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“The Life” Cel eb rating th e a r t s, cu l t u re, a nd s u s t a i n ab i l i t y o f t h e Hawa i i a n Is la nds Fifth Anniversary Hawai‘i Island Edition

Complimentary Copy

January–February 2014 ‘Ianuali–Pepeluali 2014

“The Life” Celebra ting the a r ts, culture, a nd susta ina bilit y of the Ha wa iia n Is la nd s

January–February 2014 ‘Ianuali–Pepeluali 2014

Art 63 Deadly Charms: Creating beautiful jewelry from Hawai‘i’s “Fish of Death” By Denise Laitinen Business 75 Managing with Aloha: Ho‘okipa By Rosa Say 87 Honoring a Five Year Advertiser with Ke Ola Kona Stories Culture 19 Sounding the Pū: An echo of the past resonates today By Catherine Tarleton

Health 37 Healing Plants: Pohe Kula A small wild plant you want to remember By Barbara Fahs

Home 69 This Old/Beautiful House Maureen’s Bed and Breakfast By Paula Thomas

Land 55 E Ala o Mahi‘ai The way of the farmer By John J. Boyle | January/February 2014

83 Hawaiian Grinds Homemade ‘ōpakapaka laulau By Sonia R. Martinez


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Music 77 Bruddah Waltah The father of Hawaiian Reggae By Le‘a Gleason

Big Island Honda Kona supports the Big Island

Ocean 29 Fishponds in Hawai‘i: A small scale understanding By Barbara Fahs

You’ll see our company name attached to quite a few functions here on the Big Island. We believe in supporting local, quality the Hospice of Kona, the Peaman races at the pier, PACE, and tons of local school and community events.

47 Swimming with Spinners Plunging into the swim-with-dolphins industry By Gabrielle Gray and Lindsay Brown

People 13 Weaving Kona Aunty Jo Barney’s life’s work By Kate “Kealani” H. Winter

Please remember us when you are in the market for a new or pre-owned vehicle.

39 Every Store Has a Story: Keauhou Store in Hōlualoa By Margaret Kearns

Spirit 11 Kaulana Ka Wai Ola Na Kumu Keala Ching

That’s all we ask... we’ll be there for you.

Ka Puana -- Refrain 90 Lost Twain A Novel of Hawai‘i By Kate H. Winter

Featured Cover Artist: Lisa Bunge Crossword Puzzle Island Treasures Farmersʻ Markets Hawai‘i Island Happenings Community Kōkua–Volunteer Opportunities Talk Story with an Advertiser

Back issues of Ke Ola available for purchase.

45 67 80 82 84 85 88

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5 | January/February 2014

Advertiser Index


Mahalo to our advertisers, who make Ke Ola’s stories possible and keep circulation free on Hawai‘i Island. Clip our new $5 Ke Ola Kālā coupon (p.71) and take it to one of the advertisers in this issue before Feb. 28. You’ll receive $5 off your purchase!

Accomodations Dragonfly Ranch Healing Arts Center and B & B Kilauea Lodge Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows Shipman House Bed & Breakfast

72 18 28 53

Activities, Culture, Events Aloha Performing Arts Co. Dolphin Journeys Fair Wind Big Island Ocean Guides Harbor Gallery-Winter Wood Show Hawaii Forest & Trail, Native Bird Tours Hawaii Wood Guild Annual Show He Lei Hiwa No‘Iolani Luahine Hula Festival Hilo Orchid Show & Sale Ka‘u Coffee Mill Kohala Zipline Kona Boys Kona Cowboy Lyman Museum & Mission House Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration Palace Theater Paleaku Peace Garden Panaewa Stampede Rodeo

84 56 91 62 61 42 26 18 76 58 51 46 22 28 23 49 38

Art, Crafts, Jewelry Blue Sea Artisans Gallery, LLC Carol Adamson Greenwell Cindy Coats Gallery Cliff Johns Gallery Elements Gallery Fabric & Quilting Delights Firehouse Gallery Harbor Gallery Hawi Gallery Art & Ukuleles High Fire Hawaii Gallery & Studio Holualoa Ukulele Gallery Ipu Kane Gallery Ironwood Custom Framing & Design Jason Wright Kailua Village Artists Gallery Lavender Moon Gallery Living Arts Gallery Mary Ellen Clagett, Artist Mountain Gold Jewelers Pura Vida O Kohala Quilt Passions Sassafras Jewelry Showcase Gallery & Beads Simple Elegance Gems Studio of Sticks and Stones Susun Gallery Treasure Island Gallery of the Exotic Trudy’s Island Arts True Hawaii Blue Aprons Wright Gallery Hawaii

70 33 44 26 59 21 66 43 58 23 57 59 66 32 44 26 58 24 43 59 21 15 26 64 64 48 44 44 56 68

Automotive Big Island Honda 5 BMW 2 Lex Brodie’s Tire & Service Center 31 Precision Auto Repair 27

Beauty, Health, Nutrition Bailey Vein Institute The Clockwork Masseuse Colleen Keegan, CHT, NLP Douglas Dierenfield, DDS Frank Snow Yoga Joan Greco, DDS, Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery Hamakua Hairbrush Co. Hawaiian Healing Yoga Kohana ili Skincare & Waxing Luana Naturals Monica Scheel, MS, Dermatologist Natural Balance Acupuncture, Rolfing & Massage Randy Ressler, DDS Reiki at Klein Chiropractic Center Swami’s Healing Arts Valerie Cap Vog Relief Herbal Capsules Wave Salon

3 28 28 17 51 36 33 53 27 46 18 26 30 50 36 38 36 27

Building, Construction, Home Furnishings Algood Living 42 Aloha Adirondack Chairs 38 Aloha Metal Roofing 31 Bamboo Too 70 Concrete Technologies 17 dlb & Associates 71 Garden Inspirations 16 Hawaii Water Service Co. 88 HomeWorld Furniture 7 Indich Collection Hawaiian Rugs 18 Islandwide Solar 78 Marcus Castaing Fine Wood Working 48 Mason Termite & Pest Control 17 Pacific Gunite 24 Pools Yards & Solar 56 Plantation Living & Interiors 38 Pro Vision Solar 30 Quindembo Bamboo Nursery 42 Statements 68 Tai Lake Custom Furniture 50 Trans Pacific Design 41 Tropical Living By Design 24 Water Works 60 Yurts of Hawai‘i 52 Business and Professional Services A Wealth of Wisdom Book Publishing 74 Action Business Services 88 Aloha Business Services 20 Allstate Insurance, Steve Budar 88 Entrepreneur’s Source, Kari Waldhaus 74 Great American Self Storage 66 Hastings Luan & Roth 38 Hawaii Marine Center 81 Homes Group-Hawai‘i 41 I Hear Angels 33 myKonaOffice 74 Netcom 27 Red Road Telecom 74 Regency Pacific 49 Scott March, Attorney 53 Wainaku Ventures Gathering Place 52

Education Keystone Waldorf


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81 10

Real Estate Abacus Real Estate Appraisal 15 Aloha Kohala Real Estate 4 Jacob Schneider, RB, Hawaii Beach & Golf Properties 7 Lava Rock Realty 54 Kelly Shaw, RS, Koa Realty 36 Kona Coast Realty 86 Ro Scarbrough, RS, Hawaii Life Real Estate 71 The Real Estate Book 72 Restaurants and Food Aloha Lehua Café Amethyst Nightclub Banyans Restaurant & Bar Blue Dragon Restaurant Boogie Woogie Pizza Coco Island Cuisine Cafe Chef Paul’s Sauces & Seasonings Country Coffee Holuakoa Gardens & Café Ho‘oulu Farmers Market K’s Drive In Keauhou Farmers Market Kenichi Pacific Lucy’s Taqueria Pele’s Kitchen Peaberry & Galette Simply Natural Breakfast & Lunch Shop South Kona Green Market Sushi Rock Sushi Rock & Trio

73 12 21 14 73 73 89 61 57 46 76 80 35 22 73 35 33 51 59 76

Retail and Gifts Aloha Kona Kids 4 Aloha Kona Kids 27 40 Basically Books 22 Big Island BookBuyers 73 Golden Egg Cash Assets 89 Hawaii’s Gift Baskets 86 Hilo Bay Paddler 22 Kadota’s Liquor 76 Keauhou Shopping Center 34 Keauhou Store 57 Kiernan Music 26 Kona Commons Shopping Center 60 Kona Wine Market 60 Kona Stories 35 Mama’s House Boutique 66 Paradise Found Boutique 35 Puna Style 73 Rainbow-Jo 22 South Kona Macadamia Nut Co. 48 Sweet Wind Books & Beads 66 The Spoon Shop 71 Vera’s Treasures and Mall 33 Travel Jet Vacation Travel Agency Mokulele Airlines

16 20

“The Life” Ce leb ra t i n g t h e a r t s, cu l t ure, a n d s u s t a i n ab i l i t y o f t h e Hawa i ia n I sla nds


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 Hawai‘i state motto.

Publisher, Marketing, Operations Barbara Garcia Bowman, 808.329.1711 x1,

Editor, Art Director

Renée Robinson, 808.329.1711 x2,

Advertising Sales, Business Development East North South West

Mary Strong Ed Gibson Mars Cavers Ed Gibson

808.935.7210, 808.987.8032, 808.938.9760, 808.987.8032,

Distribution, Subscriptions

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Creative Design

Michael Mark P., Creative Director, Mana Brand Marketing 808.345.0734,

Advertising Design

Mary Strong, 808.747.2829, Stephanie Schreiber, 808.315.7182,

Intern Sara Hayashi Copy Editor

Lindsay Brown


Sharon Bowling

Production Manager Richard Price


Eric Bowman • Keala Ching • WavenDean Fernandes • Fern Gavelek | January/February 2014

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. Submit online at (go to Contact menu) Community Kōkua volunteer opportunities Editorial inquiries or story ideas Request advertising rates Worldwide Delivery 808.329.1711 x3, order online at, or mail name, address, and payment of $30 US/$48 to Canada for one year to: PO Box 492400, Kea‘au, HI 96749. Contact us for international rate. Subscriptions and back-issues available online © 2014, Ke Ola Publishing, Inc. All rights reserved

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7 | January/February 2014

Mahalo Ke Ola 2013 Contributors


Barbara Garcia publisher marketing operations social media

Renée Robinson editor photographer

Mike Portillo story graphics

Richard Price prepress production

Lindsay Brown copy editor

Sharon Bowling distribution subscriptions proofreader

Eric Bowman bookkeeper

Ed Gibson West Hawai‘i advertising distribution

Mars Cavers South Hawai‘i advertising distribution

Mary Strong East Hawai‘i advertising ad designer

Karen Valentine writer cofounder

Stephanie Schreiber ad designer

Karen Fuller ad designer

Waven Dean Fernandes ambassador

Alan D. McNarie writer

Barbara Fahs writer

Catherine Tarleton writer

Cynthia Sweeney writer

Denise Laitinen writer

Fern Gavelek writer social media

Gayle Greco writer

Hadley Catalano writer

Jessica Kirkwood writer

John (Jack) Boyle writer

Jon Lomberg writer

Kumu Keala Ching writer

Keith Nealy writer

Le‘a Gleason writer

Lily Hoskinson-Weinstein writer intern

Margaret Kearns writer

Marya Mann writer

Paula Thomas writer

Pete Hendricks writer

Peter T Young writer

Robert Oaks writer

Rosa Say writer

Sara Hayashi writer intern

Shirley Stoffer writer

Sonia Martinez writer

Stephanie Bolton writer

Stig Lindholm writer

Susan Cox writer

Aloha from the Publisher This is our thirty-first issue! We are excited to celebrate the beginning of our sixth year of publishing Ke Ola on Hawai‘i Island! It was the summer of 2008. We were brainstorming on the concept of creating a magazine for people who live here. We felt it was a timely idea because, at the beginning of the downturn, many businesses who cater to residents needed a way to create visibility. At the time, the only magazines on-island were for the visitor and real estate industries. The idea was ignited from the business community, when they embraced and supported the concept, starting with the first issue. You can read about one of those long-term advertisers, Kona Stories, on p.87, which is the first in a series that honors the advertisers who have been with us since the beginning. The concept for the arts, culture, and sustainability editorial content came within a couple of hours of birthing the magazine idea—it was truly inspired and our vision hasn’t changed. We still provide an affordable means for businesses to market themselves, while telling engaging stories about the inspiring people and happenings on Hawai‘i Island. And for nearly a year now, the Maui County edition, too. It is important to remember that our advertiser’s are the ones who make this all possible. They are the ones who provide 24,000 complimentary copies of each issue to our readers, and they need to be appreciated on an ongoing basis. Please stop in, thank them for sharing Ke Ola’s vision, and buy something when you are in the market for what they offer. Find everything you need in the Advertiser Index on p.6 and Support Local Businesses! We also love and appreciate our subscribers. Please know the subscription price just covers the cost of postage and handling. The magazines themselves are complimentary.

Did you enjoy the list of 2013 Contributors on p.8, just to your left? Isn’t it fun to put faces with names after reading their stories and enjoying the visuals in each issue? We are happy to recognize each person involved with creating Ke Ola. There is amazing talent on this island and we look forward to working with even more writers and artists in 2014 to bring you more culturally rich stories about our beloved island home. Please keep sending us story ideas about the inspiring things happening on this island, whether it’s Hawaiian arts, culture, or the sustainability of this sacred island and ocean. You can email them to Renée Robinson at You’ve been asking, so take a look at the back cover. We are excited to make available a 16x20 poster featuring the 30 covers from the first five years of Ke Ola. (Mahalo to all who have been waiting patiently for this, we hope it was worth the wait!) The poster is printed on fine-art paper and you can purchase one for $15, including shipping and tax, from one of the following: • • 808.329.1711x 4 • Remember to sign up for your free Ke Ola key tag or sticker today (if you haven’t already). Take our demographic survey and you’ll automatically be registered for our free lost and found service. It’s popular, so do it before supplies run out! May 2014 bring you abundant blessings of health, happiness, and prosperity. Aloha pumehana, Barbara Garcia, Publisher

From Our Readers

From the Editor: Mahalo for your suggestion. You’ll find the story on page 19.

Good Morning Kona Oil painting by Lisa Bunge

See her story on page 45.

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

Ke Ola recognizes the use of the ‘okina [‘] or glottal stop, as one of the eight consonants of (modern) Hawaiian language; and the kahakō [ā] or macron (e.g., in place names of Hawai‘i such as Pāhoa). Ke Ola respects the individual use of these markings for names of organizations and businesses. | January/February 2014

✿ Dear Ke Ola, I would like to suggest a topic for an article. It would be educational to see an article about the blowing of the pū, or conch shell, which would speak to the protocol, intention, history, significance, the order and directions when blowing the pū, and any other relevant pieces of information. Hopefully, a kūpuna with knowledge of this most important tradition could enlighten the readers about this most important cultural point. Aloha and Hugs, KimoB (Dr. James Birrell) San Anselmo, CA


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Kaulana Ka Wai Ola | Na Kumu Keala Ching

‘Ae, Kaulana ka wai ola

Honored waters of life

‘Auhea wale ka wai ola la? I ka uliuli lani, lipo ka honua Noho ke ao ‘Ōpua, kuahiwi ala Aia i laila ka wai ola ē!

Where are the living waters In the dark skies, within the deepest earth Upon the ‘Ōpua clouds, high above The waters of life are there!

‘Auhea wale ka wai ola la? I ka ua Kilihune, pulu i ka pua Pā lahi ka ‘ili, ‘ala ka ‘a‘ala Aia i laila ka wai ola ē!

Where are the living waters The soft rains, softly drenching the flowers Gently upon the skin, scenting so fragrantly The waters of life are there!

‘Auhea wale ka wai ola la? I ke kahawai uka, huli iho ala Lana maila i kai, pili ke kai ola Aia i laila ka wai ola ē!

Where are the living waters High upon the rivers, seeking lower lands Floating to sea, the sea of life The waters of life are there!

‘Auhea wale ka wai ola la? Hū a‘ela ke ea, pili ho‘i ka wela Noho ke ao ‘Ōpua, kuahiwi ala Aia i laila ka wai ola ē!

Where are the living waters As air flowing towards the sun Upon the ‘Ōpua clouds, high above The waters of life are there!

‘Auhea wale ka wai ola la? Aia no ka ‘ike, pili no ke ola Aia no ka pilina, ke kino i ola ai Aia i laila ka wai ola ē!

Here are the living waters In the knowledge of life In the relationship of the body that lives The waters of life are there!

He mele nō Ka Wai Ola!

A song honoring the waters of life

Where are the living waters? Found within the body of the Higher Spirit and amongst the elders living firmly within themselves. The waters are found there. Where are the living waters? Found high above the heavens, upon the earth and within the living waters of Waiau. The waters are found there. Where are the living waters? Seek the deepest waters within yourself and seek the living waters in your heart. There the waters are found. Allow the living waters to live in the Higher Spirit before thee. Inspired as a healing chant to recognize the living waters from heaven and earth to the living waters within. Recognize the relationship to influence changes forever and ever. ~ May 17, 2013 Contact writer Kumu Keala Ching: | January/February 2014


uhea wale ka wai ola la? Aia ke kino o ke Akua ā pili i nā kūpuna i kūpa‘a iā ia iho. Aia i laila ka wai ola. ‘Auhea wale ka wai ola la? Aia i uka pili i ka lani, iho mai ka honua ā ola ka wai o Waiaū. Aia i laila ka wai ola. ‘Auhea wale ka wai ola la? Huli ho‘i ka waiwai i loko ou ā e ‘ike ana ka wai ola i kou pu‘uwai. Aia i laila ka wai ola. E ola ka wai ola i ke Akua iā ha‘i.


