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Passes for “HawaiiCon 2016” On Sale Now

Kama’aina passes for HawaiiCon 2016 go on sale today. This year’s science and sci-fi convention takes place September 15-18 on the beach at the luxurious Mauna Lani Bay Hotel. Highly discounted rooms are available to all attendees who book through the HawaiiCon website.

Hawaiicon2016Beyond an exciting array of panels and workshops, HawaiiCon, will be offering fans the most unique celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Star Trek, featuring: a lu’au under the Milky Way with sci-fi stars on the beach, a hula lesson with Star Trek crew members, and amazing, real adventures with the crew of the Enterprise. Go snorkeling with Leeta (Chase Masterson) from DeepSpace 9, or night diving and snorkeling with giant manta rays next to both Rod Roddenberry (son of Star Trek’s creator Gene Roddenberry) and Next Generation’s Number One Will Riker (Jonathan Frakes).

hawaiicon 2016 membersOriginal Star Trek crew members Chekov (Walter Koenig) and Uhura (Nichelle Nichols) will also be on hand to meet fans and you can celebrate Walter‘s 80th birthday at a delicious gourmet dinner at Daylight Mind Waikoloa. If you are a Battlestar Galactica fan, go ziplining via Kapohokine Adventures with Helo (Tahmoh Penikett) and the Chief (Aaron Douglas).

HawaiiCon 2016 brings together leading cast members from the various Star Trek series, as well as over twenty other celebrity guests including New York Times Best Selling Author John Scalzi (Red Shirts).

HawaiiCon 2016 will be held at the Mauna Lani Resort.

HawaiiCon 2016 will be held at the Mauna Lani Resort.

The event also features well-known cosplayers, space scientists, visionaries, gamers, comicbook artists, and writers. Each day of the convention offers scores of panels and workshops to choose from. A popular day to come to the event is Saturday because of the Keiki and Adult Cosplay contests that draw hundreds of costumed fans. This year, a special category has been added to the contest, Star Trek, with prizes for the best costumes of characters from the original series.

Rod Roddenberry calls HawaiiCon, “The best convention I’ve been to.”

HawaiiCon, a non-profit, helps children of the Big Island ‘Reach for the Stars’ in science and the performing arts.

For more information and booking go to www.hawaiicon.com and follow them on Facebook www.facebook.com/hawaiicon and @HawaiiCon on Twitter/Instagram.

19th Annual Charity Trees at the Mauna Lani

The Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows invites local organizations and charities to participate in the 19th annual Charity Trees at Mauna Lani this holiday season. This special event helps to raise awareness and much-needed funds for local non-profit organizations.

Each decorated tree will be displayed in Mauna Lani Bay ’s hotel lobby through the holiday season. Community members, resort guests, employees and friends and family are invited to view the entries and vote for their favorite tree ($1 donation per vote).

The Charity Trees will be on display from December 3rd and winners will be announced December 19, 2012. Mauna Lani Bay will be awarding cash prizes to the organizations whose trees receive the highest number of votes: $2,000 (1st place), $1,000 (2nd place) and $500 (3rd place).  Donations will be split among all participating organizations (excluding 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners).  All for-profit organizations must designate a charity to receive their donation.

Charity Trees at Mauna Lani Bay entry forms will be accepted through November 26: For entry forms, participation details or more information, visit www.maunalani.com or call Ranie Fukumoto at (808) 881-7002 or email: rfukumoto@maunalani.com


Dear Damon – “…Attention to the Proposed Marine Reserve at Mauna Lani”

I’d appreciate it if you could give some attention to the proposed Marine Reserve at Mauna Lani (see details below). I have strong concerns about this, and would like to know if the Hawaiian community supports something like this or not. If you write about it on your blog, then people could talk about it.

I see plenty local kine folks spearfishing and I wouldn’t want to do anything that could restrict their rights. I never see tourists “taking” fish … only local kids, those who either work here or live nearby.  My first thought was this is just a way to keep people off the Mauna Lani property, and I would strongly oppose such a thing. I think the entire property needs to be open to the public, especially kama`aina, and I know Shops at Mauna Lani wants more public access and freedom also.

For the record, the “Fish Ponds” are already off limits. I think it’s disingenuous of the letter to refer to “fish ponds” because the map shows the reef, and the fishponds are mauka the reef. And, by the way, the fish ponds are jammed with fish.

On the other hand, Uncle Francis and others talk about how the reef used to have “10x more fish” back before the resort was built. But, as you know, fish populations are in decline all over the world, not just here. If Uncle Francis supports this, then I would too.

So, anyway, I’m looking for advice about what the pono thing is to do.

