Community

General news which affects the Molokai community in one way or another.

Shifting Gears in Kalaupapa

Thursday, September 18th, 2014

Community Contributed

Father Pat Killilea, St Francis Church, Kalaupapa

I turned the ignition key and without hesitation my Paddy Wagon began to purr in anticipation of the ride. Then I put the shift lever in forward and suddenly something snapped in the gear box. What a time to have this happen when I was about to take my young college visitors on a tour to Kalawao! Still, it was providential that it happened here in Kalaupapa town rather than on the way. Saints Damien and Marianne were surely watching out for us. Then along came Meli and Randall Watanuki, like the Lone Ranger and Tonto riding to the rescue.…

Kawela Bridge Dedication Ceremony

Thursday, September 18th, 2014

Kawela Bridge Dedication Ceremony

Photo by Bianca Moragne.

The Hawaii Department of Transportation (DOT) celebrated the completion of the Kawela Stream Bridge Replacement Project last Wednesday with a dedication ceremony on Molokai’s Kamehameha V Highway.

State-contracted construction company Goodfellow Bros., Inc. Assistant Regional Manager Todd Svetin said he pursued a career in construction for the sense of pride he feels when a project, like the replacement of the Kawela Bridge, is completed.

“Everyone involved in this project should feel that same pride,” Svetin said. “…I’d like to thank the Molokai residents and neighboring property owners for their patience during the construction.”

According to the DOT, the $6 million project replaced the original bridge, constructed in 1940, with a new bridge that meets modern standards.…

Keeping an Eye on the Algae

Thursday, September 18th, 2014

Keeping an Eye on the Algae

DNLR staff documented gorilla ogo growth along Molokai’s south shore during a Sept. 4 visit. Photo by Catherine Cluett.

On a fishing trip along Molokai’s south shore in late July, fisherman Clay Ching noticed something strange. Huge masses of thick seaweed blanketed the shallow flats near Coconut Grove, protruding from the surface and covering hundreds of square yards in several large patches. As owner of local charter fishing company Hallelujah Hou Fishing and having spent decades trolling the area, Ching called it “epic proportions of growth” and said he’d never seen anything like it.

The algae invasion concerned him so much that he notified the Department of Land and Natural Resource (DLNR)’s Division of Aquatic Resources (DAR).…

Gold and Silver at Pailolo Challenge

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

Gold and Silver at Pailolo Challenge

Photo by Catherine Cluett.

Molokai paddlers celebrated top finishes at last weekend’s Pailolo Challenge. The 25-mile channel race from Maui to Molokai is tagged as “the world’s funnest canoe race” and features a downwind course for six-man teams in a variety of divisions. Molokai’s Team Boomski swept the women’s open unlimited division with a first place finish at Kaunakakai harbor in three hours 55 minutes. Wa`akapaemua men also won the men’s open in three hours seven minutes, while the ladies of Wa`akapaemua (pictured here) earned second in the women’s 50+ division with a time of four hours 17 minutes.…

Week of Defeat and Victory for Alex Mawae

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

Week of Defeat and Victory for Alex Mawae

Community Contributed

By Clare S Mawae

It was quite the week for Molokai’s 12-year-old Alex Mawae. It all started and finished at Lahaina harbor, with disappointment after his final heat at the Lahaina Surfa’s Stand Up Paddle (SUP) contest, and finishing the week with eyes sparkling joy from the NSSA SUP surf event. After competing in the Lahaina’s Surfa’s SUP contest on Aug. 30, Alex went on to win the National Scholastic Surfing Association (NSSA)’s SUP division on Sept. 5.

At the Surfa’s SUP, Alex won his heat in the first round, showing that he was in contention for the top three places.…

Learning Tech Together

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

Learning Tech Together

Sixth graders build solar-powered cars in class during the Tech Together program. Photos by Bianca Moragne.

Huddled outside in the hot sun, Kaunakakai Elementary sixth grade students raced solar-powered toy cars that they built in the classroom as part of the two-week Tech Together: Ka Ulu Ana Program.

Tech Together is a 10-day in-class program that delivers science, technology, engineering, and math, or STEM, to sixth grade students statewide through stimulation and interactive activities. Three Molokai schools, Kaunakakai, Kualapu`u and Kilohana, participated in the program this year with a curriculum focused on renewable and non-renewable energy technology, sustainability and the correlation between Hawaii culture and energy needs, said Vaito`i Tuala, Trainer Two, or lead classroom instructor, when she visited Molokai two weeks ago.…

Veterans Corner

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

Community Contributed

By Jesse Church

Aloha all my fellow veterans and residents of Molokai, old Jesse here with all the veterans news and upcoming events. A few weeks ago, I began thinking about the new service organizations that we have here on Molokai, Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) and Molokai Veterans Caring for Veterans (MVCV) and how they are being run. Last year, after the passing of Commander Larry Helm, Dr. Hafermann took over as commander and he had the organization running great. He started having monthly meetings, we had good turnouts and everyone was informed about everything that was being done. …

Soil and Groundwater Testing for Petroleum

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

Proposed environmental soil and groundwater testing near the wharf in Kaunakakai will take place next year to assess levels of petroleum from historic leaks. The routine testing will be performed by Chevron Environmental Management Company (CEMC) and includes evaluating the facility currently owned by Island Petroleum, Inc., and the surrounding area where their terminal is located.

“Over the years, releases of petroleum have occurred which is not uncommon in industrial areas,” said CEMC Project Manager Karl Bewley.

According to Bewley, the work CEMC will perform is a standard approach to determine if there are environmental impacts resulting from past and current petroleum terminal operations. …

Cultivating a Food Network

Thursday, September 11th, 2014

Like much of the state, Molokai imports most of the food found in its grocery stores, restaurants and schools — about 98 percent. Many Molokai residents are ready for a change and want more locally-grown foods available. That was the message received Wednesday night at Sust`aina ble Molokai’s Food Hub meeting.

Based on the Agricultural Needs Assessment survey conducted by Sust`aina ble Molokai in 2012, 90 percent of residents surveyed said they prefer to buy Molokai-grown food products, and 98 percent answered, “Yes, I would eat more local food if it was available.”

There’s a solution to that demand, said Sust`ainable Molokai Food Hub Coordinator Harmonee Williams.…

Grace Under Pressure: Miss Rodeo Hawaii

Thursday, September 11th, 2014

Grace Under Pressure: Miss Rodeo Hawaii

From left to right, Cheyanne’s parents Deanna and Kalapana, Cheyanne Keliihoomalu, and her grandfather Jimmy Duvauchelle. Photo by Catherine Cluett. 

This year’s Miss Hawaii Rodeo, Cheyanne Keliihoomalu, is making history as the first contestant from Molokai to compete in the Miss Rodeo America Pageant this December. She gained support on her home island last weekend with a fundraiser dinner held at Coffees of Hawaii.

“The support has been overwhelming and I really appreciate all the love,” said Keliihoomalu.

With the attendance of family and friends, the 24-year-old used it as an experience to practice her speech that she has to give at the national pageant in Las Vegas on Hawaii and the history of the paniolo culture.…