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Tomorrow – Mainstreet Pahoa Associations Scholars Feast

Update on North Kona Water Restrictions

The Emergency Water Restriction for North Kona remains in effect. Over the past few days there has been a water level decline in the tanks that service the general area between the Mākālei Fire station to just south of the Palani Road and Māmalahoa highway junction.

These areas include, but are not limited to, Mākālei Estates, Kona Hills, Palisades, Wainani / Lokahi Makai, Kaiminani Drive (including all side streets), Kona Acres, and Hina Lani Drive (including all side streets). Without everyone’s continued cooperation, there will be areas that will experience periodic loss of water service or lower water pressures. ALL residents and customers in North Kona must continue to restrict water use to health and safety needs (drinking, cooking, and hygiene purposes).

The Department appreciates the community’s continued efforts to restrict water use during this time. As such, limited hand watering of precious plants, on occasion, is still acceptable using the following best practices:

  • Water at night to reduce evaporation.
  • Use of County’s free mulch to preserve moisture around plants. Visit the County’s website at: http://www.hawaiizerowaste.org/recycle/greenwaste/ for more information.
  • Use of rainwater from downspouts for plants.
  • Do not over-water plants.
  • Use of sprinklers (manual or automatic) for lawns and grass areas is still prohibited. This restriction also prohibits the draining and refilling of swimming pools, hot tubs, water fountains, etc.

Customers should take appropriate measures to reduce the loss of existing water in swimming pools and hot tubs, such as checking the pool for leaks and consulting a pool supplier for appropriate pool covers.  In addition, customer should ensure proper operation and maintenance of pool pump equipment.

The installation process has begun for both the Hualālai and Palani Deepwell repairs. Contractor has two (2) crews working on both repairs concurrently. At this time, the anticipated completion of Hualālai Deepwell repair is this weekend, with Palani Deepwell repair to follow shortly thereafter.

We will update you throughout this installation process as more progress is made and/or more information becomes available.

For your use, potable water can be obtained from a portable water tanker located on Hina Lani Street below Anini Street as well as water spigots along Ane Keohokalole Highway, between Kealakehe High School and Palani Road. Please bring your own drinking water containers to fill. We also recommend that residents store a sufficient amount of water for basic household needs, such as drinking, cooking, and hygiene purposes, in the event of service disruptions.

For more information visit our website at www.hawaiidws.org. To report any observed wasteful use of water, call 961-8060 during normal business hours or email dws@hawaiidws.org. For after hour emergencies call us at 961-8790.

Baby in Puna Catches Rat Lungworm Disease – Hawaii Department of Health Confirms 17th Case of Rat Lungworm Disease in Hawaii for 2017

The Hawaii State Department of Health (DOH) has confirmed an additional case of rat lungworm disease in an infant from the Puna District of Hawaii Island. This is the tenth laboratory-confirmed case of rat lungworm disease contracted on Hawaii Island this year, bringing the statewide total to 17 cases in 2017. After a detailed investigation, DOH learned the infant became infected likely after accidentally consuming a slug or snail.

“Kane’s slowly getting better but it will take time. He had RAT LUNGWORM for 9 DAYS & i took him to his doctor, urgent care & hilo medical center MULTIPLE TIMES before they finally listened to me & did a blood sample on him. Can you imagine if my baby would have died from this? & Me knowing that i did my best to tell doctors to check his blood because in my gut i could feel that it wasn’t the flu or him teething. I hope you guys feel real dumb for ignoring my instincts, i am glad that i was firm because the ER wanted to SEND US HOME AGAIN WITHOUT A BLOOD SAMPLE, but i refused to let that happen a 2nd time around. Any ways, i am grateful that he is a fighter & i am positive that he will make a full recovery.” Santini N Dylan Tauanuu

“This is an extremely unfortunate incident, with the infant currently hospitalized and receiving care,” said Aaron Ueno, Hawaii Island District Health Officer. “While the department is unable to provide specific information on this individual case, we can take this time to remind parents and caregivers about the importance of preventing infants and young children from putting slugs, snails, or other items in their mouths. We know that slugs, snails, and rats in all counties carry the parasite that can cause rat lungworm disease, so watching over young children is especially important.”

He added, “The Hawaii Island District Health Office is making a concerted effort to reach parents and caregivers of infants and young children by providing education and resources about rat lungworm disease prevention to our Women, Infants and Children (WIC) and Early Intervention Services clients and our partners, including pediatricians and other healthcare providers.”

DOH recommends all parents and caregivers of infants and young children take extra precautions, including:

  • Watch infants, toddlers, and children carefully while they are playing and make sure they are not picking up slugs, snails, or other objects from the ground and putting those into their mouths.
  • Help children properly wash their hands after playing and/or on the ground using running water and soap.
  • When consuming food and drinks, close and seal containers when not in use to prevent slugs and snails from crawling inside, especially when left on or near the ground.

The public is urged to take the following precautions to prevent rat lungworm disease:

  • Carefully inspect, wash, and store produce in sealed containers, regardless of whether it came from a local retailer, farmer’s market, or backyard garden.
  • All fruits and vegetables should be washed and rubbed under running water, especially leafy greens, to remove any tiny slugs or snails.
  • Controlling snail, slug, and rat populations is one of the most important steps in fighting the spread of rat lungworm disease. Eliminate slugs, snails, and rats around properties, and especially around home gardens.
  • Farmers as well as food handlers and processors should increase diligence in controlling slugs, snails, and rats on the farm.