Aunty Jo dancing at the 2011 Day at Hulihe‘e Palace Fundraiser photo by Renée Robinson

Aunty Jo Barney’s life’s work |

er hands move with quick certainty taming the narrow lauhala strips into a pattern that often only she can see. Today she is weaving a hat that is going to Mexico when it is finished. That bit of information slips out between stories of other hats, her ‘ohana, the history of Hawai‘i, and this island’s intimate past. Josephine Barney weaves in many ways. Born in Kailua-Kona into a Filipino family that has been here for more than a century, she is the living memory of this place and its people. She was the oldest girl in a family of nine, and Josephine Palacat was a child full of mischief, a tag along kid, keeping up with her five brothers and always listening, storing up the stories of Kona. She recalls how the children of pre-World War II Kona made their fun with whatever was available when the only transportation from Honokōhau to Kailua other than bare feet was donkey or canoe. She chuckles before she even starts to tell about riding to school on the family’s donkey, five siblings clinging to his bare back for the five miles from Honokōhau to the two-room school

By Kate “Kealani” H. Winter

that sat where the Kailua Library is now. The black donkey had been saved from a man who beat him, and Josephine’s father had thoroughly tamed him by soaking the children’s dirty clothes in water that he then gave the donkey to drink. When the children were unloaded at school, he was turned loose for the day to “horse around,” as she

Aunty Jo keeps busy weaving | January/February 2014


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Aunty Jo sharing with the Calabash Cousins photo courtesy Denise Rosso

puts it. At the end of the school day, they would simply call him, and he would return to pick them up for the ride home. When the children were older, a school bus was needed to take students mauka to Konawaena School. A Ford flatbed truck was outfitted with a roof, benches along the sides and down the center, and a chicken wire “cage” around the back. The wire did more than keep the youngsters safe aboard—it deterred them from picking guava along Ali‘i Drive as the “school bus” rumbled down what was then a one-lane dirt road. The memory brings a rascal’s smile from Aunty Jo as she confesses that sometimes they would tie a hapless student’s hair or belt to the wire for fun. Having grown up where there were no perennial streams and little water except the ocean and shoreline ponds, Aunty Jo is brimming with stories about water. Her father was an expert fisherman, and she was taught all about nets and lures, including how to make them. If you ask, she will tell you about the shark in Kamakahonu (Kailua Bay) that he had made a bargain with. He would call the shark to him when he was ready to fish by thumping on the side of the canoe three times. The shark would come out of the deep water, and her father would promise to feed it when it brought back fish. When the shark returned surrounded by ‘ōpelu, her father would cut up the first three fish he caught and hand feed them to his finned fishing partner. Like many of the tales she weaves, this one leaves some folks suspended in delight and disbelief, especially when her merry laugh erupts and she shrugs slightly. Believe or not, she does not care. From the magical tale of her father communing with whales out at Honokōhau when he was caretaker of the fishponds, to the story of a mysterious stranger in white who foretold their donkey finding a good source of drinking water nearby, many of Aunty Jo’s stories are connected to Kona’s waters. One special wellspring in the village on a spot in front of St. Michael’s Catholic Church was a place where anyone could go to get drinking water when it was needed. The well needed to be protected and children needed to be kept safe from falling in, so a grotto was planned. Josephine’s brothers—with her tagging along—would go down to the church after school, get a crowbar and wheelbarrow, and head out to collect coral clumps in the shallows in front of Hulihe‘e Palace and farther south. The older boys built the cement form and cemented the coral in to create the grotto that stands today where St. Michael’s is being rebuilt. An opening was

left on the south side so anyone could still get water there when they needed to. She will tell you sadly that more recently people who didn’t understand its significance fouled the well and it had to be walled up. While she talks, her hands do not stop tugging and folding the lauhala strands in her lap. Aunty Jo learned to weave when she was only five years old. She describes Hulihe‘e Palace in those days as “my playhouse and school.” The Victorian style pavilion built by King David Kalākaua on the north side of the palace was still standing after the royalty were gone. Today the walkway that leads from the front lānai to the wooden structure ends in the grass, seeming to go nowhere. Aunty Jo points it out as if she can still see the shaded platform where kūpuna would gather to weave lauhala mats, hats, and baskets, and fishermen sat to mend their nets or make new ones. In the breezes off the bay, they shared laughter and gossip, songs, and stories while they worked. Little Josephine listened, storing up the voices and incidents, stowing them in the remarkable memory she has. Her willing hands were guided to making lauhala mats, and her nimble fingers eventually accomplished more complicated designs. After beginning school at the age of seven, she would return home from school, do her homework, and then weave a pāpale pā, the crown for a lauhala hat that her mother would finish weaving the next day. Together, mother and daughter produced five or six hats a week, using the cash for clothes and eventually a sewing machine. The Palacat ‘ohana lived in several places in the district of Kona, from Kaloko Pond to Kalaoa to Kailua Village. She lovingly remembers the house at Honokōhau that her father built with a sand floor that she had to rake every day and how she took pride in making lovely patterns in the sand. Around the interior walls of the house, wooden platforms about four feet above ground were wide enough to sleep on and left the center of the room open to the sandy floor. Even though there were no beds, each child had a bedroll—a pillow, blanket, and a Japanese-style mat—that was rolled and stored in a corner of the one-room house during the day. She and her mother did laundry in a nearby cave with soap that she helped her mother make. With no clothesline, they spread the wet clothes on the pāhoehoe to dry. Sometimes she and her mother would walk along the shoreline gathering sea salt from where it had dried on the rocks in order to dry their own fish catch and to trade with mauka folks for produce. | January/February 2014

Aunty Jo helping as a docent at Hulihe‘e Palace, 1980s

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15 | January/February 2014

Later, her father was offered an old house up in Kaloko that he tore down to have materials for a house in town. After soaking the wood in a salty pond, he built a home where the King Kamehameha Hotel is now. Most of her young life was connected to the ocean and shore, and eventually her parents found a place up in Keopu where they could pick coffee during the season and have a safe place to evacuate if necessary from their home makai. Josephine was an apt student who loved school. Her parents took her out of the classroom when she was 15 and her hope of becoming a schoolteacher ended. Aunty Jo says her mother was afraid she would marry a haole and so arranged a marriage to a Filipino man. Being a Catholic, Josephine says she finally—after several attempts at escape—“accepted my fate.” Farm work replaced weaving, fishing, and school. They grew tomatoes, beans, peas, and coffee and processed them for sale, with Josephine driving an old truck to Hilo across the island’s “saddle” to deliver the produce. The first of her four children born in those years was her son Cirilo, whom she took along on the cross-island trip safely tucked into a re-purposed Carnation milk crate for crib and carrier. Three other children were soon hānai or adopted into the ‘ohana, making more hands, but also more work. Two more husbands, five more children later, and after living in California for 18 years, she returned to Kailua-Kona. Once home, she stopped to visit her beloved Hulihe‘e Palace and talk story with her friend, Fanny Au Hoy, who recruited her as a docent. In a soft mu‘umu‘u, her diminutive figure gave gracious welcome to all who passed through the palace grounds. She was the very embodiment of aloha, interpreting the story of Hawai‘i, Hulihe‘e


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Aunty Jo with daughter-in-law Kate Winter photo courtesy Denise Rosso

Palace, the monarchy, and the life of Kona. Her dozen years as docent were filled with tours that visitors enjoyed so much that they would linger afterward or return another day to hear more. On days off she might be found sitting cross-legged on a lauhala mat spread out on the palace lawn, repairing the old mats that protect the wooden floors of Hulihe‘e or telling a willing student how to climb the hala tree and get the leaves to prep for weaving, all while sharing a colorful story about remembered

characters and places along the Kona coast. The urge to teach has never subsided and she has found many ways to express it. While in California she became a nutrition educator, and when she came home to Kailua-Kona, she worked at local resorts teaching lei-making, lauhala weaving, and basic hula. She danced for Uncle George Na‘ope on the cruise ship Constitution, at Uncle Billy’s, Lava Java, and almost anywhere there was Hawaiian music. Happy to be back in Kona These days she can be circa 1970s found at Hualalai Regency working with lauhala, playing ‘ukelele, and dancing. Her hula hands—strong, nimble, and graceful—tell the stories while she dances, and she can still flick a skirt and toss a flirtatious wink as well as any hula dancer half her age. Life in old Kona may seem primitive to people used to the Internet and global travel, and yet Aunty Jo remembers that they never went hungry and always had clean clothes. The community strung along the coastline from Kohanaiki to Keauhou was generous and loving, a place where all kūpuna shared the work of looking out for the keiki of Kona.

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Under the palms on the makai side of the palace one breezy afternoon last year, Aunty Jo offered a group of rapt listeners this final advice: “Have Aloha for each other, respect each other, pick the flowers, leave some fish in the ocean, and most important, be Aloha.” At eighty-seven, she still entwines those lessons with Kona’s history and her own while her fingers command and coerce the fibers to bend to the weaving that her life is. ❖ Family archive photos from Aunty Jo’s daughter, Mary Shannon. Contact Aunty Jo Barney: Regency at Hualalai, Apt. C-507 Contact writer Kate “Kealani” H. Winter:

circa 1970s

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Sounding the Pū:

the past resonates today |

he tropically iconic conch shell trumpet, or pū, is often seen at the lips of malo-clad beach boys, sounding the start of sunset and tiki torch lighting time. The tradition of the pū is ancient, sending out a sound that resonates attention, respect, and significance across the ocean and time. In Hawai‘i for countless generations the pū has announced the arrival of canoes, the entrance of ali‘i, and the beginning of protocols. Today, its one-note fanfare is used to start a meeting, bless a home, or call a gathering to order. “When I traveled on the Hōkūle‘a, we sailed to the Olympic Peninsula,” says Danny Kaniela Akaka, Cultural Specialist at Mauna Lani Bay Hotel and Bungalows. “We got there later than expected, about two hours behind schedule. It was dark and cold and there was heavy fog. About 10 o’clock, I blew the pū through the fog. And as we got closer, the fog lifted and we saw all these familiesTranspacific on the pier, Fine singing.” Design Design tsin the Pacific rpeInteriors The pū is a horn heardtaround theaworld, � l a n �rie the great tsnail Islands, shells can be found. ineanywhere �and e s ugs® arp� s t e � trumpets were used in Italy as long ago as l a t n �arp Triton shell rien aiia e� aw in � 5150 BC. “Blowing shells” are called Shanka in India, � ® s � s® n �ug in Mayan culture, Nagak in n �ug Dung-dkar in iiaQuiquizoani Tibet, a w a ets � � Korea, and Horagai in �arp t n e i esntal “Even iniYokohama of our journey, as �ri ne �rin 2007 on the last leg t e p e � r n a i ® we entered the harbor to tie up, we heard Danny. ugsthe pū,” l� nta� n� itessays r e p iaia r � a a “The blower of the a pūw was young Buddhist monk.” e iian n l i� � asw ®a nta� e i � g r u Danny� said n the monk's instrument was made of the Triton � � � ian �i e aithat ® gasw shell, not the Helmet shell used in Hawaiian pū, and his u � � MAUI: n � iia Used by Tibetan monks for a had a metal mouthpiece attached. w a � •� Kahului 808.877.7200 thousands of years, the metal mouthpiece enables the pū blower inventory in the Pacific to play different with everyday low prices he Pacific pitches. ow prices “I spent time Woven • Natural Fibers trying to learn from him,” says Danny. Silk • Wool & Hemp al Fibers “He was the best esign & Sizes Available ol & Hemp that I have ever met.” Available When he came to visit Danny in (with min. purchase) Hawai‘i, the young monk brought a pū min. purchase) that he had found while diving and fitted with a metal mouthpiece. “My wife Anna put a cover of lauhala Danny Akaka blowing the pū at the Ikua Purdy statue in Waimea over it,” says Danny,

By Catherine Tarleton

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Conch Blower Morning of Hi`uwai and Ho`okupu Spencer Beach Park South Kohala—Sept. 1, 2007 both photos courtesy of Michael O’Brien | January/February 2014

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Cassis Cornuta Shell

Didier Descouens / Wikimedia Commons | January/February 2014

“And if you ever heard it, it sounds like a Matson Ship coming in.” The pū can be made from any large gastropod (sea snail) shell by removing or filing down the tip of the shell’s spire at its apex. Most in Hawai‘i are from the long pointed Triton’s Trumpet (Charonia tritonis) and the smaller smoother Helmet Shell (Cassis cornuta). The living snails feed on urchins, starfish, and other creatures, and due to their popularity, the shells have become exceptionally rare in Hawaiian waters. Danny uses a Triton shell pū for house blessings and the Helmet shell pū for “Twilight at Kalāhuipua‘a” music and talk story at Eva Parker Woods Cottage. At one such gathering, he met Babe Bell, “the most famous pū-blower in Hawai‘i.” “I don’t know about that, but I might be the oldest,” said Babe, 76, who has sounded the pū every day at the Ilikai Hotel on O‘ahu for more than 50 years. Afterwards, he performs the torch-lighting at the Duke Kahanamoku Statue, and on Fridays


Charonia Tritonis

Public Domain / Wikimedia Commons

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performs at Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center. An avid paddler with the Anuenue Canoe Club, Babe visits Kailua-Kona every year for the Queen Lili‘uokalani Long Distance Canoe Race, where he naturally blows the pū, too. Akaka had admired Babe’s large Triton shell pū, and asked about its story at “Twilight.” “I bought it at Disneyland for 35 dollars,” said Babe. “It was in a showcase over there, and I’ve been blowing that same one all these years. I guess it fits my mouth.” Babe said that he accidentally ran over the shell with his Volkswagen Bug one time. “It made a puka, and I had to patch it with surfboard fiberglass.” Babe learned to blow the pū from Kumu Hula Haunani Kahalewai at the Royal Hawaiian Hotel. “I went to pick up my wife, and Haunani said, ‘You, you, and you—all you husbands and boyfriends come back tomorrow and we’re going to put you in the show.’ So I went and got a conch shell and taught myself to play. I played the trumpet in high school, so it was a similar vibration of the lips.” Babe has blown the pū for parades, performances, blessings and funerals in Palau, American Samoa and the Solomon Islands, and next year plans a trip to Guam.

Danny Kaniela Akaka, Cultural Specialist at the Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows with Chris Leudi, Regional Vice President and General Manager of The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i, blow the pū at 2011 Big Island Film Festival at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i.

Photo by Devany Vickery-Davidson, courtesy of Big Island Film Festival | January/February 2014

Like Babe, Danny has blown the pū in many different places, including Carnegie Hall in New York. He was scheduled to sing for the “Hawai‘i Calls” radio program, however, at the last minute someone handed him the pū. “That pū belonged to John Papa I‘i. He was advisor to the ali‘i, and I’m sure that pū was heard by all the Kamehameha’s. That was a chicken skin moment,” Danny says. The pū caused chicken skin at the 2011 Big Island Film Festival at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i, as the welcome reception filled with glass clinking and excited chatter of filmmakers and fans. Two men stepped quietly forward, and the long low tone of the pū drifted over the crowd. A unique quiet settled—what Danny calls a “spiritual silence.” Danny was one of the pū-blowers that evening. The other was Chris Luedi, General Manager and Regional Vice President of The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i. Together they heralded the four compass points and then blew heavenward, concluding with an oli chanted in unison. Chris, originally from Switzerland, has embraced the Hawaiian culture in a way few physically can. Among other

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accomplishments, he has completed 10 of the renowned Moloka‘i Hoe canoe races and was part of a voyaging team that paddled more than 1,750 miles around the Hawaiian archipelago and chronicled in the film, “Family of the Wa‘a.” Chris says, “When I came to Hawai‘i in 2002, seeing someone blowing the pū was very exotic, very Christof Luedi of foreign to me—quite The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i mystical actually. I had no sense of what the meaning might be. I learned more when I got involved with canoes and paddling and with the culture as a whole. Kimokeo Kapahulehua, my mentor and paddling companion taught me how to blow the pū.” To Chris the sound of the pū signifies the beginning of something—the beginning of a meeting, a blessing, the arrival of something new. As taught, he follows the protocol of blowing to the four compass points, then up and out to the audience. “The sun rises in the east where a new day and a new hope has begun,” says Chris. “And the sun goes down in the west, hopefully after a good, productive day with great achievements. To the north, we salute the North Star—the big, bright star that guides us, and to the south, we acknowledge the people from the South Pacific, our forebearers who came to Hawai‘i. Then, upwards, we honor Ke Akua and the audience as well.” Chris is often asked to talk about Hawai‘i, his experiences, and paddling adventures. “I travel with my pū. When I am asked to do a little chant or blessing—as a hotel general manager and representative of the hotel—I take my pū and give oli and do whatever I am asked to do.” “When you run a business in Hawai‘i, you have to honor the Hawaiian traditions and Hawaiian culture, particularly when Blowing the pū in farewell to the you come from Alingano Maisu in Kealakekua Bay far away,” says photo courtesy of Michael F. O’Brien Chris. “And that’s

Triton xray © Dr Michel Royon / Wikimedia Commons | January/February 2014

something I do try and bring to the forefront, that we allow our guests to partake of the culture and try to explain what it is. You can come to our hotel and really get a taste of what Hawai‘i is all about.” Next time you’re at the beach or your favorite spot for sunset cocktails, when torch lighting begins and you hear the sound of the pū, allow yourself a moment of spiritual silence and reflection and appreciate being exactly where you are in place and time. “Today, for torch lighting, it’s a sound of the past,” says Danny. “It’s an announcement that the day is coming to an end, and the pū kind of gives it a sense of the past.” ❖ Contact photographer Michael F. O’Brien: Contact writer photo courtesy Catherine Tarleton: Michael F. O’Brien


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Hawaiian ‘ōlelo

Danny Kaniela Akaka, Cultural Specialist at Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows, tells a traditional Hawaiian ‘ōlelo (story) about a dog named Puapualenalena and a famous pū named Kihapu: “Puapualenalena and his owner, an old man, were living in Waipi‘o Valley and the old man would send the dog out to bring him ‘awa from the king’s ‘awa patch. The king asked, “Who has the nerve to steal from my ‘awa patch?” He sent people to find out and they only saw the dog. They followed Puapualenalena to the old man’s home and arrested the man and the dog, and took them to the king. The king said, “You broke the kapu, and you deserve to die!” The old man asked, “If I can get your favorite pū back from the Menehunes, will you spare our lives?” When the king said yes, the old man sent the dog up the valley to the Menehunes, who played with him and danced and danced and danced as they loved to do—all through the night until they dropped to sleep. Then, Puapualenalena grabbed Kihapu and ran back down the steep trail, but the wind made the pū sound and it woke up the Menehunes. They chased him, and at one point he dropped the pū and it chipped, but he was able to grab it again and run home. The old man took the pū back to the king and as a reward, he was given a lifetime supply of ‘awa. That pū, Kihapu is in the Bishop Museum, and you can see where it is chipped!”

