Archive for the ‘Around The Island’ Category

Tsunami Update from Kauai

Tuesday, March 15th, 2011

This photo by Garden Island Photographer Dennis Fujimoto is of the crowds in the King Kaumuali‘i

Elementary School cafeteria in Hanama‘ulu while waiting out the tsunami warning in the early morning

hours, Friday. The holding area reached its capacity just before 2 a.m. with lines overflowing the cafeteria

while others spent the night sleeping in their vehicles parked in the school’s parking lot.

The Tsunami sirens sounded for the first time at 10pm and all residents in low lying areas had to evacuate.


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This included all of our guests at Hideaway Cove, so after calling everyone and letting them know what

was happening, we invited everyone up to our home.  The first wave was not due to arrive until 3am, so

there was plenty of time.  Our 18 guests starting arriving around 11pm and everyone was here by midnight.

In these photos you can see everyone enjoying the buffet breakfast we cooked up at 7am.  The all clear signal

was given at 8am and everyone was able to return to Hideaway soon after.


For the most part Kauai did not suffer significant damage.  This photo, also by Dennis Fujimoto of the

Garden Island shows a pier area at Nawiliwili Harbor with the water at unusually low levels.  Properties

that suffered the most water damage were located close to the ocean and built right a sea level.  If you ever

wonder why you see so many house on the north shore of Kauai that appear to be built on stilts, now you

know why.


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Tuesday, March 1st, 2011


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Missing Sign Found

Tuesday, January 11th, 2011

Earlier in the week, Kauai resident Janos Samos reported a sign had been stolen.  He said a community group cleaned up the Hanapepe lookout area, located on Kaumuali‘i Highway. The area beyond the guardrail had been full of trash for years, he said. The cleanup crew erected an aluminum sign with an educational message, greeting the visitors with Aloha. On or about Dec. 28, the sign, along with its concrete footing, was stolen. The group was asking for help to recover the sign.  Here is what the sign looked like:

On the surface this seemed to me to be a pretty reasonable request.  The sign is missing, they’d like it back. After all, who would want to steal a good looking sign like this?  Then I decided to read the sign, although the print was pretty small.  As best I can tell it reads “This area was cleaned ukp by the local citizens and supporters of the Lawful Hawaiian Government who love their ‘aina (land).  Please keep our beautiful island clean.  Take your trash back home or dispose of it in the containers, and remember (Next part written in both Hawaiian and English) Kauai is not America and never will be.  Enjoy your stay on Kauai!

Whoa!  What was that part about Kauai not being a part of America? Now I’m getting the sense this was no ordinary sign, and sure enough a follow up article in the newspaper a few days later said that the sign was not, in fact, stolen.  The mayor’s office had received a complaint of a sign being placed on State land and the sign was removed by the state Department of Transportation  No mention was ever made in the paper of the wording on the sign.


Hawaii November Visitor Spending Increases 30%

Tuesday, January 11th, 2011
According to the Hawaii Tourism Authority, total spending by visitors who came to Hawai’i in November 2010 rose 30.4 percent, or $227.8 million, from November 2009, to $976 million. Total expenditures for the first 11 months of 2010 were $10.3 billion, a 16 percent increase compared to the same periodlast year, according to preliminary statistics released.
For the third consecutive month (since September 2010) total visitor spending increased by double digits on all islands.
The growth in visitor spending for November 2010 was due to higher average daily visitor spending (+10.5%), and an 18.2 percent increase in total arrivals to 577,540 visitors. Total arrivals by air grew 17.6 per-
cent from November 2009 to 560,588 visitors. Canada (+28.2%), U.S. West (+23%) and U.S. East (+18.1%) showed double-digit growth, while arrivals from Japan rose 3.3 percent from last November. Arrivals by cruise ships increased 43.5 percent to 16,952 visitors.
For the first 11 months of 2010, total visitor days for all visitors increased 8.9 percent compared to year-to- date 2009, and total arrivals rose 8.6 percent, to 6,450,795 visitors.

Poipu Beach New Years Eve Fireworks

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010


Happy Hanapepe Town

Saturday, December 4th, 2010

Every wondered how Hawaiian salt is made?  Get the answer plus a lot of footage of one of Kauai’s original plantation towns in this seven and a half minute video.


It’s accompanied by soothing Hawaiian music and is very well done.  It’s a segment of in flight entertainment offered on Hawaiian Airlines, so if you’re going to be flying to Hawaii in the next month or so you can get a sneak preview.


Love animals and want a job on Kauai?

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

Company Name:Kauai Humane Society


Information: KAUAI HUMANE SOCIETY EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Kauai Humane Society is a nonprofit 501(c) (3) animal welfare organization dedicated to ensuring compassionate and informed care of Kauai’s animals and promoting the human-animal bond. Its key function is to operate an open admission shelter.


Description: The Executive Director oversees all programs, services and facilities of the Kauai Humane Society. This position is highly visible in the community and requires proven fundraising ability and a strong management background. Must have excellent written and verbal communication skills; computer knowledge; fiscal experience; minimum 5 years management experience and a bachelor’s degree. Nonprofit management preferred.


For more information and an application, please contact or by mail to: Executive Director Search Committee, c/o Kauai Humane Society, P.O. Box 3330 Lihue, Hawaii


Shrimp Farm Public Hearing set for November 23rd at Waimea Theatre

Monday, November 8th, 2010

The state Department of Health will hold a public hearing on a proposed draft discharge permit for the Sunrise Capital shrimp farm at 6 p.m. Nov. 23 at Waimea Theatre, 9691 Kaumuali‘i Highway.         