Rat lungworm disease (angiostrongyliasis) is contracted when a person becomes infected with the parasite Angiostrongylus cantonensis. This happens when a person accidentally consumes raw or undercooked infected slugs, snails, freshwater shrimp, land crabs or frogs. The most common symptoms include severe headaches and neck stiffness, but symptoms may vary widely among cases. The most serious cases experience neurological problems, pain, and severe disability.

More information about the signs and symptoms of rat lungworm disease may be found at http://health.hawaii.gov/docd/disease_listing/rat-lungworm-angiostrongyliasis/ and https://health.hawaii.gov/docd/files/2017/01/RLD-rackcard-version1_06152017.pdf. The first in a series of public service announcements about rat lungworm disease prevention is posted on the Hawaii Department of Agriculture’s website at http://hdoa.hawaii.gov/blog/main/rat-lungworm-information/.

Hawaii Representative Ing to Introduce Bill to Lower Beer Tax

Representative Kaniela Ing plans to introduce a bill during the next legislative session that would cut taxes Hawaii residents pay for beer by more than half, from 93 cents a gallon to 42 cents a gallon.

“While it may appear that beer is taxed at a lower rate per gallon when compared to wine or spirits, if you break down the amount of alcohol per average gallon of beer versus wine or spirits, beer drinkers are taxed at a much higher rate,” said Rep. Ing. “The goal here is to level out the taxes so that each type of alcoholic beverage is taxed equitably.”

Ing says that his proposed tax cut is not to encourage drinking, as he rarely drinks alcohol himself. Rather, Ing says, his proposal is a matter of class fairness.

“Working people tend to drink beer more often than other types of alcoholic beverages. But today they are taxed more per ounce of alcohol than someone drinking wine. When you look at it that way, the current system is incredibly unjust.”

Compared to other states, Hawaii’s alcohol taxes rank second for beer, 11th for wine, and 23rd for spirits.

Ing believes this proposal makes sense from an economic and business standpoint as well. “Hawaii’s beer industry is growing and has resulted in hundreds of new jobs, diversified tourism, and a stronger economy,” he said. “If you look at other states, this local industry has a lot of room to grow. We should encourage the growth of local business to allow them to compete in the national marketplace.”

Public Hearings Scheduled on Proposal to Increase Commercial Marine License Fees

The Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Aquatic Resources (DAR) has scheduled statewide public hearings on proposed administrative rule amendments that would increase the annual commercial marine license fees from the current $50/year to $100/year initially, then to $150/year on January 1, 2018. This date may be delayed until later in the year, depending on when the rules are approved. The proposed rules also would establish a reporting deadline for dealers who buy marine life directly from commercial fishers.

Click to view proposed amendments

Bruce Anderson, DAR administrator said, “Commercial license fees haven’t increased in nearly 20 years.  We’re updating the fee schedule to reflect current and future needs.  Increased revenues from these fees will offset losses in revenues from non-resident fees for on-going operational expenses and to add new on-line reporting and licensing options to our website to better serve the fishing public.”

The hearings will be held at the following times and locations:

Thursday, September 28, 2017
MOLOKA‘I – Mitchell Pau‘ole Center Conference Room, 90 Ainoa Street, Kaunakakai, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Friday, September 29, 2017
O‘AHU – Stevenson Middle School Cafeteria, 1202 Prospect Street, Honolulu, 6 to 9 p.m..
LANA‘I – Lana‘i High/Elementary School Cafeteria, 555 Fraser Avenue, Lana‘i City, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017
HILO – Hawai‘i County Aupuni Center Conference Room, 101 Pauahi Street, Suite 101, Hilo, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.
KONA – Honokohau Harbor Big Game Fishing Clubhouse, Kailua-Kona, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017
MAUI – Maui Waena School Cafeteria, 795 Onehe‘e Street, Kahului, 6 to 8:30 p.m.

Thursday, October 5, 2017
KAUA‘I – Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School Cafeteria, Lihue, 4431 Nuhou Street, 6 to 9 p.m.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017
KAUA‘I – Kapa‘a Elementary School, 4886 Kawaihau Road, Kapa‘a, 6 to 9 p.m.

All interested persons are urged to attend the public hearing to present relevant information and individual opinion for the DLNR to consider. Persons unable to attend or wishing to present additional comments, may mail written testimony by Friday, October 13, 2017 to the Division of Aquatic Resources (DAR), 1151 Punchbowl Street, Room 330, Honolulu, HI 96813.

Anyone with a hearing impairment who desires to attend the public hearing may request assistance of a sign language interpreter. The request may be made in writing (to the DAR address in the preceding paragraph), or by calling 587-0100 (voice or TDD) in Honolulu. The request will need to be received at least seven days before the hearing is scheduled to start. Additional information or a copy of the proposed rules will be mailed at no charge upon receipt of verbal or written request to the DAR address.

