Hawaiian Culture

Hawaiian culture stories from Molokai

Dancing with the Winds: Ka Hula Piko 2014

Wednesday, May 7th, 2014

Dancing with the Winds: Ka Hula Piko 2014

Photo courtesy Catherine Cluett.

Ancient Hawaiians used winds to recognize and heed messages of warning, blessings and things to come. The 23rd annual Ka Hula Piko festival brought the Molokai community, along with visitors from around the world, together to celebrate hula traditions and how Hawaiians today are connected to kupuna of the past through the elements.

“The wind and the elements are so important in our lives and our ancestors made connections to them…that taught us to mind the protocol and be aware of these elements when they are in action,” said Elsie Ryder, ho`opa`a, or chanter, of Halau Hula O Kukunaokala.…

Kawela Moku: Reviving the Aha Moku System

Thursday, May 1st, 2014

Community Contributed

Opinion by Kawika Duvauchelle, Kanoelani Davis, and Hawaiiloa Mowat

The Kawela Moku lies roughly between Kalamaula to Kamalo.  It is rich in natural resources, from stunning waterfalls in the mountains to countless loko ia along its shoreline and from the many culturally significant sites that are scared to Hawaiians to one of the largest fringing reefs in the state.  The Kawela Moku is the source of water for many families on Molokai and provides us with fish from the ocean and pig and deer from the mountains.  Our hope is that these gifts will last for many, many generations.…

Hawaiian Immersion Summer Schools

Wednesday, April 30th, 2014

Community Contributed

By Manuwai Peters

With interest and demand growing for Hawaiian language programs for kids entering middle school, a second Kula Kaiapuni Kauwela site will open this summer at Molokai Middle School. Kula Kaiapuni Kauwela at Molokai Middle is for students who will complete grade six, seven or eight this school year.  The Hawaiian language based curricula is designed to engage and excite students in the many aspects of the Malama Honua Worldwide Voyage of the Hokule`a and Hikianalia wa`a.

Through direct instruction and inquiry, students will compare stories and traditions of the Polynesian (Maori and Tahitian) migration with primary accounts of Hawaiian migrations, genealogies, exploration, and discovery. …

Learning Journey: Hokule`a Crew Inspires Students

Wednesday, April 30th, 2014

The first time Molokai’s Captain Melvin “Mel” Paoa touched the Hokule`a — a replica of the traditional Hawaiian double-hulled seafaring canoe — in 1977, he said he held on tight and never let go—no matter the odds.

As a diabetic, Paoa was told to discontinue sailing on Hokule`a for health reasons, but he didn’t take no for an answer. In 1985, he set sail on his longest voyage yet for 12,000 miles from Hawaii to Tahiti to French Polynesia and finally the Cook Islands. He told Molokai Middle School (MMS) students, education leaders and community members at an education event last Friday to never give up.…

Nation-Building Process

Wednesday, April 30th, 2014

Nation-Building Process

Community Contributed

Opinion by Kamana`opono M. Crabbe, Ka Pouhana, Chief Executive Officer for OHA

 

With the May 1 deadline to register with the Official Hawaiian Roll fast approaching, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA) is moving aggressively to engage its beneficiaries on Molokai in the nation-building process.

We are invigorated by those in the Hawaiian community who tell us that they are ready to begin a process aimed at creating a nation where all Native Hawaiians have an opportunity to thrive.

This nation-building process will begin and end with Native Hawaiians who, for example, believe their children are entitled to an education that allows them to be competitive in the 21st century; believe their families should have access to safe and affordable housing that strengthens communities; and believe we as a people need to become healthier by stepping it up through exercise, a balanced diet and preventive medicine.…

Honoring Hawaii’s First Homestead

Wednesday, April 30th, 2014

Honoring Hawaii’s First Homestead

Beginning in 1921, a selected group of hardy Hawaiian families began building a life in Kalama`ula. They cleared kiawe, constructed homes and infrastructure, planted gardens and raised livestock. It was difficult work, but because of their success, more than 6,000 Hawaiian Homesteaders now live around the state, according to OHA Chairperson Colette Machado.

“They had to make do and… they overcame that and succeeded,” said Machado. “If it wasn’t for the Kalama`ula demonstration, [Native Hawaiians] wouldn’t be where we are today.”

Last week, the descendants of Hawaii’s first 42 homesteaders in Kalama`ula gathered to celebrate 90 years since the establishment of the Kalaniana`ole Settlement, as it was known.…

Aka`ula School Celebrates 10 Years

Friday, April 25th, 2014

Aka`ula School Celebrates 10 Years

Editor’s note: Reprinted here with permission are two student-written articles that originally appeared in Aka`ula School’s newsletter.

By Madison Trenner, grade 5

On Saturday, April 5, Aka`ula School celebrated a decade of “Learning and Leading Together.”  On this beautiful spring day current students opened with the school oli.  Victoria Newberry presented a colorful history of how a group of energetic people came together and started a school.  Towards the end of her speech, we were blessed with a short shower.  Lunch was a plate of tasty tortillas filled with meat and vegetables.  For dessert we had the biggest cake I have ever seen. …

Advocating for the `Aina

Thursday, April 24th, 2014

Advocating for the `Aina

In celebration of Earth Day, hundreds of attendees, young and old, examined taxidermies of the endangered native Hawaiian duck, learned how to check plants for invasive fire ants using peanut butter, and pinpointed areas of the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument, the most remote island archipelago in the world.

The community gathered at Molokai’s 22nd annual Earth Day festival at the Kaunakakai Ball Field last Friday evening to honor the values of aloha `aina and malama `aina. Kupuna Moses “Moke” Kim inspired island youth to malama `aina through the Hana Kupono program at Molokai High and Intermediate School. This year’s theme, “He Wa`a He Moku, He Moku He Wa`a; your canoe is like an island, an island is like your canoe,” is a testament to Kim’s mission to preserve Molokai’s natural and limited resources, according to event organizers.…

Nurturing `Olelo Hawaii

Wednesday, April 16th, 2014

Nurturing `Olelo Hawaii

Last Saturday was filled with keiki, mele, ono food, and `Olelo Hawaii—the Hawaiian language. Hundreds of Molokai residents congregated at Lanikeha in Ho`olehua, to celebrate the Hawaiian language and culture at Punana Leo O Molokai’s annual Ho’omau event.

Punana Leo O is a Hawaiian immersion preschool committed to reestablishing the native language,`olelo makuanhine, as the first language spoken at home. The school opened its doors in 1991, and now after 23 years, has served about 400 keiki ages three to five and ohana of Molokai.

“Today is to celebrate `Olelo Hawaii,” said event emcee Miki`ala Pescaia. “Our kupuna were [once] punished for speaking [the language].…

Descendants of Original Kalama`ula Homesteaders Sought

Monday, April 14th, 2014

Descendants of Original Kalama`ula Homesteaders Sought

DHHL News Release

The State of Hawaii Department of Hawaiian Home Lands (DHHL) is seeking descendants still residing on Molokai of the 22 native Hawaiians allocated homestead lots and the 20 who were allocated residential lots at Kalaniana`ole Settlement, Kalama`ula, from Sept. 16, 1921, through Nov. 13, 1923.
In commemoration of the 90th anniversary of the Kalanana`ole Settlement at Kalama`ula and the original 42 Hawaiian homesteaders, DHHL is planning on a celebration at Kalaniana`ole Hall, Kalama`ula following the Hawaiian Homes Commission meeting at the DHHL offices at Kulana `Oiwi on April 21, where the families of the original homesteaders will be recognized.…