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July-Aug ust 2 012

The Life of the Land The Heart of Kahalu‘u: Preserving Precious Corals Home on the Ka’ū Range The Kuahiwi Family Ranch

The Life of the People All Aboard for Youth: Bluewater Explorations Leilehua Yuen: Storyteller Extraordinaire Every Store Has a Story: Historic Kainaliu Families

The Life as Art

Burning Spirit: Woodgrain Inspirations

The Life at Home

Be It Ever So Tiny... Tiny Houses on a Big Island

"Peaceful Sunset Sail" by David “Kawika” Gallegos Complime n tary H AWA I ‘ I Copy Visit Us and Our Advertisers at

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JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 3

"The Life" Celebrating the ar ts, culture and sustainability of Hawai‘i Island

J u l y-Au g u s t 2 0 1 2

The Life in Spirit:

11 E Ho‘omalu o Hawai‘i Nei

Blessings of Hawai‘i Na Kumu Keala Ching

The Life of the People:

17 Hands On, Minds Ahead!

All Aboard Bluewater Exploration

41 Every Store Has a Story:

Oshima and Kimura Families in Historic Kainaliu

47 Leilehua Yuen: Living Within the Stories

"Hawai‘iana Live"—Interpreted with Artistry

55 There’s Help for Orchid Brown Thumbs

Hilo Orchid Society Wants to Help Everyone Grow Orchids

77 Behind the Scenes at the Lū‘au

History and ‘Ohana Create a Memorable Experience

The Life of the Land:

21 Clean-up Crusaders

Volunteer Groups Help Keep our Shorelines Beautiful

25 Search for the Heart of Kahalu‘u 4 | | JULY/AUGUST 2012

E mālama i nā papa—Protect Our Coral Reefs

65 Home on the Ka‘ū Range

The Kuahiwi Family Ranch and Natural, Free-Range Beef

Back issues of Ke Ola available for purchase at

The Life as Art:

33 Burning Spirit

Inspirations with Master Painter David “Kawika” Gallegos

The Life at Home:

51 Be It Ever So Tiny, There’s No Place Like Home

Tiny Houses on a Big Island


life JULY 15 - 22

Kalani Performing Arts Festival

SEPT 15 - 22

Adult Summer Camp

NOV 3-11

Puna Culinary Festival

The Life in Music:

71 Meet Sustainable Reggae Artist Sahra Indio

Singer Delivers Messages of Hope, Unity and Love

Ka Puana --- The Refrain:

98 Once There Was a Kapoho

A Memoir by Frances Kakugawa

Departments: Then & Now: Pu‘ukoholā....... ........................................................13 Hawai‘i Island Farmers Markets...................................................62 Island Treasures.................................................................................82 Community Calendar......................................................................86 The Life in Business..........................................................................94


with generous support from:

JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 5


Anuenue Freedom Festival

6 | | JULY/AUGUST 2012

"The Life" Celebrating the ar ts, culture and sustainability of Hawai‘i Island


The life of the land is perpetuated in righteousness. [Its sustainability depends on doing what is right.] Proclamation by Kona-born King Kamehameha III in 1843. Later adopted as the state motto.


Barbara Garcia Bowman • Karen Valentine

Editor & Art Director: Karen Valentine, 808.329.1711 x2 Marketing & Operations:

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Distribution & Subscriptions Sharon Bowling, 808.557.8703 •

Creative Design

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Advertising Design

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Copy Editing/Proofing

Sharon Bowling • Fern Gavelek • Adrienne Poremba

Production Manager: Richard Price Ambassadors

Eric Bowman • Keala Ching • WavenDean Fernandes Mariana Garcia • Fern Gavelek Deborah Ozaki • Greg Shirley

Contributing Writers

Youʼll see our company name attached to quite a few functions here on the Big Island. We believe in supporting local, quality the 4th of July Fireworks, the Peaman races at the pier and tons of local school and community events. Please remember us when you are in the market for a new or pre-owned vehicle. Thatʼs all we ask... weʼll be there for you.

KE OLA is printed on recycled paper with soy-based inks. KE OLA is a member of Hawai‘i Alliance for a Local Economy (HALE), supporting the “Think Local, Buy Local” initiative. Editorial inquiries & calendar submissions: Submit online at (go to Contact page) Worldwide Delivery: Call 808.329.1711 x3, order online at or mail name, address and payment of $24 US/ $48 International for one year to: P.O. Box 1494, Kailua-Kona, HI 96745. © 2012, Hawaii Island Publishing, Inc. All rights reserved

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JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 7

Hadley Catalano • Keala Ching • Fern Gavelek Jessica Kirkwood • Denise Laitinen • Marya Mann Sonia Martinez • Noel Morata • Robert Oaks Cynthia Sweeney • Paula Thomas

Big Island Honda Kona supports the Big Island

Publishers Talk Story...


Surprises in Store...

8 | | JULY/AUGUST 2012

here are surprises within the stories in this issue of Ke Ola. For us, there were details that we viewed with delight when we first read them. It happens in every issue. For example, there’s a moment in time caught by writer Hadley Catalano as she was preparing the second profile in the series of historic Hawai‘i Island family stores that we are featuring. Just as she was stopping into Oshima Store in Kainaliu, two octogenarians were completing a transaction. Mr. Teshima, the customer, and Mr. Oshima, the proprietor, have been repeating this scene for decades—as did their parents before them. This time, Mr. Teshima (of Teshima’s Restaurant, another historic family business) was sent by his 104-year-old mother (!) to buy fish for a distinguished guest. The local fisherman who caught it had most likely just brought it in. In a world of big-box stores, how many times will you witness a scene like this? Read more about it in this issue [page 43]. We are also fascinated by what lies behind the scenes. Our “Life in Business” and “Island Treasures“ profiles of local businesses always give us a delightful glimpse into the lives of those who dreamed of a new business and are riding the waves of entrepreneurship. Meet some fascinating people and their business visions in this and every issue. Also read about what goes on behind the scenes at a lū‘au. Did you ever wonder? Enjoy “Behind the Scenes at the Lū‘au.” It parts the curtains for you, and you meet the performers in real life [page 77]. Also meet two others who are devoting their lives to expressing their deep understandings of cultures on the stage: “Hawai‘iana Live” star Leilehua Yuen [page 47] and reggae artist Sahra Indio [page 71]. Both of them actually live their passions, and walk their talk. There are so many fascinating people on this island. There are even more in the pages ahead. We hope you enjoy this summer issue.

Karen Valentine and Barbara Garcia, Co-Publishers

On the Cover: “Peaceful Sunset Sail,” wood-burned oil painting on mango by David “Kawika” Gallegos. Story on page 33. Also see

Send us your comments, letters and photos! We take email, snail mail, submissions through our website or posts on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter!

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From Readers... ✿ Dear Editor: This summer marks a milestone for those of us who work for the conservation of the critically endangered Hawaiian monk seal. With private financial support, The Marine Mammal Center (based in Sausalito, CA) has the funds necessary to begin construction on a new hospital in Kona, on the property of NELHA, dedicated solely to the care of orphaned, injured or ill Hawaiian monk seal pups and adults.  With what is known about the monk seal—its history in the Islands and its role in a dynamic marine ecosystem—and when one considers its plight: 1,100 animals or less, a decline of 4 percent per year, competition for food, habitat loss, and marine debris entanglements, along with harmful human actions—this hospital couldn’t come at a more pivotal time. In all, we hope to have the first phase of this privately funded hospital dedicated to the care of Hawaiian monk seals, completed by end of year so that we can begin rescuing and rehabilitating Hawaiian monk seals as early as January/February 2013. This hospital at Kona will be the long-term care hospital for seals needing extensive medical care in order to be returned to the wild. The Marine Mammal Center’s 37-plus years of substantial expertise in rescuing and providing medical care for many species of marine mammals —such as young elephant seals which are physically similar to monk seals—is why we’ve been called upon by NOAA to assist in the conservation efforts to help this species.  The hospital will be built in two phases:  Phase I, beginning this summer, includes building the pens and pools, filtration system and roadwork. Phase II includes building the “fish kitchen” lab, office and a visitor’s pavilion with exhibit panels designed to engage visitors about Hawaiian monk seals. We are currently in a capital campaign to raise funding for this second phase. Construction could start on this phase between January and May 2013. We look forward to joining the efforts of our many partners in Hawai‘i who have long been working towards the return of this iconic species and to working with new partners to provide opportunities in the community for involvement, education and job skills. Together, we can all make a difference for this one species and for the oceans. Visit to learn more about the Center, and how you can help. – Dr. Jeff Boehm, Executive Director The Marine Mammal Center, Sausalito, Calif. ✿ Aloha, Ke Ola (the life) is an awesome gift to us, the people of beloved Hawai‘i nei. From the education within every article (I even appreciate the ads. :-)) And coupons to boot, to the look, presentation, and to think it is in the newsstands for the having, with no expectations. Ah, the gift(s)... Mahalo a nui, – Elissa N. Precaido Kalapana ✿ Dear Editor, After our recent trip to Hawai‘i to visit my sister last January in Waipio Valley, my mom got me a subscription to Ke I was thrilled to get the latest issue and was so surprised to see my drawing reproduced in your magazine with the article of renovations

at Pa’auilo Store! My husband and I lived near there in 1995 and I completed 20 or so drawings of the area. I left my sister with color copies, which she must have given to the owners of the store. I would appreciate getting credit for this work. – Katy Ebersole Edenton, NC

Art by Katy Ebersole Ke Ola, May/June 2012

JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 9

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The Life


E ho’ōla mai ka honua ala Heal the earth E ola hou ka ‘ike kupuna Revive the ancient knowledge E ho’omana’o ka ‘oia’i’o pono’ī Remember the righteous truth E maluhia ke ola kanaka Peace amongst the living E kālele ke ala pono Faith upon the righteous path E mana’olana ke alaka’i Hope for the leaders

E ‘ālohilohi ke aloha Brightness of aloha E lōkahi ka lāhui like’ole Unite all nations E ‘uhola ke kapa ho’omalu Unfold the blanket of peace E ho’omalu o Hawaii nei Blessings of Hawai’i E ola Let it live!

Compassionate indeed is Hawai’i, shared and placed upon the earth. To heal the earth, we must begin with ourselves—care for the people, care for the earth. Rejoice indeed in the ancestral knowledge—this knowledge is in the work, work towards the knowledge. What is the righteous truth—give compassion, compassion is returned, and it is! Peace amongst the living—love one another, here it is! To have faith in the knowledge before you—shared knowledge, given knowledge—righteousness is here before you. A compassionate leader—a righteous leader— leads in righteousness. Patience upon our new beginning— observe and be observed in the path you are familiar with. Compassion is what brings healing—brightness from within to be shared forward. A united nation—united in compassion, done with respectful understanding of each other. There is a blanket of peace unveiled before us. Peace is the righteous work and Hawai’i is the leader. Peace lives! Tolerance is the thread of our people. Queen Lili’uokalani modeled the gift of forgiveness, compasssion and tolerance, in order to live in peace and survive as a nation gifted with tolerance and love. Understanding each other brings a path of healing; healing is needed to unite the nations—Aloha! Contact Kumu Keala Ching:

JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 11

E ahonui ke ala hou Patience towards a new beginning

ui ho’i ke aloha o Hawai’i nei i kau a’ela ma luna o ka honua ala. ka ho’ōla ‘ana o ka honua, ho’omaka i ke kino kanaka— mālama ho’i ke kanaka, mālama ho’i ka honua. Eō maila ka ‘ike kūpuna—‘ike i ka hana, hana i ka ‘ike. He aha lā ka ‘oia’i’o pono’ī— aloha aku, aloha mai ‘oia nō! I ka maluhia ‘ana o ke ola kanaka— aloha kekahi i kekahi, eia ala! Kālele iho nō i ka ‘ike i mua ou—‘ike aku, ‘ike mai—aia ka hana kūpono i mua iho nō! Aia ke alaka’i i ke aloha—pono ke alaka’i, alaka’i aku i ka pono. E ahonui ho’i ke ala hou—nānā aku, nānā mai i ke ala au e ‘ike nei. ‘O ke aloha ka mea i ho’ōla ai—‘ālohilohi iho nei, ‘ālohilohi a’e ala. ‘O ka pilina nō ka lāhui like’ole—lōkahi maila ke aloha i ka hana i maopōpō me ka hō’ihi ala. Eia ho’i ke kapa ho’omalu i ‘uhola aku ai. ‘O ka maluhia ka mea i hana pono ai a na Hawai’i i alaka’i iho nō. E ola ka maluhia!

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Keōua arriving at Pu‘ukoholā to meet Kamehameha. –From painting by Herb Kawainui Kāne, courtesy of National Park Service.

u‘ukoholā Heiau, on the northwest coast of Hawai‘i Island, played a critical role in the unification of the island chain by King Kamehameha I in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Indeed, of all the national parks on the island, this one is by far the most closely connected to Kamehameha himself. Dedicated to Kūkā‘ilimoku (Kū), the war god of Hawaiian kings, it was both one of the largest and one of the last great heiau built in the islands. Kamehameha was probably born around 1758 in the Kohala district on the northern tip of the island, near the current village of Hawi. As nephew to Kalaniopu‘u, the ruler who had consolidated his authority over the entire island, the young boy was destined for greatness. Tall and powerful even as a child, Kamehameha reputedly lifted the two-and-one-half-ton Naha Stone when he was 14 years of age. According to tradition, whoever moved that stone (now resting in front of the Hilo Public Library) would conquer and unite the islands. This was the first of several events predicting an auspicious future for the young man. In the meantime, under his uncle’s tutelage, the young Kamehameha was trained in warfare and politics. He was present when the British explorer Captain James Cook landed at Kealakekua Bay (1778-1779). Cook’s lieutenant, James King, described Kamehameha as having “as savage a looking face as I ever saw.” Cook himself, of course, was slain at Kealakekua after an aborted attempt to kidnap Kalaniopu‘u in retaliation for the theft of a small boat by some local Hawaiians.

When the aged Kalaniopu‘u died a few years later in 1782, the unity of the island died with him. Kamehameha inherited some of Kalaniopu‘u’s authority, including responsibility for the war god Kū, but the rest went to others, and eventually the island was divided between Kamehameha and his cousin Keōua. A stalemate ensued for several years, during which Kamehameha turned his attention to adding Maui to his domain. The power of the Naha Stone seemed to work. Invading in 1790, Kamehameha quickly conquered Maui, Lana‘i, and Moloka‘i, though he still controlled only half of his home island. From Moloka‘i, Kamehameha sent an envoy to a Kaua‘i soothsayer to discover what he needed to do to complete unification of all the islands. The soothsayer’s response: build a large heiau dedicated to the war god Kūkā‘ilimoku at Pu‘ukoholā (“Whale Hill”) on the Kohala coast near Kawaihae. Before he could begin construction, however, Kamehameha had to hurry back from Maui to quash a rebellion by his cousin. After two bloody, but indecisive battles on the Hamakua coast, each retired to his own territory to prepare for the next round. Keōua led his forces, accompanied by many women and children, back to their home in Ka‘ū, passing Kīlauea Volcano on the way. It erupted for three days, ultimately killing more than 400 men, women, and children. Keōua himself was unhurt, but his morale was undoubtedly shaken by the display of disfavor from Pele, goddess of fire and volcanoes.

❁Continued on page 14

JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 13


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❁Continued from page 13 Meanwhile Kamehameha began building the heiau. The effort was as massive as the resulting structure. The stones, priests determined, should come from Pololū Valley, 20 miles away. Hundreds of Kamehameha’s followers came from all over his lands to pass many of the heiau’s heavy stones, one by one, by hand. By the summer of 1791, the huge structure was nearing completion. Its dimensions were 224 by 100 feet, and it was surrounded by 20-foot high walls that were 20 feet thick at the base. But before it was finished, Kamehameha had to deal with another war, this time an invasion from the combined forces of O‘ahu, Moloka‘i, and Kaua‘i. Kamehameha suspended construction, marshaled his forces, and met the enemy in a bloody sea battle near the mouth of Waipi‘o Valley. Kamehameha was aided in this battle by two Englishmen, Isaac Davis and John Young. They were captured in 1790 and handed over to Kamehameha. After an aborted escape attempt, Young decided to stay. It was through Young and Davis, that Kamehameha acquired European weapons and expertise, as well as a small American schooner, the Fair American. The schooner had a single cannon, more than a match for the invaders’ canoes. Even so, this first naval battle in Hawai‘i was indecisive, and the invaders returned home, allowing Kamehameha to turn his attention once again to his heiau and to his cousin Keōua. There remained only one task to complete the structure: a human sacrifice to the war god Kūkā‘ilimoku. Kamehameha sent messengers to his cousin, inviting him to Pu‘ukoholā, supposedly to discuss peace. Perhaps surprisingly, Keōua accepted the invitation, though he surely must have suspected Kamehameha’s motives. Perhaps it was Pele’s warning at Kīlauea or maybe it John Young, sketched in 1819 by was the display of John Etienne Arago, artist on the superior weaponry de Freycinet expedition. in the recent sea – Hawai‘i State Archives battle off Waipi‘o Valley. Whatever his reason, Keōua, apparently resigned to his fate, headed north to Kohalā. According to some accounts, he cut off the tip of his penis so that he would be a less-than-perfect offering to the god. Accompanied by 26 companions, Keōua approached Kawaihae Harbor in a double-hulled canoe. Kamehameha’s own war canoes were massed offshore; men armed with muskets and cannon lined the shore. The two cousins greeted each other, but as Keōua started to disembark, he was killed by a spear thrown by one of Kamehameha’s

nieces, became a trusted political and military advisor, and eventually governor of Hawai‘i Island. His granddaughter was Queen Emma, wife of Kamehameha IV. The ruins of his European-style homestead are located near the northernmost point of the park. Isaac Davis, the other stranded Englishman, became governor of Oahu. Each year, the park sponsors Ho‘oku‘ikahi Establishment Day (this year August 11-12, 2012) to celebrate the significance of the heiau with kahiko hula performances, mock battles, native craft making, and other cultural events. ❖ Contact writer Robert Oaks:

For Further Reading: Remains of an older heiau, Mailekini, are seen on the hill in front of Pu‘koholā Heiau. –Photo courtesy of National Park Service

Greene, Linda Wedel. “A Cultural History of Three Traditional Hawaiian Sites on the West Coast of Hawai’i Island.” National Park Service, 1993 James, Van. Ancient Sites of Hawai‘i: Archaeological Places of Interest on the Big Island. Honolulu: Mutual Publishing, 1995 Kirch, Patrick Vinton. Legacy of the Landscape: An Illustrated Guide to Hawaiian Archaeological Sites. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1996 National Park Service, “Pu‘ukohola Heiau National Historic Site”, Oaks, Robert F. Hawai‘i, A History of the Big Island. Charleston, S.C.: Arcadia Publishing, 2003

The public is invited to the 40th Annual Ho`oku`ikahi Establishment Day Hawaiian Cultural Festival at Pu’ukoholā Heiau  National Historic Site, August 11-12, 2012. Experience Royal Court ceremonies and traditional warrior exhibitions on Saturday morning from 6:30 to 10 a.m. Both Saturday and Sunday, from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., enjoy cultural demonstrations, traditional crafts, music, games, double-hulled canoe rides, traditional food tasting and much more. For more information, visit  or call 808.882.7218. (Photo by Noel Morata)

JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 15

closest lieutenants. Most of Keōua’s companions were then killed before Kamehameha stepped in to stop the slaughter. The bodies of Keōua and his companions were then sacrificed on the altar of Pu‘ukoholā (Keōua’s anatomical alteration notwithstanding), securing Kamehameha’s rule over the entire island of Hawai‘i. For several years, according to early western observers, the sculls of Keōua and his followers were displayed on a rail around the heieu as a warning sign to others who might wish to oppose Kamehameha. It would still take nearly 20 more years to unite all the other islands, however. Most were eventually conquered by Kamehameha’s armies. Kaua‘i remained unconquered, but in the end was finally added to the kingdom through diplomacy in 1810, fulfilling the promise of the Naha Stone and the prophesy of the soothsayer from Kaua‘i. Kamehameha died at Kailua-Kona in 1819. His son and heir Liholiho (Kamehameha II)—in order to escape the pollution of the death site—fled to the Pu‘ukoholā Heiau until after his father’s burial. Upon his return, influenced by two of the old king’s powerful wives, Ka‘ahumanu and Keopuolani, Liholiho abolished the old religion, and the massive heiau was largely forgotten. More than a century later, in 1929, the Order of Kamehameha installed a plaque commemorating the site, but it did not become a national historic monument until 1966. Later, in 1972, Congress established the Pu‘ukoholā Heiau National Historic Site. While the heiau is the most important monument in the park, it is by no means the only historical structure. Down the hill towards the sea are the ruins of the older and smaller Mailekini Heiau. This heiau predates the Pu‘ukoholā Heiau by several years, though the exact date is unclear. There had been apparently some consideration given to restoring and expanding Mailekini to fulfill the soothsayer’s prophesy, but a bigger and newer heiau was deemed more fortuitous. So Mailekina was abandoned as a religious site, though at some point Kamehameha had it converted into a fort, under the command of John Young, guarding the harbor with several ships’ guns obtained from traders. The park also contains the site of John Young’s homestead. After the naval battle at Waipi‘o, Young married one of Kamehameha’s

Cordy, Ross. Exalted Sits the Chief: The Ancient History of Hawai‘i Island. Honolulu: Mutual Publishing, 2000

16 | | JULY/AUGUST 2012

Teaching our island keiki why they should treasure and protect the ocean is the goal of the Bluewater Exploration Project. Based out of Keauhou Bay and founded and overseen by Capt. Pat Cunningham, the project began in June 2010 to give local students and their teachers a hands-on, educational marine exploration experience beyond the traditional classroom. “We can teach ocean awareness and conservation in school; but to be out on a boat and see how life in the ocean works, it’s a hands-on, minds-on experience,” emphasizes Cunningham, a former schoolteacher and retired Coast Guard captain. “This type of teaching results in better retention.”

Experiencing Knowledge

After operating a Keauhou ocean activity business for several years, Cunningham conceived the vision for Bluewater,

saying he felt “compelled to get students out on the water where they could better learn.” Relying on his graduate degree in outdoor environmental education and 17 years as an educator, the captain came up with Bluewater’s detailed, multi-disciplinary curriculum. “It’s a nine-step process and designed to fit into NOAA’s strategic plan of protecting, restoring and managing the use of coastal and marine resources through an ecosystem approach,” Cunningham explains. “It’s experiential learning, where students actually experience knowledge, instead of reading it in a book.” The curriculum begins with teachers attending a seminar prior to student involvement. Next, students are pre-tested to determine their general knowledge. Upon arrival at Keauhou Bay, students receive a comprehensive safety orientation on boating and ocean recreation. “One of our major goals is communicating boating and ocean safety,” emphasizes Pat. “It is tantamount to our success.” The complexity of the hands-on, ocean exploration varies by age group and ocean conditions. Aboard state-of-the-art, twin-engine fishing vessels, students travel two miles off the Keauhou coast into deep or “blue water” for a 2-1/2-hour exploration that includes setting a plankton tow net. While taking water samples and temperatures above and below the surface, they discover the ocean’s food web.