To view the draft rule, go to the Division of Aquatic Resources website at https://dlnr.hawaii.gov/dar/files/2017/08/HAR_13-74dr.pdf

Update On North Kona Emergency Water Restriction – Another Failure

The Emergency Water Restriction for North Kona remains in effect. ALL residents and customers in North Kona must continue to restrict water use to health and safety needs (drinking, cooking, and hygiene purposes).

This restriction also prohibits the draining and refilling of swimming pools, hot tubs, water fountains, etc. Customers should take appropriate measures to reduce the loss of existing water in swimming pools and hot tubs, such as checking the pool for leaks and consulting a pool supplier for appropriate pool covers. In addition, customer should ensure proper operation and maintenance of pool pump equipment.

Recent well failures at Kohala Ranch Water Company (private water system) has left their community without an operating potable water source. As such, it was essential for the Department’s pump contractor to relocate equipment and respond to their critical situation. This will push back the completion of the Department’s Hualālai and Palani well repairs by approximately a week and a half.

Updates on well repairs can be found at www.hawaiidws.org.

Due to a significant level of overall compliance, water levels in the tanks have remained stable. The Department appreciates the community’s efforts to restrict water use during this time. Therefore, limited hand watering of precious plants, on occasion, is still acceptable using the following best practices:

  • Water at night to reduce evaporation.
  • Use of County’s free mulch to preserve moisture around plants. Visit the County’s website at: http://www.hawaiizerowaste.org/recycle/gr eenwaste/ for more information.
  • Use of rainwater from downspouts for plants.
  • Do not over-water plants.
  • Use of sprinklers (manual or automatic) for lawns and grass areas is still prohibited.

For other unique situations, please contact the Department to discuss possible options. Without everyone’s continued cooperation, there will be areas that will experience periodic loss of water service or lower water pressures.

We also recommend that residents store a sufficient amount of water for basic household needs, such as drinking, cooking, and hygiene purposes, in the event of service disruptions.

For your use, potable water can be obtained from a water “buffalo” located on Hina Lani Street below Anini Street as well as water spigots along Ane Keohokalole Highway, between Kealakehe High School and Palani Road. Please bring your own drinking water containers to fill.

For more information visit our website at www.hawaiidws.org. To report any observed wasteful use of water, call 961-8060 during normal business hours or email dws@hawaiidws.org. For after hour emergencies call us at 961-8790.

29th Annual Christmas with the Chefs

Sugarplums will dance in your head Saturday, Dec. 2 at the festive Christmas with the Chefs. The annual holiday gala returns to the seaside grounds of Courtyard King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel from 5:30-8 p.m.

Over 20 members of the American Culinary Federation (ACF) Kona Kohala Chefs Association will delight attendees with plates of expertly prepared savory cuisine and delectable holiday treats—all accompanied by handcrafted ales, choice wines and 100 percent Kona coffee.

The Bill Noble Trio jazzes up the evening for dancing under the stars fronting historic Kamakahonu Bay. A silent auction will tempt would-be Santas with an array of holiday gift ideas while supporting local businesses.

In its 29th year, the annual fundraiser benefits local culinary students attending Hawai‘i Community College—Palamanui and members of the Kona Kohala Chefs wanting to further their education.

Tickets are $90 presale, $95 at the door and available online at www.konakohalachefs.org. Tickets are available at Westside Wines, Kona Coffee & Tea, The Spoon Shop and Courtyard King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel. Tables of 10 are $1200—which includes reserved seating, table-side service and select bottles of wine—and can be purchased online.

The host hotel is offering a special event room rate starting at $159. Phone 808-331-6330 and ask for the “Christmas with the Chefs” room rate.

American Culinary Federation Kona Kohala Chefs Association: ACF is the largest, professional, non-profit organization for chefs and cooks in the nation. Founded in 1980, the Kona Kohala chapter is comprised of food service professionals, vendors, growers and culinary enthusiasts; www.konakohalachefs.org.

Kona Historical Society’s Farm Festival to Feature Celebrity Chef Sam Choy

Kona Historical Society’s Kona Coffee Living History Farm will be hosting the annual Farm Fest Open House at their historical coffee farm in Captain Cook on Saturday, September 30 from 10am to 2pm. The public is invited to attend this free community event that shares Kona’s rich farming history. Shuttles, generously sponsored by Hawaii Forest and Trail and Roberts Hawaii, will be running between the parking area of Kealakekua Ranch Center and the Kona Coffee Living History Farm from 9:30a.m. to 3p.m. since parking will not be available at the Farm.

At this year’s celebration, the theme is “From Farm to Table” in honor of Kona’s cultural heritage, and promises a day filled with fun-for-the-family activities that revolve around all the amazing sustainable foods that are made here in Kona. Celebrity Chef Sam Choy will be exploring the vegetable gardens and fruit trees on the farm, and using what he finds, he’ll prepare a delicious dish and beverage. Sandy’s Drive In will be returning to the farm for this annual celebration to cook up a traditional plantation era dish: Chicken Hekka.

The Kona Coffee Living History Farm, homesteaded by Japanese immigrants, reveals the story of Kona’s coffee pioneers in the 1925-1945 era. The coffee mill and farmhouse will be open to tours where guests can experience the domestic life of Kona’s coffee farmers. Visitors enter the kitchen where rice simmers on a traditional open-hearth stove before they remove their shoes to walk on tatami mats throughout the house. Outside, they learn to pick coffee and see how it was processed in the kuriba (mill) and dried on the hoshidana (drying platform), and explore the gardens where traditional vegetables are grown, or visit with the chickens, or Kona Nightengale Donkeys, who were an important part of the economy of Kona coffee farms.

Throughout the grounds of the Farm, historical interpreters, cultural practitioners and volunteers will be hosting “Hands on History” activities where guests can practice the art of lauhala weaving, Japanese calligraphy, medicinal gardening and pan roasting coffee, among others. The Songbird of Milolii, Diana Aki, will also return to the farm to perform local music on the lawn. Kona Historical Society will be displaying a new pop up exhibit featuring Kona’s history of growing and gathering food sustainably and sharing meals with our diverse, multicultural community.

This event is generously sponsored by Hawaii Community Federal Credit Union, Hawaii Tourism Authority, Candy Sargent, and Farm & Garden.

Kona Historical Society is a community-based, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and Smithsonian Museum affiliate that has spent the past four decades collecting, preserving and sharing the history of the Kona districts and their rich cultural heritage within Hawaii. The Kona Coffee Living History Farm is the only living history coffee farm in the nation. This award-winning, historic farm that tells the story of Kona’s coffee pioneers during the early 20th century.

For more information, call Kona Historical Society at 808-323-3222 or visit www.konahistorical.org. To get the latest updates regarding Kona Historical Society programs, historic sites and special events, “LIKE” Kona Historical Society on Facebook.

Department of Health’s Choose Health Now Campaign Launches in 7-Eleven Hawaii Stores Statewide

Today, the Department of Health (DOH) launched its Choose Healthy Now campaign in all 7-Eleven Hawaii locations throughout the state. As the department’s newest partner in the campaign, 7-Eleven is increasing consumer access to healthier foods and beverages and highlighting these better choices in some of the most visible areas of their 64 stores.

First Lady Dawn Ige honored 7-Eleven for their participation in the state’s campaign at a press event held at their Moanalua location, followed by a taste test of the healthy items that are offered in 7-Eleven Hawaii stores. Among the food items tested was a new creation, “Mrs. Ige’s Chicken Cilantro Sandwich,” which will be available for sale to customers later this year as part of the Choose Healthy Now campaign.

“We are honored and excited to be part of an initiative that provides our customers with an easy and quick way to make healthy food choices,” said Greg Hanna, President and CEO of 7-Eleven Hawaii. “The Department of Health provided the expertise to make all the changes needed to highlight healthier options for our customers. We encourage other businesses to join us.”

Through Choose Healthy Now, 7-Eleven customers will be able to easily identify and select foods and beverages that meet nutrition guidelines set by the Department of Health. Customers are prompted to choose these healthier snack and drink items through signage and point-of-decision prompts, which enable the customer to make a quick but informed decision. Product placement and price incentive strategies are also used to encourage the selection of healthier items.

“The state’s new partnership with 7-Eleven will make a huge impact on peoples’ ability to make fast, easy, healthy snack choices,” said Lola Irvin, Chief of the DOH Chronic Disease Prevention & Health Promotion Division. “With the addition of 7-Eleven’s important commitment to health, Choose Healthy Now can now be found in grocery and convenience stores, hospitals, cafeterias, and snack shops at more than 145 locations statewide!”

The Department of Health has also produced new Choose Healthy Now television commercials that began airing today; these ads encourage customers to look for snacks and drinks labeled Choose Healthy Now, and ask other stores and retail locations to join in the effort. Aloha Island Mart and KTA are also partners in the campaign since 2015 and 2016 respectively.

Poor nutrition contributes to obesity and chronic disease. More than half of adults in Hawaii are overweight or obese (57.2 percent); similarly, over 50 percent (58.5 percent) have been diagnosed with at least one chronic condition, such as diabetes, heart disease or cancer. Annual direct healthcare costs for obesity among adults in Hawaii has been estimated at $470 million and an additional $770 million for diabetes. These numbers are expected to continue to rise in conjunction with national rates.

Programs like the state’s Choose Healthy Now campaign are effective at increasing access and availability of healthier foods and beverages. “The time to address obesity and chronic disease is now,” said Director of Health Virginia Pressler. “Partnering with retail locations allows us to reach Hawaii residents where they make their everyday food choices.”

Choose Healthy Now first began as a partnership between the Department of Health and the Department of Human Services Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Ho‘opono Vending Program. It launched in May 2014 with six snack shops in state and federal government buildings on Oahu. Today, more than 145 retail locations across the state are promoting Choose Healthy Now.

Visit ChooseHealthyNowHawaii.com to view the full list of participating stores, watch the commercials, and download print materials for use in retail locations, snack shops, or other venues that sell food.

Mayor Kim Issues Emergency Proclamation Regarding North Kona Water Emergency

Mayor Harry Kim issued an Emergency Proclamation on Wednesday regarding the North Kona water emergency.

His statement is as follows:

“The Emergency Proclamation which was officially signed today was initially intended to be completed in August.  The purpose of this Proclamation is to ensure that all administrative readiness is established by the County in the event that assistance will be needed from the State government.

