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Hōkūleʻa Arrives at Rapa Nui (AKA Easter Island)

Crewmembers aboard Hōkūleʻa have arrived to Rapa Nui, also known as Easter Island, a journey that’s expected to take about two and a half weeks.

“Rapa Nui signifies a major cultural return for Polynesian navigation and our Worldwide Voyage as we re-enter the Polynesian triangle, the birthplace of our wayfinding heritage,” said master navigator Nainoa Thompson.

The crew will stay on the island for approximately a week before sailing on to French Polynesia.

After voyaging approximately 1,900 nautical miles over six days, Leg 28 crewmembers landed in Rapa Nui and we were greeted by long time friends and family that have been close to Hōkūleʻa for decades. Because Captain Archie Kalepa needed to depart the evening crewmembers arrived, the group expedited a visit to Tongariki, where 15 Moai stand guard to the east.

The arrival to Rapa Nui was suddenly made real as the crew stood in the shadow of these wonders that have been witnesses to the incredible changes that this place has seen. Crewmembers are using this time for quiet reflection after finishing the epic voyage from the Galapagos.

November After Dark in the Park Programs at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park continues its tradition of sharing Hawaiian culture and After Dark in the Park programs with the community and visitors throughout November.  These programs are free, but park entrance fees may apply. Mark the  calendar for these upcoming events:

The Statues Walked: Revealing the Real Story of Easter Island. Rapa Nui, or Easter Island, is widely known as a case study of human-induced environmental catastrophe resulting in cultural collapse. However, a closer look at the archeological and historical record for the island reveals that while an environmental disaster unfolded, the ancient Polynesians persisted.

Dr. Terry Hunt (NPS Photo)

Join Dr. Terry Hunt as he discusses The Statues That Walked: Unraveling the Mystery of Easter Island, a book he co-authored with fellow archeologist Carl Lipo. In this presentation, Dr. Hunt outlines the evidence for the island’s astonishing prehistoric success, and explores how and why this most isolated and remarkable culture avoided collapse. Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing After Dark in the Park series. Free.
When: Tues., Nov. 13 at 7 p.m.
Where: Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium

Kalapana ‘Awa Band in Concert.  Enjoy a memorable evening listening to the gentle voices of Sam Keli‘iho‘omalu, Ipo Quihano, and Ikaika Marzon, group members who are all ‘ohana from Kalapana and have been playing together for more than 10 years. Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing Nā Leo Manu “Heavenly Voices” presentations. Free.
When: Weds., Nov. 21 at 6:30 p.m. (doors open at 6:15 p.m.)
Where: Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium

Whose Footprints Are These Really? Research suggests the story behind the fossilized human footprints in the Ka‘ū Desert may be more complex than originally thought.

Whose footprints are these? (NPS Photo)

Footprints found in desert ash layers were believed to have been created in 1790 by the army of the Hawaiian Chief Keōua on their way back from battle. While in the area, Kīlauea is said to have erupted, sending suffocating ash down on one group. Others made it out alive, leaving their footprints in the then-wet ash. The ash dried, forever memorializing this event…or did it? Join Dr. Jadelyn Moniz-Nakamura as she examines fascinating geologic evidence that may indicate much more prehistoric activity in the area. Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing After Dark in the Park series. Free.
When: Tues., Nov. 27 at 7 p.m.
Where: Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium