New Flight Service, Old-Fashioned Style

Sunday, June 9th, 2013

New Flight Service, Old-Fashioned Style

A new flight service is landing on Molokai, bringing in a small business attitude that has already proven successful in Kalaupapa. Makani Kai Air is offering five flights daily to Honolulu and back, which began June 8, while keeping its twice daily Kalaupapa flights.

The decision to expand its service came after an agreement to provide aircraft and staff to Mokulele Airlines fell through, said Makani Kai President Richard Schuman. He said he was not going to lay off his employees, so he found a way to keep everyone working while providing flights to an area receiving decreased air service.

“I read the paper where Island Air was backing off its runs and Pacific Wings announced its departure,” Schuman said.…

Molokai Rocks

Friday, May 3rd, 2013

Molokai Rocks

A look at the island’s quarries

By Emily Sumners and Catherine Cluett

Rock mining isn’t one of Molokai’s more well-known industries, but it nonetheless plays an important role on the island. Molokai rock is used to pave all the island’s roads, form the cement for its buildings and sidewalks, provides gravel to repair its dirt roads and stones for its rock walls.

General contracting company Goodfellow Brothers operates one of the two currently active commercial quarry operations on Molokai. Located between Maui Electric’s Pala`au power plant and the Molokai-Naiwa Landfill, the quarry has been in operation since 1973, according to Goodfellow’s Todd Svetin.…

Island Air Reduces Molokai Flights

Wednesday, April 24th, 2013

One of Molokai’s primary air carriers, Island Air, has made changes to their flight schedule that have raised concerns among local customers. The airline has cancelled all flights between Molokai and Maui, and as of May, will decrease flights between Molokai and Honolulu from five to three per day.

“My concern for the decrease of Island Air travel to Honolulu is for our island population,” said Molokai resident and county councilmember Stacy Crivello. “Molokai people travel to Honolulu for specialized medical needs or hospitalization that may not be provided by Molokai’s health care providers. Molokai families also utilize Island Air… to visit and care for our sick `ohana and be part of our loved one’s celebration of life.”

Les Murashige, Island Air president, said the airline is going through a transitional period with new ownership and aircraft.…

Expansion for Island Air

Wednesday, March 20th, 2013

Expansion for Island Air

With a new owner and a new plane, Island Air is entering into a period of expansion and growth. Company president Les Murashige, who entered the position in October, shared his thoughts on recent buyer Larry Ellison, the ATR 72 aircraft and Hawaiian Airline’s entrance into the Molokai market.

“We have always wanted to provide service throughout Hawaii,” Murashige said last Thursday. “With our new ownership and their commitment, we can [expand].”

One way the company is expanding and improving is with the addition of new aircraft to their fleet. The ATR 72 turboprop holds 64 passengers, nearly twice as many as the Dash 8 turboprop, which is what the airlines has used.…

Larry Ellison Buys Island Air

Wednesday, February 27th, 2013

Larry Ellison Buys Island Air


Island Air News Release
Island Air closed the sale of the airline today to a newly formed holding company owned by Lawrence J. Ellison. The sale secures the future of Island Air and its employees.

There are no planned staff changes and Island Air will continue its operations as usual while developing plans for additional planes, routes and services. All current tickets will be honored and all Cloud9 members will retain their status and benefits.

“This is another major investment and commitment to Hawaii,” said Paul Marinelli, vice president of Lawrence Investments, LLC. “We understand the critical importance of transportation in an island state, and we will ensure that Island Air strengthens its role, capacity and service to the people of Hawaii.…

State of the County Address

Thursday, February 21st, 2013

The following is Mayor Alan Arakawa’s state of the county address, which he delivered February 20 at the Baldwin High School Auditorium at 5 p.m. Check back soon for some comments from Mayor Arakawa about Molokai specifically. 


Aloha and good evening.

Please join me in giving Mr. Dean Wong a round of applause. He had some large shoes to fill in taking over emcee duties this year and he’s done a fine job.

Our last two State of the County events were emceed by the late

Martin Luna, a friend to this administration and our community.

Of course it is impossible not to think of Martin now as we begin tonight.…

`Ohana by Hawaiian: Air Service Coming Soon to Molokai

Monday, February 11th, 2013

Hawaiian Airlines News Release

A kapa pattern symbolizing ancestry, family and transportation will mark the turboprop aircraft flown by Hawaii’s newest interisland operation when `Ohana by Hawaiian inaugurates service to Molokai and Lanai this summer.

The name and brand identity of the new service, as well as the aircraft design by renowned artist and designer Sig Zane and his son Kuha`o, were unveiled this morning at Honolulu International Airport.

“The name `Ohana perfectly captures the idea behind this service and the role it will play in our community. This new service has always been about making it easier for friends and families throughout the islands and from overseas to share time together,” said Mark Dunkerley, President and CEO of Hawaiian Holdings, Inc.…

Fish and Dive Refreshes Business

Sunday, February 3rd, 2013

Fish and Dive Refreshes Business


After 40 years in the same location, Molokai Fish and Dive is being moved into the gas station next door in a process that will bring several changes to the popular ocean gear and tour provider. Tim and Susan Forsberg, who have owned the shop for 12 years, said it was time to do something different, so they took on the challenge of adding fuel and food to their services for locals and tourists.

When the Forsbergs noticed Hayaku, the gas station next door, was often closed last December, they feared that Molokai would soon have only one gas station again.…

Island Air’s New Ownership

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

Island Air — Molokai’s largest air carrier — is changing ownership, the airline announced Jan. 10. The company has not yet disclosed any details, including the buyer and how the sale may affect its employees and routes.
One week after the announcement, however, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported the buyer as billionaire Larry Ellison, the new owner of Lanai. The newspaper cited two anonymous sources “familiar with the situation.”

“Yes, we are in the midst of a potential sale,” Cindy Vanairsdale Island Air’s corporate secretary, told The Molokai Dispatch last week. “Amidst all the media speculations, from our end, it is still an unnamed entity during this due diligence period, and anything can happen.”

Island Air CEO Les Murashige sent a letter to employees on Jan.…

Agreement Marks Peaceful Conclusion to Yacht Conflict

Monday, January 14th, 2013

Agreement Marks Peaceful Conclusion to Yacht Conflict

This time last year, a group of Molokai residents greeted the Safari Explorer yacht with protest signs, while the state called for a security zone to ensure the vessel’s safe docking. Last week, the ongoing conflict was peacefully resolved, not only allowing continued visits from the 36-person yacht, but also designating Molokai as future home port of operations for the company.

Community members, American Safari Cruises staff, state officials and protesters gathered last Wednesday in a spirit of understanding to sign an agreement that concludes more than a year of conflicts. Photo by Catherine Cluett

Amid smiles and hugs, former protesters, state officials and American Safari Cruises staff signed an agreement that’s been called the first of its kind in the state.…