Danny Kaniela Akaka, blowing the pū at the Alingano Maisu voyaging canoe farewell from Kealakekua Bay photo courtesy of Michael F. O’Brien

Carver Dean Ka‘ahanui of Waimea, demonstrates his handcrafted “pū lau,” wooden pū carved in the style of the Marquesas Islands. photo by Cathey Tarleton | January/February 2014

In the Marquesas Islands, pū can be very large and sometimes made of wood. At the recent Moku O Keawe International Festival at Hilton Waikoloa Village, carver Dean Ka‘ahanui demonstrated his Marquesan-style pū, which he learned about while visiting Tahiti. Long and powerful, each “pū lau” is painstakingly carved with tribal patterns and decorated with shell pieces, making each instrument a unique work of art. From Waimea, Ka‘ahanui often chooses native woods including koa, only from fallen trees. “If there’s nobody but me around, I can carve all day,” he says. “I love it like I love the ocean.”


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Na Loko I‘a O Kalāhuipua‘a at the Mauna Lani photo by Renée Robinson


Fishponds in Hawai‘i:

A small scale understanding |

Fishpond History, As We Know it Today

Fish farming became widespread throughout the Hawaiian Islands as early as the 14th century, before other Polynesian population groups adopted the practice. Fishermen primarily collected fish from their canoes and from the shore, while fishponds supplemented their take and helped to feed a growing population during times of inclement weather, drought, and crop failure.

“In a culture that honored the earth’s abundance, fishponds symbolized the connection Hawaiians forged between Mākāhā (fishpond gate) at the Mauna Lani themselves, photo courtesy Susan Bredo the ‘āina (land), and the akua (gods),” according to Fishponds existed on all of the Hawaiian Islands, with the majority occurring on Moloka‘i. The smallest number is on Hawai‘i Island because the rocky coastline and the absence of reefs and lagoons made it difficult to build fishponds in many areas. The legends and myths of ancient Hawai‘i are numerous and have provided us with many clues about historic events. Hawaiian mythology credits the god Ku‘ula-kai as the architect of the first fishpond, in Hāna, Maui. Some myths mention miraculous little menehunes as the builders of some ponds, such as Alekoko and Nomilu on Kaua‘i. According to the myths, these diminutive prehistoric residents completed huge ponds in only one night. | January/February 2014

ustainability is a major buzzword today. Growing food, harvesting power from the sun, buying locally produced products to rely less on foreign imports at the supermarket are values and practices that many Americans understand clearly today. Wherever our ancestors hailed from, sustainability was far more than a buzzword in former times—it was paramount to the continuation of life. Consider the Irish potato famine in the mid-19th century. So reliant were the citizens of that era on potatoes that when a disease struck the crops people had nothing to eat and they began to starve. The ancient Hawaiians are a perfect study in sustainability. Geographical isolation required that they produce all of their food, clothing, and building materials. In addition to the 24 lifesustaining plants the ancient Polynesians carried in their canoes, their practice of building fishponds guaranteed a steady supply of high protein food for king and commoner alike.

By Barbara Fahs


Not everyone enjoyed the bounty that prehistoric fishponds offered. They were protected by restrictive kapu intended to limit both poaching and polluting. Kapu protected fish during their spawning season. Many fishponds were created for the ali‘i, or ruling class, and a commoner who took even one fish from a restricted pond could face a punishment of death.

Types of Fishponds | January/February 2014

Fishponds were specific in their design and construction. Four major types of royal ponds, or loko, are known to have existed. • Loko kuapā are walled shoreline ponds surrounded by a massive stone seawall. They are the most common type of pond: we know of approximately 127 loko kuapā throughout the Islands. Sluice gates, or mākāhā, were present in at least one area to keep fish in and let fresh water circulate. This type of pond is exclusive to the Hawaiian Islands and is not found in other parts of Polynesia. Several of these ponds still exist on the Kona coast and other areas of west Hawai‘i Island. On O‘ahu, at He‘eia, the largest known loko kuapā has a 5,000-foot-long seawall that encloses 88 acres. • Loko pu‘uone also are shore ponds containing brackish water. They are often natural ponds behind a beach or sandbar that serves as a barricade between the pond and the ocean. A channel was usually dug to connect this kind of pond to the ocean. • Loko kāheka are brackish anchialine ponds common in west Hawai‘i. They are found slightly inland, yet are affected by the ocean’s tides due to subterranean passages. • Loko wai are freshwater ponds found in inland areas and are often natural rather than constructed.


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Pu‘uhonua O Hōnaunau, NPS photo

Types of Fish Raised in Ponds

If you were to stroll through an ancient Hawaiian village with a fishpond, you would have seen many ‘ama‘ama (mullet) and awa (milkfish). Many other species were also raised, including another mullet called an ‘anae, āhole (sea-pig), ‘ōpae (shrimp), ‘o‘opu (guppies), and puhi (eels). Sometimes other fish entered the pond on their own: common residents included ulua (giant trevally), kāhala (amberjack), kūmū (goatfish), manini (surgeon fish), ‘ō‘io (bonefish), and uhu (parrotfish), according to

The size of the annual fish harvest from a pond depended on the pond’s size and the kinds of fish that inhabited the pond. Estimated amounts for each acre of a pond’s size range from 300 to 500 pounds.

Methods of Harvesting Fish

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When harvest time arrived at strictly prescribed times of year, specially designated fishermen used hand nets, dip nets, seines, or surround nets to capture only the pond’s mature residents. A common method was the use of scoop nets that fishermen situated inside the pond near the mākāhā, or sluice gate, during an incoming tide because that’s where the largest fish congregated. Another method of gathering fish involved the use of certain plants that caused fish temporary stupefaction or loss of consciousness. Similar to drunkenness, fish would float to the surface of the pond making it extremely easy for fishermen to spear them or collect them in nets, like a pre-colonial “shooting fish in a barrel.” Ancient fishermen pounded the bark, leaves and roots of the native Hawaiian plant ‘ākia (Wikstroemia uva-ursi), or hillside false ‘ōhelo, together with bait and then dumped the mixture into the pond they intended to harvest. This plant is a small perennial shrub that contains narcotic chemical properties that caused only cold-blooded animals to lose consciousness, so when humans later ate the fish, they did not experience the same effect. Native Plants Schematic of pond features Hawaii website warns, however, “It is probably best to side with caution and avoid ingesting any parts of ‘ākia until sound information is available.”


Status of Fishponds Today

Many ancient fishponds no longer exist due to a number of factors: “Warring chiefs, siltation from upland runoff, overgrowth, introduced marsh plants and grasses, general disrepair, and pollution,” according to On Hawai‘i Island, the lava flows of 1801 and 1859 destroyed several fishponds on the Kona side. Additionally, the site states, “Earthquakes, landslides, faulting, storms, and tsunami (tidal waves), have also affected ponds.”

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Kaloko-Honokōhau, NPS photo | January/February 2014

Thanks to resorts situated along the Kohala and Kona coastlines, we can visit some of the ancient ponds today. Because fishponds existed before the hotels moved in and transformed coastal areas, we have the special opportunity to see beautifully restored ancient ponds at locations such as the Four Seasons Hualalai and the Waikoloa Beach Marriott.


Four main fishponds and three smaller ponds are part of the property that the Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows now occupies. Two ponds are the loko kuapā type, with the remainder being loko kāheka. Known collectively as Kalāhuipua‘a, these ponds cover 11 acres and have been meticulously restored to their former greatness, which would have pleased King Kamehameha I, because these were among his favorite ponds that pre-date his reign. It is said that the fish raised at Kalāhuipua‘a were of such high quality that Kamehameha had kūkini (runners) who brought these delicacies to him. Think big when you imagine Hawaiian fishponds: the largest pond at Mauna Lani, Lahuipua‘a, is nearly five acres in size and reaches a depth of about 18 feet. In 1973, before the resort was built, Dr. Patrick Vinton Kirch of the Bishop Museum identified these ponds as historic sites and dated them as far back as 250 BC, according to samples he took from the floors of the ponds. This date does not imply that humans existed here that long ago; many fishponds began because of naturally occurring conditions. At Mauna Lani Resort, visitors can experience a unique tour of these restored fishponds, which Danny Kaniela Akaka, Cultural Specialist leads three times each week. More than 20,000 visitors Fishponds at Mauna Lani have learned about photo courtesy Susan Bredo this important slice of Hawaiiana from him. Check with the hotel for the current tour schedule. The two National Historical Parks in west Hawai‘i have easily accessible fishponds that visitors can see. Pu‘uhonua O Hōnaunau National Historical Park includes two ancient ponds of the loko pu‘uone type. The north pond and possibly the south pond were used in former times. According to Adam Johnson, Chief of Integrated Resources Management, these ponds are relatively small and are situated slightly inland. They are also anchialine pools fed by underwater springs and are subject to tidal influence. These ponds were possibly used to raise mullet or simply to store fish. “We are currently restoring our ponds and attempting to eradicate the invasive tilapia and mosquito fish that inhabit them,” Johnson explained. A large loko kuapā can be found at Kaloko-Honokōhau National Historical Park near Kailua-Kona. Stacked stones form a seawall 250 yards long that encloses the mouth of a small bay and a large mākāhā illustrates how this feature of ancient fishponds served to keep fish in and out. The National Park Service is restoring the seawall and plans to reestablish this pond for active aquaculture. Two other fishponds exist at Kaloko-Honokōhau: ‘Aimakapā, a loko pu‘uone, and the ‘Ai‘opio fishtrap, which is also undergoing restoration.

Obstacles to Restoration: Permitting Process and Cost

It is difficult to obtain permission to restore an ancient fishpond today. The process that any company or group must go through involves obtaining up to 17 permits from

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Pu‘uhonua O Hōnaunau, NPS photo

Contact Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows: 808.885.6622, Contact Pu‘uhonua O Hōnaunau National Historical Park: 808.328.2326, Contact Kaloko-Honokōhau National Historical Park: 808.326.9057, Contact writer Barbara Fahs:

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Federal, State, and Hawai‘i County agencies, according to an October 2013 article in Hawai‘i Tribune-Herald. Because of the complexity of the permitting process, years can easily pass before final permission is granted, and it can cost up to $80,000 in time and wages required to navigate the many complicated forms. The promising news is that the Department of Land and Natural Resources Office of Conservation and Coastal Lands is currently proposing a “streamlined permitting process for some fishpond projects, depending on the project’s scope, materials to be used, location, and potential environmental impact,” according to their final environmental assessment document, which has received letters of support from The Office of Hawaiian Affairs and state legislators. The struggle continues, as communities and fishpond practitioners seek to maintain and rebuild known fishponds in their vicinities. For small organizations with limited funds, a simplified process exists whereby the maintenance of a pond lies outside regulations if those doing the work use only elbow grease, hand tools, and traditional materials. ❖

Heirloom Hawaiian koa wood hairbrushes handmade on the Big Island Nīnole Fishpond in Ka‘ū Top: Looking eastward from the pali, Aug 21, 1954 Lower: The remains of the wall after tsunami and high surf destroyed it, Mar 13, 1972. photo by Neal Crozier

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Healing Plants: Pohe Kula


A small wild plant you want to remember |

How To Take Pohe Kula

Look for gotu kola in natural foods stores in several forms: tea, tincture, and capsules. Capsules are the most convenient way to take this herb. Take it every day according to product label instructions. If you are able to find and correctly identify pohe kula plants on your property, it’s easy to make tea or to add fresh leaves to your salads. Folklore suggests that eating six leaves every day will help to improve memory in time. I prefer tea or tincture because I might forget to pick it and eat it every day.

To make tea, put 12 fresh leaves into a teacup and pour one cup of boiling water over them. Let steep for 10 minutes, then strain and drink three cups every day. You can make a large quantity and store it in your refrigerator. Tinctures are also convenient and are easy to remember to take on a regular schedule. You can use either fresh or dried plant material—I prefer fresh whenever it’s available. Here’s how to make a tincture: 1. Place fresh or dried pohe kula leaves into a clean glass jar, filling it one-third full. 2. Fill the jar with vodka or other alcohol, or choose apple cider vinegar or vegetable glycerin. Alcohol yields the strongest infusion. 3. Tightly cap the jar, shake it up, and leave it in a shady area indoors for 30 days. Shake it every day, or as often as you remember. 4. Strain the plant material from the liquid after 30 days. If you have a compost pile, it makes a fine addition. 5. Store your tincture in a sturdy jar in a cool, dark place. If you like, transfer the finished liquid to small brown glass dropper-top bottles. No need to refrigerate. 6. Take two to four droppers full of tincture two to three times each day. If you mix it with fruit juice, the flavor will be more agreeable.


Avoid taking gotu kola during pregnancy. It might react negatively with blood thinning drugs such as aspirin, Coumadin, or Heparin. No toxicity has been reported, but monitor your health, and if you experience any adverse reactions, stop taking it immediately. Lastly, the obvious caution—try not to forget to remember to take your pohe kula. Contact writer Barbara Fahs: Sources: • Herbal Remedies for Dummies, Christopher Hobbs • Medicine At Your Feet, David Bruce Leonard • Polynesian Herbal Medicine, Dr. Arthur Whistler • University of Maryland: kola-000253.htm • supplement-guide-gotu-kola | January/February 2014

aving trouble remembering things? Perhaps you have taken Ginkgo biloba, a popular herbal supplement that is available at health food stores and pharmacies in easy-to-take capsule form. The website WebMD reports that this herb acts as an antioxidant that improves blood flow to the brain. Gingko does not grow well in Hawai‘i, so if you want to try a local plant, consider gotu kola, called pohe kula in Hawaiian. This dainty little low-growing vine is known as Centella asiatica in the scientific world. Leaves are round, one inch across, with subtly scalloped edges. It’s related to carrots and parsley in the Apiales plant family. If you have a lawn, you might have unknowingly mowed away pohe kula plants, because it likes the moist lushness. Pohe kula contains properties that make it useful for many ailments, such as serving to kill bacteria, and it has antiviral, anti-inflammatory, anti-ulcer, anti-anxiety, and wound healing properties. It also can act as a cerebral tonic, a circulatory stimulant, and a diuretic. It’s called “kūpuna medicine” due to its ability to improve the memory, which is its most common use. It came to Western Polynesia from Asia thanks to early European explorers and spread east to Hawai‘i as other Polynesian peoples learned of its medicinal value. Little is known about its use in Hawai‘i during ancient times so we must study the ways other indigenous peoples used it. In his book Polynesian Herbal Medicine, Dr. Arthur Whistler says it was used in other parts of Polynesia to treat eye ailments, migraine headaches, and as a poultice for swellings and boils. Whistler states that it also contains an antibiotic used to treat leprosy. Since leprosy was introduced to Hawai‘i within recorded history due to infected whalers and sailors on the first ships to the islands, we know approximately when this use of pohe kula originated.

By Barbara Fahs

37 | January/February 2014


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Every Store Has a Story: Keauhou Store in Hōlualoa |

By Margaret Kearns

Keauhou Store History

Y | January/February 2014

oshisuke Sasaki was born in Japan in 1885 and immigrated to Honolulu at age 15 to work in construction. He later moved to Kona, earning a living making coffins and building redwood water tanks for prominent immigrant families. In 1903, Yoshisuke also built the ornate concrete archway for the Tong Wo Tong cemetery next to the Keauhou Store and helped with the design and construction of the Daifukuji Soto Mission in Honalo, just about one mile south of the store on the Māmalahoa Highway. In 1918, Yoshisuke, Kuma, and their young family, opened their Keauhou Store. The two original columns on the front lānai remain there today, as do many of the original features handmade by Yoshisuke nearly one hundred years ago. In 1947, the old roof was removed and the upper mezzanine floor and art deco façade were added. Yoshisuke, as it turned out, was a successful businessman and a master carpenter as well. The entire building, including doors, windows, showcases and furniture were hand-built by the 5 feet 2 inch Yoshisuke. The family also farmed and processed macadamia nuts and coffee, and Yoshisuke invented several milling machines over the years. The store became a central gathering place for the community, its large front lānai providing the perfect spot for community members to talk story. Yoshisuke and Kuma’s middle son, Rikio (born in 1924 and best known as Ricky) took over operations at the Keauhou Store in the mid-1950s and almost immediately began selling the first Schwinn and Columbia bicycles in Kona. At the time, it was

truly the region’s only department store, stocking everything from musical goods and instruments, records, appliances, stationery, radios and hardware, to jewelry, photographic supplies, sporting goods, sewing supplies, and groceries. At the time, the business also included a Chevron Service Station and records show the store pumped more gas than any other station in Kona. With the extension of Hawai‘i Belt Road (Kuakini Highway) in 1967, traffic that formerly passed right by Keauhou Store was diverted, and new businesses began to grow in the fishing village of Kailua-Kona down on the coast. Māmalahoa Highway, the road that served travelers, salesmen, and citizens from the time it was just a footpath around Hawai‘i Island, and then a narrow horse and buggy road and, finally, a paved two-lane blacktop, was now nearly deserted.


