Jim “Kimo” West and Dennis and Christy Soares in Concert Friday at the Volcano Art Center

Friday, April 29, 2011 at 7:00 pm at the Volcano Art Center Hale Hoomana Performance Hall

Media Release:

“We are so excited to have a guitarist and musician that is of the highest quality perform in Volcano Village. This concert venue  is an intimate setting and is one that allow the audience to get close and personal with Jim and we expect to sell out fast. Joining Jim will be Big Island favorites Dennis and Christie Soares who have been nominated for both Na Hoku and Hawaii Music awards. This is going to be a special night in Volcano, I can promise you that!”  stated Volcano Art Center Concerts and Performance Coordinator David Wallerstein.

Kimo West

Kimo West

West’s first two CD’s, “Slack Key West” (2005) and “Coconut Hat” (1999) are excellent examples of the tradition of slack key guitar taken to a new and unique place, while still retaining the essence of ki ho’alu. “Kimo” as he is called in Hawaii, has performed at many of the islands’ legendary slack key guitar festivals as well as on the mainland, including the historic So Cal Slack Key Festival. His playing has been featured in a number of Honda TV spots, Disney Channel movies and National Public radio. “Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar: Kimo-Style”was released in December of 2007 and proved to be another evolutionary step in the ever-evolving journey of ki ho ‘alu.

Dennis and Chistie Soares

Dennis and Chistie Soares

Released in fall of 2008, “Kimo’s Hawaiian Slack Key Christmas,” features slack key arrangements of classic and contemporary holiday songs and won the Hawaii Music Award for Best Seasonal Recording. West is also a two-time recipient of the LA Treasures Award from the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs. Between composing music for TV and film and slack key guitar playing, West also finds time to hone his production chops and has produced CDs for a number of independent artists including a project for Los Angeles-based Hawaiian performer Kapo Ku, a talented composer of new Hawaiian language mele. “Eia Mai Ka La” was recently released by Hawaii’s foremost record label, The Mountain Apple Company. He also has produced two CD’s for CMH Records in Los Angeles, “Hotel Honolulu”, and ‘Livin’s EZ-The Hawaiian Tribute to Sublime.”

Tickets for West’s performance on Friday April 29 are $10.00 for adults and $5.00 for Children. Please call David Wallerstein

at 808-967-8222 for tickets or visit the Volcano Art Center Niaulani Campus or the VAC Art Gallery. Visit www.volcanoartcenter.org  for information and to purchase tickets online. Tickets are also available the evening of the performance 1 hour before scheduled concert time at the venue.

Volcano Art Center is a 501c3 nonprofit educational organization created in 1974. VAC promotes, develops, and perpetuates the artistic, cultural and environmental heritage of Hawai’i through the arts and education.

*UPDATE FOUND* Big Island Police Looking for Missing 19 Year-old Pahoa Woman

UPDATE – I just received the following message that Zoe has been located and she is safe.

Media Release:

Big Island police are asking for the public’s help in locating a 19-year-old Pāhoa woman who was reported missing.

Zoe Domizio

Zoe Domizio

Zoe Domizio is described as Caucasian, about 5-foot-9, between 210 and 230 pounds with shoulder-length black hair, brown eyes and a fair complexion.

She was last seen in Kea’au on Friday (April 22) around 2 p.m.  She may be in the company of two other females and may be in the Keaukaha area of Hilo.

Police ask that anyone who may have seen Domizio call Detective Reed Mahuna at 961-2384.

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or 329-8181 in Kona and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000. Crime Stoppers is a volunteer program run by ordinary citizens who want to keep their community safe. Crime Stoppers doesn’t record calls or subscribe to caller ID. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

Hawaii’s Innovations Development Group Tapped for Major New Zealand Geothermal Project

 “Native to Native” model can help Hawaii too

Media Release:

Hawaii-based Innovations Development Group [IDG] is pleased to announce that it has been approved as a “foreign” corporation by the New Zealand Government’s Overseas Investment Office and is poised to commence a joint venture partnership with the Eastland Group and a native Maori land Trust of New Zealand. IDG was awarded the exclusive rights to develop the Maori land Trust’s geothermal resources in January 2008 and engaged Eastland Group of Gisborne, NZ, in August 2010 as the technical and financial partner.