❁Continued on page 18

JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 17

hroughout the course of human events, mankind’s impacts on the environment have stressed the carrying capacity of our ocean, thus ruining the essence of why we love and enjoy areas such as the Keauhou-Kona coast. Experience has informed us that the only hope for a better future is through education. It’s the responsibility of our generation to prepare our sons and daughters for what lies ahead.”— Capt. Pat Cunningham, founder of Blue Water Explorations



The Life

The hope of KCCEF is that Bluewater Project students will experience a complete understanding of our ocean ecosystem and be motivated to protect and conserve our fragile marine environment.

through a sort-of giant colander, called baleen, within their mouths.” After organisms are analyzed and recorded, each student is asked to produce a creative project about his experience. It can be a photo gallery, video, drawing, poem, etc. Participants can also email pictures of their lab findings to home computers, or bring in their own laptops and download the files. Before leaving, students are tested to see what they have learned and each keiki is gifted with a project t-shirt, hat and a certificate of completion. To help reinforce the lesson back in the classroom, each participating group receives a copy of the American Museum of Natural History textbook, Oceans; and the DVD “Blue Planet.”

Bluewater Exploration Support

Capt. Pat Cunningham, ret. U.S. Coast Guard, founder of Blue Water Explorations

18 | | JULY/AUGUST 2012

❁Continued from page 17 Cunningham explains: “They see how the sun warms the ocean at the surface and that it’s 20 degrees cooler about 250 feet down. I tell them the sun’s energy is absorbed by the tiny, floating phytoplankton in the water—via photosynthesis. During the day, tiny crustaceans called copepods migrate into the deeper, dark water where there is less chance of predation. At night, the hungry copepods come back up to the surface to eat the phytoplankton, creating the ocean’s food web.” Project participants will actually see these minute ocean creatures under the microscope after their boat trip. But first, there’s more to learn out on the ocean. Depending on ocean conditions and their discoveries, students will delve into a variety of subjects: marine life and birds, waves, currents, flotsam and weather patterns. During the day, students enjoy a short, blue-water swim, “to see how small they are in water that’s 400 fathoms (2,400 feet) deep.” They are each equipped with a life jacket and light. Students aged 12-and-up can also go on an exciting Night Bluewater Exploration. Thanks to the use of surface and underwater lighting, evening participants witness life in the ocean after dark, including eerie, bioluminescent planktons. They watch feeding manta rays and are exposed to zooplankton (pronounced zo-oh-plankton) night migration activities and night grazing. Looking to the sky, they learn how the moon affects tides. Upon return to the KCCEF’s educational hale at Keauhou Bay, students dramatically delve into the world of marine biology. They put collected water samples under microscopes for a hands-on, wet-lab science lesson. Trinocular microscopes are hooked up to a computer so organisms can be enlarged up to 400 times on a monitor. Findings can also be broadcast on a large, mounted, flat-screen. Students ID and recognize the phytoplanktons and copepods while reviewing their link in the ocean’s food chain. “All students get up close and personal with copepods—the most prolific animal on the planet,” explains the captain. “Superfast and the size of a small dot, these crustaceans are the major food for small fish, seabirds and even whales, who strain them

Operated through the non-profit Kona Community Cultural and Education Foundation Inc. (KCCEF), the Bluewater Exploration Project is funded by grants from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and private donations. There is no charge to students or teachers and the project offers both day and nighttime activities for up to 14 participants. With a goal to acquaint hundreds of island students and their educators with Hawai‘i’s marine environment, Bluewater has hosted 450 students after two years in operation. They come from public, private and charter schools, as well as community organizations. “It’s important for the public, especially our youth, to respect our ocean and understand its role in our world,” stresses Cunningham, CEO/president of KCCEF. The captain justifies this statement with a litany of facts: • 71 percent of the Earth is covered with water. • Most of the planet’s oxygen is produced by our oceans. • Ocean evaporation keeps our planet cool enough for human habitation. • Our oceans provide 90 percent of the habitable living space for all of Earth’s living organisms. • One gallon of ocean water can hold up to 20,000 living organisms! Cunningham says local agencies and individuals have contributed to the project, lending time as guest presenters or their resources. They include Dr. Bill Walsh of the Department of Aquatic Resources, Dr. Petra Lenz of the University of Hawai‘i, Justin Viezbecke of NOAA, Nancy Murphy of the Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation, plus Hawai‘i’s Division of Conservation and Resource Enforcement and the U.S. Coast Guard. Kona’s University of the Nations brings local, underprivileged kids to Bluewater as part of its Marine Biology Adventure Camp, which is offered during school holidays and as part of U of N’s Deep and Beyond Ministry. Annamari Dietrichson, ministry director, says Bluewater offers these kids a chance to see the ocean in a totally different way. “They truly experience how the ocean isn’t just water, but rather a living world with its own creatures,” says Dietrichson, who has a degree in conservation ecology and has taught environmental science around the world. “Once in the boat, the kids are in a new learning setting with new opportunities. It boosts their confidence and they want to learn.”

Dietrichson adds that, besides a science lesson, students “learn the importance of taking orders from the captain, how a boat works, how they must work as a team and how small they are in relation to the ocean.”

KCCEF, which is made up of community members who value the ocean and advocate for its protection, has applied for new funding to offer a multi-day exploration. Plans are for an overnight campout and students catching and preparing fish. Pat says the long-term goal is to build a Bluewater Exploration Project facility with five classrooms, a gathering area and administrative offices at Keauhou Bay. “The hope of KCCEF is that Bluewater Project students will experience a complete understanding of our ocean ecosystem and be motivated to protect and conserve our fragile marine environment,” emphasizes Cunningham. “The project promotes the concept that each of us is obligated to protect our ocean through good stewardship.” The Bluewater Exploration Project is open to public, private and charter school students. KCCEF has a no-child-excluded policy and accepts special needs participants. College students can get involved through a studentteacher internship through the University of Hawai‘i. For information, visit or phone Capt. Cunningham, 808.938.0101. ❖ Contact writer Fern Gavelek:

In the educational hale at Keauhou Bay, students examine their collected samples of marine life with microscope and computer.









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Photos courtesy Bluewater Exploration Project

Holualoa Village Coffee • Art • History

Highway #180, Hwy above #180 Kailua-Kona above



Drive up scenic Hualalai Road from Queen Ka‘ahumanu Hwy (190). Turn Left at Mamalahoa Hwy (180), where art studios and local shops now occupy historic buildings from Hawai‘i’s past. Take a leisurely stroll through our quaint village... You’ll be glad you did. Contemporary, fine arts, and craft pieces. Furniture custom designed and made for your application.

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Organized coastal cleanups in remove debris deposited Drive up Ka‘ū scenic Hualalai Road from Queen Ka‘ahumanu Hwy (190). Turn Left at Mamalahoa Hwy (180), by ocean currents. where art studios and local shops now occupy historic buildings from Hawai‘i’s past. – Photo courtesy of Hawai‘i Wildlife TakeFund a leisurely stroll through our quaint village . . .You’ll be glad you did.







t’s 8:30 on a stormy, drizzly morning at the lighthouse facing Hilo Bay. Assembled is a group of very dedicated people from the Hawai‘i Wildlife Fund, the Surfrider Foundation and members of Mālama Kaipalaoa. Even the hair stylists from Headline News came down before their salon opens to help clean up the Bayfront this morning. The cleanup work is being coordinated by Megan Lamson of Hawai‘i Wildlife Fund (HWF). She has been working tirelessly all around the island with many volunteer groups to help clean up the ‘āina, including Hilo Bay. Here, Mālama Kaipalaoa is a volunteer group that caretakes the small, grassy area around the lighthouse on this tiny spit of land called Kaipalaoa Landing, a gathering spot for mostly surfers and fishermen. Eventually, they want to develop this area as a park and cooperate with a future project connecting the entire Hilo Bayfront with walkways, greenbelts and family picnic areas. Some of the regular volunteers attending this morning are members of the local Surfrider chapter, a non-profit group that is focused on preserving the ocean, its waves and beaches through various educational and group-sponsored initiatives. This includes regular beach, bay and oceanfront cleanup days on the east side of the island. The Hilo chapter coordinator, James Kuriyama, encourages the members, along with the public, to come out and help with regular beach cleanups. Even his mother, Kathy, a lawyer visiting from Washington was

enthusiastic about pitching in. “This isn’t bad at all,” says Kathy, an active volunteer in many cleanup projects in her own area. “First you have to love yourself and your community; anything small kine helps, even picking up a little garbage like today’s event,” says Nadine Robertson, a dedicated and regular volunteer for both Surfrider and Hawai‘i Wildlife Fund. Nadine is the type of person that typically acts instead of talking about helping out. She and her husband Mark, both wearing Surfrider blue t-shirts and toting bright orange Wildlife Fund buckets, have been involved in many cleanup projects. The Kona chapter members are also active with cleanup programs, including the joint International Surfing Day cleanup day done in June. Most often they carry out cleanups in the Ka‘ū district, where there is an ongoing struggle keeping up with the ocean debris that is increasingly washing up onto the coastline by ocean currents that converge there. The Hawai‘i Wildlife Fund typically coordinates anywhere from six to 12 events annually and has collaborated with other state and local organizations to start beach cleanup programs in various locations around the island. One of the first was with the Natural Area Reserve crew (managed by the state Dept. of Land and Natural Resources, Division of Forestry and Wildlife) They concentrated in the area around South Kona, primarily around Manukā Bay, where they do an annual cleanup with

❁Continued on page 22

JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 21


❁Continued from page 21 some 40-plus volunteers coming to clean the rugged coastline around this bay. An area notorious for its garbage is along the coastline in Ka‘ū: Kamilo Point. The garbage isn’t generated locally, it comes from across the Pacific. Due to ocean currents and wind patterns, a confluence of garbage floating from the West Coast of the mainland and many Asian countries, is carried and dumped onto our shores. The southeast shoreline of Hawai‘i Island annually collects about 15-20 tons of plastic, glass and fishing nets. When the first cleanup day was organized by the Hawai‘i Wildlife Fund in 2003, more than 75 volunteers showed up that weekend to collect a whopping 50 tons of trash at Kamilo Point. “This project has increased public awareness about the marine debris in Ka‘ū, and galvanized help and support for ongoing cleanups in the area”, says Megan. The next cleanup is scheduled for July 14. [See sidebar for contact info.] Not all cleanup projects are centered on marine and coastline areas; there are other programs that focus on neglected,

22 | | JULY/AUGUST 2012

Coordinator of the Hilo chapter of Surfrider Foundation, James Kuriyama, and his mother, Kathy Kuriyama, pitch in to clean up Kaipalaoa Landing on Hilo’s Bayfront. – Photo by Noel Morata

trashed or illegal dumping areas inland. Recycle Hawai‘i is a non-profit organization that has been in operation and celebrating 20 years of recycling programs on Hawai‘i Island. Outside of educating the public about recycling, Recycle Hawai‘i also helps to organize and support various groups cleaning up illegal dump sites. Local community groups in Fern Acres and Hawaiian Beaches, ‘O Ka’u Kakou and Hui Aloha Kiholo have cleaned up trash and illegal dump sites in their communities, making positive changes to their ‘āina. Grants to Recycle Hawai‘i such as a recent $10,000 grant given by the county prosecuting attorney’s office, have enabled cleanup programs of illegal dump sites, including those in lava tubes in the Ka‘ū district. Expenses covered include gas for volunteers and meals, transportation of garbage, staging and transfer, along with various items like gloves, garbage bags and reflective vests. Private enterprises that fund cleanup projects in conjunction with Recycle Hawai‘i, include the Matson grant Ka Ipu ‘Āina (container for the land). Matson provides $1,000 per dump cleanup and free, 40-foot containers for hauling to groups applying for this grant. Recycle Hawai‘i helps with the application process for groups that do not have non-profit status and want to apply for the grant.

Contact writer Noel Morata:


t is encouraging that there are many organizations on Hawai‘i Island actively involved with cleanup programs. The following are organizations that do cleanup projects, and you can find more information on their websites below. Please kōkua (help) and volunteer some time to helping clean up the ‘āina. Share your aloha for this special island. Recycle Hawai‘i For inquiries Hawai‘i Wildlife Fund For inquiries Contact Megan Lamson at Get the Drift and Bag It Contact Terry Miura at Surfrider Foundation Kona Chapter Hilo Chapter Contact James Kuriyama at Keep Hawai‘i Beautiful Keep Puako Beautiful Contact Cynthia Ho at Big Island Wave Riders Contact Jeff Fear at MĀlama Kaipalaoa Contact Matson’s KA Ipu ‘Āina program the_land.html Adopt a Highway adopt-a-highway Waimea Country Schools Contact Amy Sailing at ‘Ōpala in Paradise Join at /groups/Opala/ A web forum for discussions about ‘ōpala (trash) in Hawai‘i County, and announcements about upcoming clean-ups with the purpose of facilitating a cleaner environment Hui Aloha Kiholo, contact

Coordinator of the Hilo chapter of Surfrider Foundation, James Kuriyama, and his mother, Kathy Kuriyama, pitch in to clean up Kaipalaoa Landing on Hilo’s Bayfront. – Photo by Noel Morata

‘O Ka‘Ū Kakou Contact Wayne Kawachi at County of Hawai‘i Zero Waste

JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 23

It is very encouraging that individuals can also make a big difference, connecting and organizing cleanup projects within their community. Jeff Fear is one of those individuals and his group, Big Island Wave Riders Against Drugs, have been doing coastal cleanups for over 19 years. Jeff initially started educating kids from the local surf clubs about drugs. Then he expanded to educating kids about trash and cleaning up the areas they surf in. Collaborating with Hawai‘i Island Surfing Association and the Betty Kanuha Foundation, they have increased West Hawai‘i coast cleanups from 10 to 11 times annually. Jeff is more vigilant about the beach cleanups, noting that in the next year, more of the garbage floating just off the shore of Hawai‘i Island will be landing along Hawai‘i’s coastlines. “Being a fisherman and seeing all the garbage way out in the ocean, I would love to see a trawler sweeping garbage up from the ocean before it reaches our coastline and creates more problems for us,” says Jeff. He is optimistic that more people will see the cleanup programs as crucial to our economy and personal use, and they will help his group or others to clean up the coastlines. In the Puako area, Cynthia Ho, the coordinator for Keep Puako Beautiful, organized one of the biggest cleanups in her area by “pole 75,” an illegal dump site that was an on-going eyesore to the area. She organized 44 volunteers and free trash containers and hauling to clean up over 62 tons of trash at this site, an equivalent of over 28 truckloads of trash. From that major cleanup, Cynthia has galvanized her community to continue regular cleanups and has an active email database. It’s an ongoing battle, and she continues to coordinate projects at least three times annually in various sites around the Puako area. The biggest cleanup program on the island, known as “Get the Drift and Bag It,” is part of the International Coastal Cleanup program started by the Ocean Conservancy. Over 27 years of collecting and documenting garbage on the islands have been accomplished through this one-day event. “Anything on the road also has the potential for reaching the ocean, and trash can easily cover many inaccessible areas of our island,” says island coordinator Terry Miura. Last year, more than 650 people on Hawai‘i Island collected over 6,700 pounds of garbage, and more than 9,000 cigarette butts alone were picked up that day. This year’s cleanup is scheduled for September 15, and they are hoping for more volunteers to help. ❖

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The Life

One thousand novice and seasoned snorkelers visit Kahalu’u Bay every day, rain or shine. –Photo by Marya Mann



from Cornell University before moving to Hawai’i to head the technical side of ReefTeach programs. He reminds us that coral is in the animal kingdom, just like us. “Coral was the first living organism ReefTeachers Chris Lochman and Vince Carr, invoked in along with Bay Education Center Manager the Kumulipo, Jean Bevanmarquez (seated), talk to visitors the Hawaiian at Kahalu’u Beach Park. creation chant,” – Photo by Marya Mann he says. The coral polyp was the beginning of life. In the ancient tradition, we came from the ocean, from the coral polyp. An ocean-loving people evolved. Most tropical ancestors lived in harmony with the sea, never taking more than they needed, each family group caring for a part of the reef. They tended it like a garden. In Hawai‘i, they participated in the reef as being part of the ahupua‘a, the interconnected system of land extending from the mountains to the outer reef crest. Each ahupua’a contained upland forests for timber, fields for crops, and bounty from the ocean—everything needed for sustainable living. Continued on page 26

JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 25

t’s a courtship by the sea, except we’re sitting in a Bakken Foundation classroom north of Kailua-Kona, where ReefTeach trainers show color slides of brilliant and broken corals that flourish and die in Kahalu‘u Bay. They want us to fall in love with the tranquility, beauty and history of this marine mecca without harming it, as unaware people have done for decades. “They thought it was only colored rocks,” says The Kohala Center’s Cindi Punihaole of the coral reefs, which delight snorkelers at the popular West Hawai‘i beach park. “They just didn’t understand that corals are living.” Kahalu‘u—which means “shore diving”— attracts more than 400,000 visitors every year, many of whom have never entered seawater or seen such animated fish up-close. The most popular beach on the island was being decimated. The ambling, trampling, sitting, jogging, falling and sloshing around on delicate coral polyps, flattened the tiny spires, leaving broken calcium twigs and a colorless dust where before there had been a colorful, flourishing city of life. “The degradation that we saw at Kahalu‘u came from people who had no clue what they were doing. They didn’t do it intentionally”, says Cindi, who is Community Outreach and Volunteer Coordinator for the Kohala Center. In 2006, the Kohala Center was asked to help expand the ReefTeach program created by University of Hawai‘i Sea Grant agent Sara Peck. Community volunteers were trained as Reef Teachers. Their goal for the last six years has been enticing each and every visitor they meet to become an appreciator and protector of the bay. “We’re giving a voice to those who have no voice,” affirms Matt Connelly, who earned a masters’ degree in ocean science

❁Continued from page 25 At the end of 2006, the first ReefTeach training class graduated four people, three of whom are still part of the education team. Tonight, three new ReefTeachers are learning about coral anatomy, fish behavior and how to entice 1,000 tourists per day to keep hands and feet off the coral. From the start, ReefTeach volunteers learn about “reef etiquette” and how to be ambassadors of aloha. “We’re not coral police,” says Jeanie Bevanmarquez, Kahalu‘u Bay Education Center manager. “We’re like. . . coral moms.”

26 | | JULY/AUGUST 2012

For the Love of Heart Coral

Because of “coral moms” like Jean and “coral hosts” like volunteer ReefTeachers Chris Lochman and Vince Carr, among hundreds of others, there was an 80-percent reduction in coral trampling in the first six years of ReefTeach. Coral polyps began to grow back. “In 2008, a heart-shaped cauliflower coral appeared in the bay,” noted Cindi. “We think this coral is the bay’s way of saying thank you.” Today, reef guardians cherish the “heart coral” for its nod of pink, heart-shaped gratitude sprouting in the center of the busiest bay on Hawai’i Island. Beyond its beauty and tenacity, coral plays a distinctive role in nature’s symphony with dramatic abilities and unique power. It sounds like science fiction but it’s not. Coral reefs are the largest structures on Earth, built by tiny animals, and they’ve been recreating themselves successfully and sustainably for about 500 million years. “Everybody calls coral the ‘rainforest of the sea,’” Matt asserts, but in terms of biomass, they’re the most full-of-life ecosystem you can have. Even though about 25 percent of marine species live on the coral reef and depend on the coral reef, they cover less than 1 percent of the ocean floor.” When you take into account all the different kinds of ecosystems, having 4,000 out of 30,000 species of fish on the planet dependent on one ecosystem, the coral reef, that’s a very high percentage. Unmatched by any other ecosystem on the planet, coral reefs are Parrotfish – Photo by Tom Clarke considered harbingers of change. Besides providing nurseries for spawning fish, coral are like the proverbial “canary in the coal mine”– they are very sensitive to change. “When corals die, it is a sign that something in the environment is amiss,” says Matt. Burning fossil fuels has already changed Earth’s climate, raised ocean temperatures and caused widespread coral bleaching; by adding to ocean acidity, greenhouse gases also make it more difficult for corals to build their calcium skeleton. Degradation of coral reefs may be evidence of increasing climate change—beyond the trampling issue at Kahalu‘u.

for their nutrition. Some experts believe the pink and purple colors of certain coral may be from different strains of zooxanthellae that are more resistant to UV radiation, but this hasn’t been proven. “It shows the coral can recover,” remarks Matt, “but not if poor conditions persist.” Gentle winds churn the surface when we meet the next morning at Kahalu‘u Bay. The moon is almost full, the tides running high. Classroom lessons set aside at last, we are greeted by an optimistic sun above the outstanding cultural and natural wonder that is Kahalu‘u Bay. The entire Keauhou – Kahalu‘u complex is a center of Hawaiian antiquity. Three ahupua’a extend into the sea here, while the bay itself is protected by a sea wall built around 1400 AD by Menehune, a legendary race of small people, who apparently left space open at the north end of their breakwater to preserve the excellent surf beach and heiau located here. Sheltered from rough surf, the 4.3-acre bay is an ideal spot for first-time snorkelers, and so they come. They come by the thousands for the beauty, fun and wonder. Surrounded by several hundred visitors, the Kahalu‘u Bay Education Center van is embellished with colorful banners and blue, black and gold fins and masks hanging in precise rows near chairs where visitors can sit and properly fit rented gear. “We’re $13.50 for a whole day,” says Jean. “But we give people an enormous amount of education.” It’s true. In one day you can learn about tubinaria ornata, the thick, golden conical algae that wedges in crevices at the bottom The heart coral, photographed in 2012, of the sea, shows severe signs of distress. or follow the – Photo by Marya Mann daily routine of Hawaiian elegant hermit crabs who make their homes in small—and often stolen—shells. As the warmth, laughter and splashing drench everyone in instant happiness, there’s an enriching video presentation, dozens of marine identification books, eager volunteers and oceanographers willing to share marine wisdom and tall tales. ReefTeach volunteer Fred Lindsay sets up his Friday morning display close to water’s edge: Fish and coral identification panels, rows of books on reef and Hawaiian culture. Fred has been volunteering four hours a week for a year and a half. “In summer, I’m the lone ranger here,” he says breezily. “In the winter, lots of ReefTeachers are snowbirds” (who live on-island only part of the year to escape cold weather). We walk among the tide pools while Matt points out mussels, barnacles and periwinkle snails. A daring sea turtle suns on a

❁Continued on page 28

JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 27

“So, taking care of them is really important, because if we lose a few, that’s really quite a big loss in the grand scheme of things,” says Matt. The coral colonies are so huge it’s hard to imagine all these underwater life forms working together so amicably. A coral colony is made up of polyps, from one to thousands in number, all genetically identical, but each growing into a new and different organism,” says Matt. Some of the corals in Kahalu‘u are 400 years old, but when people step on them, they die forever. Humble, angel-faced creatures, coral rise up out of a cup by depositing calcium carbonate to build a skeleton or calyx. When they get too high off the bottom of that cup, they secrete a new layer. “If you see a piece of broken coral,” Matt says, “you’ll see how they’ve grown this line of holes, kind of like a ladder, and that’s from the coral polyp basically building a ladder to climb up, and up and up.” Known as cnidarians in the taxonomy, corals have a unique job on the planet: besides serving as home and harbor for millions of organisms, corals sequester, or store, carbon— becoming “carbon sinks”—and emit about a third of the oxygen that humans breathe. Some claim that the planet’s carbon levels are becoming too elevated and that global warming and pollution are ruining the seas and coral reefs beyond repair. While coral may be the “canary in the coal mine” of the world’s oceans, Hawai’i’s coral reefs are some of the healthiest anywhere. Scientific research by celebrated Hawaiian marine biologist Kaipo Perez III gives Kahalu’u Bay high marks for preserving coral reef resources. “One of the problems that exists at Kahalu’u Bay is trampling,” he said during A unique heart coral, photographed in a lecture at the Kahalu‘u Bay in 2008 – Photo by Bo Pardau, Keauhou Beach courtesy of Kahalu‘u Bay Education Center Resort.  “Preliminary findings indicated that as the coral cover increases, so do the fish,” Perez says. “Kahalu’u is not static, rigid or non-changing.” In conversation with the kūpuna, he heard that in old times, “fish were so plentiful in Kahalu’u that the sun would shine down and we could see the colors of the rainbow.” When the Kahalu‘u “heart coral” appeared at Kahalu‘u Bay, it seemed to be a visionary boon to refute the voices of global warming doom, and to assure that the health of the bay was restored. Here, amid the novice snorkelers and vacation-addled tourists, cauliflower coral, Pocillopora meandrina in Latin, was showing its true colors, colors which happen to depend on the zooxanthellae, microscopic algae that live within the coral tissue. One of the most remarkable aspects of coral anatomy is this beneficial relationship between the algae, which uses coral waste products, and the coral, which depend on zooxanthellae

Marine scientist Matt Connelly notices small things. – Photo by Marya Mann

28 | | JULY/AUGUST 2012

❁Continued from page 27

dark lava rock while a dozen admiring onlookers ooh and aah. Eye-catching hovels shared by limpets, worm snails, and thinshelled rock crabs, whose shells turn red in the sun. Pipipi, an endemic mollusk, playing host to arthropods and urchins. There’s a lot going on as we drop away our humanidentification and find our ocean body. As we enter the sea, the first thing: humility. Sea urchin spines, slippery moss on lava rocks. Then the humans: North Dakota grandmothers without their canes, ambulating somehow on mushy black sand in two to three feet of water, lurching from slippery rock to helping hand or sea bottom, a soft, graceful landing pad. Hosts in turquoise blue ReefTeach t-shirts help visitors see what a sustainable relationship with the sea looks like. With colored charts showing stages of health and degradation of the coral, enthusiasts can identify what they see. Sharing aloha, which they consider the top priority, ReefTeachers invite a positive, nurturing experience with Kahalu‘u sea life. I watch as a couple from Missouri finds sandlegs, wearing fins and masks to enter the sacred waters. They are squeezing hands, experiencing something fresh in life. Their faces open like teenagers falling in love again, not with each other, but with the sea, the oneness and interconnection we feel in the sea. They’re falling for the sea.