Yoshisuke, who grew and prospered with his upcountry family store on this scenic highway, lived a long, creative life, and passed away in 1973 at the age of 88. Rikio continued to run the store, and in 1995 removed the gas pumps and tanks, rather than replace them as required by the EPA. Soon business slowed even further, and as the years passed, the store was only open a few hours each day. Rikio never married, and passed away in 2009. With no children to inherit the store, it was passed on to his older brother Gilbert, who was age 88 at the time, and who resided on O‘ahu. Neither Gilbert, nor other family members, wanted to take on the business, so it was put up for sale, which, is when Kurt and Thea Brown stepped in to keep the store and its history alive.


Restoring the Store


When Thea and Kurt, Kona residents for more than 30 years, decided to purchase and lovingly restore an old building in Keauhou mauka, little did they know the historic treasure trove they would uncover in the process. From its original 1918 construction, the Keauhou Store was owned and operated for decades by the Sasaki family. Located along the Kona Historic Corridor, the store is situated in the heart of the Kona coffeegrowing district. “We did see there was lots of ‘stuff’ everywhere, but we had no idea what it was,” Thea says. “Turns out that ‘what it was’ is now an incredible gift for the community and for us.” The Browns purchased the property in January 2011 with the intent of restoring the upcountry landmark and opening it

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back up as a local convenience store, specializing in sustainably grown produce, Kona coffee, island-grown chocolates, preserves, and honey, along with fine wines, cold beers, and a myriad of other unique items produced on Hawai‘i Island, including Kurt’s handmade guitars and koa wood creations. Today, a portion of the 4,000 square foot space is indeed used for that original purpose together with a mini-café and takeaway food establishment, while the remainder is dedicated to the display of culturally rich memorabilia from the early to mid-1900s. The artifacts, books, maps, and abundant remaining store inventory—many items from the 1940s and 1950s with price tags still attached—are now displayed in museum-like fashion throughout the ground level store and the second floor

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Looking into the office, Japanese records, old invoices


balcony. Among these original-store items: shoes, chenille bathrobes, hats, an old-time Schwinn bicycle, classic Coca-Cola signs, large-format Marlborough cigarette advertisements, Hawaiiana collectibles, and much, much more. “Although the basic building was in remarkably good structural shape, there was still a massive amount of cleaning and painting that needed to be done when we purchased it. Amazingly, only one piece of front fascia needed to be replaced, along with the installation of a new roof. We also disassembled, repaired, glazed, and repainted 47 windows so they will last for the next 100 years,” Thea says. The couple also cleaned and restored the family office located at the very the back of the store, and retained its original desk, chairs, safe, radio, and record books that go back two generations. “It provides a fascinating look back at an earlier time here on Hawai‘i Island,” Kurt says. Part of the fun of operating the Keauhou Store today, according to Thea, is talking story with old-timers who were frequent customers of the original store. “For example, a guy came in just a few days ago and told us he had grown up here in the 1940s, and that the very first pair of shoes he owned were purchased here by his parents back in the day. The clincher is he was 14 years old at the time and just about to start high school! It was the norm back then, he shared with us, for kids to run around barefoot throughout most of their childhood,” Thea says. According to Kurt, the new Keauhou Store has evolved slowly and thoughtfully over the past few years. Growing inventory, he says, has been dictated by what our customers actually want

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Thea’s homemade cookies, fresh from the oven | January/February 2014

and need, not necessarily what we want to provide. It’s a lesson learned early on in his retail career, he says, that has led to his success today. One item they can never have enough of, he says, is Thea’s homemade cookies! “We’ve sold more than 50,000 in less than two-and-a-half years!” Thirteen different varieties of these mouthwatering treats are available at all times. From only a few prepared takeaway foods, the offerings have now grown to a full lunch menu of hot and cold items including salads, sandwiches, hot dogs, hamburgers and more. (Insider scoop: the tuna and egg salad sandwiches on house-made brioche buns are a must-eat!). And now, customers have a choice of eating in or taking away. In late 2013, the couple was busy putting the final touches on an intimate, covered lānai area on the south side of the building to accommodate eat-in diners and to provide spectacular makai views. “The most incredible part of the journey so far,” Thea says, “has been meeting with Sasaki family members who have kept their history alive and brought the store back to life through their stories.” Although it was Ricky Sasaki, middle son of the original owners Yoshisuke and Kuma Sasaki who ran the store from the 1950s up until 2009 (when it was open for just a few hours a day), it is his older brother Gilbert—now in his early nineties— who really kept the family history alive, according to Thea. “We learned all sorts of things about the family and about their store from Gilbert,” Thea says. Feel free to stop by the Keauhou Store and explore the historical collection. ❖ Keauhou Store: 78-7010 Māmalahoa Highway, Hōlualoa, 808.322.5203, Photos courtesy of Paul Maddox: Contact writer Margaret Kearns:

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Featured Cover Artist: Lisa Bunge

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isa Bunge grew up in Orange County, CA and came to as its cultural and visual diversity Hawai‘i in 1984 from Austin, TX. After many years living so far leaves me with an unending from the ocean, she fell in love with Kailua-Kona when she came source of inspiration.” to help with her friends sailing charter business on the vessel Then the fun begins while Kahua o‘Malio. Lisa became one of Kona’s first female captains deciding which technique and and even captained for the Fair Wind for a number of years. medium will best suit the subject. “I knew from the day I could hold the first crayon that art was Oil, acrylic, and watercolor are all I really ever wanted to do.” her artistic Tropical Pleasure Lisa’s first art sale was at a reception hosted mediums of oil on handmade paper by Aunty Carol and Uncle Bob Rogers at the choice. At times former Kona Art Center in Hōlualoa in 1992. she’ll experiment with different media, such as “I am still so grateful for them creating such paper she’s made from wauke or other local an awesome place to go and explore who I was plant materials, and occasionally even painting as an artist when I first started to concentrate on silk. seriously on my art. They really gave me the Some paintings are meticulously planned, confidence I needed to move forward with while others are free flowing, loose pieces that launching my art career.” seem to create themselves. There is a contrast One mentor who continues to inspire and of action and stillness, light and shadow, color influence Lisa’s art is Chee Cha Smith. from nature and imagination, and realism versus “She abstract renderings. pushes Lisa’s art is constantly evolving and new things me to go are always in the works. beyond my “I am compelled to keep creating. Creativity comfort seems to be my only option as I continue my Dancing to the Rhythm level—to journey as an artist. I get spiritual fulfillment of the Ocean, oil see the from it.” world and my interpretation At this time, Lisa is in the process of building a new studio of it in a way that I would after a recent move to Keauhou mauka from Kalaoa. not otherwise have. I In her temporary studio, you will find an antique sign owe her so much for her advertising her grandfather’s painting service. He owned a paint influence on my art.” store before there were seven digits in phone numbers. From the flora and fauna Her handmade desk is surrounded by giant windows giving of nature, to visiting a her a view of bamboo, the birds living in it, and mauka to a view historic spot, to watching of Hualālai. hula, a fisherman, or a When she’s not creating art, Lisa enjoys the ocean, hiking, paddler out at sea, Lisa gardening, or just enjoying time with family and friends. explains, “The energy here on Hawai‘i Island as well Contact Lisa Bunge:, 808.325.6519 In Living Color, watercolor


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This un-retouched image was photographed by Cecily Reading while she was swimming near the Captain Cook monument in Kealakekua Bay, 2010

Swimming with Spinners

Plunging into the swim-with-dolphins industry |


The Business

On the Kona coast there are roughly 14 charter companies that offer swim-with-dolphin tours. Dolphin Journeys offers a variety of excursions: whale watching, manta ray sunsets, Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park tours, Pololū Valley hiking, and

snorkeling. Captain Nancy Sweatt says their best-selling tour is the four-hour dolphin journey. “It is a fabulous morning of meeting the dolphins— upon their invitation,” she says. The company attracts guests from across the globe— 97 percent of whom are visitors to the island. “We love having kids on the boat, and we have many families,” Nancy says. She continues, “Thirty percent of our guests are return or personal recommendations.” During whale season (October-April), the dolphin excursion and whale watch/reef snorkel six-hour package is their most popular tour. Dolphin sightings occur 98 percent of the time. Nancy describes the dolphin tours as a different experience every time. “Some days they are traveling—moving on a mission to get somewhere. Those Photos in story by days the best viewing Kathleen T Carr is from the boat. They | January/February 2014

eaping out of the serene Pacific and thrusting their smooth, graceful bodies into the unsuspecting air, Hawaiian spinner dolphins’ aerial acrobatics are one of the most spectacular displays to witness in Hawai‘i. Hawai‘i companies are attuned to the breathtaking lure of spinner dolphins’ performances. According to the Hawai‘i State Department of Land and Natural Resources, reefs in Hawai‘i (where spinners cruise in the daytime to rest) are a major part of the ocean recreation industry—an industry that generates millions of dollars in revenue each year (Department). Yet, interacting with these mammals in their natural habitat is a delicate discourse, and not everyone agrees we should interact so closely with our dorsal-finned friends. Spanning the social spectrum of the Kona Coast—from Local Hawaiians, to tour guide operators, to visiting university scientists—we begin to understand how different groups of people weigh in on this industry.

By Gabrielle Gray and Lindsay Brown


Dolphin Dance

love to ride the bow and play, jumping and spinning,” she says. So swimming with dolphins isn’t guaranteed. Yet there are certain expectations guests have when coming onto the tour. Nancy says, “The experience everyone dreams of is the days the dolphins are hanging in the bay and wanting to be close to everyone, interacting and swimming alongside them.” In reality, she continues, “Some days the dolphins just do | January/February 2014

not want us to leave.” Aside from her role as boat captain, Nancy is also an oceanographer and geologist. She says Dolphin Journeys tracks dolphin behavior in a dolphin log and includes detailed information about dolphin locations and what their behavior is like during the excursions. Their behavior patterns tend to repeat for a week at a time. “I think the best days are a combination of 30 minutes or so of the dolphins traveling and enjoying them from the boat, then an hour or more of swimming in a bay.”


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The Law

According to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) of 19721, Congress determined, “Marine mammals have proven themselves to be resources of great international significance, esthetic and recreational as well as economic, and it is the sense of the Congress that they should be protected…and that the primary objective of their management should be to maintain the health and stability of the marine ecosystem” (Text). It seems as though governmental observation provided a solid ground on which scientific research could stand. Since the induction of the MMPA, NOAA has set out guidelines that regulate marine mammal and sea turtle viewing in Hawai‘i. In this Code of Conduct, the “pursuit and feeding of marine mammals is prohibited by Federal Law.” Subsequently, NOAA Fisheries has set out these specific dolphin viewing guidelines: • Remain at least 50 yards (1/2 a football field) from spinner dolphins. • Limit your time observing to 1/2 hour. • Spinner dolphins should not be encircled or trapped between boats or shore. • If approached by a spinner dolphin while boating, put the engine in neutral and allow the animal to pass. Boat movement should be from the rear of the animal. According to the NOAA website, “NOAA Fisheries does not support, condone, approve, or authorize activities that involve closely approaching, interacting, or attempting to interact with whales, dolphins, porpoises, seals, or sea lions in the wild. This includes attempting to swim with, pet, touch, or elicit a reaction from the animals (Dolphin Viewing Guidelines).

The Emotional Encounters

The standards regulating our interactions with marine life have not deferred people from actively seeking dolphin encounters. Let’s talk for a moment about how people come face-to-face with spinners. In Nāpo‘opo‘o, I witnessed a mother, father, grandmother, and son holding on to a flotation noodle kicking into the bay. “Dolphin! Dolphin!” the small son exclaimed through breaths in his snorkel. His father replied, “Yes, we are going to see the dolphins. Isn’t this special?” They were supportive, helping each other make the swim. Others board a boat where the goal is to swim with spinners. When you’re right next to someone in the water and they exhale, “Oh, my gosh” into his or her snorkel as dolphins pass below, you know the amazement is genuine. During these charters, I have also heard people say swimming with spinners was the most awesome thing they had ever done. Captain Nancy can attest to this. “Our guests are so thrilled to see the dolphins. Some have tears of joy. The number one comment we get is, ‘This was the best day of my life—ever!!!’ The experience changes people’s lives. Being with the dolphins reaches into the core of our guests’ hearts and opens them to life in a new perspective—more love and less fear.” People love this activity and for good reason: there is an emotional element that might be healthy for us. According to Richard Louv in his book, Last Child in the Woods, Nature Deficit Disorder occurs when people are too

confined indoors and could be cause for an unappetizing array of behavioral issues. By actively seeking out natural encounters, we may be subverting an unhealthy body and mind (Louv).

The Research

Despite biophilia2 and our empathetic appreciation to get back to nature, we should consider our impact. To look at our

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49 | January/February 2014

footprints we have to understand “normal” dolphin behavior. Spinners are nocturnal feeders, meaning they swim off shore during the night to eat. As pack animals in the deep blue, they work in pairs to form a ball of prey from a thick horizontal layer of small fish and invertebrate that vertically migrates at night. This layer of life is called the mesopelagic boundary layer, or MBL. After the dolphins form a ball of MBL prey, they take turns snatching organisms from the ball. As daylight breaks, the MBL reverse migrates to the depths and spinners move inshore for their resting and socializing period (Johnston). Some well-studied resting spots include Hōnaunau and Ho‘okena. Because they are nocturnal feeders, spinner dolphins are then diurnal sleepers. NOAA points out, “Even when spinner dolphins are swimming, they actually may still be resting and sleeping. When dolphins sleep they must be partially awake to keep breathing, so they swim slowly, occasionally surfacing for air, allowing half their brain to sleep at a time.” Since the 1970s, scientists were curious whether or not we were disturbing dolphin sleeping patterns and began studying the behavior of spinners on the Kona coast. Ken Norris worked for 20 years from the 1970s to the 1990s, focusing on the effects human vessel activity had on spinner behavior. When Ken Norris first began conducting his research, he paid respect to the local people who inhabited the shores of the Kona Coast. At the start of his research, he hosted a lū‘au and invited local residents, honoring them and their relationship with the dolphins. Recently, a group called SAPPHIRE—Spinner Dolphin Acoustics, Population, Parameters and Human Impacts Research—took the torch, asking questions about tourism action and dolphin reaction (Heenehan). “As the dolphins begin or end their resting period, they engage in aerial spinning and leaping behaviors that are noticeable from shore. However, when they are in a period of rest, their behavior consists of synchronous dives and swimming in quiet formation” (Spinner Dolphin). This is perhaps a measure of “normal” dolphin behavior. Ideally, scientists will find a spot where people are not actively swimming with spinners in order to get an accurate measure of their behavioral patterns (Heenehan).


Playful Dolphins

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NOAA advises we leave them be. “When people swim with resting wild spinner dolphins, the dolphins may be drawn out of their resting state to investigate the swimmers. This may be a change in behavior which may constitute ‘harassment’ under the Federal law that protects them and other marine mammals…Any act of pursuit, torment, or annoyance that has the potential to disrupt a marine mammal’s behavior is ‘harassment’ under this Act and is, therefore, against the law.”

First-hand Experience Penn Henderson, director of sales and marketing at Fair Wind says his company does not advertise, “nor do we specifically go out of the way in search of viewing or swimming with dolphins on any of our tours.” Penn adds, “Fair Wind has always tried to respect the dolphin’s natural ‘space.’” Athough they are not promoted or guaranteed by Fair Wind, Penn explains sightings can occur. “There are occasions when dolphins may swim into the snorkeling area of Kealakekua Bay while the vessel is moored (rarely),” Penn says, adding, “however this is their choice (not vice-versa).” I talked with a local fisherman, who’ll be known as Frankie, about spinner dolphins. “I fish with them on the inside,” Frankie says. “You can tell when they want to play because they’ll swim in our wake, but we don’t chase ‘em down. We keep going our own way and

they go theirs…we never did mess with them. The dolphins outside of my home [in Ka‘ū] swim right up to the shore… if they like they can dig out whenever they like.” Captain Nancy says that although her company’s business profits off these creatures, they don't exploit the dolphins in any way. “Dolphin Journeys principal is to never disturb the dolphins. We care deeply about the dolphins. It is of the utmost importance that respect for the dolphins and their well being is first and foremost,” she says. Aunty Mahealani Kuamo‘o-Henry, a Hawaiian cultural teacher says that further dolphin/human interaction regulations are not necessary. Further regulations, she says, “Would prevent me, my ‘ohana, family and others from engaging, interacting, and swimming with our ocean ‘ohana—our dolphins who share our homeland of Hawai‘i.”



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Just Keep Swimming

A True Leap for Joy

Captain Nancy believes whole-heartedly through her experience that dolphins are free agents when it comes to human interactions. “They are excellent at taking care of themselves,” she says, pointing out, “Dolphins will out-swim a human any time they want. If they did not want to be with the boats, they would go away.” Dolphins are intelligent creatures, no doubt. Nancy argues that their behavior would adapt accordingly if necessary, adding, “It’s a big ocean and they have lots of choice.”


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It is easy to observe how dolphins are responding to humans: are they swimming close and sticking around, or are they fleeing from them? Communication from their body language at times displays an obvious message. It may be the answer. Still, they remain a wild and curious animal that we cannot understand fully, to say with certainty what is enjoyment or disturbance on their behalf. In 2012, “arrivals by air to Hawai‘i Island increased 8.7 percent [from 2011] to 1,433,282 visitors3” (Annual). According to this data, the number of visitors to Hawai‘i Island is increasing. As more people travel here hoping to explore the wonders of the ocean, regulating and educating is essential. When it comes down to it this issue is a matter of personal choice. Each decision is supported by reason and we can never irrefutably know what is “right” and what is “wrong” because we cannot ask dolphins what to do. However, we do have the ability of direct, intention-based observation. Economically, it is to our benefit to keep the coastline healthy. Spiritually, it is in our best interest to respect nature. Perhaps this is a matter of fine-tuning our etiquette and relations toward marine life, and listening to our gut when it tells us what to do. Whether you swim with

dolphins or swim solo—be safe in the water, respect all the ocean’s creatures, and have a fantastic time immersing yourself in the depths of nature. ❖ Footnotes 1) Policy 16 U.S.C. 1361 2) The biophilia hypothesis, introduced by Edward O. Wilson, suggests a bond between humans and other life forms on earth. 3) However, the highest number of visitors in the last 10 years was between 2005 and 2007 (Annual). References 2012 Annual Visitor Research Report, Hawai‘i Tourism Authority, 2012, Online, Nov. 2013. Department of Land and Natural Resources Sustainability Hotspot, DLNR Hawai‘i, Kona Coast, Online, Nov. 2013. Dolphin Viewing Guidelines, NOAA Fisheries, Online, Nov. 2013. Hawaiian Viewing Guidelines: Overview, NOAA Fisheries, Online, Nov. 2013. Heenehan, Heather, et all, From Norris to Now, SAPPHIRE, 2010–2011, Online, Nov. 2013. Johnston, Dave, A Hard Days Night: Spinner Dolphins Also Need Their Rest, Vol 28 No 2, University of Hawaii Sea Grant College Program. Summer 2006. Online. Nov. 2013. | January/February 2014

Louv, Richard. Last Child in the Woods, Chapel Hill: Algonquin Books, 2005. Spinner Dolphin, American Cetacean Society, 2006. Online, Nov. 2013. Spinner Dolphin and Human Interaction EIS Information Update. NOAA Fisheries Service. Jun. 2007, Online, Nov. 2013. Stenella Longirostris, IUNC List of Threatened Species, Jan. 2013. Online, Nov. 2013. Text of the Marine Mammal Protection Act, NOAA Fisheries, Online, Nov. 2013. Contact Penn Henderson: Contact Nancy Sweatt: Contact photographer Cecily Reading: Contact photographer Kathleen Carr: Contact writer Gabrielle Gray: Contact writer Lindsay Brown:

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E Ala o Mahi‘ai

The way of the farmer

from seed to harvest—even when one lasts only a season while another will grow on for years. Whether we are kama‘āina or malihini, we bring our own personal history and culture into our food preferences. Whatever country or climate we have a history with informs our choices and practices when it comes to embracing the work of growing. When we catch wind of the GMO controversy, it is important to remember that the agribusiness is supposed to be doing their best in providing food for our burgeoning population demands. Unfortunately, agribusiness has made some unwise choices in the interest of monocropping and shortsighted use/abuse of the soil. The individual’s solution here is to regain control of one’s own food supply by growing it in a way that perpetuates the land for generations to come. In Craig Elevitch’s book, Specialty Crops for Pacific Islands, he writes, “Agroforestry has been the primary A one year old land management integrated species system for food, fiber, food forest in Hāmākua | January/February 2014

ere at a crossroads of two cultures—one immediately challenged by serious food needs and another steeped in a culture of sustainability in exclusion—it is understood that the foods the first Polynesians brought with them on their canoes were the most nutritious and most exhaustive use of each plant they could carry. In a sometimes-daunting yet otherwise brilliant act, many of us are learning more about growing our food. In one of the world’s most ideal climates, those of us with access to land to garden are confronted by two questions: first, “What do we grow?” and second, “How do we grow it?” Today, with the advent of agroforestry, great possibilities appear for the small home gardener as well as farmers. Forests and gardens are integrated in a small area, thereby producing maximum yield in a minimal space. It is ideal for the family gardener or weekend warrior of the soil. Much Pigeon Pea more can be done with photo courtesy attention to the process Forest and Kim Starr

| By John J. Boyle


Before–Freshly planted | January/February 2014

fuel, and medicine production for thousands of years in the Pacific Islands.” In October 2013, Craig and fellow expert M. Kalani Souza hosted a workshop, E Ala o Mahi‘ai, or the way of the farmer. In an effort to educate the community, they hope to revive the ancient practices by augmenting the soil with living soil and combining the growing of foods, wind breaks, and shade management.


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Companionable Gardening

It’s early—just after 8am—on a Saturday at Hale Ho‘okipa Farm in Pa‘auilo, and Kalani and Craig’s workday workshop is already well underway. In and around the door to the kitchen buzzes a hive of activity: elders, mothers, children, and dogs joyfully swarming in preparation of a day promising productivity.

After–One year later

Kalani and Craig mix in and out as people bring out their gloves and tools and water bottles. Many different hands— calloused, soft, big and small—gather in a circle and a pule is offered. A circle of farmers, scientists, grandmothers, sisters and brothers rounds with individuals representing three islands and four corners of Hawai‘i Island. Each is interested in how to better grow food in the ancient tried and true way.

Kalani smiles and tells the group, “In my grandfather’s gardens we would be taking our break right now, already having been out on the land before the first light—weeding and doing hard digging in the coolest part of the day by the last of the moonlight.” Kalani and Craig then point out side-by-side gardens. One was planted more than a year ago in a traditional western style layout

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with rows. The other was grown with the companionable poly-culture understanding. In the more segregated western style planting, wind and sun wear mark the plants. Although seemingly unorganized without rows or walkways (and more like clusters or little islands of food), the latter is a more tightly clustered and healthier collection of plants. There is a cluster of papayas and bananas bordered by pigeon peas and flanked with sweet potatoes. Each plant in the cluster helps out the other by providing shade and a barrier against the wind.

Transplants, Starts, and Swales

Water swale The main work of the day entails planting a new garden of taro, pigeon pea, sugar cane transplants and starts in Out of the three-month food forest garden, already mature what was once a depleted-plantation-scraped corner of the pigeon peas are gathered for eating and replanting. From one-acre property—an area about 30 square feet. This involved sowing to reaping is only a matter of months for this nitrogencreating a series of swales, or earthen mounds, that shunt and fixing bush bean. aim water flow. I walk into a kitchen stewing and brewing with delights Kalani explains, “Because we have had a dry summer, the all from the immediate land: taro, papaya, mango, banana, heavy rains that are coming will flow on the top of the baked oranges, liliko‘i, breadfruit, and cassava becoming our food for earth, and we need to decide where we want the water to go, the day. A local Japanese woman brings her ‘ulu coconut balls bringing it to our food.” and homemade umeboshi. Someone else shares a chicken from This involves sensing the immanent flow of rainwater. down the road. It is a feast for the eyes—not just the mouth. Kalani stands on the hill above the plantings and describes This display represents an immediate example of the with musical hands the way the water may flow. Craig lines monoculture design blended with traditional Polynesian up a tripod plum line to get a reading on the leveling land. An sensibility. The proof is in the pudding: more and various ancient communication of understanding is shown with a gesture foods are growing in the same sized area in a far shorter time. along with a modern scientific bit of data by a simple tool, thus Companion planting happens below the surface as well. validating both worlds of wisdom.

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Papaya planted a year ago

The soil is augmented with composts and introduced indigenous microorganisms, some of which show thin white hairs of a bio system barely visible to the eye. We know to like worms and grubs and how they transform organic compost into soil-accessible nutrients. In this living soil thrive a myriad of microscopic plant and animal matter, which is essential to plant health at the root processing level. In a western style garden, some organisms will arrive eventually, sometimes after seasons without herbicides and pesticides. These are the living things that make up the nutrients for our food. Generally, the yield is less in poly-culture growing, but the variety is greater and the total production is higher for a smaller garden. ❖ The next class in E Ala o Mahi‘ai series will be Jan 31–Feb 2. Contact Julie Stowell for more details 808.776.1077. Contact M. Kalani Souza: Contact Craig Elevitch: Contact writer John J. Boyle:

Rev. M. Kalani Souza is a gifted storyteller, singer, songwriter, musician, performer, poet, philosopher, priest, political satirist, and peacemaker. A Hawaiian practitioner and cross-cultural facilitator, he has experience in promoting social justice through conflict resolution. His workshops and lectures inspire, challenge and entertain the listener while calling all to be their greater self.

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Craig Elevitch is Director of Permanent Agriculture Resources and Project Coordinator, responsible for all aspects of planning, coordination, and logistics. Since 1989, he has worked in agroforestry design, management, and education. His projects focus on multipurpose trees that have economic, environmental, and cultural significance. He also directs, a nonprofit educational organization dedicated to empowering people in agroforestry and ecological resource management. The organization’s internationally recognized publications have guided thousands of readers in developing agroforestry systems, ecological restoration, and reforestation on farms, ranches, home gardens, and conservation areas. Publications include Agroforestry Guides for Pacific Islands (2000), Growing Koa: A Hawaiian Legacy Tree (2003), Traditional Trees of Pacific Islands: Their Culture, Environment, and Use (2006), Noni: The Complete Guide for Consumers and Growers (2006), Pathways to Abundant Gardens: A Pictorial Guide to Successful Organic Growing (2007), and Specialty Crops for Pacific Islands (2011).


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Deadly Charms:

Creating beautiful jewelry from Hawai‘i’s “Fish of Death” |

Today, at least two Hawai‘i Island craftsmen, Wil (Kauoha) Costa in East Hawai‘i and Billy Lum in West Hawai‘i, are continuing the old practice of creating exquisite jewelry from ‘opihi shells. Both are also concerned about the future of the Hawaiian delicacy, which is now threatened due to constant demand and overharvesting. Billy Lum has collected ‘opihi shells for decades and turns those shells into necklaces, earrings, and bracelets. The KailuaKona resident says these days he has to go “farther and farther to find ‘opihi shells.” He combs the beaches of the Kohala and Kona coasts, traveling south to Ka‘ū and north to Hawi. Billy says that all too often when he comes across Billy Lum with ‘opihi shell ‘opihi shells left behind at a campsite on the beach, the shells are small. “Sadly, a lot of the ‘opihi shells I find now are small, meaning people are picking the illegal ones.” (State regulations require an ‘opihi shell to be at least 1.25 inches in diameter before it is harvested.) Billy is reluctant to pick up the small shells, because | January/February 2014

an you name the “fish of death” in Hawai‘i? Think it’s ciguatera, the foodborne illness found in many parrot and trigger fish? You’d be wrong. Think it’s the feared tiger shark? Guess again. Hawai‘i’s “fish of death,” (he i‘a make) is not a fish at all, rather, a tiny limpet with a cone-shaped shell only a few inches in diameter. ‘opihi are often found along Hawai‘i’s rocky shorelines where they eat algae. The unassuming mollusk got its nickname because it is incredibly dangerous to collect ‘opihi along Hawai‘i’s rocky coastline amidst pounding surf. Since December 2012, three people have died on Hawai‘i Island alone while picking ‘opihi with an additional 13 people killed on-island between 1999 and 2009. People risk their lives to collect the small limpets because they are prized for their tangy taste. Eaten raw or grilled, ‘opihi have been a staple at Hawaiian family lū‘au and parties for generations. The popular sea creatures vary in size and color depending on where they live in the coastal zone. Yellowfoot ‘opihi, or ‘opihi ‘ālinalina, have a yellow tint to the shells and prefer the constant surf of the low tide zone. Blackfoot ‘opihi, or ‘opihi makaiauli, are among the most harvested because they prefer calm waters. The most coveted ‘opihi, the ‘opihi kō‘ele, are the biggest—and can be up to four inches in diameter. However, the yellow and gray colored ‘opihi kō‘ele are also the hardest to find and require diving to depths of 10 feet. Rough with sharp edges and dull in color, ancient Hawaiians used the ‘opihi shells for fertilizer, to scrape taro and breadfruit, and as jewelry.

By Denise Laitinen

63 | January/February 2014

he doesn’t want people to think he was responsible for picking ‘opihi illegally. Wil (Kauoha) Costa of Pāpa‘ikou, echoes Billy’s sentiments. The ‘opihi jewelry artisan says he has stopped gathering ‘opihi entirely, and relies on his massive collection of shells Stage 1 of ‘opihi shell gathered over a lifetime of carving by Wil Costa fishing and diving. The two men, both skilled artists, share many similarities and do not know each other. Yet their love and respect for the ocean led each man to pursue their passion of creating jewelry from ‘opihi shells. Billy grew up on O‘ahu in Kalihi Valley where he learned how to read tides and waves as a surfer. As a youngster, his Boy Scout scoutmaster would take the boys to the ocean and teach them what was edible and Stage 2–3 how to live off the land. Honu ‘opihi shell After graduating from Honolulu Community College with a degree in auto body repair, Billy moved to Maui and then Hawai‘i Island in 1987. Over the years, he changed professions, working as both a real estate agent and bartender, while his love of the ocean remained steady. When his son, Ikaika, and daughter, Kiana, were young, Billy spent more time in tide pools than surfing. Thus, his shell collection increased. Like many, when Billy Final stage Honu ‘opihi shell ate ‘opihi with family and friends, he would throw the shells in a bucket. “Over the years, my shell collection became quite large,” says Billy. In 2010, he saw a woman wearing a polished abalone shell necklace and had an epiphany on what to do with his shell collection. “I realized I could do the same thing with ‘opihi shells,” he says. “I got a large shell and started grinding it down with my sander. It took a while, but the more I sanded, the more beautiful it got! “I transformed what looked like a barnacle into an amazing work of art. That was it—I was hooked!” Billy pursued his hobby while working as a bartender at the Hilton Grand Vacations Club, where he still works today.


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He uses a variety of tools to sand the shells then hand polishes them to bring out their luster. He uses only all-natural materials, stringing the shells with hemp or cotton rope. Each piece of jewelry takes a couple hours to create. Billy started making ‘opihi necklaces for family and friends. Soon, tourists at the bar began asking to purchase his jewelry. That led to being Wil Costa of Alohilani’s asked to showcase his work in Opihi Art & Jewelry a local art gallery. Today, Billy’s ‘opihi jewelry is available at Wishard Gallery in Waikoloa and Waimea. Like Billy, Wil (Kauoha) Costa grew up on O‘ahu and also has a deep appreciation of the ocean. He also did not start out his career as a jewelry artist. Wil grew up on O‘ahu’s north shore where the beach and ocean were his playgrounds. An avid fisherman, he would pick and eat ‘opihi while fishing. “I was raised on the beach, so ‘opihi shells were a by-product of our fishing excursions,” says Wil. After high school, Wil joined the Navy where he worked in naval construction for four years. Returning to Hawai‘i after his military service was completed, a chance encounter led him to move to Hawai‘i Island. While visiting Hilo to help a relative move in 1989, Costa was offered a construction job and decided to make the move. While working full time in construction, Wil would spend his weekends camping and diving—pastimes that both continued after he met and married his wife, Russlyn Alohilani Mercado. “We’d load up the truck and go on diving adventures on the weekends. We would go camping at places like '‘opihi hale' [in Hilo], Puna, and Punalu‘u. We’d collect ‘opihi for our family gatherings and lū‘au and then I’d save the shells afterwards,” recalls Wil. While Wil was diving, Russlyn would sunbath on the shore where she would sand ‘opihi shells. “I’d have to find just the right type of lava rock,” explains Russlyn. “I’d rub the shell against the rock and sand it down.

Contact Billy Lum: Contact Alohilani’s Opihi Art & Jewelry: ‘Opihi earrings created by Billy Lum

Contact writer Denise Laitinen: | January/February 2014

Then when it got to a certain point, I’d find a different grain of lava rock and sand it further.” Wil began sanding shells using sanders and grinders, and the Costa’s shell collection grew as Wil perfected his technique. Working with ‘opihi shells continued as a hobby for Wil until one fateful day in 2006 when a drunk driver plowed into Wil’s car while he was stopped at a stoplight. His injuries were severe enough that he was unable to continue working construction and needed to find a new career. As he recovered from his injuries, Wil decided to turn his passion for creating ‘opihi jewelry into a full time profession. Wil is unique among ‘opihi shell jewelry artists in that he not only sands the shell— he carves into it, creating exceptionally detailed threedimensional artwork on the shell itself. Some of his most popular Alohilani’s Opihi Art & designs include a fishhook, Jewelry fishhook pendent honu (Hawaiian sea turtle), dolphin, and taro plant. He even creates small triangle diamonds along the side of a shell to represent tapa designs. He first sketches a design on the shell. After carving out the design with small hand tools, grinders and sanders, Wil then polishes the remainder of the shell to a white opalescent shine. The pearlized color of the shell contrasts nicely with the amber and grey tones of Alohilani’s Opihi Art & the top layer of the carved Jewelry butterfly pendent shell. After polishing the piece, Costa seals it with a resin glaze as a finishing step to protect the ‘opihi shells from wear and tear. It’s a time consuming process with each piece requiring 8-12 hours of work. Like Billy, Wil uses only all-natural materials for the necklaces for the ‘opihi shells. “Having worked on construction so long, I’m used to making things that are strong,” says Wil. He double and triple braids hemp ropes that are “built for a lifetime of use.” While Wil is responsible for carving the ‘opihi, Russlyn braids the cords for the necklaces and assembles the jewelry. The Costa’s offer a lifetime guaranty on the knots used in the necklaces and also provide a certificate of authenticity with each piece of jewelry. You can find their ‘opihi jewelry at Burgado Galleries, Hawaiian Force in Hilo, Keaukaha Market, and Got Gifts in Prince Kuhio Plaza. ❖


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Crossword Puzzle | By Myles Mellor

This page is for Ke Ola readers to have FUN while learning about the Hawaiian culture and this wonderful island we call home. Some answers are in English, some are in Hawaiian. Some answers will be found when you read the stories and ads in this issue. Feel free to use the online Hawaiian electronic Oh yes, you can find the answers on page 89. Your feedback is always welcome.