Negotiating N2N Model in New Zealand

Negotiating N2N Model in New Zealand

The transaction was structured around IDG’s proprietary Native-to-Native (N2N) community-based development model. The first phase of the project’s proposed 50 MW plus project is intended to begin construction soon.

Patricia Brandt

Patricia Brandt (CEO)

“It’s taken time and trust to get to where we are: ready to begin geothermal development in New Zealand . The very name of the project, Te ahi o Maui , calls to mind the mythology and close cultural ties that connect us as a Polynesian people. Maori Trust leaders will only accept developments on Trust land that are ecologically, economically and culturally sustainable,” says IDG CEO Patricia Brandt.  “They believe our involvement helps ensure this.”

Community Perspective Replaces Past Opposition

Though opposed to Hawaii geothermal projects in the past because of the absence of efforts to address community needs and rights, IDG executives say that today, less intrusive technologies, clean technology, culturally sensitive protocols based on judicially established rights,  and a genuine community-oriented perspective make geothermal a viable energy alternative. They believe that Hawaii can learn from the New Zealand project.

Mililani Trask (Indigenous and Community Advisor)

Mililani Trask (Indigenous and Community Advisor)

“Native Hawaiians, like the Maori and many other indigenous people around the world are resource-rich but concerned about exploitation,” says IDG Indigenous and Community Advisor Mililani Trask.  “IDG brings access to capital and technical expertise in a highly specialized field to guarantee that development on native peoples’ lands benefits the native, local community and our larger society.”

Native-to-Native Model Delivers Fair Return to All

According to IDG’s Senior Advisor Robbie Le’a Kapi’olani Cabral, the company has become internationally recognized for its Native-to-Native business model of sustainable development.

Robbie Le’a Kapi’olani Cabral (Senior Advisor)

Robbie Le’a Kapi’olani Cabral (Senior Advisor)

The complex joint venture agreements IDG negotiated on behalf of the Kawerau Trust ensure significant returns to all stakeholders.  The project will deliver economic growth and job creation while respecting the cultural values of the Maori people.  Project investors can count on fair profits and New Zealand will enjoy enhanced renewable energy production to meet its growing need for electricity.

“We put into place a structure that ensures the training, employment and substantive participation of the Maori people in the development of resources which are theirs through the status of the land as a taonga (treasured asset). Every beneficiary of this development has whakapapa or genealogical ties to the land,” said Cabral.  “We structured the deal to protect those rights while delivering a generous return to investors and long term energy diversification for the country, ” she added.

This concept has now been used with other Maori land trusts and incorporations working with IDG in the energy sector of New Zealand .

Ideal for Hawaii too

“The N2N model forms the basis in dealing with native stakeholders while embracing the larger society as a community-based development which is ideal for Hawaii ,” adds Brandt. “Using it, we can build a more sustainable energy future for Hawaii in a way that protects our land [aina] and cultural traditions, compensates the community fairly and reduces our dependence on foreign oil. It’s an approach that benefits the state and provides income and jobs at a time when both are desperately needed,” said  Brandt. “We hope the state will partner with us and embrace a model for geothermal development whose time is now.”

IDG Team with former President Oscar Temaru of the Government of French Polynesia in Tahiti

IDG Team with former President Oscar Temaru of the Government of French Polynesia in Tahiti

About Innovations Development Corporation, Hawaii

Innovations Development Group (IDG) is a Hawaii-based strategic planning and development company specializing in developing Indigenous land and resource assets focusing on renewable energy.