Resident at Mauna Lani

From: FML Manager
Subject: Marine reserve


An effort to get the reef offshore of the Mauna Lani declared a marine reserve (no-take) area is in a critical and near final stage.

Many people in the Mauna Lani community feel it will benefit property owners in the vicinity.

Here is a little information about this effort:

Those in favor of the effort are trying to get letters (the old-fashioned kind, on paper) supporting the reserve.  The DLNR is responsive to such input.
This effort has not been endorsed or opposed by the Fairways association, but we are sharing this information with you in case you wish to take a position on the matter.
For more information from those sponsoring the effort, contact:

Mauna Lani Community Reef Conservation Committee
68-1030 Mauna Lani Point Drive
Kamuela, HI 96743
They have provided a sample letter if you wish to support this cause.

Big Island Film Festival Begins Thursday – Opening Night World Premier of “Aunty Nona Beamer – Malama Ko Aloha”

The Big Island Film begins this Thursday at the Fairmont Orchid and The Shops at Mauna Lani.

Beginning at 9:00 am, there will be a Screenwriting Workshop with Jennifer Grisanti on “How to Write TV Spec & Pilot Scripts. Then at 12:30 another Screenwriting Workshop with Brian Kohne on “From Conception to Completion: Indie Features”.  Both of these workshops are $50.00 each and they are filling up fast.  See the Big Island Film Festival website http://www.BigIslandFilmFestival.com for more information.

The FREE family movies that will be shown beginning at 7:30 pm at The Shops at Mauna Lani are “Beatrice”, “Swoosh!”, “Life Through a Lens”, and the WORLD PREMIER of  “Aunty Nona Beamer – Malama Ko Aloha (Keep Your Love)“.

Aunty Nona Beamer — Malama Ko Aloha (Keep Your Love) – OFFICIAL TRAILER – A Film by Kenneth K. Martinez Burgmaier


OFFICIAL SELECTION: Opening Night Film World Premiere, May 24th at The Big Island Film Festival 2012

Mohala Hou Foundation commissioned Emmy Award, Billboard Music, Na Hoku Hanohano Winner — Maui Filmmaker Kenneth K. Martinez Burgmaier of Jazz Alley TV and Hawaii On TV.com Networks to produce a documentary film on Aunty Nona Beamer, the first ever to be done of this legendary Hawaiian matriarch of the Beamer family. The Film: Aunty Nona Beamer-Malama Ko Aloha (Keep Your Love) explores Aunty Nona in her own words, the journey of her life and her fight toward preserving, perpetuating and creating awareness of Hawaiian Culture.

It will serve to educate people around the world about traditional Hawaiian culture and how it can serve as a way of bringing people of all backgrounds together. Some of Hawai’i’s most respected artists contribute in sharing their own stories and what Aunty Nona Beamer has achieved as being recognized as one of Hawai’i’s Treasures of Aloha.

I heard personally that members of the Beamer Ohana will be on hand to view the premier.

CALL FOR ENTRIES – 2011 Big Island Film Festival at Mauna Lani Resort, May 11-15, 2011

Media Release:

Hawaiian music, moonlight and movies make Mauna Lani Resort a must for filmmakers, fans and friends in May, when the Big Island Film Festival returns for its sixth year.  One of MovieMaker Magazine’s “25 Film Festivals Worth the Entry Fee,” and “25 Coolest Film Festivals”.  BIFF 2011 is now accepting entries for the May 11-15 event, on location at two luxury hotel properties and premier resort shopping center.

BIFF Director Leo Sears gives actor Tom Berrenger the "Golden Honu" award at the 2010 BIFF

A celebration of independent narrative filmmaking, BIFF 2011 includes screenings, social events and networking opportunities, celebrity receptions, screenwriting workshop and a closing night “Best of the Fest” with a top Hawaiian music concert and movies chosen from Festival entries.  Last year’s celebrity honorees included screenwriter Ron Osborn (“Moonlighting”), filmmaker Scott Stewart (“Legion”) and actors Tom Berenger (“Platoon”) and Cary Hiroyuki-Tagawa (“Mortal Kombat”).

Narrative short films (30 minutes or less) and feature length (60 minutes or more) completed after January 1, 2010 will be considered.  Deadlines are:
•    “Early Bird” November 1, 2010. Early Bird Entry Fees: $50 Feature, $40 Short, $30 Student
•    Regular January 1, 2011. Regular Entry Fees: $60 Feature, $50 Short, $35 Student
•    Late/Final February 1, 2011. Late Entry Fees:  $70 Feature, $60 Short, $40 Student

All films shot in Hawaii or created by filmmakers who live in Hawaii receive a 25% discount on entry fees (verification required).