Down 1 Film about a falcon 2 Brings people together 3 _____ Barney, an 87 years Hawaiian weaver and dancer (2 words) 4 Atmosphere 6 Hawaiian word for to appear 7 Mother-of-pearl 8 Welcoming quality 12 Hawaiian word for sovereignty 13 The value of complete giving 15 Hawaiian words for the crown of a lauhala hat 18 Hawaiian word meaning to strike a blow 21 Measurement of diamond quality, for short 22 Historic store in Hōlualoa that was built in 1918 23 Tiny limpets with a cone shaped shell, prized for their tangy taste 26 Wave behind a boat 27 Hawaiian word for an officer in society 30 Hawaiian word meaning a vine, as of sweet potato 31 Hawaiian word meaning incoming, of a current 33 Hair of the head in Hawaiian 34 Melody in Hawaiian 36 Expression of surprise 38 Leave | January/February 2014

Across 1 Famous, in Hawaiian 5 A pū is made from this type of shell 9 Hawaiian word for by 10 Popular acrobatic dolphins in Hawai‘i 11 Cubes that go in a cocktails 14 Hip-hop 15 Dessert 16 You 17 One of the meanings of aloha 19 Trumpet in Hawaiian 20 Return (2 words) 22 Hawaiian word meaning pillar 24 Sea motion 25 Hit the shore, like the sea 26 _____ Costa, a craftsman who creates jewelry from the ‘opihi shells in east Hawai‘i 28 Hawaiian word meaning pillow 29 US state that whales swim from to Hawai‘i, abbr. 30 Hawaiian word for barracuda 32 Hawaiian name for a plant that is anti-viral and anti-inflammatory (2 words) 35 “Pirates of the Caribbean” shout 37 Hawaiian tuna 39 Hawaiian honeyeater 40 Maureen ___, owner of the Saiki home 41 Hawaiian word for parrotfish

67 | January/February 2014


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ucked away behind dense jungle foliage and invisible from Kalanianaole Street in Keaukaha is one of the most architecturally interesting homes in Hilo. Known to some as the Saiki home, today it is Maureen’s Bed and Breakfast and has been functioning as a haven for island travelers since 1979. Owned and operated by Maureen Doto, a native of Baltimore, Maryland, the B&B has evolved steadily over the last 25 years into a totally charming, quiet, restful, coolly spacious home where clearly everywhere you turn, east coast vintage is splashed with traditional Asian and south sea island. The house has beautiful bones. Stunning, in fact. The two-story great room, into which beams the sun from the south-facing pairs of arched windows, is built the way a ship is. Thirty-foot boards of salt-treated redwood (they were floated in alongside a barge), set in a tongue-and-groove fashion and stained to perfection, line the rectangular central space. You can’t help but experience the dwarfing verticality. Yet, among the first things you feel in the open space is how comfortable and welcoming the two-story great room feels. The next eye-catching wonder are the gorgeous arches in the banisters on the symmetrical staircases that lead

This Old/Beautiful House Maureen’s Bed and Breakfast |

By Paula Thomas | January/February 2014

up from left and right of the great room to the east and west-facing bedrooms on the second floor. Each wing has separate access and comprises corner bedrooms on either side of a central bathroom. On the north side, two small bedrooms accessible from the balcony accommodate single travelers. In the original home, this was an open-space walkway to connect the east and west wings. It’s a unique and singularly accommodating layout, especially for the original owners, Takaichi and Mary Forbes Saiki, who had eight children (although not all of them grew up in the residence). The house was designed by Frank Futoshi Arakawa in the 1930s, one of several residential architecture commissions he completed in Hilo in the years before WWII. There’s a touch of playful sophistication in the house, in the way Arakawa divided the second floor, in the arched doorways that lead beyond the great room to the bedroom areas. It’s efficient, artful, and laid out in a way that supports togetherness as well as privacy. Overall, the house had seven bedrooms, five baths, and two kitchens (one on the ground floor). Today, the layout transfers well for Maureen’s guests who hail from all over the world. On the first floor, two bedrooms and one bath on the east side sit directly underneath a similar layout upstairs. On the west side, the dining room that seats 10 and the kitchen behind it where Maureen cooks everyone breakfast sits underneath the two-bedroom/ one-bath arrangement on the floor above.


Pancakes and waffles are a specialty of the house, along with fresh fruit and Hawaiian coffee. On the grounds beyond the kitchen and parking area grow an array of fruit and old hardwoods like black walnut, black pine, and cypress. Any fruit in season is gathered for the breakfast table. The charm of the home stems from the simple Front Lānai yet thoughtfully placed architectural detail that directs your eye to points of interest. Everywhere you look there is some detail in the wood to ogle if you care to look hard. The 80-year-old 30-foot-long boards that make up the walls have been unyieldingly sturdy and locked tight since they were installed. The floors are darkstained fir and, according to Maureen, get polished every other day along with the walls. The overwhelming use of dark wood


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and ample second-story windows keep the central space cool without the need for ceiling fans. All the hinges and hardware are black forged metal—the type of hardware you might see in medieval structures. They almost seem to hold the door seams in place and are quite an unusual element for a tropical residence.

A View From Every Vantage Point

It’s a delightful feeling, looking through arched doorways from the great room and into the remodeled, pastel-colored bedrooms outfitted with quilts and lace and antiques. It is fun to run your hands along the whimsically graceful lines of the carved banisters—or just appreciate them as they catch the midday light. The wood detail here came at the hands of the contractor, Sango Kawasaki, well known at the time, as was Arakawa. Behind the kitchen and overlooking the Japanese garden and koi pond in the backyard used to be a Japanese tearoom. While now a rather conventional TV/lounge area for guests, elements of the once-distinguished tea room are still there: preparation area, cherry wood posts, the raised floor for the tatami mats, and metal slides for the Shoji screens that once enclosed the room. Perhaps most unexpected are the lavender bath fixtures in what was the master bath—a lavender pedestal sink with matching lavender tub and large-tank toilet. Original to the house, their existence is owed to Mrs. Saiki’s design and taste.

Frank Futoshi Arakawa: a Prolific Architect

Frank Arakawa was born on Maui in 1891. The Arakawa family moved to Hawai‘i Island where Frank graduated from Hilo High

School as the first-ever Japanese student. After high school, he served in WWI as a doughboy officer and graduated from Stanford with an engineering degree with a secondary interest in architecture. When he returned to Hawai‘i Island, he worked for the County and eventually became the chief engineer of the Department of Public Works. Married to a Japanese woman with a large family of his own, the Saiki residence was a project that he could have designed as his own residence. It must have been a labor of love for his good friend. Although he did some stellar and unique residential work and is known for his graceful, sleek pitched roofs, he is perhaps more familiar to many for his contributions during the build out of the island schools and facilities in the late 1920s-30s. The Hilo High School auditorium was built in 1928, designed by Frank Arakawa (an alumnus) and funded with donations from the Alumni Association. In Pāhala, Ka‘ū High and Pāhala Elementary School, built in the 30s, is a largely intact campus done by Arakawa. He used tongue-and-groove vertical board and single-wall construction on a post and pier foundation, which was typical school construction. As with the Saiki house, he used orientation to capture light: most classrooms face the north to capture maximum light without direct sun, while the south side features the lanai for shade and shelter. The campus is, according to the Historic Hawai‘i Foundation website, “significant as an intact example of the rural school to service the plantation community. This school reflects the time period on the County of Hawai‘i’s building program of rapid expansion in plantation population and therefore educational needs in rural areas of the island.”

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Former Japanese Tea Room | January/February 2014

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In 1938, Arakawa was hired to draw up plans and specifications for recreational facilities, a bar room, and alterations to the former Harlocker home and grounds. The property, set in Keaukaha, had been secured for the new Hilo Yacht Club. Unfortunately, Arakawa’s structure was lost in the tsunami of 1946, according to Hilo Yacht Club records. Not long thereafter, during WWII, Arakawa was interred on the mainland, a heavy sanction for his having greeted Japanese dignitaries at Hilo’s Kuhio wharf pre-WWII. The dignitaries had arrived to sightsee at Volcano. The dislocation ended up being permanent: Arakawa never returned to Hawai‘i Island, but rather, stayed on the mainland and moved to Chicago. He left | January/February 2014

Two separate stairways to the bedrooms L: over the kitchen/dining area R: over the downstairs bedrooms


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a legacy through the service he provided to Hawai‘i County as architect and engineer and in the many educational and municipal structures he designed that still stand today. For Maureen’s Bed and Breakfast and the Saiki family, Frank Arakawa has provided decades of memories of life well lived. Maureen uprooted her life in Maryland as an X-ray technician to resettle in the idyllic, close-to-nature life that Hilo beckoned so many years ago. Friends and fate brought her to the house she now runs as a bed and breakfast. Today, people from all over the world looking for the homey accommodations offered by B&Bs wax enthusiastic over the charm and peacefulness of Maureen’s Bed and Breakfast. One thing the beautiful old Saiki house is still providing is lasting memories for all who still pass through the front door. ❖ Citations: • • Residential/Hawaii_Pahala_ KauHighandPahalaElementarySchool.html Photos courtesy of Maureen Doto and Crosby Reed: Contact Maureen’s Bed and Breakfast:, 808.935.9018

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The value of complete giving. Welcome guests and strangers with your spirit of Aloha. Seventh in an ongoing series.


Managing with Aloha: Ho‘okipa

The question then, for all of us who are business owners and managers, is very clear: How do we ensure the Ho‘okipa experience happens for all our customers? Even better, how do we ensure the Ho‘okipa experience happens for every single person our business endeavor touches and will affect? Some say they see age or tenure connections to exemplary service and that true Ho‘okipa is a value we grow toward. Yet stories abound telling of how the very young serve others, setting magnificent examples for all who are supposedly older and wiser. To serve as the Mea Ho‘okipa do is simply another calling—one more pressing to a person’s values than other callings may be, and that person is in their sweet spot of readiness for it. Growth’s wisdoms can certainly enhance capability, but service in the art of Ho‘okipa is not something any business can afford to wait for: You must attain it now and you can. Groom your readiness now. When I ask my how-to question of the experts, the Mea Ho‘okipa themselves, a common theme I hear in their response is, “Don’t over complicate it.” They do feel competence is important, and they appreciate all the training a manager ever invested in them, and what they appreciate most is that their managers turned them loose—letting them fly and soar on their own once the training was done. They could make service personal. Competence was their launching pad, but it was also a kind of spigot that turned on the expressions of Ho‘okipa they already had inside them, waiting for the right opportunities to get released and get applied. Job descriptions functioned like a car’s starter, the Mea Ho‘okipa were the engine, fueled by their Aloha-rooted values and raring to go. So this issue, I ask you: How can you make Ho‘okipa happen without overly complicating it? Identify your Mea Ho‘okipa, employ them well so they radiate their joy, and allow them to teach you. Getting Ho‘okipa to happen in your workplace world of business will be the best way to celebrate 2014 as Ka lā hiki ola—the dawning of a whole new day. ~ Rosa Say Next issue: ‘Ohana, the value of family Photo by Renée Robinson Contact writer Rosa Say:, | January/February 2014

everal years ago, I walked into a drugstore with my boss and was able to witness his conversation with the store clerk. He handed over his business card at the end of their chat, shook the clerk’s hand, and said, “If you ever become unhappy here, please call me, for I’ll have a job waiting for you.” He wrote the clerk’s name on the store receipt, tucking it into his pocket. As we walked out, I asked, “What do you see in him?” for lively as it was, their conversation had nothing interview-conventional about it. And he said, “He’s a Mea Ho‘okipa through and through, and that means we need him more than he’ll ever need any job.” The clerk took him up on the offer a few months later and became a magnetic force with our guests. Everyone loved working on shift with him, and he was the teacher my boss knew he would be, teaching by merit of his good example. So deeply is his behavior rooted in his values that he couldn’t do otherwise, even if he tried (not that he would). Ho‘okipa is widely known as the value of service and hospitality in our Hawai‘i, and admirably so, for it has much to teach us within that framing. In the Managing with Aloha philosophy, we’ve described it as “the hospitality of complete giving,” because we ask Alaka‘i Managers to dig deeper and to take the lead of those we call Mea Ho‘okipa, wherever they happen to occupy the company’s organizational chart. Mea Ho‘okipa is a recognition of character and of self-expression rooted firmly in Aloha, sharing one’s value-driven breath of life. From chapter six, “If you were called Mea Ho‘okipa in old Hawai‘i, it was a compliment of the highest possible order. It meant that the person who accorded you that recognition felt that you embodied a nature of absolute unselfishness…The Mea Ho‘okipa were those who seemed to radiate well-being, having an inner peace and joy that came from the total satisfaction they received from their acts of giving.” This radiance of well-being is what we on the receiving end of great service think of as experiencing our server’s genuine sincerity. It is a highly competent service experience without anything scripted or staged about it. It is the service of Aloha intention in all the personal purity of Lokomaika‘i—the “generosity of good heart.” Just typing those words makes me sigh with pleasure! To be on the receiving end of this kind of service, this Ho‘okipa, well, it just doesn’t get better than that, does it?

| By Rosa Say

75 | January/February 2014


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Bruddah Waltah

The father of Hawaiian Reggae |

“We weren’t taught Hawaiian. It wasn’t cool when we were growing up,” he says, “but my grandchildren speak Hawaiian. When I want to learn something Hawaiian I ask them.” Walter wanted to play a different kind of music, and when he listened to the transistor radio, it was rock and roll that got him excited. He would soon find another genre that would influence him to change the face of Hawaiian music forever. In 1979, his sister moved to New Zealand and mailed him a cassette tape of Bob Marley. “I listened to the cassette tape and every song sounded the same. I never really caught on to his music until I went to see him at the Waikīkī Shell. They were wearing | January/February 2014

t’s amazing—and not surprising—how many people in Starbucks recognize Walter Aipolani. To them, he’s Bruddah Waltah, a 30-year music sensation sometimes called “the father of Hawaiian reggae.” “My family was always into music,” he explains. Walter was born in Keaukaha, lived there until he was four, and then moved to O‘ahu. There were four children in the family, and their music education began when he and his two brothers started playing Hawaiian music for their sister to dance hula to. As Walter speaks, he has a sense of sincerity and calm that he says he’s gained through his experiences over the years. There was a time when he was young and playful, and a sense of that still finds a place in his smiling eyes. “I started playing ‘ukulele, but I was noticing that all the older guys who played guitar got all the good chicks so I had to upgrade and learn the guitar, but [now] everybody wants to learn the ‘ukulele again,” he laughs. When Walter started playing music, it was with a single goal: to make music that could make people dance. At that time in Hawai‘i, he says, everybody was playing music. And for him, playing the traditional Hawaiian songs he was raised hearing was a challenge.

By Le‘a Gleason


old army fatigues and smoking on stage. The music they were playing was rebel music, and I got influenced by the reggae sound,” he says. At the time, though, Walter and his brothers were playing reggae with a standup base, guitar, and ‘ukulele, while the 1990s Rastas had the onedrop, drums, and percussion. They did it anyway, beginning to shape their music into something never seen before. At just 11, he’d booked his first professional gig in Waikīkī. “I knew what I had to do,” he remembers. “I had to be different. I didn’t want to be the same as everyone else, so I went into the [reggae] sound. All the kids nowadays, they listen to the reggae music. Reggae music was here for a long time, but it wasn’t as popular until I came into the scene.” Walter says he’s also been influenced by Elton John, Creedence Clearwater Revival, The Bee Gees, and The Beatles. “I took some of their music and turned it into reggae. I did John Lennon’s Imagine. I was doing other things that the local entertainers weren’t doing or saying on the stage,” he remembers.