Listening to Coral

“Coral is the animal without a voice,” Matt had said last night, but after we don fins and mask and flutter toward the deeper sea today, I hear the sounds of hundreds of life forms in the water. The swoosh of fish flipping by, checking us out. Floating gardens, rockmover fish nudging pellets toward home, cities and hills of color and magic.        I hear scratching. Matt points to a star-eyed parrotfish biting chunks of coral. “They eat it. You can see bite marks on the coral,” he says. Freshwater springs and human bathers scuffling in shallow waters near-shore make the snorkeling cloudy, but about 50 feet offshore, the water turns crystal clear. Excited to finally see the “heart coral,” a message of hope to bay-caretakers, we search, but can’t locate it. Instead, we see surgeonfish and vegetarian convict tangs nibbling away at seaweed. We spot a hectic wrasse cleaning station where cleaner wrasse swim right

into a larger fish’s mouth to feed on parasites. The surgeonfish is groomed and the wrasse gets dinner in a partnership built on trust. Chris Lochman, a six-year veteran of ReefTeach, points out domino damsels, the endemic Hawaiian dascyllus, which, outside the protected bay, are captured and sold by aquarium hunters for $1.58 each. What would a coral in this free-living, open sea-loving community have to say? Do they feel fragmented? In uneasy accord with humans? Or thrilled at the adoration by mammalian eyes? A coral reef shelters crabs and petroglyph shrimp while Christmas tree worms and harlequin shrimp mate among the mound and lobe coral crevices. But does the heart coral know the Pacific Ocean covers one-half the planet and it lives at the center of it? The ocean invites contemplation. What is our place beside the immensity of the ocean and how do we fit within our mysterious home, this womb, the ocean? I hear the rocks rolling around, the thundering of the waves. So close to nature. All manner of life, snails, snowflake eels, crabs, all swimming around and underneath. I sort of melt in and feel a part of things. Maybe that’s what the “heart coral” did too, because as much as we search, it still can’t be found. Dive deeper. Isn’t this what great teachers have always said? I dive again and again, looking for the heart coral. Isn’t that my prerogative as a sensing being, to know my kinship with all life? To align with this magic called “heart coral?”

The Glory of Sea Teachers

We are drawn to the ocean, but how do the increasing numbers of people affect the living sea? What we do in one place affects the entire ocean. We are connected in unseen ways. “It teaches us,” says Cindi, “So you listen to the land. If you listen well, it will teach you. The ReefTeach students have been just absolutely magnificent in embracing Hawaiian teaching. Understanding the different elements that are this island alone,

❁Continued on page 31

You can help protect the living reef

From ReefTeach, Kahalu‘u Bay While you enjoy one of our most beautiful natural resources, keep in mind that the reefs are extremely fragile living organisms. Please follow these practices to avoid damaging them.

1. Avoid standing on or touching coral. Walking on or breaking live coral polyps will kill them. To adjust your mask during snorkeling, or to rest, please find sandy or rocky bottom on which to stand. Also, be aware of your fins so that you do not accidentally kick corals. Try not to kick up sand or sediment when on the reef; it blocks sunlight that is essential to reef animals such as corals.

2. Do not feed the fish. Fish play an important role in keeping the reef clean through what they eat. Feeding the fish disrupts their natural behavior. Some fish become aggressive while others get sick. Fish feeding upsets the natural balance on the reef. It is also illegal. Reef fish, such as the butterflyfish and parrotfish, naturally eat coral and algae.

3. Apply waterproof sunscreen 15 minutes prior to entering the water. Choose an environmentally-friendly brand and give the sunscreen time to absorb before entering the water. This helps protect your skin as well as reef life from the oily residues sunscreen leaves in the water.

4. Do not disturb the turtles. Hawaiian green sea turtles feeding and resting at Kahalu‘u Bay are endangered as a species, so please keep your distance. Under both Federal and Hawai‘i State laws it is illegal to harass or harm sea turtles.

5. Throw away your trash. Trash left on the beach ends up in the ocean and harms sea life. The ReefTeach Program at Kahalu‘u Bay aims to educate visitors and residents alike on how to avoid damaging corals and take care of turtles and reef animals. If you would like to volunteer, the training is fun and you’ll help in this visible, robust and effective reef protection program. Trained to identify different types of fish and invertebrates in the bay and about the ecology of the reef, you become an important voice in saving the bay. For more details on volunteering, contact Jean Bevanmarquez at 808.887.6411 or

JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 29

ReefTeachers of Kahalu‘u closely protect the exact location of the heart of the bay so that heavy snorkel traffic won’t endanger this tender little pink ballerina, the offering of mahalo nui loa from the larger sea. When we at last find the “heart coral,” it doesn’t look like itself. The dramatic heart-shape has dissipated and its dazzling pink color has faded. Are we receiving inevitable revenge from nature because we have refused to change? Can we change? How deep is our ecology? Matt, the accepted authority on such matters, says the coral does not appear to have bleached or otherwise been harmed by warming temperatures or a new source of pollution. Even though the consensus among scientists is that climate change is definitely caused by human activities like burning fossil fuels and deforestation, there is no definitive sign that global warming has caused the heart coral deterioration. Luckily, there is no sign of disease either. “This seems like a natural aging process,” he says. Jean, pointing to a photo of the fresh pink heart coral, felt sad about the change. “It just no longer exists in the same way it was. It was pink and heart-shaped. Now, its color and shape have changed, so it was a gift of the heart that came and went.”

Reef Etiquette:

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❁Continued from page 29 we have 11 elements of the world. And so in an ahupua’a you can learn the old ways. You can learn so much in one day. We’re very blessed that we’re able to do that.” Still, new ReefTeachers are needed to help preserve the gains in helping snorkelers learn to move with respect. Nobody, however, seems to know what can protect our local bays and the larger shores of the Pacific Ocean from the global warming of oceans. As harmful as overfishing, coastal development and human carelessness can be, the warming planet is quickly becoming the chief threat to the health of coral reefs around the world. Reef protection efforts are succeeding in recovering our shorelines and oceans; they may also be helping to restore human relationships. I watch the Missouri couple emerge from the sea. They’re holding hands again. An ‘ukulele master casually plays underneath the restored pavilion where volunteers have painted honu on the ceiling – the beginning of a Hawaiian Sistine Chapel? Rows of tables draw lei-makers, meals, spontaneous hula. A thousand people from faraway places who have never snorkeled before and can’t understand why they haven’t mastered it come through here everyday, gathering courage with a sense of adventure, stepping back into the ocean they came from. Then they go home a little more in love with life, having caught the happy virus—the gentle Hawaiian spirit—at Kahalu‘u Bay. ❖

Contact writer Marya Mann: To participate in ReefTeach Training, please contact Kahalu‘u Bay Education Center: Phone 808.640.1166 or visit

ReefTeacher Holly Mallardi advises everyone: “Go out in the bay. Float! Don’t push or touch anything. Just enjoy it! Give 10 feet of space to sea turtles and avoid long-spined sea urchins, called locally ‘wana halula.’” – Photo by Marya Mann

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The Life

“Honu Hula - Mele” wood burned oil painting on mango

AS ART hinting at his own past, hard-living and extravagant lifestyle— which has decelerated into a modest home studio in Puna, inhabited by the somewhat reclusive artist and his cat, Mango. The work coming out of this studio is profound, however, and the culmination of four decades of practice, more than 3,000 completed artworks—and a visit from the goddess Pele that directed his current passion for wood-burned or pyrographic oil painting on wood grain. “I know it is cliché,” said Gallegos, “but I have had other experiences here in Hawai‘i that are similar. The spirits are here—the night marchers are real.” His first chicken-skin story comes from 2005, eight years after moving to Hawai‘i full-time. Gallegos, who is Native American and Spanish by birth, was “beginning to be inspired in a real way by the deeply spiritual meanings of the Hawaiian culture. It started to mingle with my own Native American heritage,” he says. The beauty of the scenery impacted him so deeply it was almost painful. He had met several hula dancer models who helped him paint traditional hula. “I was painting hula because I wanted to help get rid of the Hollywood stereotypes and to capture the tradition and sacred nature

❁Continued on page 34

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omeone or some spirit has been looking out for David Maes “Kawika” Gallegos. With divine timing and serendipity, and in spite of personal crises, deep heartbreaks and challenges, the right person (or angel) has appeared at the right time. The artist’s life, history has shown, isn’t an easy one. The psyche that produces the most inspirational works is sometimes the most fragile one. It’s open to attacks of genius and psychological trauma alike. Yet, in the case of Kawika, he perseveres and awaits the next one. “My best work comes from a severe emotional response, such as a heartbreak. In between, I paint flowers,” says Gallegos. “For Picasso, it was ‘Guernica.’” For Gallegos, in spite of huge success, major commissions and acclaim for his art, his eyes reflect pathos, his face is sculpted with life’s journeys, and still his outlook remains optimistic. Life has formed him into a generous, humble and loving soul, quick to give compliments and a helping hand to others. “All really good artists start as young men-about-town and then disappear into the woodwork,” he says, not too subtly

❁Continued from page 33

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A Hawaiian Gallery

of hula.” His model Kanani led him to South Point and Kaulana Bay, where they did prayer and ceremony prior to his deftly painting her movements with the foaming sea as backdrop. The story continues when, in addition to his own work, he was helping his sculptress wife David “Kawika” Gallegos in front of a print write a proposal of his wood burned oil painting on mango, “Hawaiian Botanical” for the Volcano Art – Photo by Karen Valentine Center Gallery’s “Wahi Kapu” project. “My ex was having a hard time writing the right sentence for her proposal. We came to the end of a paragraph she was having trouble with, and I said, ‘No, it should say: …and the Hawaiian people will be respected!’ At that exact moment, all the doors in my house slammed shut by a large wind, and I heard thunderous footsteps outside. It sounded like ten big NFL men, running through the yard, it was loud, ground-shaking. I looked outside, and there was nothing there.” Born in Denver, Colorado, David Gallegos grew up there and in San Francisco—a child and grandchild of Arapaho and Cheyenne ancestry. (His great-grandmother married Kit Carson.) His family had “escaped” the reservations, yet the spiritual lessons and mana, as the Hawaiians would express it, were passed down. At age 2, David had his right hand caught in a washing machine wringer, with terrible injuries, severing part of his little finger and leading to disfigurement and years of multiple surgeries to make it as functional as possible. His surgeries are in medical textbooks, he says. “When I say I’ve been through the wringer, I really mean it!” he quips. “My first conscious memory of art, at age 4 or 5 was an enlarged, detailed photograph of the right hand of Michaelangelo’s sculpture, ‘David,’” Gallegos commented. Much later, he completed a nine-painting series for Genentech Corporation featuring exquisite representations of another master, Leonardo da Vinci’s anatomical drawings and journal entries. After winning full-tuition scholarships in painting and drawing, Gallegos received his bachelor’s of fine arts degree with high distinction from California College of Arts and Crafts in 1974. In 1977 he received his master’s of fine arts degree in painting and printmaking from the University of California, San Francisco. In the San Francisco Bay area from 1978 to 1990, Gallegos had numerous one-person and group museum exhibitions. During this time he worked with the famous lithographer, Ernest De Soto. From 1986 to 2006 he traveled throughout the U.S., Europe and Japan, participating in numerous museum and A-list gallery exhibitions and meeting with great success. David’s art has been featured in Architectural Digest, Art in America, Art Week, Smithsonian, Art Forum (with Ernest DeSoto)

and drummers in the van with him. “Kimo asked me what my name was, and I said ‘David’ and he said, no, it’s ‘Kawika!’” I explained to him I was Native American, and he said to me ‘That means you hapa haole!’” We arrived at Kona Village, it was getting dark, and I was told my job was ‘up there…. You’re an artist, follow the instructions; make sure the right color is on the right people. I climbed the stairs, and there sat a large, oldfashioned, 1950s-era light filter, with gear-shift knobs.’” He was to operate the lighting for the entire show. “The drumming started, the sun was sinking, and my first cue on the paper came up with a red light for the conch shell blower. Then, the first set of hula dancers came out. I was mesmerized; I could barely get my chicken-skin down after hearing the conch shell by the time all of these beautiful—

Wood burned oil painting on koa wood, two panels 24” x 24.4” each

and I mean beautiful—hula dancers came out, followed by the male dancers. Then the finale: Kimo Lim came out with a fire dance so amazing, I have never seen anyone equal it since. With the ocean breeze, crystal clear night with a zillion stars, and a big smiling moon in the sky, I was definitely in love with Hawai‘i,” exclaims Kawika with passion, even today, decades later. This night turned into a local job for Kawika, running the lights at Kona Village, which lasted four months, until he had to return to the mainland. But it set the tone for his love affair with Hawai‘i. “I’ll never forget Kimo,” he says, “because as a stranger to the island, and as an artist, to have this brilliant fire dancer, twice my size, be so kind to me would always stay with me. And then a few years later, Kimo died in a helicopter crash, in a ball of fire.” ❁Continued on page 36

“Full Moon Eclipse” headboard, wood burned oil painting on koa, 75” long x 32” tall x 2” deep.

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and the Encyclopedia of Important American Artists. Gallegos’ work is displayed in a number of prominent museums and galleries in major cities, including San Francisco, Palo Alto, and Santa Barbara, California; Chicago, Illinois, and Austin, Texas. Gallegos artworks hang in a great number of private and corporate collections internationally, and he is in demand for private and corporate commissions worldwide. Some of his corporate commissions were for Google, Genentech, Constellation Corp., Robert Mondavi Winery, numerous Hollywood legends and a billionaire brewery king in India, who is part of The UB Group – London, U.K. Gallegos first landed in Hawai‘i in 1984. “I had just finished my ‘Art for Peace’ project about nuclear proliferation in the world, in which I made a large lithograph, a triptych of Chicago the day after a nuclear holocaust, and I sent posters to every member of the U.S. House and Senate. I remember receiving many letters from Congressmen and Senators, the best one from Sen. Daniel Inouye. I guess this is why one of my biggest collectors, Robert and Margrit Mondavi, suggested Hawai‘i to me. After a show I had at their winery, Robert said I would love Hawai‘i and its temperament.” He took their advice and made arrangements to visit Kona. “I’ll never forget the plane landing on this island; when the jet door opened, the most beautiful, moist air I have ever felt, rushed through the cabin. I came down the stairs of the plane, and beautiful women were putting leis around everyone’s neck. Then I smelled the most beautiful fragrance in the world, a plumeria, and it seemed as if the whole island smelled like this beautiful flower!” On the drive into Kona, Gallegos said he was stunned by the visual beauty of the island. “Remember, I’m an artist, beauty is the only thing I see, and this was after having been a full-time professional artist for ten years with many museum and gallery shows under my belt, so everything was aglow with color to me.” Arriving at his host’s house, he says, the first thing he did was to pull out a watercolor palette and paper and immediately start painting watercolors of the setting sun and the sky. “They must have captured something; I sold them all. This series of watercolors were about 20” x 16” and some were quite beautiful, as I would experiment with the drizzle of rain on the paper and would paint the watercolors wet on wet—and fast! I painted until the sun was gone, and it became dark, and I slept like a baby.” David received his nickname “Kawika,” from the well-known fire-dancer Kimo Lim, during that first visit to Kona, on a spontaneous trip to Kona Village with a troupe of hula dancers

“The Vector Shell,” a very precise and intricately designed painting on maple burlwood, part of a series done on commission for Genentech Corp. (48” x 48”)

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❁Continued from page 35

Gallegos’ style is super-realism, painting in detail that is more precise than photographic, because there is nothing out of focus. In art school, he says, “Painting was dead,” and everyone was experimenting with other, very outrageous forms of art. He credits pop artist Andy Warhol for a return to realism, even though it featured the banal and the consumerist culture. “It took a lot of chutzpah to get through art school,” he says, for a realist taught by some of the best realists in the business “to paint every square inch in as much detail as every other one.” The Japanese loved his style, and he was “snatched away” by a Japanese art publishing company for five years from 1990 to 1995 to paint 400 scenic paintings that would be turned into color fine art serigraphs. He says he signed 18,000 prints. Even though it was a lucrative contract for Gallegos, he said, the company made profits a thousand times bigger from his work. At the end of that “servitude,” he moved to Hawai‘i. During previous visits, he had already begun researching galleries that might show his work, which began selling right away. In Hawai‘i, the realism practiced by Gallegos needed another layer. Underneath reality, there is a hidden world of spirit, and he wanted to express that as it had been awakening in him since he first felt it in Hawai‘i. “Hawaiian spirituality is equal to the beauty of their ‘āina,” he says. “It’s the same with American Indians, who share the same tragedy as the Hawaiians and maintain that same spirit. Hawaiian spirit is pure beauty. It is the spirit of nature first, and that points to everything. Kīakahi means that everything has a purpose. Fish swim because they swim. Birds fly because they fly. It is the same with the Native American tribes. All living things are our brothers and sisters. Trees are standing people, rocks are stone people, winged ones, finned ones, creepy crawlers, all of them. Artists create because they create. I try and live in my artwork, as I live in my spirituality and honor the ‘āina where it is that I live.” Kawika found that deeper reflection of spirit in the woodgrain that he has chosen as his canvas. A burl, a swirl of grain, a pattern, a hue of natural color become not only the basis for the oil paintings, they become part of the image. Koa creates an ideal background for luminous moonscapes, mango may offer up rays of the sun, ‘ohia and other woods all express their unique spirit images. When you view a kumu hula in a progression of hula movements, the images in the grain above

her head appear as kūpuna, or teacher-ancestors, looking down upon the scene with approval. Gallegos began using paper-thin veneers, cross sections of the tree, but not enough to sacrifice major portions of trees. Shortly after he had started working with woodgrains, he was driving from Waimea, turning onto the Saddle Road, on his way home from a gallery opening at Harbor Gallery in Kawaihae. “I started up the Saddle Road, which was at first clear, and then it turned into a very thick and rainy fog—the road is so alone up there, about 10 to 15 miles up from the upper belt road—and I could not see but ten feet away. What first came into view through the thick fog was a woman—all I saw was her standing alone. I had already been held up by a car accident near Waimea, and I thought there might have been another one, which is why I pulled over. It was late, around 11 p.m. I stopped, and the woman seemed to float into the back seat, I would remember later. I felt something jump in with her. I was so tired, but it felt like a dog or something leapt in with her. I could not really see if she was young or old, I just knew it was a woman who needed help up there, late at night. I asked if everything was OK, and there was just a silence. My mind just accepted the fact that this person needed a ride, and the driving was no joke, so I was concentrating. I did not even look in the rear view mirror; it was very dark, so I kind of looked, but could not see anything. I heard a dog, I thought about medium size, moving around. Finally, I asked where she needed to go. That is where I felt something. A stick or pole of some kind just kind of bumped the top of the right hand car seat, pointing straight ahead, I felt the hair go up along the back of my head. And it was then I felt a different vibration than just a woman in need of a ride. Finally, as the road started to swing down into Hilo,

“Keauhou Surf,” aka ”Feng Shui” is the first painting Gallegos did in Hawai‘i, a 50”x 40” watercolor on paper. It was one in a series of about 20 watercolors inspired by his first visit. Five large-scale panels of that series currently hang in the Landmark Hotel Lobby in Tokyo.

the rain and fog stopped, and I turned around and said, ‘Where in’ and the woman and the dog were gone. There was no one, nothing in the back seat of my car. The hair went back up my head again. It was like an electromagnetic energy. I hightailed it home. I know not why this woman came and went. I was told it was Pele, and that it was a blessing for me, but it scared me with its power,” says Kawika. “I feel that she was saying things were okay with me and my work, and that it was about love, not anger.”

The visitation happened during a period when Kawika was experiencing a lot of inner angst himself, as well as selfdoubt. He had been saying to himself, “Nobody will like me; nobody will listen to me.” He decided, “I’m “The Royal Hawaiian Seal” (c.1890), presented to Hawai‘i Island Mayor Billy Kenoi, going to burn every line in. I is a giclée of a wood burned oil painting on feel I was also mango, 48” x 40.” – Photo courtesy of the Mayor’s office tapping into the Polynesian tradition of tattoo. Every line is burned very deep.” It was a determination to make something permanent, more profound, to make a statement that could not be erased. He burns in the outlines and the detail lines of each painting onto the wood veneer before adding the color. And the colors, too, are laid on with the same kind of determination that it become indelible. Like Leonardo Da Vinci’s ‘Mona Lisa,’ which is painted in sfumato style, with perhaps 1,000 glazes, Gallegos lays on layer after layer of tinted oil glazes, giving his paintings a luminescent depth that makes the images glow, especially when rendering a fisherman’s torch in the moonlight. He chooses the placement of objects on the woodgrain to integrate the image with the grain so they complement each other. After burning in the image, he fills in the lines with paint and adds around 70 layers of glazes. Gallegos says in his artist’s statement: “Art is a journey of the soul.” He elaborates, “As an artist, I pick up the spirit of the ‘āina and the ‘āina and spirit come through me to give back.” As his Cheyenne grandfather would say, “You walk the Good Red Road.” “I never wasted a single day with the gift Creator gave me to create.” When asked what advice he offers to young artists, Kawika says, “Study all the master artists. Get your bachelor and master of fine arts degrees. This is very important later in an artist’s life, as the auction houses: Sotheby’s, Bonham and Butterfields, Sloan and Kenyon, look for these degrees. As such, my artworks from the 1980s and ‘90s are selling at the above auction houses today. Work, work, work and show, show, show! Don’t be shy and glide over criticism. Criticism for artists is like calluses on a guitarist’s hands. The more one plays, the thicker the calluses. You become invulnerable over time. David “Kawika” Gallegos is represented on Hawai‘i Island by Harbor Gallery in Kawaihae. His work may also be found at Eclectic Craftsman in Kailua-Kona, and at Ke‘ei Café in Kainaliu. ❖ Contact writer Karen Valentine: Art images courtesy of the artist. Website:

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since 1981

Fine Crafts Local Art Furniture Gifts, Beads & Jewelry Supplies

In Kainaliu, on Hwy. 11 ~ 322-3203 (next to the Donkey Ball Chocolate Factory)

Kimura Store, a landmark in Kainaliu, opened in 1920 as a grocery store. – Photo by Hadley Catalano


The late Mrs. Irene Kimura, whose love of sewing inspired the fabrics and quilting specialization of H. Kimura Store – Photo courtesy of Kimura family

f you walked into Kimura Store as a child it was almost guaranteed that Mrs. Irene Kimura would give you a piece of candy. While that reason alone might be good enough for any seven-year-old to visit the historic fabric store, located on Mamalahoa Highway in the center of Kainaliu town, it most likely wasn’t the reason the child’s mother or grandmother was dropping in. The destination shop was, and still is, considered among island sewers, quilters and seamstresses one of the best fabric and sewing accessories shops on Hawai‘i Island. With more than 10,000 bolts of fabric, ranging from bright floral Hawaiian and Japanese prints, to all shades and hues of solid colored cloth, Kimura’s has a diverse and continuously updated

The late Hisashi Kimura assumes his daily proprietor’s stance outside the store his parents founded. – Photo courtesy of Kimura family

assortment of yardage. And they get plenty of advice to go with it. “Women travel from Puna and Hilo to come buy fabric here,” explains Winnie Kimura, daughter of the late Irene and Hisashi Kimura, who were the second-generation owners of the family business. “Including (former) Gov. John Waihe‘e’s mother. She came here to pick out the fabric for her inauguration dress.”