For more information: http://innovationsdevelopmentgroup.com

Wordless Wednesday – 8 1/2 Mile Camp

The other day I took the time to shoot off of Highway 130 near Milo Street and I turned down by Christian Liberty School into this small Filipino Community of older run down houses known as 8 1/2 Mile Camp.

Alan McNarie wrote an article about this place a few years back in the Hawaii Island Journal (no longer published) and I learned more about the place after doing a bit of research of my own.

Unfortunately it appears the folks that live there are subjected to very high arsenic levels from the old sugar plantation:

…Arsenic at about four times the recommended limit was found in the soil at community gardens in two plantation communities known as 8 1/2 Mile Camp and 9 1/2 Mile Camp, according to Peard. There are fewer than 100 homes in the two camps altogether…

Keaau is Warned of of High Arsenic Levels at Garden

On my short drive through part of the “camp”, I took this video of the place:


I felt very out of  place as folks were coming out of their houses to see who I was as obviously I was in a car that the folks in the community hadn’t seen in the camp before.

In another article published, Big Island Sculptor Fred Soriano had this to say about the place:

…The story has been told that the workers came to Hawaii to escape poverty, found a life of hard work and often spent their lives here without wives and family, Soriano said.

The story is only partly true, said Soriano, an amateur sculptor and sociology professor at the University of Hawaii at Hilo.

Workers were already moving from one plantation to another in the Philippines in 1906 when the first sakadas came to Hawaii. Often the motivation was not poverty, but adventure, Soriano said…

Sculptor Forges History

To say this is quite a unique little village would be an understatement.  While the houses may be a bit run down… the folks in the community are very open and friendly and the spirit of the Filipino Community is alive and well!

Deadline to Sign Up for Big Island Film Festival 2011 Screenwriting Workshops is May 6th

Media Release:

Limited space is still available, but the registration deadline for Big Island Film Festival’s two professional filmmaking workshops is May 6.  “Inside Pitch: How to pitch effectively in an evolving marketplace”, by producer Naketha Mattocks precedes Ron Osborn’s screenwriting workshop “It’s Alive: Breathing Life into Your Characters”, for a full day of education on Saturday, May 14.

Big Island Film Festival's filmmaking/screenwriting workshops

Photo from the 2010 Big Island Film Festival's filmmaking/screenwriting workshop

Producer Naketha Mattocks is former head of development at Larger Than Life, the production company of Oscar-nominated writer/director Gary Ross (Hunger Games, Seabiscuit, Pleasantville).  She was also an executive at Paramount Pictures and Vice President of Development at Baltimore/Spring Creek Pictures.  Screenwriter Ron Osborn’s memorable characters include those in TV comedies like Mork & Mindy, Night Court, Moonlighting and Duckman as well as West Wing and feature films like Meet Joe Black.

Both programs take place Saturday, May 14 at The Shops at Mauna Lani (exact location TBD).

“Inside Pitch: How to pitch effectively in an evolving marketplace” by Naketha Mattocks, 9:00-11:30 a.m.

“It’s Alive: Breathing Life into Your Characters” by Ron Osborn, 12:30-3:00 p.m.

Workshops cost $50 each with advance registration required by May 6.  Early registration is suggested as space is limited and participants will be accepted on a first-come first-served basis.  Workshop registration forms are available at www.BigIslandFilmFestival.com

The Big Island “Talk Story” Film Festival is a celebration of narrative filmmaking, May 11-15 at Mauna Lani Resort.  Events include free family films under the stars at The Shops at Mauna Lani, daytime movies and nightly double features at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i Plantation Estate (self-parking validated), stellar social events, networking opportunities, celebrity receptions, awards and a closing night “Best of the Fest” starring Henry Kapono in concert and the audience-voted Best Feature and Best Short from BIFF 2011.  For more information and to purchase ticket online, visit www.BigIslandFilmFestival.com or call 808-883-0394.