Ironically, today he says he’s going back to the Hawaiian songs of his youth. “The kids now, they all play the reggae. Every song they get, instead of playing a Hawaiian song they’ll play something they heard on the radio yesterday. That’s sad, because they say, ‘you Hawaiian, sing Hawaiian’,” he says. Despite this return to his roots, Walter has made quite the career on being different. Today, he’s got four albums out. And it took a lot of hard work to get there. Before he was a household name, Walter remembers, “Me and my brothers had a Hawaiian group that performed in Wai‘anae. I had lots of people come up to me and say they wanted to record me, but they were drinking and would forget. I had this one person come up to me and say ‘next Thursday I am going to pick you and your brothers up and take you to the studio’.” Earnest “Ernie” Amona came back. They recorded a song on | January/February 2014

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Friday, took it to the radio station on Saturday, Bruddah Waltah with and on Sunday, he was shot. his wife, Thailiana “I got scared. I cancelled the recordings. I was the oldest in the group. My brothers were younger and we were playing all night in a club getting paid $5 a week. “When our manager died, KCCN radio wanted to take us and record, but I was scared,” he says. Their uncle became the band manager and booked them gigs in bars and clubs in Honolulu until they finally landed a record deal. Walter was different back then, and when he walked out of a club one night refusing to clean his own table, the rest of the band didn’t follow. He became Bruddah Waltah, a solo act capable of playing with a band or on his own. His rocky ride would continue when in 1991 his album Hawaiian. I just loved the music, I loved the sounds, so I was the best-selling album in Hawai‘i, but the music industry wanted to incorporate that in my Hawaiian music,” he explains. wouldn’t take it seriously because they said it was made with Maybe it’s because, just like his mother told him to, he’s drug money. begun to return to traditional Hawaiian music. “My producer was arrested for cocaine. Our studio got raided. Or maybe it’s just because as a proud Hawaiian man, We cleaned that all up. I’m not as cocky as I was before. I everything Walter does today is unmistakably reverent towards thought I was the best. I never cared what I said on the stage. his culture. A part of that comes from what he says is the center People would listen to me and say ‘did you hear what that guy of he and his wife’s life today: their grandchildren. said?’ ” Walter says, almost surprised at himself. “No need teach them [music]; they pick it up. They are in the When Walter talks about it, there’s humility in his voice. room singing and playing ‘ukulele. I teach them a little chords He knows he made a mistake. But he made the choice to and singing, but they learn on their own,” he laughs. change and is much wiser for it. He appreciates all the good His grandchildren are in Hawaiian language immersion school, opportunities he’s been given, especially the support of family. unlike he was. He’s set on being a good influence for them. “I was losing it in Honolulu. I had all the money and I was Walter also travels to high schools for career days. cocky. I thought I didn’t need my family. I only needed myself. “You gotta be an inspiration to the kids,” he says. “I tell My wife packed up everything and moved us to Hilo. Being them I started by listening to the music. Be different, make a a musician, you gotta have a wife that understands, trusts, difference. You want to play music, be a game changer. Instead because of the music life. You gotta be really strong and have a of playing Hawaiian music all the time, that’s exactly what I did. good ‘ohana. A lot of my friends got divorced. A lot of musicians I got tired of it, so I tried playing Hawaiian music with Reggae.” are on drugs,” he says. Walter keeps busy these days playing two regular weekly Walter knows that being a musician isn’t all roses. Like every gigs and traveling on weekends to play elsewhere. He plays on job, it takes work to succeed. O‘ahu at least twice a month and is recording music with Ryan “People say ‘you play music, it’s not work’ but I tell people, Hiraoka of Honoka‘a. ‘you try entertaining people for even five minutes’. It’s not easy. “I don’t like to travel. I hate the airports, but I take the gigs Especially when it’s over. The screaming is done and the lights whenever they come. I grumble when there’s no work, and I go out, and you’re all alone in that room. People think it’s lights grumble when there’s too much work,” he laughs. all the time, and you make a lot of money, but music is hard,” The smiling Bruddah Waltah sitting in Starbucks has certainly he says seriously. transformed from the cocky young man Walter once was. Only someone who loves music as much as Walter does And what makes him different? could keep up this kind of career. He smiles as he remembers “My heart,” he says. the high points. As he stands, several people wave, saying “eh, Bruddah.” “I opened up for Steel Pulse, Gregory Isaacs, Inner Circle, He hugs them and shakes their hands and slips behind the UB40—all those good top 40 reggae bands. I got to play Starbucks counter for a moment to say goodbye to his daughter. with them, travel with them…I sing with Dirty Roots, Mana‘o “I love you,” he says. Company, Ho‘aikane,” he says. The famous yet amazingly ordinary Bruddah Waltah gets into Smiling, Walter explains that music is his life, his bread and his regular car (nothing fancy) and drives off, disappearing into butter. He’s worked his whole life to be here living his dream the Hilo rain. And yet, driving next to the other people in the and do what he loves to do. regular cars on those wet Hawaiian streets is a music legend. ❖ Walter has a hard time with people referring to his music as “Jawaiian,” though. Contact Bruddah Waltah: “When they ask you what Hawaiian music is, I don’t know. It’s maybe Hawaiians playing Hawaiian songs. What I do is Contact writer Le‘a Gleason: Hawaiian music or Hawaiian reggae. I’m not Jawaiian, I’m


Sassafras—Waimea, Kailua-Kona

| Sara Hayashi


hat we do is quickly becoming a lost art. It’s important to support the artists carrying on traditions and techniques of old.” Hand sculpted jewelry from Sassafras are hand fabricated, one-of-a-kind pieces. These wearable works of art are made from solid 14K gold, sterling silver, and natural gemstones. The metal starts in sheet, bar stock, and wire form, which are then transformed into unique pieces of jewelry. Each bezel setting is also custom made for each stone. “Not many jewelers use this technique,” says Charles Cummings, the original artist for Sassafras. Nothing is cast or molded; it’s all sculpted by hand, ensuring that every piece is an original. After learning how to make brass hardware from a man in Hollywood in the 1960’s, Charles taught himself to work in a

Charles Cummings Goldsmith | January/February 2014

Elly Mercer Goldsmith and Jewelry Designer


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smaller scale with precious metals. His daughter, Elly, attended school for interior design and then continued her education with a 10year apprenticeship under her father to learn the same hand fabrication techniques. Along with Peggy Petersen (Jewelry Designer & Sales), they began selling their work at craft fairs on Hawai‘i Island in 1995. Their commitment to providing high quality, rare products at affordable prices soon led them to open two stores, one in Kona in Ali‘i Gardens and another in Waimea on Māmalahoa Highway. If you are looking for a unique piece of wearable art that is expertly crafted on Hawai‘i Island, check out Sassafras Hand Sculpted Jewelry! Sassafras Waimea: 64-1032 Māmalahoa Hwy. Kailua-Kona: 75-6129 Ali‘i Dr. 808.885.1081

Marcus Castaing—Waiohinu


arcus Castaing has been making fine furniture and doing architectural mill work for a living in the remote town of Wai‘ōhinu since moving there 34 years ago. “The source of my inspiration is the wonderful expressions of beauty and elegance that Mother Nature reveals in the timbers I shape into furniture,” says Marcus. The goal is that each and every piece reflects his deep appreciation for these trees. Because he uses almost exclusively local timbers, more than 90% of the wood Marcus works with has come from down and dead trees. From the tree milling to lumber drying, and even sawing his own veneers, Marcus is immersed in the entire process. This allows him to use these materials in a sustainable way. Through the years, he has collected some of the most dramatic and wonderful materials for his undertakings. Marcus employs joinery techniques in his woodwork to ensure his

pieces provide the utmost quality and longevity. These pieces are meant to remain in the family for generations to enjoy. Marcus considers himself a fortunate man to enjoy each and every day doing what he loves. Besides woodworking, he tends his farm, which has several acres of hardwood trees planted from seed. His work complements homes from Europe to Asia, as well as the permanent collection of The State Foundation on Culture and Arts, The Honolulu Academy of Arts, and is featured in the book Contemporary Hawaii Woodworkers. Marcus usually has several finished pieces on hand and is always available for commissioned work. Marcus Castaing, fine woodworking 808.929.9974 | January/February 2014

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Hawai‘i Island Farmers Markets West East


Sunday 9am–1pm Laupāhoehoe Farmers Market. Next to the Minit Stop on Hwy. 19.

Saturday and Tuesday 2–6pm, Tuesdays 8am–pau, Saturdays * Hawi Farmers Market, North Kohala, across from Post Office and Nakahara Store under the banyans.

Daily 8am–5pm Pana‘ewa Hawaiian Home Lands Farmers Market, Puainako and Ohuohu Streets by Walmart, Hilo.

Saturday 8am–1pm Waimea Town Market at Parker School, 65-1224 Lindsey Rd., Waimea/Kamuela. | January/February 2014

Saturday 7am–noon Waimea Hawaiian Homestead Farmers Market, 64-759 Kahilu Rd., located at Kuhio Hale Bldg. (off of Mamalahoa Hwy., two miles east of Waimea town).


Saturday 7:30am–2pm Honoka‘a Farmers Market, Mamane St., Honoka‘a, Honoka‘a Trading Co., Old Botelho Bldg. Tuesday and Friday 2–5pm Kekela Farms Organic Farmers Market, 64-604 Mana Rd., Waimea. 100% organic. Wednesday 9am–4pm Waimea Mid-Week Farmer’s Market at Pukalani Stables, site of the Paniolo Museum. Pukalani Road in Waimea.

Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Thursday 7am–4pm Hilo Farmers Market, corner of Mamo and Kamehameha Ave., downtown Hilo. 30 vendors. Wednesday and Saturday 6am–4pm * Hilo Farmers Market, corner of Mamo and Kamehameha Ave., downtown Hilo. 200 vendors. Saturday 7am–noon * Kino‘ole Farmers Market. Kino‘ole Shopping Plaza, 1990 Kino‘ole St., Hilo, Sunday 7am–2pm Akebono Farmers Market. Luquin’s/Akebono Theater parking lot in Pāhoa. Sunday 8am–2pm * Maku‘u Farmers Market, Kea‘au-Pāhoa bypass road.

Sunday and Thursday 2pm–dusk, Thursdays Dawn–2pm, Sundays Pepe‘ekeo Farmers Market. Off Hwy. 19 on Ka‘akepa St. Produce and foods. Daily 7am–5pm Kea‘au Village Market, 16-6550 Old Volcano Rd., Kea‘au Wednesday Evenings 5–9pm Farmers Market Kalapana end of Kalapana-Kopoho Rd, (Rte 137), next to Kalapana Village Cafe. Local grown produce, ono grinds and live music. Saturday 7:30am–4pm Keaukaha Pana‘ewa Farmers Market. Railroad Avenue, across from Home Depot, Hilo. Homegrown produce offered by Hawaiian Homelands lessees. Saturday 8am–noon * SPACE Farmers Market, Seaview Performing Arts Center for Education, 12-247 West Pohakupele Loop, Kalapana. Saturday 8am–1pm * Hilo Coffee Mill, 17-995 Volcano Rd., Mountain View (on Hwy. 11 between mile markers 12 and 13).

* EBT accepted:

Saturday 8am–noon * Keauhou Farmers Market, Keauhou Shopping Center Keauhou. Saturday 7:30am–10am Waikoloa Village Farmers Market, 68-3625 Paniolo Ave., Waikoloa Community Church parking lot across from Waikoloa Elementary School. Sunday and Friday 9am–1pm South Kona Green Market Captain Cook, Amy Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden Wednesday 8:30am–1pm Kings’ Shops Farmers Market Waikoloa Beach Resort Kohala Coast Wednesday and Saturday 9am–2pm Ho‘oulu Community Farmers Market, Sheraton Kona Resort at Keauhou Bay Wednesday–Sunday 7am–4pm Kona Farmers Market, corner of Ali‘i Drive and Hualālai Rd.


Sunday 6am–9am * Volcano Farmers Market, Cooper Center, 1000 Wright Rd., Volcano Village. Saturday and Wednesday 8am–noon Na‘ālehu Farmers Market, Ace Hardware lawn.

Please send info on new markets or changes to

Hawaiian Grinds: Homemade ‘ōpakapaka laulau | By Sonia R. Martinez


‘Ōpakapaka and Vegetable Laulau ‘Ōpakapaka fillet (1 per person) Maui sweet onion slices (2–3 per serving) Fresh baby spinach, slightly wilted (ogo or limu can be used) Carrot, thin julienne or ‘shaved’ with a vegetable peeler Fresh ginger, minced Fresh garlic, minced Lime juice Hawaiian sea salt White peppercorns, freshly ground Lime, thinly sliced (2–3 per serving) Fresh dill sprig (1 per serving) Taro, banana, or ti leaves Prepare the leaves by getting rid of the spine or stalk first, then trim, if needed. If using banana leaves, cut to size needed and trim into a square or rectangle. Place the sections of banana leaves in the oven at 350 F for just one minute to make them pliable. If using ti leaves you need three placed over each other forming a six-pointed star per serving. When ready to close up, bring each leaf over the food to the top over the filling. Put the taro/banana leaf or ti leaves on the counter and place 2–3 overlapping onion slices in the middle. Add spinach and carrots. Top with the filet of fish. Sprinkle with the ginger, garlic, lime juice, sea salt, and pepper. Then top with lime slices and dill sprig. Fold the leaves over the food and wrap the bundle well, leaving no openings; tie with kitchen string or pin with toothpicks or thin bamboo skewers. Place in bamboo steamer over boiling water and steam for about 15–20 minutes or on a tray in the oven at 350 F for about 20-30 minutes. It depends on thickness of the fish filet. Serve with Tropical Salsa.

Tropical Salsa Peel, seed or core and chop fresh mango, papaya, pineapple, sweet Maui onion, minced young ginger, chopped red-hot Hawaiian chili peppers, and red and green bell peppers in ¼ inch pieces. Add fresh squeezed lime juice, sea salt, a smidgen of sugar and the juice from liliko‘i, chopped fresh mint leaves and/or fresh chopped cilantro (optional). Mix and refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving. Photo by Sonia R. Martinez Contact writer Sonia R. Martinez: | January/February 2014

he early Hawaiians didn’t have any way of knowing they were in the vanguard of haute cuisine when they came up with the idea of making laulau. The French cook ‘en papillote,’ the Italians ‘in cartoccio,’ and the Hawaiians make laulau—it sounds really fancy, and yet all it means is that the food is cooked in sealed packets made of parchment, brown paper bags, foil, or leaves. Cooking en papillote or sealed bags is one of the simplest and cleanest methods of cooking, yet considered very sophisticated by many a gourmand. Everything is either baked or steamed inside the sealed packets, where the main ingredient will be infused in its own flavorful liquids and the natural aromatic essence of the vegetables and seasonings used to complement it. Since it requires little or no additional fat besides the fat already present in the meat or fish selected, it is a healthier method of preparing food. At many avant-garde restaurants as well as in local Hawaiian ‘grinds’ eateries, food is served in the packets, letting the diner experience the pleasure of unwrapping their food and catching that first whiff of delicious goodness. In old Hawai‘i, laulau would be placed in an imu, or underground oven. Lava rocks were heated in fire until they turned white, covered in banana leaves, then laulau were placed on top, covered in more banana leaves, and buried by white-hot lava rocks once again. This would steam the laulau and be ready to eat after a few hours. Today, a regular oven, bamboo steamer, or a slow cooker (Crock-Pot) work well. For my laulau I selected the delicious tasting pink snapper or as it is known in Hawai‘i, ‘ōpakapaka, for its moist white, firm yet flaky texture when cooked. I also like that it is not a fishy tasting fish. It has a delicate, clean, natural sweetness that accepts and pairs well with the taste of the other ingredients. Although the waters around the Hawaiian Islands were being overfished for ‘ōpakapaka in the not too distant past, the population has been increasing steadily, and with careful management and pono fishing practices, they will remain available for our nourishment and enjoyment for, hopefully, far into the future. Ogo and limu are popular seaweeds that can serve as vegetables or as condiments in a variety of dishes and are an important source of minerals, and vitamins such as A, C, B12, and riboflavin. The food can be wrapped in taro, banana, or ti leaves for baking or steaming. If none of the leaves are available to you, parchment or foil can be substituted. Taro leaves may be eaten after cooking; banana or ti leaves are not edible. Sometimes you can find banana leaves, already cut in squares or rectangular pieces in the markets. Steaming or baking foods wrapped in banana or ti leaves imparts a subtle pleasant flavor to the food.


Hawai‘i Island Happenings

Wondering what’s happening around Hawai‘i Island? Visit these businesses and organizations websites for the most up-to-date event calendars.

Konaweb Shirley Stoffer, 808.345.2627

Hawai‘i The Big Island Sherry Bracken, 808.334.1521

Quick Eventz

Akebono Theater 808.965.9990

Aloha Theatre–Kainaliu

Aloha Performing Arts Company 808.322.9924

Amy B.H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden Peter Van Dyke, 808.323.3318

Basically Books 808.961.0144

Donkey Mill Art Center 808.322.3362

Downtown Hilo Improvement Association 808.935.8850

EHCC/Hawaii Museum of Contemporary Art 808.961.5711

Food Hub Kohala Karla Heath, 808.224.1404

Hawai‘i Homegrown Food Network

Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park Volcano Art Center Julie Callahan, 808.967.8222

Honoka‘a People’s Theatre 808.775.0000

Hulihe‘e Palace 808.329.1877

‘Imiloa Astronomy Center of Hawai‘i 808.969.9703

Kahilu Theatre–Waimea 808.885.6868

Kailua Village Business Improvement District 808.326.7820

Kalani Oceanside Retreat 808.965.0468

Kona Historical Society 808.323.3222 | January/February 2014 808.328.2452

Palace Theatre–Hilo 808.934.7010

Society for Kona’s Education & Art (SKEA) 808.328.9392

UH Hilo Performing Arts Center 808.974.7310

Waimea Community Theatre 808.885.5818

West Hawaii Dance Theatre and Academy Virginia Holte, 808.329.8876

Resort and Shopping Center Cultural Events Log onto websites for event calendars

Keauhou Shopping Center 808.322.3000

Kona Music Society

Kingsʻ Shops–Waikoloa

Kona Stories Bookstore

Kona International Marketplace 808.334.9880


One Island Sustainable Living Center 808.324.0350

Living Arts Gallery 808.889.0739

Lyman Museum Emily Benton, 808.935.5021

North Kohala Community Resource Center 808.889.5523 808.886.8811 808.329.6262

Prince Kuhio Plaza 808.959.3555

Queens’ MarketPlace–Waikoloa 808.886.8822

The Shops at Mauna Lani 808.885.9501

To submit volunteer information for your nonprofit, (Listings provided on a space available basis.)