❁Continued on page 42

JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 41

H. Kimura Store

Kimura Store is known across Hawai‘i Island for their extensive and diverse fabric selection. Thirdgeneration owners, brother and sister Winnie and Brian Kimura, now operate the fabric store since the passing of their parents in the early 2000s. – Photo by Hadley Catalano

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❁Continued from page 41

However, when Hisashi Kimura’s parents originally opened the store in 1926, it was a general store, selling essential items such as detergent, produce, alarm clocks, cookware and hardware. The supplies were indispensible to the local, rural community and in 1940, when Hisashi and Irene took over the Mamalahoa Highway storefront, Irene’s dressmaking practices and talent quickly found their way into the business. “The depression times were tough. My mother would make dresses seven days a week till 10 p.m.,” says Winnie, who currently owns and operates the business with her brother Brian. “She would make dresses for the Aloha Theatre shows, the Filipino and Japanese shows.” While the Kimura matriarch worked late into the evening, local residents would buy grocery items from their store: scratch, foodstuff and rice as Winnie recalls—and leave it at the store and come pick it up after the show. It was during the 1950s that the Kimuras started selling fabrics, and rebuilt and expanded their business. The fabric stock took over the shop and soon Kimura’s had 95 percent of its inventory in fabrics. Irene would take Winnie on buying trips twice a year to purchase new fabric from wholesalers in California (a tradition that later would include Brian’s wife). “Mom looked for bargains, but good quality bargains,” Winnie recalls of the mother-daughter excursions. “Still today we want to save money for the customers too, especially with the economy, but we want economy goods that will last.” In addition to offering affordably priced fabrics, Mrs. Kimura (the name by which she was known by all in the community) also focused on giving customers a wide variety of material selections and accessories choices (a practice that is still

employed). Kimura’s carries everything from burlap to silk to cotton and a vast assortment of sewing staples such as threads, ribbons, buttons, zippers and netting. While the Kimuras taught their children trade secrets, they also stressed the importance of obtaining a quality education. “Our mother was self-educated. She taught herself how to make dresses and she designed her own patterns,” Brian Kimura said of their mother, a well-known, talented seamstress in the community, who passed away in 2002, followed closely by her husband in 2003. After Winnie, her younger brother, Brian, and oldest brother, Glenn, received degrees in education, business management and law respectively, the three returned home to Hawai‘i Island and eventually began to help their parents in the business. Winnie operates the day-to-day retail store, Brian does the bookkeeping for the shop and Glenn, who lives in Hilo, takes care of the legal work. “We are grateful to our parents for sending us all to school and we hope we can continue the successful business they started,” Brian says, noting that Kimura’s will be receiving its Kona Historical Society Heritage Store plaque soon. Over the years, by word-of-mouth, rave reviews and another store expansion, Kimura’s was acknowledged in a handful of publications, including American Patchwork and Quilting magazine and Stories of Aloha, a book compiling the short profile pieces on Hawai’i small businesses from Aloha Airlines’ Spirit of Aloha magazine. Packed from the front door to the walls with rows of fabric options and supplies, a scattering of hardware items and a display case of Japanese cosmetics, the old store has the charm of yesteryear. With frequent patronage of local clientele, returning tourists who make a point of visiting Kimura’s when on the island, and new customers who will soon make Kimura’s a routine stop are a testament to the institution of the historic fabric shop. The unmatched familial atmosphere—whether it’s Brian’s children helping out around the store, one of the part-time ladies ordering a specific fabric for a customer or Winnie handing out pieces of candy to children as they leave—has proven that H. Kimura Store is an exemplary representation of the true nature of a family business.


One day recently, Mary Teshima, 104 years old, sent her son, Ernest Teshima, shown here at left, to buy menpachi for the family-owned Teshima’s Restaurant in Honalo. It was for a special customer, Senator Daniel Inouye. At the Oshima’s fish counter, he stops to chat with his friend and store owner, Susumu Oshima (right), 85, whose father opened the general store in 1926. – Photo by Hadley Catalano

Oshima Store rnest Teshima approaches the back display case at Oshima Store, the landmark Kainaliu family store, and walks behind the fish counter. Senator Daniel Inouye is having dinner at his family’s well-known restaurant that evening and Ernest was sent by his centenarian mother, Mrs. Mary Teshima, to pick up Oshima’s fresh menpachi. Owner Susumu Oshima bags the order and listens as his long-time patron chats—a salty-sea aroma wafting up from the metal tray holding the locallycaught, whole red reef fish. As the two elderly men lean against the small glass counter, talking story, dressed in similar, faded aloha shirts, long slacks and sneakers, they exemplify the daily welcoming interactions that have taken place between the Oshima family and their store customers for the past 86 years. Registered as one of the Kona Historical Society Heritage Stores, the family business, a clientele-tailored “mom and pop” store is a Kona mauka gathering place, a pharmacy and a convenient general store run by three generations of Oshima family members. The seed of the Oshima entrepreneurial spirit was planted by the family’s patriarch, Kanesaburo Oshima, upon immigrating to Hawai’i Island in 1907. Making his way as a hired hand at a Hāmākua plantation, Susumu Oshima explained that his father was then cook’s helper at the W.H. Bruno estate and a barber

for a Korean officer, before relocating to Kealakekua to open his own barbershop. With the close of the plantations and their roadside stables in the early 1920s, Oshima and his new wife moved to Kainaliu and opened a tailor shop out of one of the vacant stable buildings on what was then known as Mamalahoa Trail. In 1926 the family moved to an adjacent street-front shop and opened up a sundry goods store at Oshima’s present day location. “My mother and all the children helped in the store,” remembers the 85-year-old director of Oshima Bros. Inc, who grew up in the family business alongside his 11 brothers and sisters. “We sold soda pop and pastries before we gradually kept increasing our merchandise.” While business grew, the war wrecked havoc on the family. In 1941 Oshima senior was forced into an internment camp in Oklahoma for his correspondence work with the Japanese consulate in Honolulu. “My father worried about his wife and children back home,” recalls Oshima, who was 14 at the time. “I helped pick coffee and took care of my father’s obligations.” Tragedy further befell the family as Kanesaburo was shot and killed as he tried to escape the camp. In the face of calamity, nevertheless, the Oshima family prevailed and Susumu enlisted in the military. Working to meet their customers’ orders during wartime shortages, the entire family labored in-house to keep the business successful. The mauka Kona area was the commercial center of Kona during the ‘40s and ‘50s, prior to the tourist boom that came later. With the help of Hilo wholesalers who provided the store with their spare food supplies, Mrs. Oshima continued to lead the business, pay back loans and keep her family together.

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At Oshima Store, a true, old fashioned general store, you can buy freshly caught island fish, menpachi and opelu, or the tackle to catch them with. Fishing supplies are a popular seller. – Photos by Hadley Catalano

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“When I returned from the war I continued to help in the store,” says Susumu, whose wife, Setsuyo, also used to work regularly in the store. “But in August of 1948 we had a fire at the store at 10:30 at night. It was right before the shipping strike and we had stocked up on merchandise. We didn’t have insurance and the fire burned everything.” Again the Oshimas’ reputation for hard work and strong business ethics helped the large family gain a loan from the bank and supplies from island wholesalers, allowing the family to rebuild their general store from scratch. Over the years Oshima Store has expanded, opening up a pharmacy in 1955, after Oshima’s younger brother became a pharmacist. Today niece Corinne Oshima-Koseda (daughter of Susumu’s second eldest brother) runs the pharmacy and is the general manager, alongside her uncle. “Now I’m working for her. She said she’d be the manager provided I stick around,” Oshima laughs, saying his nieces, including Kathleen Abe who operates Oshima Surf, an adjacent clothing and accessories store (a second location is now open in Kailua-Kona), will take over the business one day. The Oshimas’ strong, small-industry leadership, sponsorships and donations to local organizations, and community-focused business plan have been distinctive company practices that have helped the store earn numerous small business accolades, including 2010 Retail Business of the Year-Hawai’i and recently, U.S. Small Business Administration’s 2012 Family-Owned Small Business of the Year for the State of Hawai’i.

Susumu Oshima still works at the store alongside his niece Corrine Oshima-Koseda, who is the general manager and pharmacist. Another niece operates Oshima Surf Shop next door. It recently opened a second location in Kailua-Kona. The Oshimas are currently in the process of expanding the front of their Kainaliu store and plan to add solar panels in the near future. – Photo by Hadley Catalano

Letters of recommendation poured in with support for the honor, from senators to Hawai‘i Island Mayor Billy Kenoi. They spoke highly of Oshima’s commitment to local business, dedication and humble family pride, along with the store’s characteristically well-known feature: their unending and extremely diverse supply of goods. An old-fashioned general store survives in the modern world. “Our old advertising pens said ‘A little bit of everything,’ and that’s what we have,” says Assistant Manager Alfred Morimoto, noting that Disney’s Aulani Resort on O’ahu modeled their historic general store after Oshima’s. “People can find anything here.” Indeed they can. Be it just one of an item or several makes and styles, everyone from tourists who’ve read about Mr. Oshima in travel guides to locals who have been stopping into the store since childhood, can locate anything, including (but definitely not limited to) fishing supplies, rubber boats, tents, canned goods, musubi makers, paper and notebooks, pocket knives, hats and gloves, beauty products, first aid supplies, canned goods, fresh produce, coolers, cold drinks, liquor and candies—making the family store a historical and integral part of the Kona community and truly a convenient spot. ❖ Contact writer Hadley Catalano: Store contacts: Oshima Store: 808.322.3844 H. Kimura Store: 808.322.3771



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The Life


he is bathed in bright light on stage in a white mu‘umu‘u, her hands ever so delicately miming the picking of a lei blossom and bringing it close for its sweet scent, her movements like floating silk. I was lost in the grace of it all. Such is the artistry of Leilehua Yuen: storyteller, dancer, singer, artist and Hawaiian cultural specialist. The occasion happened to be Hawai‘iana Live!, the ongoing Wednesdaymorning cultural performance at Hilo’s Palace Theater, now in its sixth year. Yuen conceived of and continues to design the performances that differ each week. In April-May they focus on lei-making, one of her favorite subjects. Otherwise, the stories are roughly based on topics suggested by the Hawaiian lunar calendar. In fall and winter, for example, the shows are about Makahiki (Hawaiian New Year) and focus on the rains and watershed environment. The Wednesday after the first snowfall of winter is devoted to stories of Poli’ahu, goddess of Mauna Kea. So they cover a range of Hawaiiana, hence the title of the production. Nearly always accompanying her is Manu Josiah, her husband, companion and fellow artist/musician. When I asked him how long he has known Leilehua, I already knew from his expression what was coming: “forever,” he said. In truth, they have known each other for many years and married six years ago, now making their home in her grandparents’ house, which they are slowly restoring. They make a perfect pair: both deeply spiritual, both rooted in their culture, both committed to revitalization, both attentive to the mission to teach and entertain—edutainment, they call it. It’s not an uncommon term, and it justly suits what they do: educating and entertaining with an underlying purpose to perpetuate the Hawaiian culture as authentically as possible.

One of Leilehua’s distinguishing features is her hair. When it’s down, it nearly reaches the ground, falling 52 inches from the nape of her neck. –Photo courtesy of Palace Theater

“Art should not get easier, but better,” she quotes. “For a story to be good, it has to be true—to the human heart. I don’t care for stories that go for the quick laugh. When the kernel of a story is true, we laugh because we relate to the truth of the human condition.” For Leilehua, telling and teaching stories is all-consuming, and it takes many, many forms. In addition to Hawai‘i-ana Live!, she and Manu “edutain” through Recycle Hawai‘i’s “Artists in the Environment” program under Howard Shapiro; they put on Malalo O Ka Pō Lani – Hawaiian Culture Night, a monthly presentation of the Institute for Astronomy and Mauna Kea Support Services; perform hula “informances” for Volcano Art Center at Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park; and she produces Hilo’s Lei Day ( program every year,—now held at the East Hawai‘i Cultural Center. These are just a few of their regular engagements. The pair does presentations, workshops and activities through the Univeristy of Hawai‘i, Hilo Conference Center, and performs at many festivals and private functions. Lately, though, Leilehua and Manu have made time to do some of their own performing and recording. Their latest CD, A Makahiki Carol, won the Children’s Music award, and “By Moonlight, By Sunlight” won for spoken word at the

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One Story at a Time

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❁Continued from page 47 Big Island Music Awards (BIMA) banquet held on April 2, 2012. Their story, “Why Summer Days are Long, A Hawaiian Story About the Sun,” won honors from Storytelling World Awards 2012. Why they are so good at their trade is no secret to them. Leilehua spends much time researching the stories, legends and myths of Hawai‘i, many of which she learned originally from her kūpuna. She also uses her vast collection of books and clippings, online sites, and she delves into archives, such as the old Hawaiian newspapers now searchable online through the Bishop Museum and other sources. What has made the research especially rewarding and exciting for her is being able to bring forgotten stories to life and finding the missing pieces of incomplete stories she learned long ago, she says. They also understand that a good story will come across if you truly know the story. Not from memory, not just the words of it, but the meaning, the feeling, the point of it. Manu quietly reflects, “Culture includes staying pono within it. Storytellers have many lessons to share, and stories affect people in different ways. People take what they need to hear from stories; they are like medicine. They affect everyone in a different way. And, they affect people different ways at different times. It all depends on what you are ready to hear.” The talent and skill of Leilehua is hard-earned. A student of the legendary Aunty Nona Beamer, Leilehua notes that she was learning all the time, because Aunty Nona never wasted a minute. She was constantly teaching and took advantage of opportunities: waiting in an airport lounge, for example, was never down time. “She held herself and everyone she taught to a very high standard, because she understood that being a role model came with responsibility. Aunty Nona opened her heart to everyone.” Leilehua has deep roots in Hawai‘i. Her father, Don Yuen, was born here of Hawaiian heritage and the family comes from Hanapepe on Kaua‘i, across the channel from Ni‘ihau. It’s not surprising, therefore, that Hawai‘iana Live! contains some history of lei-making with the prized Ni‘ihau shells. As a young girl, the daughter of working artists and storytellers, Yuen went back and forth between Hawai‘i and California, as she had extended family in both places. She got used to traveling, performing, being around people who did things. When she was young, her parents went their separate ways and she remained in Hawai‘i, where her father’s parents helped raise her Manu Josiah, Leilehua’s husband and in the house just co-performer, team together in a mission off Waianuenue to spread cultural awareness, with their Avenue. She notes, “edutainment” presentations around laughing, “between the island. – Photo courtesy of Leilehua Yuen Hilo Union, Hilo

Intermediate, Hilo High School and South One, you could spend your whole life on Waianuenue Avenue!” One of the things she appreciates about being raised by elders is the attention that was paid to reflection and the past. “It may seem like you are taking two steps forward and one step back; but moving forward and then stepping back and reflecting gave me a strong foundation and a sense of continuity, while encouraging a willingness to try new things.” This process of learning and reflecting, of merging the present with the past and blending the new with the old, is how she has learned to live life. I asked Leilehua what she dreamed of doing when she was younger and what appealed to her besides art, if anything. Her answer was: journalism. “I really got into writing and my fantasy was to live in the rainforest and have a motorcycle and a plane; and when I was called on a job, I’d get on my bike, ride to my plane and fly to someplace exotic and exciting to cover some dramatic story, then off to my editor’s office, maybe in New York, and deliver my story . . .” As fate would have it, Leilehua got a chance to pursue her dream when, while in college, Space Age Publishing Company (SPC), now based in Waimea, hired her. She worked with SPC (much of the time as an outside consultant) for 17 years, traveling to cities like Hainan, Beijing, Jakarta, Vancouver, Toronto and Frankfurt, as well as mainland U.S. cities, meeting people she found to be amazing. A career highlight was guiding astronaut John Young (commander of Apollo 16 in 1972) on a personal tour of Mauna Kea. Over the years, she has herself had a number of businesses, often concurrently. With 9/11, her tour business collapsed, and with it most of her income. Unable to afford the $500 per month in gas her aging Jeep Cherokee cost commuting to her teaching job, she sold the decrepit vehicle and bought a 450cc Honda Nighthawk motorcycle to make the Saddle Road commute. Years later, the cycle would be important. It was a Labor Day weekend, and Manu emailed her from O‘ahu asking her to guide him and 17 of his Harley-owning friends on a cycle tour of the Big Island. She agreed. That weekend marked a shift in their relationship that eventually led to Manu moving to Hawai‘i Island. Although that was years ago, they both still ride. One of Leilehua’s distinguishing features is her hair. When it’s down, it nearly reaches the ground, falling 52 inches from the nape of her neck. You might think that she has never cut it but she has, twice, and both times proved to be disastrous emotionally. It was when she met Aunty Nona in around 1994, that her hair took on more symbolic meaning for her—representing her cultural heritage and honoring her teacher. Aunty Nona asked her not to cut it anymore, and to this day she has not. It is an act of respect to do what your kumu asks of you. “I will always be a student,” she says, “because I won’t cut my hair.” It falls and shimmers like a waterfall down her back, and she carries it with strength and elegance, as if it weighed nothing at all. The more Leilehua Yuen works as an artist, the more she learns, and the more everything comes back to story. “Story defines culture . . .. Nothing is separated from anything else. You need physics to understand how to make art and vice-versa.” “And culture,” Manu adds. “Culture is the context in which you live your life. It’s in the koko, meaning it flows in your veins, the same as it did with our ancestors. It influences your decisions on food, family, work, patterns, activities you choose to do . . .. All human endeavor takes place in a cultural context. ” As a cultural specialist doing monthly presentations on Mauna Kea, Leilehua has strong ideas about science and culture. The

Contact writer Paula Thomas: Leilehua’s websites:

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two are not separated. “Science is not just a collection of data or instruments. It’s a method of inquiry: observing and absorbing. It’s the same system, the same process. . . . With a fishnet, which string is the most important? It’s all one string. Which knot is most important? Leilehua performs a hula that tells a story at All knots are Hawai‘iana Live!, the ongoing Wednesdayimportant. If morning cultural performance at Hilo’s Palace Theater, now in its sixth year. Yuen there is a hole, conceived of and continues to design the the fishnet as a performances that differ each week. system is broken. –Photo courtesy of Palace Theater Manu adds, “A warrior’s spear, is it just a weapon? He can always use the other end as a hoe, or as a bar of defense. Everything has its context.” From a cultural perspective, each of us is a knot. We are all important. When we see things separately, is it an error of judgment or is it a difference in interpretation? The answer is sometimes: how are you holding it in the light? She and Manu merge their talents in many ways. In addition to performances, they have created LeiManu Designs, a business that first and foremost carries forth the legacy of her father, Don, and the Malama Torch™ he originally designed for the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel. All of the torches are manufactured by Leilehua and Manu in their Hawai‘i Island workshop, where they also do custom work. “It’s great to be able to carry on a family business,” Leilehua says. “I starting out sweeping the shop, then drawing the designs, and finally being trusted with a torch in my hand. Manu got interested in the business, too, so he trained with Dad as well. Leilehua does most of the metalwork, while Manu has started working in wood—of all kinds. They were featured artists recently at the Volcano Art Center Gala. Her dad still helps, especially in the design phase of a project, to suggest alternative approaches, and help solve technical problems, like armature stresses and electrolysis issues. Geraldine Duncann, Leilehua’s mother and also an artist, has always been very encouraging of her rather eclectic career. She is a writer, ceramicist, painter, doll maker, and amazing at historical costume reconstruction. While eclectic may describe Leilehua Yuen’s career, it is deeply rooted in intention and a profound cultural current. “To be able to pass on spiritual mana and wisdom, you have to be coming from the right place,” she says. She and Manu do pī kai before performances sometimes, to cleanse and prepare. When she is on stage Leilehua is spellbinding. There is a reason: “I live within the stories,” she says. ❖

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50 | | JULY/AUGUST 2012 • 885-4968

Model home Paniola, showing solar panels, catchment system and landscaped yard. The trailer hitch is visible beneath the bay window. – Photo by Dale Belvin

“It started with ‘Oh those are cute,’ and evolved to where we really see the need for our world to shift consciousness, simplify and downsize,” said Barrie Rose, who with Johanna Tilbury created Habitats Hawai‘i. “Our economy is dictating that. It’s a bit radical, but this totally works.” The “Paniola” is Habitats’ model house and measures 16 x 9 x 14 feet. Step inside, however, and even the most skeptical will find that this is not your father’s camper. It is constructed like a conventional home, with two-by-four stud walls, birch plywood siding and wiring to code. There is a roomy loft for the bed and plenty of shelving. There is bamboo flooring, granite-like countertops, a double-burner propane stove and an on-demand hot water heater. There is detailed craftsmanship with finishes of Sapele wood custom cabinetry, and in the bathroom an overhead shower and composting toilet.

❁Continued on page 52

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n 1970, the size of the average, single family home in the U.S. was 1,500 square feet. In 2009, in the country that originated the phrase “Super-size Me,” that average peaked at 2,630 square feet. After decades of increasing in size, U.S. Census data shows that homes in the U.S. are now beginning to shrink. In 2010, the average sized house was down by 200 square feet. People are downsizing for a lot of reasons. The foreclosure situation in the U.S. has given some no choice. For others, an increased awareness of their environmental footprint has them shifting gears, re-organizing their life and downsizing their domicile. Just how far down? Habitats Hawai‘i creates tiny custom homes built on trailer platforms that measure about 145 square feet. Yes, only 145 square feet!

