Culture & Art

Recalling Kulaia History

Friday, September 4th, 2015

Molokai Canoe Festivals Committee News Release

Historical records dating back to 1865 note Hawaiian outrigger canoe race competitions as one of the many events our kupuna took part in during annual la kulaia, days of festivities honoring the Kingdom of Hawaii and especially honoring our beloved monarchy.  During that era, kulaia generally occurred once a year during a national holiday or birthday celebration of a mo`i (monarch).

After the overthrow of our beloved Hawaiian Kingdom, kulaia festivities changed focus and no longer celebrated the Kingdom and monarchy.  In historical records, we see the shift from national celebration to simply canoe race competitions. …

Shop Offers Design-Your-Own Apparel

Thursday, September 3rd, 2015

Shop Offers Design-Your-Own Apparel

Something for Everybody News Release

Something for Everybody celebrated its third year in business anniversary on Saturday, Aug. 8. There were #goodwaibes all around, food and music to be found and of course, something new going on.

“This yearʻs huliau (change in time) has lead us to grow and meet our customers’ needs by allowing them to be a part of their wear,” said owner Wailani Tanaka, referring to their addition of a custom designs and creations corner in the shop. “Here at SFE we’re big on products that are relevant to our customers and their lives, and what better way to find that than by allowing them to be a part of that design process of their apparel and accessories.”

The store is now primarily stocked with brand new blank tops, bottoms, dresses, skirts, hats, even home decor and more that are all available for custom design from creation to print or press right in the store.…

Celebrating Life and Tradition

Wednesday, September 2nd, 2015

Celebrating Life and Tradition

Photo by Catherine Cluett.

Last Saturday at Molokai’s Guzeiji Soto Mission, families gathered together to keep the memory of loved ones and the traditions of Japanese culture alive on Molokai. The island’s annual bon dance brought more than 100 residents and visitors together for lively drums, dancing and good food.

“It’s a time of celebrating ancestors who have passed on,” said Marge Bento, one of the event’s organizers. “We’re kind of partying with them.”

In an event repeated every summer in towns around Japan and places around the world, including Hawaii, community members smiled as they danced around the yagura, or bon dance tower, stepping to the beat of the heavily thumping taiko drums.…

Celebrate Bon Dance This Month

Friday, August 14th, 2015

Guzeiji Soto Mission News Release

Don’t miss out on an unforgettable evening of fun as the community gathers to celebrate and remember our ancestors at Guzeiji Soto Mission of Molokai’s annual Bon Dance celebration. This year’s event will be held on Aug. 29 at Hotel Lane in Kaunakakai, with guest minister Rev. Shuji Komagata and special performances by Somei Taiko.

At 5 p.m. a memorial service for departed ones will be held, and the chicken hekka dinner plate sale begins and booths will open. The Bon Dance will be from 6 to 10 p.m.

Chicken hekka tickets are on aale now for a $10 donation; call 658-0943 for tickets.…

Mel Paoa: A Legacy of Humility and Humor

Wednesday, August 12th, 2015

Mel Paoa: A Legacy of Humility and Humor

Uncle Mel sharing his love of the Hokulea with Molokai keiki in 2013. Photo by Catherine Cluett.

Last week, Molokai lost a beloved waterman, paramedic, Hokule`a captain, mentor and family man. Melvin “Mel” Paoa, Jr., who dedicated his career to saving lives as the island’s first certified paramedic, was known around the island and the world for his quiet, aloha spirit.

Shortly after noon last Saturday, Molokai firefighters responded to a report of a boat floating unattended near Kamalo Wharf. Witnesses said they last saw Paoa, 62, tying up his 26-foot-catamaran in the area, according to fire officials. Rescue crews found him unresponsive, floating about 300 yards offshore and downwind from the wharf.…

Iconic Grove Restored

Wednesday, August 5th, 2015

Iconic Grove Restored

The grove before renovation. Photo by Gayla Haliniak-Lloyd.

Just weeks ago, Molokai’s historic Kapuaiwa Coconut Grove was thick with shrubs, piles of dead fronds and manmade trash. Now, after a thorough weeklong overhaul, the ground is bare and smooth, the fallen tree trunks are stacked neatly and Molokai residents see what many of them said they remember growing up: an unobscured view of the ocean between the towering palms.

“We’re happy it’s clean. It’s like we got back the old Coconut Grove,” said Kalamaula Homestead Association President Gayla Haliniak-Lloyd, who said the last clean-up was about four years ago.

The Department of Hawaiian Home Lands (DHHL), which owns land the property, organized the cleaning in response to community meetings in May and June during which many Kalamaula residents pointed out the grove’s deteriorating conditions.…

Evening of Poetry and Prose

Friday, July 31st, 2015

Kalele Bookstore and MAC News Release

Ariana Nadia Nash and Brandon W. Jones will be reading from their works in progress at Kalele Bookstore on Wednesday, Aug. 5 at 6 p.m. in a lively literary event cosponsored by Kalele Bookstore and the Molokai Arts Center (MAC).

Wine and the written word have gone hand in hand since before the time of Euripides, so bring a bottle of wine and/or a pupu dish to share and come lift a glass to the literary tradition.  Ariana will be reading new works of poetry and Brandon will be reading one of his short stories, with time at the end to ask them questions about their work. …

Island Foundation Logo Winner

Thursday, July 30th, 2015

Community Contributed

By Barbara Haliniak

Congratulations to Michael Onofrio, winner of the Molokai Island Foundation’s (MIF) logo contest.  Michael was presented with a $200 check for his winning design, which depicts a gourd, a vine that reaches out and bears a hard shell fruit used as an implement (ipu) adorned with kukui nuts and leaves. This exemplifies the foundation’s purpose: to reach out into the community, to serve and support its needs.

Michael graduated from Molokai High School in 2013 and is about to begin his junior year at Johnson & Wales University in Rhode Island, where he majors in graphic design.…

Arts Center Poetry Workshop

Friday, July 17th, 2015

MAC News Release

The Molokai Arts Center (MAC) is excited to present “An Introduction to Poetry,” a two-day creative writing workshop taught by award-winning poet Ariana Nadia Nash.  The two-part course will take place on consecutive Saturdays, July 25 and Aug. 1, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., at a private residence in Kawela Plantation.  The cost will be $55 for the general public and $44 for MAC members.  The workshop enrollment fee includes catered lunches both days by Roshani Nash.

The course is intended to be a fun, no-pressure introduction to the basics of modern poetry. In the first class, students will learn fundamentals of craft, both as readers and writers, and in the second class, students will try their hands at writing poetry.…

“Fishing Pono” Film Now Viewable Online

Wednesday, July 15th, 2015

“Fishing Pono” Film Now Viewable Online


Poepoe, left, and Mauna Kea Trask. Photo courtesy of Teresa Tico.

A half-hour documentary film featuring Molokai resource manager Mac Poepoe is now available for free streaming online through the end of July. “Fishing Pono: Living In Harmony With The Sea” tells the story of declining fisheries and how some Native Hawaiian communities are using traditional conservation practices to restore their fishing grounds. The film, which premiered on PBS last summer, explores the exploitation of commercial fishing, in contrast with the sustainable resource management taught by Poepoe.

“I was drawn to Mr. Poepoe’s story because of the success of his program,” said filmmaker and producer Teresa Tico of Kauai.…