This Proclamation also allows County government to bypass certain procurement policies in the event that emergency purchases must be made. This also includes the use of emergency funds for the use of the Department of Water Supply’s needs.”

Click on the link to access the Emergency Proclamation:

http://records.co.hawaii.hi.us/weblink/1/doc/89509/Page1.aspx

Suisan Celebrates 110th Anniversary – Hosts Poke Takeover Featuring Top Chef Finalist, Sheldon Simeon

Rooted in local values with an eye always to the future, Suisan celebrates 110 years in business.

To commemorate this milestone, Suisan is hosting a birthday event at its fish market on Lihiwai Street on Thursday, September 7 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. featuring Hilo’s own Top Chef finalist, Sheldon Simeon.

Simeon has five creative poke combinations that are available for this one day only, including Singulaw, ahi garnished with fried pork belly, coconut vinegar and coconut milk; Da Lox, salmon three ways mixed with cream cheese, onion, ikura and dill; and Bam Bam, chunks of tofu and watermelon seasoned with nuoc cham and a mixture of fresh herbs, peanuts and toasted sesame seeds.

The birthday event also features pop-ups by local chefs from Seaside Restaurant, Ponds Hilo and Cousins Seafood & Bento, who will prepare samples using an array of products Suisan distributes.

Throughout the month of September, Suisan will give away 110 poke bowls via social media contests.

“It is humbling and gratifying to be part of Suisan as it celebrates 110 years of service to Hawaii Island,” said Stephen Ueda, president and CEO. “We would not be here without the support of our hardworking and dedicated employees and our loyal customers. We look forward to another century of innovation and growth, while always taking care of the customer.”

Suisan celebrates 50 years in business. Photo taken in 1957 at the site where Suisan’s fish auction was once held.

Founded on September 7, 1907, Suisan has grown from a fish market cooperative to Hawaii Island’s premier broadline food distributor. Over the last 110 years, Suisan faced many challenges including two tsunamis and having its property seized in World War II and its principal, Kamezo Matsuno, sent to an internment camp. More recently, Suisan suffered a fire that claimed its main office and warehouse in 2014.

Despite these setbacks, Suisan has moved forward and thrives. Its growth has been predicated upon anticipating community demand. In the 1950s, Suisan expanded its product mix to include frozen food. In the 1970s, it established a Kona warehouse and office to better serve its customers.

Today, Suisan employs 185 and has a fleet of 33 refrigerated trucks. It inventories more than 5,000 products and serves more than 1,000 wholesale customers including restaurants, schools, healthcare and government facilities, resorts and institutions islandwide.

Hawai’i CC Nursing Instructor Receives National Recognition for Work in Psychiatric Nursing

Hawai’i Community College Nursing instructor Cheryl Puntil is the 2017 recipient of the Award for Distinguished Service from the American Psychiatric Nurses Association (APNA).

Cheryl Puntil

Puntil will be recognized for her commitment, initiative, loyalty, integrity and exceptional and meritorious service at the 31st Annual National APNA Conference in Phoenix, Arizona on October 18. With more than 10,000 members, APNA is the largest professional membership organization committed to the specialty practice of psychiatric mental health (PMH) nursing and wellness promotion, prevention of mental health problems, and the care and treatment of persons with psychiatric disorders.

Puntil and several APNA colleagues worked on the APNA Essential Suicide Competencies for nurse assessment and management of individuals at risk for suicide.

“Through [Cheryl’s] vision, determination, and perseverance, the APNA Suicide Competencies initiative became a reality and an exemplar, continues to expand, and addresses both a major national public health problem and gap in nursing education,” Puntil’s colleagues stated.

“It is an incredible honor to receive the American Psychiatric Nurses Association Award for Distinguished Service,” said Puntil. “I followed my passion and was lucky to find awesome mentors who paved the way for me to assist in establishing competencies that will change nursing practice and improve care for those at risk for suicide. I was very surprised and grateful for the acknowledgment from my esteemed colleagues who nominated me, and to the APNA board for voting on my behalf to receive the award.”

Puntil received her Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing from the College of Saint Teresa and her Master’s of Science in Nursing from the University of California, Los Angeles. She is certified as an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) and a Psychiatric Mental Health Clinical Nurse Specialist (PMHCNS-BC).

Puntil joined Hawai’i CC Division of Nursing and Allied Health in 2014. Hawai’i CC offers Associate of Science Degree in Nursing and a Certificate of Achievement in Practical Nursing.

Suicide Prevention at Hawai’i CC

With suicide the second leading cause of death for persons 15-34, Hawai’i Community College has taken an active approach to suicide prevention. The college has established a Mental Wellness and Personal Development Service that offers services to students and leads trainings for faculty, staff and students in Safe Talk and QPR. Puntil has also brought Safe Talk training to Hawai’i CC Nursing students.

Puntil and Hawai’i CC Mental Health Therapist Kate De Soto were invited by UH Hilo Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Farrah-Marie Gomes to serve on the UH Suicide Prevention Committee.

The college will participate in National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month in September with tabling events, sign making and sign waving on September 12 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The goal is to bring awareness to the issue of suicidality and and enhance prevention efforts, said De Soto.