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Cost is another big factor in owning a tiny house. Completely built and delivered, the houses’ costs vary between $30,000 and $50,000, depending on building materials, size and accouterments. “Providing affordable housing is our motivation,” Barrie said. “Our vision is that more and bigger do not equal better. This is a statement that asks us to take a look at that thought. Does a bigger house buy more happiness? Or is there more to take care of and more taxes to pay?” The potential for these homes is limited only by the imagination. For the second year in a row, Habitats Hawai‘i was the Angela Leslee sits on the 170-square-foot lanai of her 146-square-foot house in Kealakekua. Angela chose most-visited site on the to have her bathroom outdoors, with the vanity sink shown behind her, outdoor shower to the left and outhouse with composting toilet sited down a landscaped path. – Photo by Cynthia Sweeney Grand Green Homes Tour of sustainable homes ❁Continued from page 51 in West Hawai‘i. People are looking for their first house, for an ‘ohana for elders, relatives, kids returning from college or Barrie and Johanna built their first “Habitat” four years ago. homes for semi-communal living, with several dwellings on a (Johanna likes the word “trailer” Barrie does not.) Each farm or large piece of property. Habitat is completely custom, from the drawing board to Johanna loves the flexibility of the homes, which allows her the finishing touches. to be endlessly clever. There is storage space under bay window Barrie has been a real estate agent since the 1970s and is cushions. While the model has an indoor bathroom and loft well-known for her outgoing personality. for the bed, another home has a “push-out” for the bed and an “I love working with people and designing space. This is a outdoor shower. creative project and I’m really into the artistic side of it. I’m not “In this market (economy) we are trying to find a place in the interested in doing a plain box. Johanna is an accomplished, middle, not too expensive, trying to keep costs down. Trying to skilled craftsperson, and each house is unique,” Barrie says. bridge the gap between beautiful and too expensive,” Johanna has been a licensed contractor for 30 years. Barrie says. “Barrie has ideas, I build them,” she said. “I’ve been a builder forever and I hate the rules. I like to figure it out myself.” Johanna is familiar with small spaces. In Seattle, she lived on a boat and is now most comfortable sleeping with micromovements. The tiny house can gently mimic the motion of the The small house movement has been around in the U.S. for ocean in the strong winds that blow through Waimea, where about 15 years, and is a somewhat countermovement to the the model house is parked. “bigger and better” concept. Its beginnings are largely credited Which is not to say the houses are not stable. Each house to the publication of the book, The Not So Big House, in 1997 is built, bolted, welded and totally integrated into its steel by Sarah Susanka. The movement took off a few years later chassis. If anything, Johanna says, the houses are overbuilt. when Jay Slater co-founded the Small House Society and They are well insulated and, since there is no foundation, in started selling tiny house plans as part of his Tumbleweed an earthquake the house on wheels has a better chance of Tiny House Company. weathering tectonic jolts. And they can be hauled by a regular Angela Leslee, who owns Aloha Massage Academy, a 4x4 truck. massage school in Kainaliu, had been watching the “Tiny All the Habitats are solar with water catchment and septic House” movement on the Internet for a few years and had been systems. The houses run on solar photovoltaic energy and wanting to get off the grid. When she found Habitats Hawai‘i, include a handcrafted water catchment tank, with metal roof she worked with Barrie and Johanna to build her 146-squaregutters to capture rainwater. Electricity can be run from a foot house that has a full-size refrigerator, queen-size bed nearby house (“Everyone always asks where the TV is,” and a “guest room.” Johanna said).

The Small House Movement

See more at or contact Barrie Rose at 808.960.6785. Contact writer Cynthia Sweeney: Johanna Tilbury (left), a licensed contractor, and Realtor Barrie Rose founded Habitats Hawai‘i as part of the small house movement. – Photo by Dale Belvin

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Angela’s house has changed her life. “It’s more than a house, it’s a lifestyle. It has been a process of whittling down and getting rid of what I don’t need. I had stuff I hadn’t seen in years,” she said, adding that when she moved into her new house last year, she actually had storage space left over. “Now, I make different choices (about buying things). I ask myself, ‘Do I really need this?’ I’m consuming less.” Angela was an integral part of the design process for her tiny house, Hale Maluhia. She has a refrigerator-freezer that’s converted to solar, a 24” gas stove with four Interior view of model home Paniola’s kitchen with granite-like countertops and custom cabinets burners (“If I can – Photo by Dale Belvin have a real kitchen, I “It’s exciting watching the little house come together. can live anywhere”) and a pullout counter for her Vitamix. She [Angela] made the decisions along the way and it fits her like a added details like custom, bamboo-etched glass in the kitchen glove,” Johanna said. cabinets and a doggie door. Angela parked her house on a friend’s 16-acre parcel in Kealakekua. Hale Maluhia was designed with the area’s wetter climate in mind with a dehumidifier and Nyloboard, a “green” building material that is impervious to mold and dry rot. Angela also embraces indoor/outdoor living with a 170-square-foot lanai. Her shower, sink and composting lua are all outdoors. She also has a storage shed for garden tools and luggage. And to her endless delight, she has discovered ‘dual purposing’—finding more than one use for anything she can. Her phone is also her clock. The broiler is also a toaster. Her 17-inch laptop computer is also where she watches movies, and her bookshelf holds a Kindle. “I haven’t given up anything. Technology has made it easy to live in a tiny space,” she said. “Why did I think I ever needed more? It’s such a relief to not be up-keeping so many possessions. I’m all about alternative living, dropping all your possessions down to just what you need. It’s kind of perfect.” Okay, we get it. But isn’t there anything she misses about having a normal size house? Angela doesn’t hesitate when she says, “Not one single thing.” ❖

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The Life

Paphiopedelum ‘slipper orchid’

❁Continued on page 56

Jurahame Leyva joined Hilo Orchid Society when he was just 12 years old. – Photo by Denise Laitinen

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ulie Goettsch wants to set the record straight. The president of the Hilo Orchid Society (HOS) wants people to know that growing orchids isn’t complicated or difficult to do, especially here on an island known as the “Orchid Island.” “I’ve talked to so many people who say, ‘I have such a brown thumb, I couldn’t possibly come to the Orchid Society,’” says Goettsch. “We always reply: ‘you are the ones we want to come to our society because we can help you become successful at growing orchids. “Orchids have become such as passion for so many people who thought they could never grow them but because of our climate, in Hilo especially, anyone can excel at orchids. A lot of people get orchids as gifts, and after it finishes blooming they say ‘what do I do with it now?’” says Goettsch. “They don’t know what to do to keep it growing and blooming.” “You can have better and more beautiful orchids if you know a little bit about caring for them,” says Sheryl Rawson, another member of the society who is passionate about helping others.

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not normally available to the public,” says Goettsch. To say that members look forward to the tours is an understatement. In fact, so many members come prepared with cardboard boxes [to hold all their orchid purchases] that the group has a volunteer follow them in a truck to hold all the orchids members buy along the tour. “What you’ll see at some of these places are very unusual orchids,” adds Goettsch. “Everyone is so happy at the end of the trip. It’s just the most wonderful thing.” “It’s a good group,” says Sheldon Takasaki, owner of Carmela’s Orchids in Hakalau, who has been active in the Society for more than 35 years. “Nobody thinks that they’re too good. Everybody helps out each other. People will teach you whatever you need to know.” Sheldon says his father Yasuji Takasaki, who founded Carmela’s Orchids, would take him to meetings when he was a teen. “My dad was part Theme of the 2011 Hilo Orchid Society show was Orchid Safari. of the club for 50 years,” says Takasaki. “He used to – Photo courtesy of Hilo Orchid Society really enjoy learning from all the old timers. “Ayito Tanaka and Masaya Miyao were the old timers when ❁Continued from page 55 I was starting out [with HOS]. We learned a lot from them.” In addition to their monthly meetings and annual “When I first joined [in the 1970s] we met at someone’s orchid show, the HOS offers special member tours of local house, maybe 20 members all in one backyard,” adds Takasaki. greenhouses several times a year. “The greenhouses open their “Then we moved to the university—the facilities were nice— doors to us and talk about everything they are doing. People and more people joined.” wouldn’t have a chance to do this otherwise. Plus they [the “We’re not really sure how old the Society is,” says Goettsch. growers] give us the opportunity to buy their plants, which are “This year is our 60th annual show—we know that. We know

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it started sometime before World War II, but it was suspended off and on during the war and then came back to life again after the war.” The 200 or so members of the club range in age from 19 to folks in their 80s. At 19, Jurahame Leyva is the youngest member, and he’s been growing orchids for 15 years! “I actually started growing orchids when I was 4,” says Leyva. His mother owns a daylily nursery, and he would accompany her on trips throughout the state to buy and sell plants. “Most 4 year olds do not have that long of an attention span,” he explains. “I would often look at the plant displays at other booths.

B. Little Stars ‘ Yasuji’. Developed by Carmela Orchids and named after Mr. Yasuji Takasaki who was the founder of Carmela Orchids

I came across an [orchid] plant and I just thought it was cool. I asked my mom if I could get it and she said yeah. I’m sure my mom thought the plant wouldn’t last two weeks,” he adds with a chuckle. “I brought the plant back to her three months later with eight stems on it and 47 flowers.” Leyva’s love of orchids has continued to grow ever since. At age 12, he joined the Hilo Orchid Society. He recalls how membership to HOS was his birthday present that year. “I showed up and started listening to the lectures and going on nursery tours and things like that,” he says. Leyva, who will be a sophomore this fall at UH Hilo with a double major in astronomy and tropical horticulture, is currently on the society’s board of trustees. This year marks the seventh year he’s on the planning committee for the orchid show. “Being a member of the Hilo Orchid Society is a lot of fun,” says Leyva. “There are folks in the club that are tremendously knowledgeable. They’re great fun to be around and they are always happy to talk about orchids. The highlight of my year is participating in the Hilo Orchid Show,” he says. In 2005 Levya’s display won the Mayor’s Trophy for best display (at the ripe old age of 12). The society meets on the second Saturday of every month from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Kamana Senior Center in Hilo. Each meeting features both educational opportunities and time to chat with friends. Various commercial growers often bring orchid plants to display and offer practical tips on caring for plants. “It’s really educational,” says Sheryl Rawson. There’s a potluck break where members talk story about orchids, and many orchid plant varieties are for sale during each meeting.

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president, secretary and treasurer. It was her husband Pete who It is the speaker presentation that’s introduced her to orchids. the main attraction. “The club brings “My husband loves orchids,” in speakers from all over the island explains Haspe. “He got his first and the mainland,” says Rawson. But orchid plant when he was still sometimes the meeting might single and we’ve been married feature something as practical as a for 58 years.” The couple has hands-on demonstration on how participated in the annual orchid to pot an orchid. show for more than two decades. You do not even have to be a “One day in the late 1980s, member to attend the monthly Sheldon Takasaki’s daughter meetings, which are free. While some suggested I have my own display Oncidium ‘popcorn orchid’ – Photo by Sheryl Rawson members are orchid hobbyists [at the annual orchid show], and others are commercial which back then used to be in growers, some folks just want to figure out what to do with the old Butler Building,” she explains. “From then on, every year their plants. we’ve faithfully made a display—every year, except for one or Other members echo the sense of camaraderie. Hilo residents two years we didn’t participate because I got sick.” Lottie Haspe and her husband Pete have attended meetings Not all orchid society members have displays at the annual since the 1970s and formally joined in the1980s. show. Some folks just like coming to the monthly meetings “It was like a family thing when we started coming,” explains because they want to learn more about orchids or spend time Haspe. “We always look forward to the meetings because they with people that have similar interests. This year’s Hilo Orchid [the members] become like extended family. You meet so Show is August 3-5 at the Edith Kanaka‘ole Tennis Stadium. many friends and so many different people that share a similar [See calendar for details.] interest. We’re able to go to different islands and meet all Aimee Takamoto, current corresponding secretary and a different kinds of people. I was born in the Philippines and to member of the group for more than a decade, says she became meet all these different people from all over the world, hooked on the organization after her first meeting. it’s so interesting.” “I came to the first meeting and it’s like a virus—you just Haspe has served in a variety of capacities with the want to come,” she says. “When you buy orchids you just want organization throughout the decades, including stints as to buy more and more,” Takamoto adds with a laugh. The Hilo

❁Continued from page 57

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New member Susie Forbes of Hakalau (left), and Ruth Robison of Hilo, carry their purchases from a fall 2010 HOS orchid tour. – Photo courtesy Hilo Orchid Society

native says she has always liked orchids, but that her interest has grown as the years go by. Takamoto explains that the rest of her family does not share her interest in orchids, so for her the society is a good place “to see people with the same interests and share the same passion as you do.” The organization also holds various fundraisers throughout the year, enabling it to provide annual scholarships. Their

annual orchid show is the biggest fundraiser of the year. “The fundraiser goes toward providing scholarships to UH Hilo students studying tropical agriculture,” says Goettsch. This year the society awarded two scholarships of $1,500 each. Orchid Society members are Phalaenopsis ‘moth orchid’ hoping for a good turnout this year to raise funds for next year’s scholarships. With such enthusiasm, it’s easy to see that Hilo Orchid Society may very well keep going for another 60 years. ❖ Contact writer Denise Laitinen: Orchid photos courtesy of Hilo Orchid Society For more information: Hilo Orchid Society Monthly meetings: second Saturday of the month, 2-4 p.m. at the Kamana Senior Center, 127 Kamana Street, Hilo

JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 59

“Many a small thing has been made large by the right kind of advertising.” –Mark Twain

Mahalo for allowing me to be a part of your lives. This summer is my second year anniversary working with Ke Ola Magazine, and I am so pleased to represent this fine publication. Ke Ola Magazine is a free, island-wide publcation bringing readers relevant, insightful and consistently beautiful and entertaining content each issue. Would you like have your business be a part of our Ke Ola advertising ‘ohana? Advertising in Ke Ola Magazine is easy, effective and affordable. Please give me a call. I look forward to working with you.

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Adrienne Poremba East Hawaii Sales/Advertising Rep. Office: 808-935-7210 Cell: 808-280-1563

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Saturday & Tuesday: Hawi Farmers Market, North Kohala, across from Post Office and Nakahara Store, under the banyans (Saturdays 8 a.m. – whenever everyone goes home; Tuesdays 2 – 6 p.m.)


Saturday: Waimea Town Market at Parker School, 65-1224 Lindsey Rd., Waimea/Kamuela. 8 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Sunday – Monday: Pana‘ewa Hawaiian Home Lands Farmers Market, Puainako and Ohuohu Streets by Walmart, Hilo. 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

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Saturday: Waimea Hawaiian Homestead Farmers Market, 64-759 Kahilu Rd., located at Kuhio Hale Bldg. (off of Mamalahoa Hwy., two miles east of Waimea town). 7 a.m. – noon Saturday: Honoka‘a Farmers Market, Mamane St., Honoka‘a, Honoka‘a Trading Co., Old Botelho Bldg. 7:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. Tuesday & Friday: Kekela Farms Organic Farmers Market, 64-604 Mana Rd., Waimea. 100% organic. 2 – 5 p.m. Wednesday: Waimea Mid-Week Farmer’s Market at Pukalani Stables, site of the Paniolo Museum. Local foods and local artists in a historic setting. Serves lunch or dinner. 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Pukalani Road in Waimea. Midweek Farmer’s Market, Anna Ranch, 65-1480 Kawaihae Rd., (nestled beneath Hoku‘ula, aka Buster Brown), Kamuela. 12:30 – 5:30 p.m.

Sunday: Laupāhoehoe Farmers Market. Next to the Minit Stop on Hwy. 19. 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Sunday, Monday, Tuesday & Thursday: Hilo Farmers Market, corner of Mamo and Kamehameha Ave., downtown Hilo. 7 a.m. – 4 p.m. Sunday: Akebono Farmers Market. Luquin’s/Akebono Theater parking lot, Pahoa. 7 a.m. – 2 p.m. Sunday: Maku‘u Farmers Market, Kea‘au-Pahoa bypass road. 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. Sunday & Thursday: Pepe‘ekeo Farmers Market. Off Hwy. 19 on Ka‘akepa St. Produce and foods. Sundays dawn to 2 p.m.; Thursdays 2 p.m. – dusk. Tuesday – Saturday: Kea‘au Village Market, 16-6550 Old Volcano Rd., Kea‘au. 7 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Wednesday & Friday: Uncle Robert’s Awa Bar and Farmers Market in Kalapana at the end of Kalapana-Kapoho Road (Route 137), next to Kalapana Village Café. Locally grown produce, ono grinds, artisans, awa bar and live music. Evenings 5 – 9 p.m. Saturday: Kino‘ole Farmers Market. Kino‘ole Shopping Plaza, 1990 Kino‘ole St., Hilo, 7 a.m. – noon Saturday: Keaukaha Pana‘ewa Farmers Market. Railroad Avenue, across from Home Depot, Hilo. Homegrown produce offered by Hawaiian Homelands lessees. 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. Saturday: SPACE Farmers Market, Seaview Performing Arts Center for Education, 12-247 West Pohakupele Loop, Kalapana. 8 a.m. – noon Saturday: Hilo Coffee Mill, 17-995 Volcano Rd., Mountain View (on Hwy. 11 between the 12 and 13-mile markers). 8 a.m.–1 p.m. Saturday & Wednesday: Hilo Farmers Market, corner of Mamo and Kamehameha Ave., downtown Hilo. 6 a.m. – 4 p.m.


Saturday & Wednesday: Nā‘ālehu Farmers Market, in front of Shaka Restaurant. 8 a.m. – noon


Saturday: Keauhou Farmers Market, Keauhou Shopping Center, Keauhou. 8 a.m. – noon SKEA Farmers Market Hōnaunau, Hwy. 11 between mile markers 104 & 105. 9:30 a.m.–2 p.m. Saturday: Waikoloa Village Farmers Market, 68-3625 Paniolo Ave., Waikoloa Community Church parking lot across from Waikoloa Elementary School. 7:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. Sunday: South Kona Green Market, Captain Cook, Kealakekua Ranch Center (behind ChoiceMart and Ace Hardware). 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Wednesday: Kings’ Shops Farmers Market, Waikoloa Beach Resort, Kohala Coast. 8:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. Wednesday: Ho‘oulu Community Farmers Market, Keauhou Beach Resort/Outrigger. 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Friday: Green Market, Ocean View Community Center, 92-8924 Leilani Circle, Ocean View. 2 – 6 p.m.

Wednesday-Sunday: Kona Farmers Market, corner of Ali‘i Drive and Hualālai Rd. 7 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Sunday: Volcano Farmers Market, Cooper Center, 1000 Wright Rd., Volcano Village. 6 – 9 a.m.

Please send info on new markets or changes to




Mamey Smoothie

–Story, photos and recipe by Sonia Martinez

Contact writer Sonia Martinez:

Mamey Cheesecake 1 pound cream cheese 3/4 cup granulated sugar 4 egg yolks 1 cup sour cream 1/2 teaspoon vanilla 18 ounces fully ripe, mashed mamey

Preheat oven to 275o F. Soften cream cheese in the bowl of a mixer or with a hand mixer beating for about 3-4 minutes until completely creamy. Scrape down; add the sugar little by little as you mix and then the egg yolks, one at a time. Add the sour cream and vanilla. Remember to continue scraping as you go. Add the mashed mamey and mix well. Pour into your favorite crust in a springform pan or glass pie dish. I prefer it with no crust. Bake for 10 minutes, then turn oven down to 250o F and bake for about 30 minutes or until a sharp knife inserted in the middle comes out clean. Turn the oven off, but leave the cheesecake in for another half-hour. Cool at room temperature. Cover and chill until completely set. Unmold to serve or cut from the pie dish.

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he mamey (Pouteria sapota) had its origins in Mexico and is now grown in many tropical areas. It is also known as mamey sapote in Puerto Rico, Hawai‘i and other tropical locations where it grows, and just plain mamey in Cuba. The tree that bears this footballlooking fruit is very temperamental to grow and the delicious fruit can be expensive. The skin is brown and rough, and the flesh is orangered, tasting a bit like a combination of pumpkin and sweet potato with a dash of cinnamon and nutmeg. The texture can be smooth and creamy, although sometimes you can find some that are a bit stringy. It contains a large and shiny, brownish seed. In some countries, the outer cover of the seed is removed and the inside ground up to use as flavoring in other foods. When buying mamey, be sure the fruit is firm, even hard. To ripen, just place on counter, in a basket or bowl in a warm area and prepare to let it sit a while. Do not refrigerate until you feel the fruit give when pressed. Larger fruit take longer to ripen all the way through. Once ripe, it is best to eat right away or scoop from the skin and store the pulp in freezer bags, freezing until ready to use. A cup of mamey pulp contains 107 calories, 1 g protein, 1/2 g fat; 28 g total carbohydrates, 1-1/2 g fiber, 22 mg calcium, 1 mg iron, 226 mg potassium, 23 mg ascorbic acid and is loaded with Vitamin A. The fruit can be eaten raw, by just scooping from the skin once it is cut, or as an ingredient in milkshakes, smoothies, ice cream or cheesecake.

Mamey pulp, fresh or frozen Banana, fresh or frozen Orange juice, milk, or yogurt Sweeten with a little honey if desired Mix all ingredients in blender and serve.

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Michelle Galimba on horseback – Photo courtesy of Kuahiwi Ranch

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hen Captain John Vancouver presented King Kamehameha with cattle on the Big Island as a gift in 1793, no one imagined the impact it would have on the future of the island. Kamehameha placed a kapu on the cattle the following year at the suggestion of Vancouver, and the resulting cattle population explosion wreaked havoc on our island’s ecosystem for decades. This, in turn, resulted in the creation of Hawai‘i’s paniolo tradition, with cowboys imported from Mexico to teach locals how to wrangle and manage cattle. Fast forward nearly 220 years, and it’s surprising to find that many local ranchers make more money shipping their beef off island rather than selling it locally. One ranch in Ka‘ū is working to change that. In fact, the Galimba family has worked very much like the first vacqueros (Mexican cowboys) who came to Hawai‘i, producing free-range, natural beef. “My father always wanted to have a ranch,” says Michelle Galimba, whose family started Kuahiwi Ranch in 1993. Today they lease 10,000 acres in Ka‘ū between Wood Valley and Wai‘ōhinu, with 2,800 head of cattle grazing on land from sea level to the 2,100-foot elevation. They actually got their start raising dairy cows. Back in 1993, she said, the timing seemed right and there was a market to raise dairy cows. “My brother was out of school and the sugar plantations were closing, so this land was available,” she explains. Her father, originally from Nā‘ālehu, had spent many years on O‘ahu as a dairyman with Meadow Gold Dairy and he had extensive contacts in the Hawai‘i dairy industry. “My parents, Al and Sami Galimba, and my brother, Guy, started the ranch in 1993. I came back after college (earning a PhD. in comparative literature from UC Berkeley) and joined them.” “At the time there wasn’t a lot of land for raising dairy cattle on O‘ahu,” says Michelle. “A lot of the dairy farms had housing developments grow up around them, and the cows got more and more confined in feed lots.”

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In order to raise calves to become the next generation of dairy cows, many were shipped to Ka‘ū, where they were raised and then shipped back to O‘ahu when they were older. By 1995, the last remaining dairy farms on O‘ahu closed and the Galimbas switched to raising beef cattle. This switch was not as easy as flipping on a light or changing work clothes. Michelle and her family developed their herd by roping wild cattle. They started with one cow. Like the first vacqueros who came to Hawai‘i to round up wild herds in the 1800s, Michelle says her family “roped wild cattle from abandoned ranches,” she explains. “It was a lot of work. We did a lot of fencing. We’d spend the week fencing and then one day roping.” At the time there were a lot of wild cattle in the Ka‘ū district. “There were several ranches that the owners just walked away from,” explains Michelle. “We got the owners’ permission and worked out a deal to rope the cattle [the other ranchers had left behind].” Roping wild cattle is not for the faint of heart. “I really enjoy it,” says Michelle. She points out that having a horse that likes to chase cows helps too. “It takes a toll on the horses when you’re roping because the horses have to run really fast,” explains Michelle. She describes how, in the early days of building the ranch’s herd, her horse named Nā‘ālehu had a special knack for finding cows. Ranch dogs would bark if they spotted cows, who typically hid in stands of trees. Michelle says Nā‘ālehu would actually stop and listen for the dogs’ barking and would follow the sound. “I couldn’t hear the dogs barking but she could and would go chase after the cows,” Michelle says with a chuckle. Over time, the family slowly built up their herd. “We were bringing in 10 to 20 head [of cattle] a week,” explains Michelle. “And that went on for the first five years”. Michelle admits it was difficult the first few years. She and her mother both held part-time jobs to help make ends meet. “None of us had salaries for the first five years,” she says with a laugh, recalling the early days. “We camped out at my grandmother’s for a few years.” Not all the cattle at the ranch were caught wild. The Galimbas also traded calves with other ranches. “We would trade the steer calves for girl calves, so that helped us build up our herd faster.” Maintaining a herd of top quality cattle has always been important to the Galimgas. To that end, they purchased several purebred Angus bulls from Ponoholo Ranch in Kohala to help build up their herd. “They’re known for having top quality Angus bulls,” says Michelle. Today, the ranch has 2,800 head of cattle, mostly Angus crossbreed, although the family is also raising about 100 head of British White cattle as well. Choosing to raise beef cattle required some key decisions that would affect the very way they did business. The family opted to not give their cattle antibiotics or artificial hormones. That left them with two options: natural beef or grass-fed beef. The terms natural beef and grassfed beef aren’t used lightly. In fact, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has strict certification standards for anyone using either label. As Michelle explains it, “natural beef and grass-fed beef are different but they shade into each other. “Grass-fed beef has to

Cattle at Kuahiwi Ranch are free range – Photo by Kuahiwi Ranch

be fed 99 percent grass or forage for the entire life span of the cattle.” If you feed your cattle more than one percent of grain, then you can’t use the title ‘grass-fed’. The term natural beef means it is minimally processed and contains no artificial additives.

