in the National Art Honors Society, was split in half and donated to Annunciation Church’s Food Bank and Kokua Ministries at New Hope Church, both in Waimea.

More than 200 students in grade 6-12 spent the morning volunteering within the Waimea community. Students helped with improvement and maintenance efforts at the Waikoloa Stream, Waimea Elderly Housing, St. James Episcopal Church and Thrift Store, as well as around the school’s 23 acre campus. “Thanks to the experience of ‘Ohana Day, our students take away a genuine sense of pride and accomplishment in their combined efforts to give back to our community,” says Tina Doherty, Middle School Head.

“Lower school students enjoying an all-school and family chili cook as part of the school’s Ohana Day.”

“Lower school students enjoying an all-school and family chili cook as part of the school’s Ohana Day.”

Upon returning to campus, Parker’s extended ‘ohana gathered outside the school’s 100 year old Kahilu Hall for a short ceremony announcing the food drive totals.  After filling three flatbed trucks with food drive donations, more than 320 students and their families enjoyed a meal together on the schools front lawn.  With more than 12 entries into the annual chili and soup cook off competition, attendees were thankful for the food and community the day provided.

“In the spirit of the Thanksgiving holiday, ‘Ohana Day allows Parker students the opportunity show their collective gratitude and thanks with our extended Waimea community through small acts of service followed by the fellowship of sharing a meal together on campus,” says Deena Carey, Upper School Head.

Celebrity Chef Sam Choy Delivers on Promise

Celebrity Chef Sam Choy signed and delivered today to Hawaii Island HIV/AIDS Foundation a check in the amount of $750. This donation was made possible thru partial sales proceeds of his brand new Hawaiian Kitchen Line, which debuted in Kona last month.

Chef Sam Choy signs the check

Chef Sam Choy signs the check

“It’s is very important to support our local Big Island charities so they can keep doing the good work” said chef Choy. “Was a pleasure working with them on this project” he added.

Sam Choy Check and other

“Without generous contributions from our Big Island friends we would not be able to do our important work” quoted Teri Hollowell – Director of Programs “thank you so much for including us on this project Uncle Sam and Tiki Shark Art Inc” she added.

Sam Choy’s Hawaiian Kitchen Line will be available on all islands, in all States Nationally and selected Countries, Internationally in major retail stores starting late Spring 2016.

sam choy cooking line

The line has been designed for Chef Sam Choy to his exact specs by renowned local artist Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker”.

For more information and availability about Sam Choy Hawaiian Kitchen Line please contact: Nick Corish – HIC Corp (ncorish@hi-corp.com)

WWII Triple Ace Bud Anderson, WWII and Pearl Harbor Survivors at Dinner Gala

More than a dozen Pearl Harbor and WWII survivors are expected to join WWII Triple Ace Fighter Pilot and Congressional Gold Medal recipient Col. Clarence “Bud” Anderson at this year’s 9th annual Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor gala, December 5, at 6 pm.

Col. Clarence “Bud” Anderson

Col. Clarence “Bud” Anderson

The event is the Museum’s largest fundraiser of the year, and for many WWII survivors, serves as a prelude to the December 7 Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day Commemoration at Kilo Pier, Pearl Harbor.

“It’s such a privilege to host these WWII heroes at our signature event,” said Kenneth DeHoff, Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor Executive Director. “The evening is intended to honor the spirit of the men and women who serve our country, and what better way to do this than in the presence of Pearl Harbor and WWII survivors in this historic Hangar 79.”

During WWII, Col. Anderson served two combat tours, escorting heavy bombers over Europe in the P-51 Mustang from November, 1943 through January, 1945. He flew 116 combat missions and destroyed 16.25 enemy aircraft in aerial combat and another one on the ground. In addition to his Congressional Gold Medal of Honor,

Col. Anderson has been decorated 26 times, including 2 Legion of Merits, 5 Distinguished Flying Crosses, the Bronze Star, 16 Air Medals, The French Legion of Honor, and the French Croix de Guerre, as well as many campaign and service ribbons.

Themed, “For Love of Country—Pass It On,” this year’s gala will remember the past, honor the present, and inspire the future, while raising funds for the Museum’s education and restoration programs. The event takes place in the Museum’s historic 86,000 square foot WWII Hangar 79 – its windows still riddled with bullet holes from guns fired on December 7, 1941.

Highlights for the evening include:

7:15 pm: American Flag Art Explosion by Speed Painter and Artist Michael Ostaski.

8:00 pm: Partnership announcement and unveiling of commemorative Nose Art emblem for Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor’s B-17 Swamp Ghost by Greg Coleman, VP of Worldwide Marketing & Franchise Management at Walt Disney Animation Studios.

8:45 pm: Keynote address by WWII Triple Ace Fighter Pilot and Congressional Gold Medal of Honor recipient Col. Clarence “Bud” Anderson. Special performance by American Idol finalist Jordon Segundo

This year marks the 74th anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack, and according to the United States Navy, more than 40 Pearl Harbor survivors are expected to attend the December 7 commemoration ceremony.

TOMORROW – Free Thanksgiving Luncheon For the People of Puna

A FREE Thanksgiving luncheon will be held for the Puna Community tomorrow at the Pahoa Community Center.

Thanksgivng 2015Sponsors and members from Hope Services Hawaii, Aloha Lehua Cafe, Kalapana Mauna Kea Church and Puna New Hope will be providing free thanksgiving dinners from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.