BIFF 2011’s “Golden Honu” will be awarded to the Best Feature and Best Short in Overall, Family, Student, Animated, Foreign and Hawaii categories at a special Awards Brunch to honor the filmmakers and their works on Sunday, May 15.  Numerous alumni films have won awards at prestigious film festivals around the world, and achieved commercial success in the industry.

“Lunatics, Lovers, and Poets” (BIFF 2009) was distributed in 10 states through Carmike Cinemas, and by North American Home Entertainment DVD contract with Seminal Films.  “Remarkable Power” starring Kevin Nealon (2009 BIFF Best Feature) was released through most cable outlets as a PPV title before DVD release.  “Two Tickets to Paradise” (BIFF 2008), and “Rain in the Mountains” and “Sixes and the One-Eyed King” (BIFF 2007) have been released on DVD.

“As we approach our sixth Big Island Film Festival, judging by the quality of films submitted in the past, we are absolutely ready to see the next ‘Little Miss Sunshine’ or the next ‘Honokaa Boy,’” said Executive Director Leo Sears.  “Fans are more sophisticated and open to independent films than ever, especially those brilliant, different gems that surprise us.  And when you bring your film to BIFF in Hawaii, you can’t have a more receptive, more spectacular and beautiful place to introduce it than the Mauna Lani Resort.”

The Big Island “Talk Story” Film Festival is a celebration of narrative filmmaking, with free family films under the stars at The Shops at Mauna Lani, international features and shorts screened at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii and Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows, stellar social events, celebrity receptions, awards and much more in an outstanding island setting.

For submission rules and application visit www.BigIslandFilmFestival.com.  For further information call 808-883-0394.

June’s Sizzlin’ New From Hawai’i’s Big Island

Media Release

Big Island Visitors Bureau

Come to the Big Island and explore Hawaii’s Island of Adventure

Hawaii’s Big Island (June 2009) —Hawai‘i’s Big Island heats up this summer with a new direct flight on the horizon, yet keeps your wallet cool with a bevy of  “do more, spend less” deals and adventures.


Uplifting News for Travelers. Following the successful launch of its direct Seattle to Kona flight last year, Alaska Airlines announces a new direct service between Oakland and Kona International Airport three times a week starting Nov. 10, and will expand neighbor island service, too.  www.alaskaairlines.com.

Paradise Helicopters has a brand-new aah-dventure: the Secluded Valley Massage. After an exhilarating flight above the Kohala coastline, the helicopter touches down in a private, lush valley where a babbling brook provides background during a relaxing massage. Memorable for couples or groups. Visit www.paradisecopters.com or call (866) 876-7422 or (808) 969-7392.

“Wheel adventurers” will love Ride The Rim’s new Waipi‘o Valley Adventure on an ATV or buggy. Experienced guides lead you to the unparalleled vistas and waterfalls at the back of Hawai‘i’s “Valley of the Kings.” Tours operate twice a day, seven days a week from Kukuihaele and are about three hours long. Visit www.ridetherim.com or call (877) 775-1450 or (808) 775-1450.

Kohala Kayak takes $20 off! In commemoration of Hawai‘i entering statehood in 1959, the three-hour kayak and snorkel tour is just $59 for all of 2009. Stand-up paddling also available. Visit www.kohalakayak.com or call (808) 882-4678.

Pedal Power. Raise money for multiple sclerosis research just like an Ironman cyclist on the Bike MS: Go BIG or Go Home cycling adventure, Aug. 8 (65 miles) & 9 (50 miles). Pedal on pavement alongside volcanic rock landscapes, breathtaking ocean views, paniolo ranches, and historic towns. Sponsor Hilton Waikoloa Village provides discount group rates to participants. Register at www.mshawaii.org or call (808) 532-0808.

Kona Honu Divers, Inc. has a great deal for divers, which includes five to seven nights at one of Kona’s prime condominium properties and five to six days of two-tank morning boat dives aboard Kona Honu Divers’ custom dive boat. Upgrades and additional nights available upon request. Valid through November. $1,029  to $2143.25 plus taxes and fees. Call (808) 324-4668 or (888) 333-4668 or visit www.konahonudivers.com.

Want more? Click http://bigisland.org/calendar for detailed information about Hawai’i Island events and be sure to mark your calendars for the 2nd Annual Hawaii Film Hoike, featuring Hawaiian filmmakers at Hilo’s Palace Theatre. Sept. 19-20. Visit www.hilopalace.com.


Mango Magnificence! The first annual Mango Festival is Aug. 1 on Hawai‘i’s Big Island, and Keauhou Beach Resort is celebrating with a special festival package. Priced at $149/single or $199/double, the package includes one-night accommodations, a buffet breakfast the following morning and entry to the Mango Festival’s Kona Mango Experience and the Mango-Inspired Dinner. For reservations, call  (866) 326-6803 (808) 324-2515.