“We want to reduce the stigma of depression and suicidal thoughts so people have fewer barries to seeking help,” De Soto said. “The more we show support as a community, the more people are likely to speak up and the more people are likely to know what to do if someone does speak up.”

Students seeking services from the Mental Wellness and Personal Development office can contact De Soto at 934-2706 and kdesoto@hawaii.edu.

New State Food Safety Rules for Food Establishments Enhance Public Health Protection

New state food safety rules designed to improve public health protection will go into effect on Sept. 2. The Hawaii Department of Health (DOH) has amended Chapter 50, Food Safety Code, after completing public hearings on Hawaii Island, Kauai, Maui and Oahu in December 2016 and March 2017. The amended rules will affect all food establishments statewide with new requirements for the industry.

One of the major rule changes is a new mandate for Food Handlers Education certification for persons-in-charge at all food establishments. This will ensure a minimum baseline of food safety knowledge for all facility owners and managers. Studies have shown that food establishments with properly trained persons-in-charge have a lower occurrence of critical food safety violations that are directly linked to food illnesses.

The new rule requires that at least one employee present at every food establishment during normal work hours (including during food preparation) must have a formal food handlers training level certification. DOH will accept certification recognized by the American National Standards Institute. Training is available online from various vendors with fees averaging $10-$15 for certification. Proof of certification will be required during health inspections after Sept. 2, 2018. DOH will allow the industry one year to comply with this new provision.

Other changes to the state’s Food Safety Rules include:

  • Health inspectors may post placards during all types of inspection, including those for general complaints, and may post a “CLOSED” red placard at food establishments operating without a valid permit.
  • DOH may refuse permit renewals for food establishments with unpaid fines or stipulated agreements more than 30 days overdue.
  • DOH approval will be required prior to the sale of all “Wild Harvested Mushrooms.”
  • Permit exemptions will be allowed for residential child and adult day care providers, and bed and breakfast operators when certain conditions are adhered to. While exempt from permit requirements, these establishments may be subject to state health inspections.
  • Exemptions will also be allowed for the sale of “Homemade Foods” foods that are not potentially hazardous (e.g. certain pre-packaged foods). While exempt from permit requirements, these establishments may also be subject to state health inspections.
  • Special Event Temporary Food Establishment permits will be restricted to 31 days at a time. Consecutive permits may be allowed. Permit fees will remain at $100 for a 20-day permit with an additional $5 fee for each day over 20 days.
  • The section of the rules for Mobile Food Establishments has been removed and these regulations will be incorporated into the general regulations for all food establishments. All Mobile Food Establishments are required to access a state approved facility to support their food operations safely.
  • Full adoption of the 2013 FDA Model Food Code to include regulations governing reduced oxygen packaging. This will provide Hawaii with the most current nationally recognized food safety practices based on the most recent scientific studies conducted on food safety.

The DOH Sanitation Branch protects and promotes the health of Hawaii residents and visitors through education of food industry workers and regulation of food establishments statewide. The branch conducts health inspections of food establishments where food products are prepared, manufactured, distributed, or sold. The branch also investigates the sources of food borne illnesses, and works to control and prevent foodborne outbreaks. Health inspectors work with business owners, food service workers, and the food industry to ensure safe food preparation and conditions.

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

Mai Tai Festival and Battle of the BBQ Winners Are…

The 9th Annual Don the Beachcomber’s Mai Tai Festival happened this past Saturday at the Royal Kona Resort.  Over 20 of the top bartenders from around Hawaii and the mainland participated for a chance at $17,500 in prize money.

The day began with a “Battle of the BBQ” at the courtyard of the Royal Kona Resort where 13 restaurants competed for the coveted “People’s Choice Award” and the “Judges Choice Award”.

Broke Da Mouth Grindz took home the “People’s Choice Award” with a BBQ Beef dish topped w/ shrimp:

The Kona Butcher Shop took home the “Judges Choice Award” with a smoked brisket dish:

After the Battle of the BBQ was finished folks mingled throughout the courtyard as there were lots of craft vendors selling local Big Island Made products.

Brad “Tiki Shark” Parker’s booth was one of the more popular shops.

People then moved on over to the Resort’s pool area where Henry Kapono performed in concert while folks enjoyed a casual pool party for a few hours.

Then at 4:30 the Mai Tai Festival began inside Don the Beachcombers where hundreds of folks gathered to watch some of the best bartenders compete in ten minute mix-offs with the judges getting to sample each of the Mai Tai’s after the mix-off.

The winners of the Mai Tai Festival were:

  1. Kevin Beary – 3 dots and a dash Chicago with the “Tricky Tricky Wiki Wiki”
  2. Justin Kipapa – Myna Bird – Honolulu
  3. Paul Schreuder – Bar Leather Apron Honolulu

Mai Tai Festival Director Jeff Isbister said, “These are 3 great bartenders all carrying the torch of the classic Tiki Cocktail into the mainstream. Both Justin and Kevin are returnees and both have finished in the top 3 in past events. We couldn’t ask for better representation than that. Paul is a first time competitor but he represents bar Leather apron which is owned by a two time winner and two time judge, Justin Park. These top tier mixologists are testament to how big the Mai Tai Fest has become. Kevin has come all the way from Chicago twice to compete. We’ve had competitors from all over the country and beyond.”

