Pahoa Nikkei Jin Kai to Celebrate 50 Years

Pahoa Nikkei Jin Kai will celebrate 50 years since its incorporation on Saturday, June 8.

nikkei Jin Kai

Crafted by graphic artist Cary Tanoue, the design incorporates English and kanji spelling out the organization’s name along with an anthurium.

“A Japanese community non-profit organization has been around in Pahoa for more than 100 years,” said committee chairman Jason Hashimoto. “This event celebrates the golden anniversary of our formal incorporation in 1963. It’s the first time we are trying to get Pahoa people together for a community reunion, both current and former residents.”

President Craig Shimoda said, “We are looking for people with ties to Pahoa who may have moved away from this area.”

Events planned for the day include a memorial service at 10 a.m. followed by recognition of keirokai members (80 years of age and older), luncheon, old fashioned games, photographic and artifact displays, and talk story time in the YBA Hall in Pahoa.

Past president Stanley Oishi recalled, “The organization way back built the first Pahoa Japanese school. In recent years, we built the YBA Hall. We take care of the hall and the cemetery. Annually we host the last obon dance of the season and mochi pounding close to the new year.”

Cost of the event is $10 for members or $20 for non-members. RSVP by May 4 to Pahoa Nikkei Jin Kai, P.O. Box 504, Pahoa HI 96778. Anyone wishing further information may contact Jason Hashimoto at (808) 937-5941 or by e-mail

About the logo:

A logo has been selected for Pahoa Nikkei Jin Kai to celebrate the 50th anniversary since the non-profit community organization’s incorporation.

Crafted by graphic artist Cary Tanoue, the design incorporates English and kanji spelling out the organization’s name along with an anthurium.

“If it’s representing Pahoa, it’s got to be an anthurium,” said long time resident Glenn Watarida, a former president of the organization.”

According to the late Pahoa historian Hiroo Sato, an active member of Pahoa Nikkei Jin Kai, “The first anthuriums were imported from England in 1889 by Samuel N, Damon and planted in his Moanalua botanical garden.” That first variety had a pink spathe.

“One of the first persons to grow anthuriums in Hilo was Herbert Shipman. There were several other local pioneers of whom one was Kisataro Keno of Kaumana. Kono produced anthurium
seedlings that were sold to Katsuto Hayashi who probably was the first to grow anthuriums in Pahoa in the 1930s.”

A multi-million dollar floral industry flourished with more than 260 farms on the island of Hawaii in 1959 – the majority of the state’s production. Due to the many growers, packers and shippers located in the area, Pahoa was labeled the Anthurium Capitol of Hawaii. “The industry reached its peak in 1980, supplying local, national, and international markets with up to 232,000 dozen flowers per month. Although yield was at 2.5 million dozen flowers in 1980, supply was insufficient to meet demand,” according to University of Hawaii publications. The bacterial blight of the 1980s set the industry back. Since then, development of disease-resistant strains, new horticultural practices such as drip irrigation, and advances in tissue-culturing of disease-free varieties has led to the continuation of the industry.

“We are so grateful to Cary Tanoue for all his help,” said current president Craig Shimoda. “Cary also has cleaned the Pahoa YBA sign that hung on the front of the first hall starting in 1921 and on the current building since 1980. It will be ready to hang up again for the celebration.”

“We have a full slate of activities for Saturday, June 8,” said anniversary chairman Jason Hashimoto. “Registration has been extended until May 25.”

Advance registration is required for the memorial service, activities and luncheon. For further information, contact Hashimoto at (808) 937-5941 or by e-mail to

Los Angeles Lakers Chris Duhon Announced as Special Guest for 2013 Hawaii Island Hoops Summer Camp

Hawaii Island Hoops (HIH) is happy to announce and welcome Los Angeles Laker and former Duke Blue Devil Chris Duhon as our special guest at the HIH 13 College Prep Basketball Camp from June 3- 7, 2013 at the Kekuaokalani Gym in Kailua-Kona.

Chris Duhon

Chris Duhon was a high school McDonald’s All-American and a four year starter for Duke University. In his freshmen year, he helped the Duke Blue Devils win the 2001 national championship, defeating Arizona in the finals. Duhon finished his career as Duke’s all-time leader in steals (300) and minutes played (4,813), and second in assists (819). He left as the only Atlantic Coast Conference player to record 1,200 points, 800 assists, 475 rebounds, 300 steals, and 125 three-point shots.