Mauna Lani Point, located on the stunning Kohala Coast, provides guests with a free pass to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, 4th night free and a $200 gift card now through Dec. 19. Mauna Lani Point is an ultimate oceanfront location with golf resort amenities and one-and two-bedroom luxury villas. Townhomes and estates also available. Call (866) 966-5985 or visit www.visitmaunalani.com.

In July, King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel, located on a beautiful white sand beach in Kailua-Kona, plans to re-open one tower of 230 rooms after an extensive, Hawaiian-inspired renovation.  The newly designed guestrooms feature themes of lava, native flora, and the intricate detail of the Hawaiian tattoo.  Visit www.konabeachhotel.com to see photos of the new rooms, and for special packages and offers.

Kona Village adds value to every stay with airfare and activity credits through Dec. 19. Book any published room rate in select categories and receive $800 airfare credit and bungalow upgrade. Or, book any published rate and receive four spa treatments and four rounds of golf at Hualālai; values worth more than $1,540. Call (800) 367-5290 or visit www.KonaVillage.com. Restrictions apply.

Every Third Night Free at the Outrigger Fairway Villas! Enjoy a relaxing getaway in your own private Waikoloa Beach Resort condominium. Rates for a three-night stay starting at $163/night. Offer valid through Dec. 21. Free parking and free local and toll-free calls. Call (800) 688-7444 or visit www.outrigger.com.

Two for One. Make a new booking at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii and receive a second room absolutely free! This offer includes guaranteed connecting rooms in the same category booked for garden view, partial ocean view, and ocean view categories-perfect for friends and families looking for a getaway. No minimum stay required. Valid through Dec. 20.  May not be combined with any other promotion.  Call (800) 845-9905 or visit www.fairmont.com/orchid.

Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort & Spa celebrates 50 years with the “Hawaii Statehood Package.” Guests will receive the fourth night free when they book three nights, VIP turndown service, daily breakfast for two, a one-time $50 resort credit, and a newly minted Hawai‘i State Quarter (while supplies last and good for one per package). Based on availability, restrictions may apply. Visit www.Marriott.com and use promotional code PRO or call (800) 721-6996.

A Deal That Will Make You See Stars! Guests at Arnott’s Lodge in Hilo enjoy Mauna Kea Sunset and Stargazing for just $85 – the best deal on the mountain! Visit www.arnottslodge.com or call (808) 969-7097.

Unlimited Golf Package at Hilton Waikoloa Village & Waikoloa Beach Resort. Golf at Waikoloa Beach or Kings’ Course and play a second round, same day, same course on availability. Includes golf shuttle, storage of bags, and practice facilities. Starting at $314 plus tax/night for one golfer. Some restrictions, black-out dates apply; reservations based on availability. Offer valid through Dec. 20.  Not valid with other offers. Request rate plan P6. Call (800) HILTONS or book online, http://www.hilton.com/en/hi/reservations/index.jhtml?ctyhocn=KOAHWHH&spec_plan=P6&spec_plan_desc=Unlimited+Golf

The Polynesian-styled Sea Mountain Resort is located next to the mesmerizing black sands of  Punalu‘u Beach Park, and only a 30-minute drive from Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, home of Kīlauea, one of the world’s most active volcanoes.  Rates from $99/night, valid through Dec. 20. Call (800) 525-5894 or visit https://mycrs.innpoints.com/book/book/guest/stay?hotelCode=1794&promotionCode=HAWAII


Meet for Less at the Hilo Hawaiian Hotel. The Premier Meetings Package includes meeting room rental and set up; podium, microphone and projector screen; water station throughout the day; mini continental breakfast and afternoon refreshments at just $25/person, tax and tip inclusive. Valid until Dec. 31. Minimum of 25 people. Call (800) 367-5004 or email groups@castleresorts.com.

Aston Kona by the Sea Unveils “The Beach Club,” a new oceanfront function space, which can be transformed for intimate sunset wedding receptions or themed bridal showers. The space features two separate rooms that can be configured differently to seat up to 52 people. Room rates start at $169/night through Dec. 21; blackout dates and restrictions may apply. Visit www.AstonHotels.com or call (866) 774-2924.

Sheraton Keauhou Bay Resort & Spa Executive Chef Eric Lelinski has developed a “Sustainable Menu” for banquets that brings the freshest, tastiest, best quality food available to the resort’s tables. From organic eggs and potatoes to a seasonally adapted Big Island fruit platter and salads of locally grown greens and vegetables, Sheraton Keauhou, home to the Kona coast’s largest meeting facility, introduces the Big Island’s best to discerning palates. www.SheratonKeauhou.com