Television personality DJ Maleko helped emcee the event and Celebrity Chef Sam Choy was one of the Judges.

Bacardi USA was on hand and was giving folks a chance to win bottles of Bacardi by posting pictures of the event on Instagram and Twitter under the hashtag #BacardiUSA.

Isbister continued, “Another great event, we went into the planning for the 9th annual Mai Tai Festival with our sights firmly set on our tenth anniversary next year. Everyone’s focus was of course this year but we kept in the back of our minds the idea of what can we do bigger better and bolder for next year. I know Gary Hogan, Tom and Liz Bell and the staff here at the hotel promise the best event yet.”

Coffee With a Cop Day

Today (August 22), from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. South Hilo Community Police Officers partnered with Zippy’s Restaurant in Hilo for Coffee with a Cop. The event allows members of the public to speak to officers in a relaxed setting, building partnerships between law enforcement and the community. Throughout the morning officers spoke to over 20 citizens on a variety of topics.

Pictured are officers with the South Hilo Community Police Unit, Neighborhood Watch Liaison-Bobbye St. Ambrogio, along with Zippy’s employees at Zippy’s Restaurant.

The 2nd Annual National Coffee with a Cop Day is (October 4). Officers with the Hawaiʻi Police Department will be at the Puainako Starbucks in Hilo from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. that day.

Golf Tournament and Luncheon to Benefit Kona Historical Society

The West Hawaii Association of REALTORS (WHAR) are recruiting four-person teams and individual golfers to compete on September 11, 2017 at the Golf Tournament and Luncheon Fundraiser for Kona Historical Society (KHS) on the beautiful and exclusive courses of The Club at Hokuli`a. Tee time is set for 10am at The Club at Hokuli’a’s Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course,a private, oceanside course where every hole is framed by a dramatic ocean view and some holes run directly along the ocean. Registration begins at 9am, and a blessing will be given at 9:30am. Fidelity National Title & Escrow of Hawaii is the Premiere Sponsor of this tournament.

In addition to the lively competition and the gorgeous landscape rarely accessed by non-members of The Club, the organizers of the tournament have planned raffles and prizes, including the giveaway of a car from Big Island Honda for a hole-in-one, as well as gift certificates for the Hokuli`a Pro Shop.

Participation in the tournament includes a lavish buffet luncheon featuring grilled tri-tip roast, seared ahi and more elegant dishes highlighting fresh flavors and local ingredients. Beer, wine and nonalcoholic beverages are included in the luncheon. Non-golfers interested in supporting Kona Historical Society can also purchase tickets for $35 to attend the luncheon only,which will feature a presentation from Hokuli`a’s cultural liaison, Kaleo Kuali`i, about the significance of the seldom visited Hokukano area. There will also be a silent auction of five rare, large-scale, 5 ft. by 3 ft. canvas photo prints from Kona Historical Society’s private archive. Kona Historical Society will also be auctioning a gorgeous East Indian Rosewood dining table with renowned Hawaii historical provenance. The auction items will be on display and accepting silent bids throughout the course of the day. Winning bidders will be announced at the end of the luncheon.

Kona Historical Society is a community-based, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and Smithsonian Museum affiliate that has spent the past four decades collecting, preserving and sharing the history of the Kona districts and their rich cultural heritage within Hawaii. Since 2012, WHAR has chosen a charity to dedicate fundraising efforts to every year. This year, WHAR is proud to choose Kona Historical Society as WHAR’s Charity of Choice. West Hawaii Association of REALTORS® (WHAR) is a voluntary professional association of real estate licensees primarily spanning the West Hawaii area of the Big Island of Hawaii from Hawi at the northern end of the island to Naalehu at the southern end. The West Hawaii Association of REALTORS® was organized in 1969 and is a non-profit corporation.

To register your team for the tournament, visit http://www.konarealtors.com/news/4841066 to download a registration form and submit it to karin@konarealtors.com.The cost per person when signing up as a team is $250, the cost for individuals is $275. For more information about Kona Historical Society, call 808-323-3222 or visit www.konahistorical.org. To get the latest updates regarding Kona Historical Society programs, historic sites and special events, “LIKE” Kona Historical Society on Facebook.

Tomorrow – Battle of the BBQ’s and Mai Tai Festival at the Royal Kona Resort

Tomorrow, August 19th 2017, the Royal Kona Resort celebrates the legendary Mai Tai cocktail at the ninth annual Don the Beachcomber Mai Tai Festival.

Watch as over 20 of the world’s top bartenders converge on the Big Island of Hawaii to mix it up in a battle for the title of World’s Best Mai Tai and a $10,000 cash prize.

Festival Highlights include:

  • Mai Tai Marketplace: Shop for crafts and island treats from local artisans and merchants from 11am-4pm
  • Battle of the BBQ: Taste and vote for Hawaii’s best barbecue from 11am-2pm
  • Pool Party: Listen to live music from local Hawaiian artists by the pool from 2:30pm-4pm

Mai Tai Mix-off: From 4:30pm – 7:30pm watch bartenders from around the world vie for the title of World’s Best Mai Tai and cash prizes. First place winner receives $10,000, second place winner receives $5,000, and third place winner receives $2,500.

