Sen. Inouye Makes Kalaupapa Visit

Photo Courtesy NPS.

NPS News Release 

Kalaupapa National Historical Park residents and staff were honored to host Hawaii Sen. Daniel K. Inouye for the rededication of Paschoal Hall on Oct. 29. Held in the community of Kalaupapa, Mr. and Mrs. Inouye traveled from Oahu to re-open Paschoal Hall and spend the day talking story with patient residents and kokua.

Sen. Inouye has long been a champion for the Kalaupapa settlement. In 1998, he was successful in obtaining funding for the first phase of the massive, four phase project to stabilize and refurbish Paschoal Hall. The hall was built in 1916 in response to the residents’ desire for more extensive social activities. The community was particularly fond of music, dance and movies and they were successful in petitioning the Board of Health to provide a facility to accommodate these activities.

The final phase, completed this past summer, was the rehabilitation of the interior of the building. This involved removing thousands of acoustical tiles which were falling from the walls and ceiling, exposing asbestos bearing mastic used long ago to adhere them. This prompted the need for asbestos removal as part of the rehabilitation process. The 225 theater seats were removed, refurbished, and reinstalled. National Park Service staff performed extensive repairs, replacing original components only as necessary and always with matching materials. An accessible restroom was added and the entire interior was repainted in period colors. The facility now houses six new interpretive panels to inform and educate visitors about the unique history of this historic structure.


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