“Since the weather has been, and can be, very unpredictable here in Ka‘ū, we decided to not go with grass-fed beef because we didn’t want to take the risk of not having enough grass.” “We wanted to have a consistent beef product for high-end restaurants like Alan Wong’s, so we decided to raise natural beef.” These days Kuahiwi Ranch is actively building their herd based on breeds of cattle that prefer being grass fed. “Some cows are actually bred to be in a feed-lot environment,” explains Michelle. “My mom (Sami) started looking at cattle breeds that were particularly suited to being raised free range.” Michelle says it was her mother that first had the idea of importing British White cattle about six years ago. The British White cattle are smaller in size and thrive in a grass-fed environment. “They’re a really ancient breed,” says Michelle. Indeed, traces of the British White breed can be traced back to the 1500s in Europe. The cattle were such an important part of British cattle culture that a certain amount of cattle were airlifted out of Britain during World War II and relocated to the U.S. That makes them unique, but it was their eyes that sealed the deal. “Here in Hawai‘i we have a tropical climate with a lot of sunshine. British White have black pigmentation around their eyes,” explains Michelle. “Other breeds of cattle that do well being grass fed have white pigmentation around their eyes, which makes them susceptible to skin cancer.”

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❁Continued from page 67

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In 2006, Kuahiwi Ranch bought 14 British White cattle from a ranch in San Luis Obispo, California. “They were very expensive and shipping them here was expensive,” says Michelle. They did well and now they have about 100 head of the heritage breed. “The British White cattle, like the rest of our cattle, are free range,” says Michelle. They are out in grass pastures their whole lives.” In fact, if you look mauka while driving from Punalu’u Beach to Wai‘ōhinu along Highway 11, you might see their cattle roaming the land. Weather in Ka‘ū has lately affected the grass supply, so the cattle’s diet is supplemented with all-natural wheat, barley, corn and molasses. Over the past few years, The Galimba family, at home on the range. drought and vog have plagued From left in rear: Michelle; her parents, Al and Sami; sister-in-law Faith and brother Guy Ka‘ū. Michelle says the vog hasn’t really been an issue, but all of their Front, from left: Michelle’s daughter Ua, and Guy and Faith’s children, Kealia, Gavin and Grant pastures have been affected by Their beef is featured at several restaurants on O‘ahu, the drought. For ranchers, it’s never economically feasible including Alan Wong’s Pineapple Room and King Street to haul in water. “Bringing water in is cost prohibitive and locations, as well as d.k. Steakhouse. On Hawai‘i Island it can be with the amount of land you need to irrigate—Kuahiwi found at Sansei in Waikoloa, and in Volcano at ‘Ohia Café and leases 10,000 acres—you would bankrupt yourself very, Kīlauea Lodge. Foodland Supermarkets recently started selling very quickly, especially in Ka‘ū,” explains Michelle. their beef statewide. They are also at the Nā‘ālehu, Volcano, They are dealing with the devastating effects of the Ocean View and Kino‘ole St. farmers markets. drought just when the interest in, and market for, locally “We really want to expand what we can provide to the local grown beef is soaring. market,” says Michelle. “We provide Foodland with fresh beef “There is so much more demand than we can fill right every week. They want more beef than we can provide.” now,” says Michelle of the local beef market. “Not just on Which brings us back to grass. With the drought conditions, this island, but on O‘ahu too.” the fact that the ranch must still adhere to USDA standards for Michelle explains that, until a few years ago, island natural beef and their own high standards of producing top ranchers were sending the majority of their beef off island quality beef for high-end restaurants, the ranch is currently while at the same time local chefs were buying beef from sending a little more than half their cattle to the Mainland to be the mainland. fattened up. Michelle says that they could keep more beef on Cattle are sold and then shipped to the mainland by island if there were more grass for the cattle to eat. barge or airplane because it is cheaper to send them off “If it rains a lot, we get to keep the cattle back, because there island (even by plane) than it is to pay for shipping grain to is more grass for them to feed,” she explains. Even with drought Hawai‘i to feed the cattle. conditions the past few years, they have increased the amount In recent years, chefs like Alan Wong and Roy Yamaguchi, of cattle they are able to sell locally. “Every year we are keeping pioneers of Hawai‘i Regional Cuisine, have started touting more and more beef—about 10-15 percent more every year— the benefits of Hawai‘i-grown beef. Michelle recalled how here on island.” Alan Wong set up a presentation about four years ago in Yet Michelle points out that the ranch is more than just which he invited chefs on O‘ahu to sample locally grown producing beef. “It’s about taking care of the land and using the food, including Kuahiwi Ranch beef. “They [the chefs] had land,” she says. “The way I see it we have an ecosystem here. The no idea they could get local beef,” says Michelle. land, the people, the community around us.” “Until we started selling beef to local markets about These days the land and the people of Ka‘ū could use a little three years ago I assumed they had access to it and they more rain. ❖ really didn’t,” explains Michelle. “The market is exploding.” Interestingly enough, their beef is found in more places Contact writer Denise Laitinen: on O‘ahu than Hawai‘i Island. It was a strategic choice the All photos courtesy of Kuahiwi Ranch family made. “There were already other people supplying For more info: local markets,” explains Michelle. “Instead of competing with them, we explored the other islands.”

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The Life Soul singer, award winning international reggae recording artist and sustainable living advocate Sahra Indio

❁Continued on page 72

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eggae—with its catchy rhythms and poignant messages—was born on the island of Jamaica in the 1960s and made its way to Hawai‘i nearly two decades later—right around the time Sahra Indio first landed here, too. “I identify with roots reggae music because of the message it delivers. Audiences actually come for the words of wisdom that uplift their spirits. The heartbeat rhythm is the foundation of reggae music; it is centering, while the thumping bass line makes you wind up your waist. There’s an old saying in reggae: We make your body rock while we hit your head hard.” Her musical style is playful and upbeat, while her voice is soothing, deep and soulful. In live performance she is so enchanting that once, even before entering a recording studio, she was invited to play at a festival on Kyushu Island in Japan. “It took me two years to create all the material and believe in myself enough to go,” she admits. Accepting the invitation led her to become a solo artist.

Since stepping out into her own power, she has created three self-produced CD’s of all-original tunes and has performed worldwide across France, Japan, Germany, Amsterdam, Australia, Canada and across the U.S.—alongside major reggae stars such as Alpha Blondy, Don Carlos, Midnite and Bambu Station. Her signature song “Good’s Gonna Happen,” off her debut album won the 2004 award for World/Reggae Song of the Year at Unisong, the oldest International Songwriting Contest, with past judges such as Peter Frampton, Randy Bachman, Desmond Child and K.C. Porter. This award encouraged her to believe that there was a place for her unique, jazzy reggae style on the international scene. “’Good’s Gonna Happen’ encourages us to not give up—not on love; not on life; especially not on ourselves.” And Sahra has quite a hope-filled tale to tell. Seated outside at the Kanaka Kava Bar on Ali‘i Drive, we are surrounded by quaint conversations, fruiting banana stalks and

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the ocean’s waves surging behind us. Sahra suggested we meet here: a place where she’s performed numerous shows, and a place nearly as grounding as she is. I am immediately charmed by the contrast between her petite physique and her long, clean, powerful dreadlocks (which, by the way, she sports with some serious elegance). A stylish organic hat, which she’s hand-weaved, sits on her head. Her smile is sincere, her demeanor calm, dignified and humble, she smells sweet. In speech she’s eloquent and good-humored. Having moved to Hawai‘i over 30 years ago, she currently lives

off-grid with her husband, growing estate coffee, citrus, vegetables and avocado. Water is collected from rainfall and their house is powered by solar energy. “Life seems to take on more meaning because we don’t take our resources and energy for granted. Keeping it real, by keeping life land-based, helps keep me balanced,” she says. At age 60, she wears her life experience with the utmost grace and beauty. She eats only energyfilled, natural foods, while she runs, practices yoga and rides her bicycle regularly—reinforcing that our environment, how we live, how we eat, and how we treat other people becomes our identity. “I believe that to live sustainably for the planet, we must first learn to live sustainably in our own body,” she affirms. Sahra also creates eclectic fiber art, inspired by a job she once had working as a textile conservationist at the Doris Duke Estate on O‘ahu, where she had the meticulous and tedious job of hand-sewing beautiful, century-old tapestries, with her first piece being from the 13th Century Iran. “I focus on palm cloth and recycled material to make unique and wearable art.” She also creates devotional necklaces from wood, stone and shells, and weaves baskets, hats, cushions and carvings that are sold at local markets. As for music, rhythm is deeply rooted in Sahra’s family tree. Her uncle was the legendary 1950s American jazz trumpeter, Clifford Brown, whose name was uttered in the same sentence as Charlie

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Parker and Dizzie Gillespie. Grammy Award-winning cousin Reggie Griffin has played with Anita Baker, Babyface, The Isley Brothers, Jean Luc Ponty and George Duke. Reggie has also coproduced island projects with Sahra’s brother Moon Brown, a wellknown alto-saxophone player and art education specialist on the Big Island. But musically speaking, Sahra herself is a late bloomer. Having grown up in a time of extreme racial unrest in Philidelphia, she had to learn to cope with the drug use, civil riots, racial injustices and the blight of poverty that was then-wracking her community, “Many of my family members were leading stagnant lifestyles with cycles of drug use and rehab programs,” she admits. School, too, was a scary, non-academic place, where gang violence was prominent and where girls were being raped in the secluded halls of her high school. Sahra’s mother was shot and killed at the age of 23, when Sahra was only five. Several years later, her father, a detective with the Philidelphia Police Department, was shot on-duty in the streets. “The loss of my father added an almost unbearable weight.” With such painstaking circumstances, she began yearning for greener landscapes, open vistas, starry skies, cultural diversity and for a chance to live a life that wasn’t so statically black and white. Sahra eventually moved to California, where her landlord, a travel agent, gifted her a surprise ticket to Kaua‘i on her 25th birthday. Sahra felt fortunate, yet reluctant. Having never traveled outside mainland U.S., Hawai‘i seemed formidable. “I thought Hawai‘i was only for surfers and hula dancers.“ And so she departed for Hawai‘i openly reserved. “That was back in the 70s and I was the only person of color on the flight. But I had a complete itinerary from my landlord, which I was determined to follow.”

Stepping foot on Kaua‘i, she pulled out her landlord’s handwritten guidebook, which read, “Get off plane, stand by road, hitch ride.” And so the story goes. “These people pulled over and picked me up; after a while they asked me if I knew why they stopped for me. They told me they picked me up because I was popolo (black), meaning we were family, they said.” Swerving through lush, botanic rainforest and past endless ocean landscapes, she hopped out at a trailhead along the Nā Pali Coast and began hiking towards the majestic Hanakāpī‘ai Beach. Sahra was moved, awe-struck by her surroundings. “When I reached the beach, everyone was naked. I had never been naked in public. I was conservative. I was from Philly!” Needless to say, after days of meditating, hiking, swimming through rivers, collecting puka shells and stripping herself down to the bare minimum, Sahra left the valley a different woman than when she first entered. “I remember thinking that this was the kind of experience Aretha Franklin was singing about in her song ‘Natural Woman!’” Although the flora and fauna captivated her senses, she reflects, it was the smiles, the feelings from the islanders and the aloha spirit that essentially stole her heart. “When I went back to California, I became more aware of the conversations of others, and found that I no longer fit in,” she reflects. She had had a brief taste of what it meant to live deliberately, to confront just the basic facts of life—and she wanted more. Sahra first sought refuge on Maui, which she claims ‘didn’t open up to her.’ Upon contemplation of leaving Hawai‘i altogether,

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a Hawaiian elder offered that if one island didn’t feel right, to seek another. So that’s exactly what she did—and hopped a plane to Hilo. Once timid and embarrassed by her voice, when Hawai‘i Island opened up to her, she opened up as well. And in 1994, at age 40, she co-founded the reggae band, “Jahringa.” Taken from the Australian Aboriginal word for “Dreamtime,” Jahringa is where Sahra tapped into her musical genes and discovered her dormant passion for singing, transforming her dreamtime into reality. “It’s reggae music that delivered me. It gave me a social outlet, a place to convey messages from my heart,” she says. As she puts it, music has allowed her to live love, in all aspects of her life: “The birds singing in the morning and the trees waving their leaves at me each day. This is what I rise for: our communion with mother earth. All life is musical and I don’t want to ever separate from that.” And for the past four years, she has also found a way to share this musical communion in a unique and unifying community event on the Big Island. Inspired by her performance at the 2006 Rastafarian Agricultural Fair on the Island of St. Thomas, a Rastafarian elder encouraged her to start a similar event in Hawai‘i. Setting out to fulfill that request, she summoned some like-minded individuals, wrote some grants, and in 2008 became the creator and promoter of the unique community event, “The Bob Fest Ag Fair.” The event takes place on the second Sunday in February to honor the birth of legendary reggae icon Bob Marley. In 2012, the fair was renamed Hawai‘i Reggae and Agricultural Fair. “When I was given the album ‘Catch a Fire’ by Bob Marley and the

Wailers, it changed everything: lifestyle, my diet and my political point of view,” she admits. The album became so well-known that Eric Clapton created a cover for “I Shot the Sheriff.” Time magazine eventually voted Marley’s album “Exodus” the greatest album of the 20th century. Bob Marley was one of the founding fathers of reggae, which not only makes timeless music, but which carries a timeless message. He supported the idea that we need nothing but each other—that we can feed each other, care for each other and trust each other. He was such a powerful symbol of unity that at his One Love Peace Concert in 1978, Marley was able to do the unthinkable when he summoned the two rivaling Jamaican political leaders on-stage, where they shook hands in front of over 32,000 people. Marley believed in overcoming petty prejudice and owing one’s ultimate loyalty not to countries and nations, but to our fellow men throughout the entire human community. Like Sahra, Marley—born in Nine Mile, Jamaica—faced identity issues, community violence and racial injustices as a youth. He once reflected: “Me don’t have prejudice against meself. Me father was white and me mother was black. Me don’t dip on nobody’s side. Me don’t dip on the black man’s side nor the white man’s side. Me dip on God’s side, the one who create me and cause me to come from black and white.” I feel that Sahra, who is of Native American, Jamaican, and Irish blood, embodies this profound belief, both in her lyrics and in her humble presence. She reminds me that we’re all distant relatives, and that we need to mix together in order to reach our highest potential.

Rastas say that Jah, or God, lives within each human, and for this reason, they often refer to themselves as “I and I” instead of “We,” emphasizing the equality between all people and that the spiritual link within us is what makes us, in essence, one and the same. This year the admissionsfree public event celebrated its fourth anniversary at Mo’oheau Park in Hilo, with a line-up of talented reggae artists, CPR demonstrations, craft Sahra with a stack of her “royal crowns”— vendors, students, a made for her eco-friendly, off-grid business, children’s art booth, Royal Crowns 4 U. The hats are designed in an aquaponics, seed open-air studio using salvaged palm cloth, exchange, solar reclaimed natural fabrics and found objects. resource booths, cane juice and kava. The fair supports local organic farmers and is an alcoholfree, zero-waste event sponsored by her husband’s company, Keep it Green Hawai‘i. Sahra’s hope is to encourage people to reduce, reuse, recycle, compost and recognize what it means to live sustainably in Hawai‘i. She also fosters an environment for people

to connect, to move their bodies, to smile, and to bring awareness to just how easy it is to do this. “We should be happy even doing the dishes. We’ve got this beautiful body temple, and this beautiful island home. Whether good or bad, we should give thanks for every second of this life.” Sahra is currently seeking sponsors for the fifth annual Hawai‘i Reggae and Agricultural Fair in February, 2013, while also working on her upcoming album “The True I,” due out later this year. Meanwhile you can catch Sahra performing regularly at Kanaka Kava Bar, Wasabi’s Japanese Restaurant and at local festivals across Hawai‘i Island. ❖ Contact writer Jessica Kirkwood: All photos courtesy of Sahra Indio For more information on her music visit: and for more information on her art visit: For music bookings, contact

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Lu‘au buffet awaiting the guests – Photo courtesy of Island Breeze Productions

“Aloha! E Hele mai. Come and listen to the sounds... the distant call of the Hawaiian chanter... and the beating of the ipu heke. We will share the laughter, the color, the excitement and the joy of the Hawaiian Hula.” — Taito Collins, Master of Ceremonies


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Tahitian dancers glow in the evening light. – Photo by Koakane Green

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he emcee’s voice sets the tone of enchantment for visitors to Hawai‘i, first through a culinary feast and into the dreamscape of a Pacific odyssey. They’ve been anticipating this evening for a long time, a climax to a dream vacation or honeymoon—a real Hawaiian lū‘au, a Polynesian immersion experience. On a green expanse of lawn overlooking the dusky blue sea, brightened by a lingering sun, the evening begins. The conch shell is blown, marking the official beginning of this particular lū’au’s new show, “Hāleo,” the Voice of Life. A raised earthen platform and lava-like sets with honu and paddler petroglyphs await the evening’s performance. Warming up the guests, a sumptuous buffet, displayed on monkeypod wood platters bedecked with hibiscus flowers and ti leaf greenery, serves up kālua pork fresh from the imu, ‘ulu, poi, ‘uala (Hawaiian sweet potato), island fish, chicken lū‘au, tropical fruits, pastries and mai tais. In the wings, the cast of dancers, musicians, directors and technical staff come together in a pule, or prayer circle. Laughing, they tease each other to move out the spotlight “into the dark” if they forget their place, which is unlikely in this professional ensemble of ten dancers, five musicians, an emcee and a Samoan fire-knife dancer. Holding hands, they affirm their promise to embody the legends and history of Pacific Rim cultures through mele (song), dance, comedy, theater, education and the spirit of lōkahi, or unity. “Every major event in Hawai‘i begins with a pule, or prayer,” says Kumu Hula Paoakalani Patu, director of productions for Island Breeze Productions, which produces this lū‘au at the Sheraton Keauhou Bay Resort and Spa, as well as customized

productions at two other hotels on the island, Courtyard by Marriott King Kamehameha's Kona Beach Hotel and Fairmont Orchid. Her full-bodied passion for dance ignites a fiery light in her liquid brown eyes, her serene face and easy smile emphasizing every word. “When everyone comes together and joins hands as family,” she says, squeezing invisible hands to illustrate, “we are unified and on the same page in hearts and minds.” “Talofa! Join the ‘aiga (family) in Samoa where the people love life and enjoy having a great time. You will be fascinated by the bravery and courage of the Siva ‘Afi (Samoan fire-knife dance).” The journey to this evening’s high-energy performance began more than 25 years ago, in the 1990s, when several Hawai‘i Island families came together with the idea of creating a professional lū‘au experience that reflected the essence of Hawaiian and Polynesian life. They wanted to produce an artistic, culinary and educational, cultural extravaganza that would “raise up” Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders, empower and dignify young artists with training, opportunities and mentorships in good professions, and offer jobs and income to support their dreams. With a current staff of 75 full-time and part-time workers

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performing regularly three nights a week, the company, Island Breeze, is an extended family, an ‘ohana made up of parents, aunties, uncles and children, all sharing the values of “living aloha, embracing ‘ohana and creating memories that last forever.”

The Creative Process


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From concept to theme, research and writing, the early stages of producing a new show like “Hāleo” begins with collaboration. “What’s really beautiful about this team effort is that it’s one of the core things that matter to us in our Emcee Taito Collins South Pacific cultures, and in Hawai‘i. shares talk-story That (team effort) is what we express about Hawaiian through our production,” says Becky language and Fernandez, director of marketing. culture. – Photo by Sometimes the theme is placeKoakane Green oriented, as at Keauhou, or culturespecific, as when corporations like Mitsubishi request motivational theatrical events, lū‘au and performances for their specific needs. With the goal of helping guests to sense the mana, or power, in the Polynesian cultural heritage, they render such historical subjects as the birth of King Kamehameha III, a central figure in “Hāleo,” with dramatic flourish. “Once the management team has settled Preparing for the Maori magic on a theme, it – Photo by Marya Mann gets handed over to each department,” says Paoakalani, gesturing with her hands—hula dancer’s hands that began their storytelling motions while watching classes at her mother’s Hilo hula studio more than 40 years ago. Paoakalani danced on stage with Island Breeze until 1998. As she matured, her creative fervor shifted and she began choreographing. “I put together the choreography and how it’s all going to come together, but our cultural advisor Leina’ala [Fruean] brings in her mana’o (wisdom). She opens up the door, and I take and just expand on it with my creativity, try to bring that to life. Becky [Fernandez] and Taimane [Kaopua] as well, in their knowledge, help to look at how we express the essence of the theme.” One of four emcees working with Island Breeze, Kealoha wrote the script for “Hāleo,” and, along with Paoakalani’s choreography and musical arrangements by the musicians, the artistic quality comes through the respectful attitude of collaboration weaving through the creative process. Next, set designs, costumes, lighting and stage configurations evolve,

creating the whole theatrical and educational impressions relating back to the theme.