Community Kokua Volunteer Opportunities

Use provided contacts for information


East Hawaii Cultural Council

‘Imiloa Astronomy Center of Hawai‘i

Trap, neuter, spay, community education, colony feeding, management. Contact Cathy or Nancy 808.327.3724

Volunteer in the art galleries, performing arts, classes, workshops, festivals. 808.961.5711

Assist with tours, shows, education programs and membership. Contact Roxanne Ching 808.969.9704

Methodist Church Palani, Kailua-Kona 3rd Saturday, 10am

Boys & Girls Club of the Big Island Hilo, Kea‘au, Pāhoa, Pāhala Oceanview, Hāmākua Monday–Friday, 2:30–5pm

Volunteers needed for after-school youth programs Contact Matthew S. Therrien 808.961.5536

Calabash Cousins

Kailua-Kona Hulihe‘e Palace Grounds 2nd Tuesday of the month 1–2:30pm

Men and women who support the mission of Daughters of Hawai‘i. Contact Sabine Andresen 808.329.9555

CommUNITY cares

Kailua-Kona Monday–Friday, 9am–5pm Saturday, 9am–2pm

Community suffering from cancer, medical hair loss, domestic abuse. Contact Tiana Steinberg 808.326.2866

Donkey Mill Art Center

Volunteers help in arts education program. Contact Anne Catlin 808.322.3362

Friends of NELHA

Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawai‘i Keahole Kona Monday–Friday, 9am–noon

Share Ocean Science/Technology using deep ocean water. 808.329.8073

Hamakua Youth Foundation, Inc. Hamakua Youth Center, Honoka‘a Daily, Mon. Tue. Fri. 2–5:30pm Wed. 1–5:30pm, Thu. 2–8pm

Serving Hamakuaʻs school-age kids. Contact T. Mahealani Maiku‘i 808.775.0976

Hawai‘i Island Humane Society Kona Shelter, Kailua-Kona Monday–Saturday, 9am–5pm Need volunteers 16 or older, parent/child team 6 or older. Contact Bebe Ackerman 808.217.0154

Hawai‘i Wildlife Fund Wai‘ōhinu Coastline, Ka‘ū

SE Hawai‘i Island beach cleanups.

Ongoing 7:45am

Contact Megan Lamson 808.769-7629

Hospice Care

North Hawaii Hospice Waimea Monday–Friday, 8am–4:30pm

Care for families facing serious illness. Contact Catrinka Holland 808.885.7547

Hilo Tuesday-Sunday 9am–5pm

Kahalu‘u Bay Education Center Kahalu‘u Beach, Kailua-Kona Daily 9:30am–4:30pm

ReefTeach Volunteers educate visitors on reef etiquette and protection. Contact Jean BevanMarquez 808.987.6249

Kalani Retreat Center Kalapana

Varied Schedules Seeking volunteers: skilled trades/maintenance, housekeeping, kitchen, horticulture. Contact Volunteer Office 808.965.7828

Kona Music Society Kailua-Kona

Contact Alice Widmann 808.315.8460

Kona Toastmasters

Kailua-Kona 1st and 3rd Tuesdays, 6pm

Lynn Bell 808.989.7494

Lions Clubs International

Various Locations, Kailua-Kona 2nd Tuesday, 5:30pm

“We Serve” is the motto of Lions Clubs International. Contact Lani 808.325.1973

Make-A-Wish Hawaii Ongoing

Granting wishes for children with life-threatening medical conditions. 808.537.3118

North Kohala Community Resource Center

Kohala Welcome Center, Hawi Daily 9am–noon or noon–3pm

Greet people to North Kohala with aloha. Contact Juanita Rivera 808.889.5523

Paradise Ponies, Carousel of Aloha Hilo Coffee Mill, Mountain View Ongoing

Seeking volunteers to create the Carousel of Aloha Pavilion. Contact Katherine Patton 808.315.1093

Parrots in Paradise Sanctuary Kealakekua Flexible hours Monday–Friday Sanctuary for displaced parrots. Contact Dorothy Walsh 808.322.3006

Snorkel Day for People with Disabilities Kahalu‘u Beach Park 3rd Friday, 10am–2pm

Volunteers needed. Contact Stephanie Kovatch 808.326.4400 x 4017

Soroptimist International Kona Kailua Kona Monthly Meetings

Enriching the lives of women and girls in our community for more than 40 years.

Sundayʻs Child Foundation Kamuela

Serving at-risk youth aged 6 to 17 Volunteers needed islandwide. Contact Lauren Rainier 877.375.9191 | January/February 2014

Holualoa Holualoa Foundation for Arts and Culture Tuesday–Saturday, 10am–4pm

Hilo Monday–Friday, 8am–3pm

85 | January/February 2014

Hawaii’s Gift Baskets offers fun and unique locally made treats and treasures


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Kona Stories

Honoring a Five Year Advertiser with Ke Ola


ona Stories is an independent bookstore located on Hawai‘i Island. Established in 2006 by Brenda McConnell and Joy Vogelgesang, it features all genres of books. Whether it’s the latest hard cover, best seller, or an old classic, this bookstore is fully stocked with 10,000 titles. They specialize in Hawaiiana, kids’ books, whimsical gifts and cards and are an elite dealer for Woodstock Chimes.

A Dream Come True

If Brenda was ever asked what her “dream job” would have been it would have been to own a bookstore. “I just started talking about it like it was real. I would go to independent bookstores and talk story with the owner and even started taking pictures of things I liked,” states Brenda. Brenda moved to Hawai‘i in 2004 looking for the next chapter of her life. Joy was in California looking for her next adventure. The women had met years earlier in a book group and had stayed in touch. One night Brenda sent out an e-mail to a group of her friends asking if anyone was interested in joining her in Hawai‘i to open a bookstore. Joy was the first to jump in. A few months later she relocated to Hawai‘i and the birth of the bookstore began. They come from completely different backgrounds. Joy’s last job at Honeywell was as VP of Human Resources. Brenda worked in the medical field and then owned her own childcare business. Yet their common threads are, they are both avid readers and passionate about the literary value books bring to our society. After several years of planning and dreaming, Kona Stories became a reality and opened Thanksgiving weekend, 2006.

The Bookstore Business

Shadow and Nobel, Marketing Team

store hosts. Snowbirds come back every year to check up on Shadow and Nobel. Monthly donors make sure they have only the best cat food and their vet bills are always covered. Kona Stories offers a unique consignment program for local, self-published writers who need an opportunity to market their work.  One of the things that sets Kona Stories apart from other stores are their community events—most are free to the public.

Words and Wine

Brenda and Joy believe in supporting local authors. On the first Tuesday of each month at 6pm, three authors come together to promote their work. This free event is attended by 30-50 people. The evening starts with a mingle talk story around the pūpū table inside the store. There is a gorgeous assortment of yummy appetizers, and yes, wine. Each author has 20 minutes to talk about and/or read from their book. The evening ends with the authors at tables for Q&A and book signings. Afterwards the authors work remains in the bookstore for further purchases. Today there are more than 200 titles in Kona Stories that are works from our local community. Congratulations to Kona Stories for seven years of success and mahalo for being one of Ke Ola's original advertisers! Kona Stories Keauhou Shopping Center 808.324.0350 | January/February 2014

Kona Stories primary market are readers, and people looking for unique gifts. “We think our customers represent some of the smartest enlightened people in our community. They get what it means to shop local. They know the value a bookstore adds to their community.” says Joy. Competing with an online market and discount stores sometimes selling the same things for less, Joy and Brenda focus on customer service. Shipping takes a huge chunk out of the bottom line. Books are heavy and Kona Stories does not pass shipping costs to their customers. Their #1 marketing tool is the store cats! People talk about them and remember them longer than any ad or any event the

Joy Vogelgesang and Brenda McConnell, Co-Owners


Tax planning is a year round event!

Chef Pauls llc

Talk Story with an Advertiser

Paula Wilson, EA • Action Business Services


Hawaii Water Service Company Proudly providing high-quality water and wastewater utility services to Hawai’i since 2003. | January/February 2014

Hawaii Water Service Company 68-1845 Waikoloa Road, Unit #116 Waikoloa , HI 96738 (808) 883-2046 • (877) 886-7784 toll-free


Chef Paul Heerlein, Owner with culinary students at the 2013 Taste of the Range


hef Paul Heerlein attributes his success to his mom who was a part time personal chef, and his father who taught him a good work ethic. Chef Paul has an A.A.S. degree in culinary arts and is an ACF Certified Chef Instructor. He has worked in many excellent restaurants and hotels in New York, Florida, California, and Hawai‘i. His life took a turn after his 6-Pepper Salt won first place at the 1993 Seafood Excellence competition on O‘ahu. It was the beginning of Paul creating a line of unique, healthy seasoning products that are perfect for people who enjoy flavorful spicy cuisine. The initial ingredients in 6-Pepper Salt, Sansho and Szechuan pepper, made the final product too expensive for market. The ingredient formula was changed to be price competitive. If you love delicious food, shake 6-Pepper Salt on all foods that need salt and pepper before or after cooking. Shake it on salads, soups, fish, poultry, beef, and vegetables. The benefits are: • They are 55% lower in salt than table salt • The products are wheat and gluten free • Chili Peppers and a low salt diet help lower blood pressure • Cayenne pepper helps the immune system • Chili peppers fight cancer Chef Paul has been the culinary arts instructor/coordinator at Hawai‘i Community College in Kealakekua since 2001. He participates in many community events and contests with his students. He is a personal chef to a few distinguished guests on the Kona-Kohala coast. Add some spice to your life. Turn the ordinary into extraordinary. Be creative and have fun! Chef Pauls LLC 808.938.1288 These stories are special features for our advertisers. If you have a business you would like to have featured, please call 808.329.1711, x1.

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Harbor Gallery

Talk Story with an Advertiser

Available at KTA superstores and Kona Mountain Coffee Elli and Gunner Mench Owners


Harbor Gallery (daily 11:30am–8:30pm) Kawaihae Shopping Center next to the Kawaihae Harbor 808.882.1510


Save $5 at our advertisers; see Ke Ola Kālā on p71 | January/February 2014

lli and Gunner Mench grew up on farms in the country and were instilled with a hard work ethic. “I was a poor immigrant child from Germany whose parents spoke no English when we arrived [in the US]. I was lucky enough to have many mentors who helped to guide me with the principles that this great country was founded upon,” says Gunner. Gunner started working in the gallery in 1996 with the original owner, Dee Chapon, when the gallery was called Kohala Kollection. After recently deceased Peter Tucker and his wife, Lynne, took over in 1998, Gunner stayed on, and after Peter and Lynne retired in 2004, Gunner and Elli purchased the business. Harbor Gallery has the largest collection of local artwork on Hawai‘i Island, exhibiting the work of more than 200 local artists—nothing made in China. The gallery has items ranging in price from $4 to $40,000, with artwork and crafts in almost every medium imaginable. From wall art to koa wood furniture; sculpture in wood or bronze; glass; turned and carved wood bowls: high and low fired ceramics and lots of jewelry—including Charms of Aloha, Ni‘ihau lei, earrings, bracelets and more—the gallery has something for everyone. The gallery upgraded to UV-free LED lighting and the windows are covered with UV protective film, converting into a green space. They also have been using recycled packing materials from clients, other businesses, and neighbors for many years. During the Winter Wood Show (mid-January to midFebruary) and Summer Wood Show (July), Harbor Gallery donates 10 percent of the total sales to the Kohala Watershed Partnership, which is reestablishing an endemic forest from Kawaihae Harbor to the top of Kohala Mountain. More than $30,000 has been donated in the past four years. Gunner and Elli also volunteer their time planting trees. To ensure the solvency of their artists and the future of their business, Gunner and Elli buy certain inventory and raw materials. “We like to put our money where our mouth is and invest in our local community.”


Ka Puana–The Refrain Following is an excerpt from Kailua-Kona resident Kate Winter’s book, Lost Twain. Used with permission | January/February 2014



rom outside the window of the Islander Inn early that second Maui morning, the smell of plumeria blossoms had slipped through the jalousies inviting her to reveries and pleasures she literally could not imagine. She had decided against staying at the historic turn of the century Pioneer Inn with its creaking floors and antique accessories, even though she knew it was precisely the sort of place that a nineteenth century scholar ought to want to stay. Instead she chose the kind of accommodations that residents on an interisland jaunt would pick—clean, efficient, quiet, with rooms looking like any mainland motel except for the basket of plumeria soap and coconut shampoo by the bathroom sink. After almost a day of naps and cautious self-care, her jet lag abated, Emily felt eager to begin the work rather than feel the languid pulse of the morning. Inside her white car, the scent of its newness assaulted her senses that had only just been awakened by the beauties of Maui. The afternoon of arrival, she had sat at the airport rental car parking lot as long as it took for her to learn where every switch and button was and how it worked before pulling out onto the highway. Now, coasting along the road between Lāhainā and Kahului, she passed green expanses of spiked pineapple and tasseled sugarcane fields. She pressed the automatic window control and lowered the green-tinted glass a tentative two inches. The air was softer than she had imagined. It blew her short dark hair to one side slightly and moved like fingers along her neck. Keeping her eyes on the unfamiliar highway, she reached confidently for the air conditioning controls and flipped them off. The turn-off to Kahului came sooner than she’d anticipated, and she missed it, taking the road to Wailuku instead. It was a surprise to her when she passed a K-Mart and the new mall and found herself in front of the Bailey House Museum. Having spent an unfruitful hour in the Baldwin House in the whaling port of Lāhainā the previous afternoon, she did not intend to waste any more time listening to the defensive pseudo-history of wellmeaning, white-skinned docents who wanted to tell the Christian missionary side of Hawai‘i’s past. It was more than unlikely that there was anything of worth to her there, certainly nothing connected to her Melville research. Across the street, the white and green facade of Queen Ka‘ahumanu’s church rose trimly above the slope of lawn. It reminded her of every other Congregational church she had seen including the one in Lenox, Massachusetts that she had discovered while searching for the house that Melville had lived in. The building felt familiar, and she could ask directions to get her back on her way. She stepped out of the car and like a

reflex gathered her gear bag before closing and locking the door. She walked lightly across the crisp grass, ticking off the facts she had picked up about Maui’s oldest stone church—1830s— Queen Ka‘ahumanu, Kamehameha’s favorite wife, who became a Christian and burned the old idols. One of the heavy double doors of the church opened and a man in a faded blue shirt stepped out, turning back to twist a large old-fashioned key in the clanking lock. As he did so, he saw her and reversed the process, pushing the door wide open instead. He turned to face her as she hesitated near the foot of the church steps. “Aloha,” he called out softly. “I have been expecting you.” She barely took in what he had said. “Were you closing up? I see it’s nearly noon. I only wanted to ask….”  “I know. E komo mai. Welcome.” He gestured to the open door. “But I don’t want to keep you if it’s time for you to close for lunch or….” “I was expecting you.” “You were?” “Yes. You are looking for something here.” “Well, not particularly here—well, perhaps.” She followed his gesturing hand and slipped past him into the cool interior of the old church. She felt his warmth and took in a faint scent of sandalwood as she edged around him. He stepped inside with her, closing the door behind him. “Go ahead, look all you like. I will be right here.” He sat easily on a hard chair just inside the door, and leaned on the table beside it. With his elbow he pushed aside the small pile of hymnals and Bibles that rested on the starched white cloth and cradled his chin with his palm. ... “Is there anything you would like to ask?” “Oh no—I just wanted to see—it’s a superb example of the style.” “Maybe you would like to come for worship. They have service in Hawaiian.” “I don’t speak the language.” “Perhaps it does not matter.” The habit of contention rose in her then, and she looked at him closely, taking in the cinnamon color of his face with its wide Polynesian nose and full, sensuous mouth. But his eyes caught hers. Hazel eyes. Not the dark brown depths of the few local people she had actually taken the time to look at, and not the brooding black eyes that seemed to glare at her at the car rental place. Kamuela’s eyes were pale, with glints of green like the light inside a forest and there were streaks of blue like that of his shirt. Definitely hazel. “I’m here to work, looking for material about Herman Melville. He may have stopped here.” “Melville. I see. Are you not looking for something else as well?” She shook her head in denial. “Ah, then maybe you are not the one.”  “The one?” “The one I was expecting.” Contact author Kate Winter: Lost Twain is available at: The author, Kona Stories in Keauhou, Basically Books in Hilo.


Celebrating Five Years of Ke Ola

Kristi Kranz

Francene Hart

Rocky K. Jensen

Suzy Papanikolas

Caren Loebel-Fried

Michael Harburg

Hugh Jenkins/Stephanie Ross

Victoria McCormick

Bryan Lowry

Calley O’Neill

Bobbi Caputo

Ken Charon

Rod Cameron

Jamie Gilmore

Kay Yokoyama

Herb Kawainui Kāne

Clayton Bryant Young

Shirley Pu Wills

Cindy Coats

Juanette Baysa

David “Kawika” Gallegos

Harry Wishard

Esther Szegedy

MaryAnn Hylton

Edwin Kayton

Leilehua Yuen

Ethan Tweedie

Beth McCormick

Lisa Greig





G.P. Merfeld

All cover art is copyright the artist and used with permission.

January–February 2014