For the past eight years, the Don the Beachcomber Mai Tai Festival has drawn bartenders from around the globe to compete for the title of World’s Best Mai Tai and cash prizes. This annual festival is a full-day, fun-filled event with live entertainment, a pool party, arts and crafts displays, a BBQ Cook-Off Contest, food booths, and lots more. The main event is the exciting action-packed Mai Tai Mix-Off contest. Watch and cheer for the competing bartenders as they create their own potent and signature spin on the historic Mai Tai, an island favorite.

Past participants

The 2016 Festival crowned Art Deakins of Bar Leather Apron in Honolulu, HI the winner of the $10,000 first prize and title of “World’s Best Mai Tai”. Second place was Tim Rita of the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas, NV. The third best mai tai recipe was created by Kevin Beary of Three Dots and a Dash in Chicago, IL.Also part of the Festival’s activities was the battle of the barbeques. The Judge’s Award for “Best BBQ” was taken by Cool Runnings Catering of Kailua-Kona, HI. The People’s Choice award winner was Umeke Restaurant also in Kailua-Kona, HI.

North Kona Water Restiction Update – Spare Motor Defective and Cannot Be Used

This is an Emergency Water Restriction update for North Kona. The Department of Water Supply’s (DWS) Honokohau Deepwell is out of service. Therefore, ALL residents and customers in North Kona must immediately restrict water use to health and safety needs (drinking, cooking, and hygiene purposes) only. Cease all landscape irrigation activities.

During today’s work, it was discovered that the spare motor is defective and cannot be used. DWS is now working on several options to obtain another spare motor before resuming the installation work. The updated repair schedule is to be determined.

DWS appreciates the community’s efforts to restrict their water use during this time. Government agencies, businesses, and other customers that use recycled wastewater or reclaimed water, in lieu of potable water, for their daily operations are to be commended. Adjustments were made to the water distribution system and a minimum level of water service is being maintained.

However, without everyone’s continued cooperation, there will be areas that will experience periodic loss of water service or lower water pressures. We also recommend that residents store a sufficient amount of water for basic household needs, such as drinking, cooking, and hygiene purposes, in the event of service disruptions.

For your use, potable water can be obtained from a water tanker located on Hina Lani Street between Anini Street and Manu Mele Street as well as water spigots on a fire hydrant along Ane Keohokalole Highway, between Kealakehe Parkway and Kealakehe High School. Please bring your own drinking water containers to fill.

For more information visit our website at www.hawaiidws.org. To report any observed wasteful use of water call 961-8060 during normal business hours or email dws@hawaiidws.org. For after hour emergencies call us at 961-8790.

UPDATE on the North Kona Water Restrictions

This is an Emergency Water Restriction update for North Kona. The Department of Water Supply’s (DWS) Honokohau Deepwell is out of service. Therefore, ALL residents and customers in North Kona must immediately restrict water use to health and safety needs (drinking, cooking, and hygiene purposes) only. Cease all landscape irrigation activities.

The contractor started removing column pipe today and expect to extract the pump and motor in a couple of days. The spare pump and motor will then be connected and reinstallation work will continue through the Admissions Day weekend.

DWS appreciates the community’s efforts to restrict their water use during this time. Government agencies and businesses that use recycled wastewater or reclaimed water, in lieu of potable water, for their daily operations are to be commended.

Adjustments were made to the water distribution system and a minimum level of water service is being maintained. However, without everyone’s continued cooperation, there will be areas that will experience periodic loss of water service or lower water pressures.

We also recommend that residents store a sufficient amount of water for basic household needs, such as drinking, cooking, and hygiene purposes, in the event of service disruptions.

For your use, potable water can be obtained from a water tanker located on Hina Lani Street between Anini Street and Manu Mele Street as well as water spigots on a fire hydrant along Ane Keohokalole Highway, between Kealakehe Parkway and Kealakehe High School. Please bring your own drinking water containers to fill.

For more information visit our website at www.hawaiidws.org. To report any observed wasteful use of water call 961-8060 during normal business hours or email dws@hawaiidws.org.  For after hour emergencies call us at 961-8790.

Kona Wine Market & Puako Provisions Present “Raise the Bar” An Urban Feast for the Senses

Kona Wine Market and Chef Noah Hester of Puako Provisions are bringing a one-of-a-kind live music event with food and drink pairings on Saturday, August 26, 2017. This event, called “Raise the Bar”, will be held from 6:30 pm to 11:30 pm in Kona at the Edible World Institute, a local non-profit and educational space supporting the food and live music scene on the Big Island. Live music will be by NOWELO, featuring Ann Hoku Lyn and Grammy award-winner John Keawe.

Chef Noah Hester is the manager and culinary talent behind Puako Provision & Catering. He was recently named one of the country’s top culinary talents for the second time by “Best Chefs America.” This prestigious honor recognizes the most brilliant cooks in the country.

Kona Wine Market, located in Aloha Plaza, offers a variety of beer, wine, spirits, cigars, gifts and gourmet food.

More information on this event is available at konawinemarket.com or call (808) 329-9400. Limited availability tickets can be purchased at the Kona Wine Market, the Music Exchange in Hilo or Kona, Puako Provisions and Catering in Puako (in The Puako General Store), and brownpapertickets.com/event/3041786.