Legacy of Light: Kamehameha III

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Under a violet sky threaded with stars, Jupiter and a milky crescent moon, surrounded by ‘ohana on a Monday night, the company is performing in front of a “small audience” of 200 people. “The Voice” comes to life: “Now welcome to Keauhou, a place of history and Hawaiian treasures,” emcee Taito Collins intones into the microphone. A boisterous mix of Don Ho and your favorite uncle, he draws you in. “Keauhou means new beginnings, or new era. Not too far from where we’re sitting, Kauikeaouli was born.” You think you hear “Kow ee kay ah oh oolee,” but it goes by fast. Kamehameha III, who was stillborn in1813, but revived by a kahuna, went on to become a great leader. With ever-increasing pressure from foreign conflicts and the arrival of diseases that decimated Native Hawaiians, he believed that education was the key to the survival of his people. By the end of his 30-year reign, Hawai‘i was one of the most literate nations in the world, the audience learns.                       People who come to the lū‘au are also revived. You can see it in satisfied faces relaxing under the firelight—and it’s not just the mai tais—they are revived by what they see, hear and feel. The language of the body expressed in “Na Hiku,” for instance, is a message from the heavens in hula. The theme of the dance, the seven elements sustaining the beauty of hāleo in your life— discipline, strength, endurance, knowledge, understanding, wisdom and authority—introduces the theme of the evening. You feel the vitality of “Te Maunga,” the dance of New Zealand warriors bracing their legs in determination and understanding that “their language is the window to their soul.” The mana continues in dances and songs from Fiji, Tahiti Maori men – Photo courtesy of and Samoa. You Island Breeze Productions sense a meeting with kin among the performers, recreating the dances of their Polynesian cousins across the wide Pacific. Behind the scenes, elders in the wings, too careful to call themselves kahuna, give “spiritual coverage” for everyone to become a part of the sense of community, excellence and family in the tender tropical light. As the music weaves together cultures from throughout the Pacific Ocean, you let your whole body enjoy the tempo of the drums, the strumming of strings, the harmony of voices of Pacific islanders who embody one Oceanic call: “We are family!” “Meet our cousins, the first families to the Hawaiian Islands, the ‘Tahitians.’ After the islands were settled, they arrived in double-hulled canoes from the south. Come and listen to their

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❁Continued from page 79 resounding drums and pounding rhythms and the dance, La Orana!” Tahitian dance is all about the rapid movement of hips. The hula is more fluid, with a focus on the hands. Each South Pacific culture offers its unique Polynesian gift to the world. “Each culture has a gift that the others need too,” says Becky. “Hawai‘i’s gift is aloha.” People come to the islands looking for peace and for a sense of belonging. “In Samoa, it’s their strength in hospitality that’s amazing,” adds Paoakalani. “Each island—and we’ve been to them, studied them—each island has that pearl of authentic beauty we try to capture in our dance and music, in a form that all age groups can identify with.” Director of Marketing Becky Fernandez' husband, Tom, is one of the fire-knife dancers; and her daughter, at the age of four, called Kumu Paoakalani to ask if she could start dancing with the hālau. “That’s quite a challenge, I told her,” says Becky. “What an investment, working toward becoming a dancer.” “It’s not like one shift and you’re trained,” says Kumu Paoakalani. “It takes months and years.” Becky’s daughter is now 14 and works as a lei greeter for the company. She has been studying hula for a decade and is being steeped in the practices and ethics that will prepare her as an Island Breeze performer. “It’s a family affair,” says Paoakalani. “It’s a job, but it’s more than that: it’s life and relationships with one another, being part of each others’ lives. It’s really like ancient hālau days. Dancers and kumu lived with each other, Dancing the culture of island cousins, eating and the Samoans – Photo by Koakane Green sleeping in the same big hale, but we don’t do that. We live in different homes, but when we get together, it’s family. And when there are issues, we walk them through.” “Kia’ora! Native to New Zealand are the Maori. You are welcomed into their whanau (family) and greeted with a haka by our Maori warriors. Women complement the strength of the men with their powerful ‘Karaga’ (chant) and the graceful ‘waiata a ring’ long poi ball dance.”

So You Want to Dance

The company auditions and hires skilled, committed performers and welcomes applicants from all races and cultures, yet at least half of the company is presently related by blood or marriage. Luki Wooching, for instance, a Samoan dancer, the crafty “coconut” comedian, has performed onstage with his Samoan daughter while his wife, a modern dancer and seamstress from Washington State, works at the lū’au

reservations desk and as a costume designer, seamstress and modern dancer. Wives, husbands, uncles and sisters help mount shows at the Fairmont Orchid and Courtyard by Marriott King Kamehameha's Kona Beach Hotel, as well as at the Sheraton; they fill in as dancers, reservationists and reviewers, and bounce around ideas as needed. “Our children very much have a voice with us,” says Paoakalani. “People come to the lū’au and see that they have a voice. The show itself is about voice.” Giving voice to the next generation, while a significant goal, also poses her biggest challenge: finding good people to work with. “We want people who have both the skill in dancing or music, and who are also willing to do what it takes to do it. Times have changed.” Describing the younger generation, she says, “I’m not labeling everyone, but you definitely see the difference in work ethics and commitment from those who have been in the industry a long time and the standards they hold. Although we are a family, there is a standard of how you present yourself.” It’s all part of life in the business of show business that precedes and goes on long after the show is over. “Bula Vinaka! Anthropologists believe the people of Fiji eventually settled all of Polynesian. Their ‘meke,’ or spear dance fascinates audiences because of the dancers’ agility.”

A New Era

Contact writer Marya Mann: Website:

  


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But is it a real lū‘au? Here, at a hotel, surrounded by 200 neophytes who may have discovered that in pre-contact Hawai‘i, eating was an act of worship, cooking a sacrifice to transform mana, and farming and fishing conscious acts of religious devotion. Smelling the evening fragrance, looking past the hibiscus exuberance to the real lū‘au, not just the “tourist version,” but an honorable feast at Keauhou, “the place of new beginnings,” the birthplace of a king, a battleground over ancient tradition, and the start of a new era. “We each play such a significant role in how we unfold the evening for our guests,” says Paoakalani, but it’s not just joining hands, joining as family, and saying “Let’s do this Samoan fire-knife dancer Tom Fernandez together.” Work – Photo by Koakane Green on a new show begins months, years, many generations before you roam, frosted glass and pineapple wedge in hand, among the hala trees, sampling seven different kinds of vegetables and Kona Coffee chocolate cake. The lū‘au is more than the sum of its succulent salads and genuflecting, glimmering, heart-felt dances. You came, you enjoyed, you drank well, you felt the mana and you learned something, too. A lū‘au opens your heart to the Polynesian and Hawaiian culture. You’re no longer guests. You’re family. ❖

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Bikinis, Skateboards & Fruit Pops

family of creative and talented people have turned inspiration into innovation, creating unique treats and products for everyone who likes to “buy local.” Want a bikini that doesn’t waste fabric? Blonde the Bikini is designed by Kelsey Christopher and sewn by her mom. How about a skateboard that looks like a surfboard? The M.A.C. is crafted from recycled and new hardwoods by Kelsey’s dad, Marc. Need a cool, healthy snack? Try popsicles made from fresh fruit from local farms and markets. Kelsey’s older sister, Megan, creates her own line of custom knitted scarves and toys, along with soap and jewelry. Marc and Penny Christopher and their two daughters, Kelsey and Megan, all pitch in at Kailani Surf Co. in Kailua-Kona. The family moved to Hawai‘i in 2003, after owning and operating a custom cabinet shop in Idaho for 18 years. At the time, there was a need for finish carpenters, and that’s what the couple did. Then, as the housing construction declined, they decided to use their creative talents and opened Kailani Surf Co. in November of 2009. The location was formerly a restaurant, so it offered a commercial kitchen for them to make their fruit pops, along with plenty of space to sell their all-original designs of unique clothing and handcrafted gifts. Kailani Surf Co. is located in the heart of historic Kailua-Kona at Ali’i Dr. and Sarona Rd. Address: 75-5719 Ali‘i Dr, Kailua-Kona, Hi Phone: 808.326.1500 Website:

Penny and Marc Christopher, owners of Kailani Surf Co., enjoy one of their fresh fruit popsicles. At left is a display of their custom-made skateboards and bikinis designed by daughter Kelsey. If you have a locally-made product—an Island Treasure—that you would like to see featured here, please email or call 808.345.2017 for more information.

Ceviche Dave’s Orgasmic Lilikoi Dressing


tangy hint of sesame gives our dressing an Asian flair and the lilikoi brings it back to the islands. It makes a great gift,” says David Weaver, speaking of the secret-recipe salad dressing sold at his restaurant, Ceviche Dave’s, in Kailua-Kona. Ceviche, a dish similar to poke, is popular in Central and South America. It consists of fresh, raw fish that is marinated “Ceviche Dave” serenades or “cooked” with citrus juice and customers while tempting them enhanced with seasonings. “The with Orgasmic Lilikoi Dressing ceviche we make is a 2,000-year- and ceviche. old idea that came from the Incas, and we updated it by using locally caught fish and locally grown ingredients,” says Dave, whose wife, April, developed this special dressing for salads to go with the ceviche. The primary ingredients in April’s secret recipe include sesame oil, vinegar and sustainably-grown, organic lilikoi

Address: 73-4976 Kamanu St., Suite 100, Kailua-Kona Phone: 808.326.4737

Helping you create those magical memories! Linda Nagai

Shawn Sato


JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 83

puree, which comes from their farm. It can also be used as a marinade or dip. Customers at the restaurant loved it so much that the Weavers decided to bottle it and sell it. It’s become a popular item for residents as well as visitors, many of whom pick it up on their way to the airport when they’re leaving Kona. “Everyone is welcome here,” Dave says, “even if they are coming straight from the beach. Ceviche is a perfect meal after any kind of water sport. A good day is when there is a lot of sand on the floor.” What other restaurant has a shower so you can clean up after surfing or on your way to the airport? It’s also a great place for networking and meeting other people—it’s simply a fun place to hang out. In the restaurant, the lilikoi dressing is served on their farm-grown salad greens and avocados or other vegetables. It’s the only ceviche restaurant on Hawai‘i Island and as far as Dave knows, it’s the only place in the U.S. that exclusively serves ceviche. Ceviche Dave is an avid surfer and also plays guitar with the band Leche de Tigre and solo. In his spare time, he makes custom-carved wood archery bows. He’s a multi-talented adventurer and even serenades his customers with his acoustic guitar while they’re enjoying their ceviche and salad. Ceviche Dave's Orgasmic Lilikoi Dressing, daily ceviche and more can be found at Ceviche Dave’s, located directly above Home Depot in Kona, with a view of the ocean and lovely ocean breezes. It’s open seven days a week from 11 a.m.–4 p.m.

Kona’s Legendary Gathering Place

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Keauhou Shopping Center

Enjoy shopping, dining, art and helpful services in a truly legendary location... To slurp or not to slurp, that is the question



Festival of 1000 Bowls benefit at the

Donkey Mill Art Center Saturday August 25 12 to 3pm

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July-August 2012 ❖ H A P P E N I N G S ❖

JULY Opera on the Rocks Monday, July 2 Kailua-Kona Hawai‘i Performing Arts Festival kicks off with an informal and irreverent look at opera from a fresh, fun point of view as performed by HPAF artists. Be prepared to be entertained! 7 p.m., Huggo’s on the Rocks. Tickets $8. Visit or 808.333.7378.

Volcano Village 4th of July Wednesday, July 4 Volcano Village Enjoy a real small town Independence Day parade at one of the most unique communities on Hawai‘i Island— Volcano Village at the 4,000-foot elevation next to Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Includes parade,

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Featured violinist Chee-Yun

Monday, July 2–Saturday, July 21 Various Locations Hawai’i Performing Arts Festival presents its eighth summer of stellar artists and extraordinary performances. Based at Hawai’i Preparatory Academy in Waimea, HPAF brings young artists together with renowned teachers to study and perform in more than 20 concerts, showcasing a wide variety of musical genres. Opening Night Concert on July 6 features worldfamous violinist Chee-Yun, performing Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. In the following days, Big Island audiences can meet one of the world’s renowned early music experts, Stephen Stubbs. Hawai’i

craft fair, huge farmers market and local musical entertainment. A fun way to meet lots of friendly folks! 9 a.m., Cooper Center in Volcano Village. 808.967.7800.

Kailua-Kona Independence Day Celebration Wednesday, July 4 Kailua Kona Annual event featuring live music, games, children’s activities, and the traditional parade—starting at 5:30 p.m. along Ali‘i Drive with the Hawai‘i County Band, floats, antique cars and more plus a fireworks display over Kailua Bay at 8:15 p.m. 808.990.4785 or visit

Annual Parker Ranch Rodeo Wednesday, July 4 Waimea This Independence Day tradition includes action-packed rodeo events, keiki (children) activities, delicious food and more. Parker

Hawai’i Performing Arts Festival Symphony Orchestra concertmaster Iggy Jang [who also serves as HPAF string program director] takes his strings on the road to Honoka’a and Hilo to perform with local favorites Gary Washburn and Quack Moore. Young musical theater artists present a Broadway review directed by award-winning Los Angeles music director Gerry Sternbach. Fully staged theatrical productions of Mozart’s The Magic Flute on July 19 and 21 complete the festival schedule. Many concerts are free to the public. Created in 2005 with a stated mission of forming a world-class training program in the beautiful environs of Hawai‘i, HPAF has over the years brought over 450 young artists from around the world to the Big Island, contributing over $3 million to the local economy. The organization has awarded scholarships to over 100 young artists from Hawai‘i. See calendar on these pages for individual events. To order tickets, visit or 808.333.7378. – Photo courtesy HPAF

Ranch paniolo (Hawaiian cowboys) are joined by their peers for a roundup of traditional rodeo events from 9 a.m.–1 p.m. at the Parker Ranch Arena in Waimea. 808.885.7311 or visit

Turtle Independence Day Wednesday, July 4 Kohala Coast Held purposefully every year on July 4, this different event educates people about endangered Hawaiian green sea turtles. Watch as the young honu (turtles), which have grown up in the ponds at the Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows, are given their freedom as they are released back into the ocean. 808.881.7911 or visit

Great Waikoloa Rubber Ducky Race & 4th of July Extravaganza Wednesday, July 4 Kohala Coast An all day fundraiser for United Cerebral Palsy of Hawai‘i, the fun-filled event features a wild and wacky rubber ducky race, live entertainment, and lots of exciting activities, culminating in a spectacular fireworks display over Kings’ Lake. 10 a.m.–9:30 p.m. 808.886.8811 or visit

Ka‘ū 4th of July Rodeo Wednesday, July 4 Ka‘ū Ka‘ū Roping & Riding Association, Inc. puts on this annual event at the Nā’ālehu Arena grounds in Ka‘ū. The organization is dedicated to preserving paniolo culture in Ka‘ū. It features team roping, Poo Wai u, and many more events. 808.929.9281.

Critical Love Hilo Wednesday, July 4 Hilo Join this monthly, non-athletic, noncompetitive, free bike ride to connect local bicycle riders and educate the auto-bound to the simplicity of travel by bicycle and to draw attention to the rights of urban cyclists. 4:30 p.m., meet at the Mo‘oheau bandstand. Connect with riders at facebook. com/groups/244794215619904/.

Chee-Yun and Friends Friday, July 6 Waimea Opening Night of Hawai‘i Performing Arts Festival. Violin virtuoso Chee-Yun performs

Vivaldi’s all-time classic “Four Seasons” and Mendelssohn’s “Octet,” joined by HPAF faculty and students. Sponsored by a special friend of the Hawai‘i Performing Arts Festival. 7:30 p.m., Location TBD. Tickets $10. Visit hawaiiperformingartsfestival. org or 808.333.7378.

Na Mea Hawai‘i Hula Kahiko Performance Saturday, July 7 Volcanoes National Park See traditional hula and chant performed outdoors featuring Hālau Na Pua ‘O Uluhaimalama at 10:30 a.m.; also Hawaiian cultural demonstrations from 9:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m. Both at Volcano Art Center Gallery at Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Free. Park entrance fees apply. 808.967.8222 or visit

Songs of a Summer Night Saturday, July 7 Waimea Voices unite in celebration of the romance and sensuality of high summer. A Hawai‘i Performing Arts Festival event. Sponsored by the Lenore and Howard Klein Foundation. 7:30 pm, Davies Chapel. Free to the public. Visit or 808.333.7378.

Barry Flanagan in Concert Saturday, July 7 Volcano Village Guitarist Barry Flanagan is half of the internationally acclaimed Hawaiian music duo of HAPA. In this performance—the second in a three-event summer Unplugged Acoustic Series—Barry will play and tell stories about Hawai‘i from his personal experiences living here. $25. 7 p.m. Volcano Art Center Niaulani Campus in Volcano Village. 808.967.8222 or

Fourth of July Rodeo Saturday/Sunday, July 7/8 Nā‘ālehu Ka‘ū Roping and Riding Association holds their annual rodeo competition at Nā‘ālehu Arena.

Young Artists Showcase Sunday, July 8 Waimea A free Hawai‘i Performing Arts Festival event. Come experience the youthful energy and exuberance of our young

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artists. Directed by Larry Paxton. Sponsored by Waimea Coffee Company, 2 p.m., Davies Chapel. Visit or 808.333.7378.

Mid-Day: Lute & Lieder Tuesday, July 10 Waimea A free Hawai‘i Performing Arts Festival event. Elizabethan and Baroque love songs accompanied by 2012 festival conductor and world-renowned lutenist Stephen Stubbs, paired with favorites. Davies Chapel at HPA. Visit or 808.333.7378.

Metropolitan Opera HD Live Wednesday, July 11 Kailua Kona “Les Contes d’Hoffman” (The Tales of Hoffman) by Offenbach. Part of the Summer Encore Series, this opera is in French with English subtitles. 6:30 p.m., Makalapua Stadium Cinemas, all tickets $12.50. 808.329.4461.

Gary Washburn and the HPAF Strings Thursday, July 12 Honoka‘a A Hawai‘i Performing Arts Festival event. String program director Iggy Jang and the HPAF orchestra join jazz master Gary Washburn, offering the best of both the classical and jazz worlds. 7 p.m., People’s Theatre, Honoka‘a. Tickets $5. Visit or 808.333.7378.

“The Impresario’s Dilemma” Thursday, July 12 Waimea A free Hawai‘i Performing Arts Festival event. Decisions, decisions: An opera company mogul navigates finances and delicate diva egos in his quest for the perfect season-opening opera in this delightful original “pastiche” opera, loosely based on Mozart’s “The Impresario.” 7 p.m., Gates Performing Arts Center. Visit or 808.333.7378.

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Friday, July 13 Waimea A free Hawai‘i Performing Arts Festival event. Come and reward the faculty and students for their hard work as they bring audiences to their feet. Quartets and concertos featuring young soloists. Bach, Mozart and a special performance of Tchaikovsky’s Serenade, led by conductor Ann Krinitsky. Sponsored by Robert and Barbara Sterne. 7:30 p.m., Davies Chapel. Visit or 808.333.7378.

“A Chorus Line” Fridays–Sundays, July 13–28 Kainaliu Aloha Theatre presents this stunning musical-verite about a chorus audition for a Broadway musical. It tells of the achingly poignant ambitions of professional Broadway gypsies to land a job in the show, and is a powerful metaphor for all human aspiration. Memorable musical numbers include “I Can Do That” and “I Hope I Get It.” Friday/Saturday 7:30 p.m., Sunday 2:30 p.m. 808.322.9924 or

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Kīlauea Cultural Festival Saturday, July 14 Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park The National Park presents its 32nd Annual Cultural Festival, a one-day event promoting the importance and understanding of hula kahiko, traditional arts and crafts, and contemporary Hawaiian music. The festival, with anticipated attendance of 5,000 visitors, is presented at the park’s Kahua Hula (traditional hula platform) near the Volcano Art Center. This is a fee-free day. Visit or 808.985.6011.

Hawai‘i Performing Arts Festival with Quack Moore Saturday, July 14 Hilo A special Hawai‘i Performing Arts Festival event. Songwriter, Saturday Night Live Music Director and entertainer Quack Moore reveals yet another amazing talent as she joins violinist Iggy Jang & Co. in Dvorak’s “Romantic Piano Quintet.” And there’s more: HPAF is bringing the entire string program to the palace to feature sensational young soloists and orchestra, led by conductor Ann Krinitsky. 7 p.m., Palace Theater, Hilo. $15. Visit or 808.333.7378.

Hawai’i County Band Concert Saturday, July 14 Hilo The 40-member strong Hawai‘i County Band is an island musical treasure to enjoy if you happen to be in Hilo on the one Saturday a month the group performs. The band plays a tapestry of seasonal works, Hawaiian pieces, overtures, movie themes and more. At 7 p.m. at the Mo’oheau Park Bandstand. Free. Call for info: 808.961.8699.

Big Island Hawaiian Music Festival Saturday and Sunday, July 14–15 Hilo Enjoy authentic Hawaiian music— including ‘ukulele, slack key and steel guitar—and falsetto singing at this always popular two-day event featuring artists from around Hawai‘i. At the Hilo Civic Auditorium from noon – 6 p.m. each day. 808.961.5711 or visit

Pualani Terrace Health Faire Saturday/Sunday, July 14/15 Kealakekua An exciting event for the community to sample the wonderful services of the health care providers that are in Pualani Terrace, 81-6587l Mamalahoa Hwy., Kealakekua. Many free drawings and give-aways. Pupu refreshments plus $10 mini massages, blood pressure screenings, eye exams, and much more. 10 a.m.–6 p.m. Free entry, free parking. For info, call: 808.769.5212 or visit

Kokua Kailua Village Stroll and Hulihe‘e Palace Concert Sunday, July 15 Kailua Kona Spend a day strolling Ali‘i Drive (which will be closed to traffic) in Kailua Village, the heart of Kona and home to historical sites like Mokuaikaua Church and Hulihe‘e Palace, beautiful seaside views, lots of friendly vendors featuring beautiful, locally made crafts, and restaurants offering a wide variety of food choices. 1 p.m.–6 p.m. Afternoon at Hulihe‘e remembers Hawaiian royalty John Adams Kuakini, with hula by Na Pua U‘i O Hawai‘i Hula Hālau and music by the Hulihe‘e Palace Band. Free. 4 p.m. on the lawn overlooking Kailua Bay. A great way to spend a Sunday! 808.329.9555 or visit or

❖ H A P P E N I N G S ❖ “L’Allegro, Il Penseroso ed il Moderato I” Sunday, July 15 Waimea A free Hawai‘i Performing Arts Festival event. The joys of Mirth vie with the joys of Pensiveness in Handel’s great oratorio masterpiece set to the poetry of John Milton. Fully staged and choreographed by James Darrah, director of HPAF’s production of “The Tragedie of Carmen.” In English with Baroque instrumental ensemble conducted by Stephen Stubbs. 7 p.m., Davies Chapel at HPA. Visit or 808.333.7378.

Metropolitan Opera HD Live Wednesday, July 18 Kailua Kona “Lucia Di Lammermoor” by Donizetti. Part of the Summer Encore Series, this opera is in Italian with English subtitles. 6:30 p.m., Makalapua Stadium Cinemas, all tickets $12.50. 808.329.4461.

“The Magic Flute”

Some Enchanted Evening Friday, July 20 Fairmont Orchid Resort A musical theater cabaret featuring the young artists of the Hawai‘i Performing

Mango Tango Saturday, July 21 Kealakekua Part of this year’s celebration of the mango, the Mango Tango Dance and Desserts FUNdraiser is held at the New Thought Center in Pualani Terrace on Hwy. 11. Admission is a $10 donation and fun includes a dramatic show of tango dancing, dessert bar and silent auction from 6:30–9 p.m. Tickets: 808.887.1292. Mango Tango proceeds benefit New Thought Center and the free, two-day community Mango Festival the following weekend.