Written statements will also be accepted until 4:30 p.m. Nov. 23, by e-mailing or by mail to Clean Water Branch, Environmental Management Division, State Department of Health, 919 Ala Moana Blvd., Room 301, Honolulu, HI 96814.

The proposed draft permit is available for public inspection Monday through Friday from 7:45 a.m. to 4:15 p.m., at the CWB office in Honolulu and the Kaua‘i DOH District Health Office, 3040 ‘Umi St., Lihu‘e. It is also available online at

For more information, call toll-free 274-3141, then 6-4309# after the recorded message. 

The public hearing is a direct result of community concerns about Sunrise Capital Shrimp Farm’s plan to expand operations.  

Sunrise Capital needs the DOH to sign off on the permit so the shrimp farm can discharge up to 30 million gallons of wastewater effluent and treated shrimp remains into the ocean on a daily basis.

Originally owned and operated by Ceatech USA, the shrimp farm was acquired by Sunrise Capital in June 2005 and is currently operating at minimal capacity.

Residents are concerned with Sunrise Capital’s plan to expand its operations in part because of their experience with the farm under Ceatech.


The previous owner operated the shrimp farm at full capacity from February 2000 to December 2003 until it became infected with a shrimp virus in 2004.

George Chamberlain, the president of Global Aquaculture and an owner of Integrated Aquaculture, which purchased the farming operation last year has said the shrimp farm is committed to sustainability and understands how to control the white spot syndrome virus.

Efforts to reduce nutrient levels to “very” diluted levels to mitigate waste matter have been taken seriously, he said in an April interview before the public comment period on the permit closed.

The level of discharge is expected to be lower than the proposed amount at around 12 million gallons a day when operating at full speed with all 50 ponds, which vary from one to one-quarter acre in size, Chamberlain said.

The facility has also put measures in place such as plastic-lined ponds with a drainage system that periodically removes settled matter and a skimmer system that discards floating material, according to Clean Water Branch officials.

While the shrimp farm has won the support of some agribusiness owners and aquaculture program managers for its ability to diversify the state’s agricultural activities on Kaua‘i and provide jobs, many of the 167 comments received during the public feedback period expressed serious concern over the proposal.



18th Annual Slack Key Festival November 14th

Monday, November 8th, 2010

The nonprofit Ki-ho‘alu Foundation has announced that the 18th Annual Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival “Kaua’i Style” will be from noon to six p.m., Sunday, November 14th at the Kaua‘i Beach Resort in Kapaa.

Doors will open at 11:30 a.m. with music from noon to five p.m. The festival is free to the public.  The organizers, Ki-ho‘alu Foundation, are asking for a donation at the door to help defray some of the costs of putting on the festival and to help the foundation continue its work of producing these festivals statewide.

For more information on the history of slack key, the festival here on Kauai and past entertainers, see


Neil Abercrombie Elected Hawaii Governor

Thursday, November 4th, 2010
New Hawaii Governor Neil Ambercrombie

Democrats take back Hawaii statehouse

Abercrombie will be the first Democratic governor in eight years, succeeding GOP Gov. Linda Lingle in President Barack Obama’s birth state. Abercrombie, a former 10-term congressman who represented urban Honolulu, defeated Republican Lt. Gov. James “Duke” Aiona.

Abercrombie’s victory, in a state that has long been dominated by Democrats, gave that party’s faithful something to hoot about on a Election Day in which dozens of Democratic congressional and gubernatorial candidates across the country went down to defeat.

Abercrombie’s win also makes former state Democratic Party Chairman Brian Schatz the new lieutenant governor. In Hawaii, candidates for the state’s top two posts run on a ticket. They are to be sworn in on Dec. 6.

At 72, Abercrombie will is one of the last remaining major Hawaii politicians who was an adult when statehood was achieved in 1959. He by far will be the oldest to enter the governor’s office since then, and would carry with him four decades of political experience.

During the campaign, Abercrombie promised a fresh approach from Lingle, who he contended had adopted a confrontational approach to state employee unions and had unnecessarily allowed cost-saving furloughs to be adopted during the 2009-2010 school year.

In addition to restoring the state’s economy, the ex-congressman proposed to create an independent authority that would more quickly implement clean energy policies and to fold some current state offices into a new Department of Early Childhood.

Abercrombie also contended he would have a better shot at winning federal dollars for Hawaii from the Obama administration, and said he’d protect agricultural lands from development.

Both he and Aiona eschewed tax hikes, but they differed widely on social issues. Abercrombie backed abortion rights and said he would sign a same-sex civil unions bill similar to legislation Lingle vetoed earlier this year. Aiona opposed abortion rights and civil unions, and said he’d propose a constitutional amendment to define marriage as between a man and a woman.

Abercrombie also promised to quickly approve Honolulu’s proposed $5.5 billion rail project in concept. Aiona had said he’d wait until an ongoing financial review ordered by Lingle is completed before making a final decision.

It is not clear what Lingle will do with the project in her remaining month in office, though she said in August it may be more appropriate for the next governor to decide its fate “since they will really have to live with the result of it.”

Abercrombie’s victory will remove almost all measures of influence for Republicans in the state Capitol, since Democrats are expected to continue enjoying strong majorities in both the state House and Senate.