In June 2004, Chris Duhon was selected as the 38th pick in the 2004 NBA Draft by the Chicago Bulls.  During his time with the New York Knicks, On November 29, 2008, in a game against Golden State Warriors, Duhon set a new Knicks single-game record with 22 assists in one game.  Now currently with the Los Angeles Lakers, Chris Duhon has been a solid contributor at the point guard position.

To register for the camp visit:  Hawaii Island Hoops

Video: Punahou Pole Vaulter Snaps Pole During State Meet

Pole vaulting is a sport for the brave!

Pole Vault

A Punahou Pole Vaulter, Quinn Cassid, snapped his pole during the recent state meet held at Mililani High School:


Another angle:


Cassid was fine and later went on to take second place in the event.

UH Hilo Captures Microsoft Academic National Championship

A student team from the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo recently won the prestigious 2013 U.S. Microsoft Imagine Cup Championship held in San Jose, California. The team now heads to St. Petersburg, Russia for the Imagine Cup Worldwide Finals in July.

Imagine Cup is Microsoft’s premier student technology competition that honors technology innovations addressing the world’s toughest problems as student innovators from around the world use Microsoft resources to take their one-of- a-kind, ground breaking application ideas from concept to the marketplace. The national finals featured the top 10 U.S. teams pitching their ideas and solutions to investors, entrepreneurs, and technology professionals for a chance to win cash prizes and support for their businesses.

Team Poliahu - Featured from left to right: Ryder Donahue, Kayton Summers, Wallace Hamada, Professor Edwards and Mike Purvis.

Team Poliahu – Featured from left to right: Ryder Donahue, Kayton Summers, Wallace Hamada, Professor Edwards and Mike Purvis.

UH Hilo’s Team Poliahu, comprised of seniors Mike Purvis, Kayton Summers, Wallace Hamada and junior Ryder Donahue from the UH Hilo Computer Science Department, topped the field of competition with their application entitled “Help Me Help,” which focused on community help for disaster relief efforts. The program aids the community and emergency response personnel in disaster situations by allowing users to upload images of nearby hazards through the use of smart phones.

Team Captain Purvis said the idea grew out of a senior project to design software that could track native and invasive plant species.

“We realized tracking that kind of information could be applied to a larger scale with more impact,” said Purvis. “So we decided to rewrite our entire idea for disaster response.”

Team Adviser Dr. Keith Edwards, associate professor, computer science, said the student’s achievement is evidence of what hard work and creative thinking can accomplish.

“As a professor, I am always the most pleased when students are able to transcend the material taught in the classroom to develop knowledge and capabilities beyond what is presently known,” Edwards said. “The success achieved by these students is a perfect representation of how the tremendous creative possibilities at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo can have a worldwide impact.”


Fukushima Friends Benefit Concert – Japan Kids to Come to the Big Island for Respite, Rest and Fun

Please help the children and young adults that desire to come to the Big Island from the disaster area of Fukushima, Japan, in July and August, 2013 by attending the Fukushima Friends Relief Concert on May 26th at the East Hawaii Center for Spiritual Living.

Fukushima Benefit Concert

About 20 young people with chaperones from 5th grade up are coming to the Big Island to receive respite, rest, and fun from July 15-Aug 26.

A group will be providing food, shelter, and transportation for one month which is costly.  In addition, some of you may not know, but, these children and young adults have suffered the earthquake, tsunami, family suicides, survival camps, and high radiation exposure for 2 years.  They are in need of fresh air, ocean swimming, and rest for their physical and mental health.  They have been living inside locations without being able to play outside, touch the ground, or eat Fukushima food because of the radiation dangers.  Please help us provide for these young people.  Please come to the concert or you may donate any amount to the fund.


Big Island Police Searching for Missing Man in Waipio Valley

Hawaiʻi Island police are searching for a 62-year-old Honokaʻa man who was reported missing on Tuesday (May 14).

Kevin Devlin

Kevin Devlin

Kevin Devlin, also known as Shawn Devlin, was last seen on Monday (May 13) between 6:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. in Waipio Valley, where he reportedly was going for a swim. He is described as Caucasian, 5-foot-10, 160 pounds with short, thin white hair.

Police ask that anyone with information on his whereabouts call Officer Dion Santiago at 775-7533 or the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311.

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or 329-8181 in Kona. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.


Wordless Wednesday – The No Smoking Ashtray