5th Annual Art Fest Saturday, July 21 Hilo Got art? Abled Hawai‘i Artists (AHA) presents the 5th Hawai‘i Island Art Festival 10 a.m.–3 p.m. at Prince Kuhio Plaza. Artists, sponsors and volunteers are encouraged to participate. 808.895.5353 or email

Daifukuji Orchid Club Show Sunday, July 22 Honalo A free, colorful annual event, this year’s show theme is “Kona’s Orchids Through Time.” Displays of blooming cattleya, cymbidium, dendrobium and other orchid varieties, with many for sale. Enjoy educational displays, taiko drummers and complimentary refreshments. 8 a.m.–2 p.m. at Daifukuji Mission Hall in Honalo next to Teshima’s Restaurant. 808.328.8375. (See Spotlight, page 91)


Mango Festival

Saturday, July 21, and Saturday/ Sunday, July 28–29 Kealakekua and Keauhou Part of this year’s celebration of the mango has two events. First up is the Mango Tango Dance and Desserts FUNdraiser July 21 in Kealakekua at the New Thought Center in Pualani Terrace on Hwy. 11. Admission is a $10 donation and fun includes a dramatic show of tango dancing, dessert bar and silent auction from 6:30-9 p.m. For ticket info, phone 808.887.1292. Mango Tango proceeds benefit New Thought Center and the free, two-day community Mango Festival. Geared for mango lovers of all ages, the Mango Festival returns to the Keauhou Beach Resort 10 a.m.–5 p.m. for a full weekend of mango celebration, July 28–29. The free festival honors Hawai‘i’s delicious and diverse mango varieties during the peak of the harvest season. Agricultural and educational offerings is showcased on Saturday. Attendees can also enjoy

Surfing in Kona: Past, Present and Future Wednesday, July 25 Kailua Kona The first written account of surfing in Hawai‘i was documented in Kona on the Captain Cook expedition in 1779. So it is fitting that two Kona watermen, Jerome Kanuha and Pete Hendricks, discuss the development of surfboards and techniques over time. 5:30–7 p.m. Free. West Hawai‘i Civic Center in Kona. 808.323.3222 or

culinary demonstrations using mango and a mango-themed recipe contest for non-professional chefs. Arts and crafts, mango-themed desserts and drinks, plus fresh produce are offered both days. Sunday’s focus is entertainment, with a nonstop medley of music and performing arts, including hula and belly dancing on the scenic, palm-fringed grounds of the resort’s Royal Garden. Both the Mango Tango FUNdraiser and the free community Festival are presented by the nonprofit Sanctuary of Mana Ke‘a Gardens. The community is invited to collaborate, support and participate. Exhibitor booths for July 28-29 are available for businesses and non-profit organizations. Volunteers are encouraged to help with festival day activities, speaker support and workshops. 808.334.3340. – Photo by Fern Gavelek

Metropolitan Opera HD Live Wednesday, July 25 Kailua Kona “Der Rosenkavalier” by Strauss. Part of the Summer Encore Series, this opera is in German with English subtitles. 6:30 p.m., Makalapua Stadium Cinemas. All tickets $12.50 808.329.4461.

Conscious Business Network, Kona Wednesday, July 25 Kailua Kona The purpose of CBN is to network with fellow business people who embrace a

❁Continued on page 90

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Thursday and Saturday, July 19 and 21 Waimea Hawai‘i Performing Arts Festival final event. Mozart’s beloved story of Prince Tamino’s search for the beautiful Pamina, set against the rivalry between the Queen of the Night and the benevolent Sarastro.  Fully staged by Rick Harrell, director of last summer’s Coronation of Poppea,  with instrumental ensemble conducted by the renowned Stephen Stubbs. The Magic Flute is made possible by the generous support of Dr. John Stover, Rhoady Lee, and Alan Gartenhaus. 7 p.m., Location TBD. Tickets $15. Visit or 808.333.7378.

Arts Festival. Directed and staged by Mark Lamanna and musical director Gerald Sternbach, 7:30 p.m.  Pre-theater dining at Brown’s Beach House, for dining reservations, 808.887.7704. Free parking.  Concert tickets $15. Visit or 808.333.7378.

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❁Continued from page 90 triple bottom line– people, planet and prosperity. No annual dues or membership, just a donation to cover space rental and dinner-like pupus. 5–7 p.m. Join the Facebook group: Conscious Business Network, Kona. Call for location, details and mandatory pre-registration. 808.345.2017.

Mango Festival Saturday and Sunday, July 28–29 Kailua Kona The delicious mango takes center stage with tastings, culinary expertise, exhibits,

growing demonstrations and a full lineup of entertainment. 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Free. Keauhou Beach Resort. (See Spotlight, page 89)

to draw attention to the rights of urban cyclists. 4:30 p.m., meet at the Mo‘oheau bandstand. Connect with riders at facebook. com/groups/244794215619904/


AUGUST Critical Love Hilo Wednesday, Aug. 1 Hilo Join this monthly, non-athletic, noncompetitive, free bike ride to connect local bicycle riders and educate the auto-bound to the simplicity of travel by bicycle and

Thursday, August 2 Keauhou Attend this powerful business, technology, solutions conference focusing on four crucial tracts: renewable energy + marketing + green jobs + computer technology. Master how to use technology to boost the bottom line with immediate results. 8:30 a.m.– 4 p.m. Sheraton Keauhou 808.854.6769 or

60th Annual Hilo Orchid Society Show & Sale Friday–Sunday, Aug. 3–5 Hilo Thousands of orchids are on display and for sale in this three-day extravaganza, the state’s largest orchid show. Experts offer demonstrations, growing tips and more. Admission is by donation at the door. Edith Kanaka’ole Multi-Purpose Stadium in Hilo. Friday, 9 a.m.–9 p.m., Saturday, 9 a.m.–5 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m.– 2 p.m. Donation at the door. 808.965.7042 or (See Spotlight, page 91)

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20th Anniversary of Aha Puhala Friday–Sunday, Aug. 3–5 Hilo ‘Aha Puhala O Puna is a not-for-profit organization established in 1992 to preserve and promote the art and skills associated with the use of lauhala in the Hawaiian culture. The club does projects in the community and schools, teaching traditional lauhala weaving and providing instruction on traditional uses of lauhala. To celebrate its 20th anniversary, the group is hosting a lauhala weaving conference at the Hilo Hawaiian Hotel. The theme is, “I Puna paia ‘ala ku’u home,”“In Puna of the Fragrant Walls, My Home”. Kumu from throughout Hawai‘i will provide instruction. Registration is $125 and project kits can be purchased. Contact

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Friday, August 10 Kailua-Kona Everything you want to know about buying, selling, repairing, building homes and more! Great for first time and seasoned home buyers and homeowners. Sponsored by West Hawaii Association of REALTORS® Noon–2p.m. King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel 808 329-4874 or

The Art & Traditions of Hula at Kīlauea Saturday, Aug. 11 Volcanoes National Park Kumu Leilehua Yuen and Manu Josiah present a hula kāhiko “informance” at the hula platform 10:30–11:30 a.m.; plus cultural/ craft demonstrations from 9:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m. at Volcano Art Center Gallery, Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Free. Park entrance fees apply. 808.967.8222 or visit

Cream of the Crop Coffee Tasting Saturday, Aug. 11 Ka‘upulehu Kona This free annual event features select Kona coffee farms vying for top awards. Sample coffee (and vote for your favorite) as well as coffee desserts by area chefs and learn about coffee growing. Also featuring coffeerelated arts and Hawaiian music. 10 a.m.– 2 p.m. at Four Seasons Resort Hualalai Resort. 808.328.1666 or email

Ho‘oku‘ikahi Establishment Day Hawaiian Cultural Festival Saturday and Sunday Aug. 11–12 Kawaihae The famed Pu‘ukoholā Heiau takes center stage at the 40th Annual Ho‘oku‘ikahi Establishment Day Hawaiian Cultural Festival at the Pu’ukoholā Heiau National Historic Site. Experience Royal Court ceremonies and traditional warrior exhibitions 6:30–10 a.m. From 10:30 a.m–3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, enjoy cultural demonstrations, traditional crafts, music, games, doublehulled canoe rides, traditional food tasting and more. Visit htm or 808.882.7218, Ext. 1011.

Hawaiian International Billfish Tournament Aug. 12–18 Kailua Kona This year marks the 53nd annual running of this storied fishing tourney staging teams from Hawai‘i, the U.S. and around the world competing to catch prized Pacific blue marlin and win the coveted HIBT’s Governor’s Trophy (no cash prizes are given). Most marlin caught are tagged and released to promote conservation. 808.836.3422 or visit

Haari Boat Festival Thursday and Friday, Aug. 16–17 Hilo This festival celebrates the cultures of Hawai’i and Okinawa with Haari boat races, a taiko drum concert, open market with Okinawan food, a country store, cultural

❖ H A P P E N I N G S ❖ exchanges and other activities. Wailoa State Park, 7 a.m.–3 p.m. 808.987.6484 or email


Rain Forest Runs Saturday, Aug. 18 Volcano These races in this unique venue are among the most interesting found anywhere. Run at the cool, 4,000-foot elevation of Volcano Village through a native rainforest with beautiful views of Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa. Half marathon, 10K or 5K run/ walk or all ages/abilities. Take part as a runner, walker, volunteer or spectator. 808.967.8240 or visit

Don the Beachcomber Mai Tai Festival Saturday, Aug. 18 Kailua Kona This annual event attracts aficionados of this renowned tropical libation from far and wide, with bartenders competing for title of Best Mai Tai and a $10,000 cash prize. Also enjoy a farmers market, food from Big Island restaurants and live entertainment along with mai tai sampling. A fun festival! At the Royal Kona Resort. 808.329.3111 or visit

Hawai’i Island Orchid Shows

Daifukuji Orchid Club Show Sunday, July 22 Honalo The free 30th annual Kona Daifukuji Orchid Club (KDOC) show and sale is 8 a.m.-2 p.m. Sunday, July 22 at the Daifukuji Soto Mission Hall. This year’s theme “Kona’s Orchids Through Time,” hints at what club members have in store for you in the elaborate display of live blooming cattleya, cymbidium, dendrobium, phalaenopsis, miltonia, vanda and more. Veteran members staff a Question and Answer Booth where attendees can get expert advice on caring for orchids. In addition to the other displays, the annual event offers an outdoor sale of high-quality orchid species and hybrids. Complimentary refreshments, plus an orchid boutonniere corsage—while they last. The Daifukuji Taiko Drummers will perform at 10 a.m. 808.328.8375.

60th Annual Hilo Orchid Society Show and Sale Friday–Sunday, Aug. 3–5 Hilo For six decades, the Hilo Orchid Society has sponsored one of the largest floral shows in the state, displaying thousands of orchids of every size, shape and color at their annual orchid show at Edith Kanaka‘ole Tennis Stadium in Hilo. During the course of this year’s three-day event, the public can view 50 different orchid displays, attend mini-classes and demonstrations, ask experts for advice on growing orchids, as well as purchase different types of orchid plants, some not often seen in public. Professional orchid growers and amateur enthusiasts alike create stunning visual displays, following this year’s theme: “Islands of Orchids.” The show is a one-stop shopping and information resource on all things orchids.

Tropical Pointer “Cheetah” orchid

Many of the orchid plants for sale are not normally found in retail outlets, and the show includes demonstrations and mini classes throughout each day of the event. Other vendors sell orchid-related products like bark, handcrafted ceramic pots for orchids, as well as clothing and artwork, all related to orchids. Hours: Friday, August 3, 9 a.m.–6 p.m.; Saturday, August 4, 9 a.m.–5 p.m.; Sunday Aug 5, 10 a.m.–2 p.m. Cost: $3 in advance, $5 at the door. For advance tickets, 808.333.5989. – Photo courtesy of Hilo Orchid Society

❁Continued on page 92

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August 2, 2012

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❁Continued from page 91 John Cruz in Concert Saturday, Aug. 25 Volcano One of Hawai‘i’s most popular and accomplished performers of Hawaiian music, John Cruz concerts are always a sellout around the Islands. In this performance—the last in a three-event summer Unplugged Acoustic Series—John plays and tells stories about Hawai‘i life. $25. 7 p.m. Volcano Art Center Niaulani Campus in Volcano Village. 808.967.8222 or

Cool Fusion: Festival of 1,000 BowlsDonkey Mill Art Center Saturday, August 25 Holualoa Bring art into your daily life! A $20 donation provides live music and lunch of Japanese somen noodle soup in a handmade pottery bowl that you take home. On the lawn from Noon–3 p.m. and proceeds go to the Ceramics Program. 808.322.3362 or visit

Hawai‘i Island Festival

92 | | JULY/AUGUST 2012

Aug. 25–Sept. 28 Hōnaunau A month-long event celebrating Hawai‘i’s aloha spirit and cultural traditions.

Signature events include: investiture of the Royal Court at Pu‘uhonua o Hōnaunau National Historical Park at 10 a.m. Aug. 25; falsetto singing/storytelling, Miss Aloha Nui, poke contests and Hawaiian Elegance Brunch at the Waikoloa Beach Resort; kūpuna hula Sept. 13; and paniolo parade and ho’olaule’a in Waimea Sept. 15; Visit

Kokua Kailua Village Stroll and Hulihe‘e Palace Concert Sunday, Aug. 26 Kailua Kona Spend a day strolling Ali‘i Drive (which will be closed to traffic) in the charming town of Kailua Village, the heart of Kona and home to historical sites like Mokuaikaua Church and Hulihe‘e Palace, beautiful seaside views, lots of friendly vendors featuring beautiful, locally made crafts, and restaurants offering a wide variety of food choices. 1–6 p.m. Free Hawaiian music featuring the Merrie Monarchs and Kumu Hula Etua Lopes and his Hālau Na Pua Ui O Hawai‘i on the Palace’s South Lawn at 4 p.m., presented by the Daughters of Hawai‘i. A great way to spend a Sunday! 808.329.9555;

or visit or

Conscious Business Network, Kona Wednesday, Aug. 29 Kailua Kona The purpose of CBN is to network with fellow business people who embrace a triple bottom line–people, planet and prosperity. No annual dues or membership, just a donation to cover space rental and dinnerlike pupus. 5–7 p.m. Join the Facebook group: Conscious Business Network, Kona. Call for location, details and mandatory pre-registration, 808.345.2017.

The Culture of the Canoe Wednesday, Aug. 29 Kailua Kona Hannah Springer of Kona leads an interesting talk, along with local canoe club coaches, about the largest, long-distance canoe race in the world—the Queen Lili‘uokalani Canoe Race. To learn about Hawaiian canoe paddling, you won’t want to miss this lecture. 5:30–7 p.m. Free. West Hawai‘i Civic Center in Kona. 808.323.3222 or

❖ H A P P E N I N G S ❖

SEPTEMBER 38th Annual Parker Ranch Round-up Club Rodeo Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 1–2 Waimea This exciting two-day event is held annually as a fundraiser to provide scholarships for school-age children of Parker Ranch employees. Family-style fun includes team roping, bull riding, barrel racing and more. Parker Ranch Rodeo Arena in Waimea at noon to sunset both days. 808.885.7311 or visit

Queen Lili‘uokalani Canoe Races Saturday–Monday, Sept. 1–3 Kailua Kona Held on the beautiful Kona Coast, this is the largest long-distance canoe race in the world, attracting dozens of canoe hālau (clubs) and hundreds of paddlers from Hawai‘i and beyond. The event features single-hull, double-hull and individual races along with a torchlight parade, dance and lū‘au awards ceremony. 808.334.9481 or visit

Kona Style Slack Key Guitar Festival Sunday, Sept. 2 Keauhou Kona Hawai‘i’s trademark method of tuning and

playing the guitar—called “slack-key”—is showcased at this free music festival. More than 15 of the best slack-key artists from Hawai‘i and the Big Island perform. Authentic Hawaiian music–an event not to miss! Noon–5 p.m. Sheraton Keauhou Bay Resort and Spa.808.226.2697 or visit

He Hali’a Aloha No Ka Queen Lili‘uokalani Festival Saturday, Sept. 8 Hilo This festival celebrates the birthday of Hawai‘i’s beloved Queen Lili‘uokalani, the last reigning monarch of Hawai‘i. It is held in the beautiful surroundings of the queen’s historical namesake, Japanese-style gardens in the heart of town. Hula performances by worldwide hula hālau (schools). 10 a.m.–4 p.m. 808.961.8706.

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The Life in Business...

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Coldwell Banker Day-Lum Properties/Day-Lum Rentals & Management, Inc. Nancy Cabral, Owner


ancy Cabral has worked her way up from the little island of Moloka‘i to become a major player in the real estate and property management business on Hawai‘i Island. She came to Hilo in 1978 and has lived here for 34 years. “I was working in the visitor industry when I took a class with Arden Moore of Vitousek Real Estate School in the hopes of getting a future job as a resident manager,” Cabral said. “I obtained my Real Estate license and began to do property management in Hilo. After three years, I took the brokers class from Arden Moore, and she loaned me $2,000 to open my own property management company. This has grown from 20 rental houses and six homeowner associations to more than 600 residential rental houses, 31 condominium and subdivision associations, 162 commercial business locations, 25 vacation rentals and five Federal HUD projects. To take care of this large volume, I now employ 26 employees and have 16 Real Estate sales agents with my real estate firms.” From a tiny back office, they have grown and now occupy over 4,000 square feet at 2 Kamehameha St. in downtown Hilo. When asked what challenges she has faced, Cabral says: “Since 1984, I have been up and down with a variety of economic conditions, government regulations and industry changes. The greatest challenges are with the people. Over these 28 years in business, the attitude of people is the greatest challenge. Honesty and ethics are becoming harder and harder to find. I have had lots of opportunities to struggle in my past, and those experiences help me through the difficult times. In addition to having a degree in Social Work, I have been homeless in my past, and that combination of experiences helps me to work with people as clients, employees and co-workers.” As owner of Coldwell Banker Day-Lum Properties and DayLum Rentals and Management, Inc., Cabral says her primary market is East Hawai‘i. “We represent buyers, sellers and owners of residential and commercial properties, residential tenants and businesses; we have had repeat customers for 28 years. Most companies only help with buying and selling. We do it all—buy, sell, rent, lease and manage all types of real estate.” Cabral hopes to inspire people to do better. “I would like everyone in America to support hard work, honesty and taking responsibility for our own actions. We all have choices. If we are not a part of the solution, then we are a part of the problem.” Location: 2 Kamehameha Ave. in Historic Downtown Hilo Phone: 808.935.0399 and 808.935.4152 Email: Website:

Owners, from left: Patricia O’Neill Gleason, Clay Owens and Trystin Oeljen Street

The Life in Business...


Could your business use a shot of caffeine?


Location: 277 Keawe St., corner of Furneaux and Keawe St. Phone: 808.933.9777 Email: Websites:

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ynergy is “a collaboration of like-minded practitioners, artists and healers who believe in wellness on all levels of life.” Patricia’s Transitions, Trystin’s Therapeutic Massage, and Clay’s DreamScapes were finding it challenging to operate as individual practices, and that led them to the dream of collaborating. “We transformed challenge into growth. That’s just the message Synergy wishes to impart to its customers,” says Patricia. “Tending to the body, mind and spirit, our products and services are offered in a beautiful healing environment. This idea was birthed one year ago and continues to grow and evolve as Synergy responds to the desires of the community,” she says. Other artists and practitioners are represented, as well, while the three founders remain the foundation of the business. Synergy offers cards that induce laughter, psychic readings, remedies for physical and emotional issues and jewelry that holds healing stone energies. Located on the corner of Furneaux and Keawe Streets in downtown Hilo, this location has good energy, say the owners. “Local clientele and visitors comment on what a joy it is to come into such a restful, uplifting environment.” Patricia O’Neill Gleason, a Hilo resident for nearly 36 years, has had several service businesses. Her love of flowers and healing energy work led her to aromatherapy and flower essence blending. With 18 years of working in the health field, she has a special eye for selecting specific wellness products, creating tranquil environments and sacred space. Trystin Oeljen Street has been caring for the emotional and physical needs of her community for more than a decade— first through youth development and currently through therapeutic massage and bodywork. Her unique and intuitive style incorporates many modalities from deep tissue to Reiki. Clay Owens is a “natural born artist and dreamer.” His handpainted clothing was retailed in Nieman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue and many art festivals. Blending his talent with studies of dreaming, symbolism and spirituality, he offers art, art workshops, graphic design dream tours and henna tattoos.

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The Life in Business...

Bookkeeping • Payroll • Accounting Taxes • Consulting • Payment Processing

Quindembo Bamboo Nursery


Owners Susan Ruskin and Peter Berg

eter Berg and Susan Ruskin came to Hawai‘i in 1987 specifically to start a bamboo nursery. “We located the nursery in Waimea, because it is near the beach and we foolishly imagined we’d have lots of time to hang out. We seem to have missed the implication of the word ‘nursery’ (as in thousands of screaming infants) until it was too late,” laughs Susan. They spent the next 18 years importing non-invasive bamboo plants from various locales throughout the world. “All of our imports went through State of Hawai‘i plant quarantine” explains Peter. “Most all of the bamboo species now available in Hawai‘i are a result of this importation. Originally, the couple imagined that they would be producing plants for lumber and shoot production. “Though there was lots of talk, there was little action. Instead, we primarily provide fast and beautiful privacy screening for people who don’t want to see their neighbors—both private residential and resort. We sell to many landscape architects and landscape installers as well as private parties. People also buy our plants for quick and extremely effective windbreaks,” explain Peter and Susan. Both have had eclectic careers. Peter worked as a musician, playing in a variety of Bay Area bands. He also spent several years doing archaeology for the State of California. Susan had a vintage guitar store in Greenwich Village before moving to California. She worked at the Marine Mammal Center in Marin, California, and was a digital music producer for RCA. The name Quindembo is a music term, meaning a mixture of many things—a multi-cultural chop suey or gumbo. It is used commonly in Latin music to describe a mixture of cultures and music that came together and created a new style. Quindembo has survived several trials since its establishment. A major storm in 1994 blew away the greenhouse and all their ready-for-sale plants. Then a major fire in November of 2010 destroyed all their equipment, supplies, water lines, as well as some $200,000 worth of retail-ready plants. Yet, they have survived to establish their reputation as bamboo experts. “We have the largest and best selection of non-invasive bamboos in Hawai’i. We make really good plants. We know what we’re doing. When Disney was shopping for plants for the new Disney resort, they chose us. We are coqui and fireant free. We ship to all islands.” Locations: dryside Waimea and Kapa’au Phone: 808.885.4968 Email: Website:


The Life in Business...

Ho‘oulu Community Farmers Market From left: Kumu Keala Ching and Rolinda Bean of Nā Wai Iwi Ola Foundation; Greg and Gail Smith, market managers

Vendor Info: Contact Gail Smith at Phone: 808.939.7510 Email: Website:

FREE ESTIMATES! Lic# C-2926(4) / Bonded

(808) 324-7600

JULY/AUGUST 2012 | | 97

bout three years ago, the Keauhou Beach Resort asked Kumu Keala Ching if he could help to bring the community of Kona to the resort. The kumu hula and Hawaiian cultural teacher introduced several programs and events to educate the community about the cultural sites of Keauhou. “Kumu Keala also wanted to help our local farmers by operating a farmers market on the resort grounds,” says Gail Smith, who, along with her husband Greg, manage the market. “It took almost an entire year to open Ho’oulu Community Farmers Market at the Royal Lū’au Gardens of the Keauhou Beach Resort in November 2010. The Royal Lū‘au Gardens are located right on the ocean and it is a beautiful landscaped venue to hold a market.” Ho’oulu in Hawaiian means “to grow.” “We opened the market with the goal that all items must be made on the island or grown on the island,” Gail explained. “Our market is on Wednesdays, and we try very hard to get the word out to the local community,” said Kumu Keala. “We have established a regular, local clientele now and quite a few returning snowbirds and tourists during the last yearand-a-half. It is a great place to come have lunch, meet the farmers and shop for produce and gifts.” The market has a true local flavor. It sells only locallygrown and locally-made items, and it supports the local community as well as Nā Wai Iwi Ola, a non-profit 501c3 foundation. Market Managers Greg and Gail Smith also operate Earth Matters Farm, and they offer a wide range of produce grown at their Ocean View farm. Rolinda Bean, cultural advisor and market liaison with Keauhou Beach Resort, is also associated with Kumu Keala Ching and Nā Wai Iwi Ola. Some of the features you’ll find at Ho‘oulu Community Farmers Market include locally grown sweetcorn, local music, estate coffee vendors, mac nut products, tropical fruits, exotic local desserts, skin care products made here, healthy and delicious lunches, locally handcrafted items and art. The Ho’oulu Community Farmers Market happens every Wednesday from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Keauhou Beach Resort on Ali’i Drive in Kailua-Kona.

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Happy H oup.rm!.

100 | | JULY/AUGUST 2012

July-August 2012