About The Kaʻū Calendar

Ka`u, Hawai`i, United States
A locally owned and run community newspaper (www.kaucalendar.com) distributed in print to all Ka`u District residents of Ocean View, Na`alehu, Pahala, Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park, Volcano Village and Miloli`i on the Big Island of Hawai`i. This blog is where you can catch up on what's happening daily with our news briefs. This blog is provided by The Ka`u Calendar Newspaper (kaucalendar.com), Pahala Plantation Cottages (pahalaplantationcottages.com), Local Productions, Inc. and the Edmund C. Olson Trust.

Friday, December 21, 2018

Kaʻū News Briefs, Friday, December 21, 2018

Kīlauea Military Camp, above, welcomes guests during the partial shutdown of federal government. Volcano
House, Volcano Art Center, displays at Kīlauea Visitor Center, and  Hawaiʻi Pacific Parks Association store are
open, along with a number of park trails and overlooks. Photo from Kīlauea Military Camp
A PARTIAL FEDERAL GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN PROMPTED A PARTIAL HAWAI‘I VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK CLOSURE this evening. "During the shutdown of the federal government due to a lapse of appropriations, Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park will remain as accessible as possible while still following all applicable laws and procedures," says a statement from the Park this evening.
Volcano House is open for dining, shopping, and lodging.
Photo from MacArthur Sotheby's Realty
     Entrance fees will not be charged. Some park roads, trails, and viewpoints remain accessible to visitors, but emergency and rescue services are limited.
     While the Kahuku Unit near Ocean View is closed, the public is able to enter the Volcano park gate at no charge.
     Kīlauea Visitor Center exhibits and Hawai‘i Pacific Parks Association store will be open, though the Kīlauea Visitor Center Theatre, which shows films to visitors, is closed. Also open are Volcano Art Center Gallery, Kīlauea Military Camp, and Volcano House, with their lodging, restaurants, and stores. Kīlauea Military Camp Theatre remains open.
     According to staff members at Volcano House, managers met late today to determine how to proceed with many guests checking in to accommodations and dining. They said the Park assured them the main gate to the Park will be open. Volcano House is operated by a private contractor able to pay its employees. Volcano Art Center Gallery and Hawai‘i Pacific Parks Association staffs work for non-profits, and KMC has separate funding. However, many National Park employees faced furloughed at 7 p.m. and will be unable to return until the government is funded.
Volcano Art Center Gallery is open, with its
fireplace, Christmas in the Country, and 19th 
Invitational Wreath exhibits. Photo from VAC
     Also open during the shutdown are Kīlauea Visitor Center picnic tables and restrooms; Crater Rim Drive from Park entrance to KMC; Crater Rim Trail between Volcano House and KMC; Steam Vents and Sulfur Banks; Mauna Loa Road to Kīpukapuaulu (vehicles not permitted past the gate at Kīpukapuaulu); Mauna Loa Road to Mauna Loa Lookout – pedestrians and bicyclists only; Kīpukapuaulu day use picnic area (no trash or custodial services – pack it in, pack it out only); Kīpukapuaulu and trail; and Ka‘ū Desert Trail to the Footprints shelter and exhibit.
     The rest of the park is closed, including Chain of Craters Road, Escape Road, all campgrounds, and all backcountry areas.

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THE PARTIAL FEDERAL SHUTDOWN BEGAN TODAY after the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate voted to fund the government without $5 billion for Pres. Donald Trump's wall along the southern mainland border. After Trump refused to sign the legislation, the House capitulated and voted to fund the wall. The Senate refused to fund the wall and partial funding for government lapsed. House and Senate leaders entered discussions on a compromise, and are expected to vote again whenever they reach a solution and the President agrees to it.
Kīlauea Visitor Center displays and Hawai‘i Pacific Parks Association store remain open during the government shutdown.
Photo from KVC
     Sen. Mazie Hirono remained in her office after 9 p.m. in Washington, D.C. tonight. Interviewed on MSNBC, she noted Trump said earlier that he would take responsibility for the shutdown, but has turned to blaming others. "He has to grow up," she said.
     Hirono said federal workers will suffer, and noted she signed onto a bill for retroactive pay for those essential employees who work during the shutdown without paychecks, and those furloughed through no fault of their own.
     She posted on her Facebook that the Senate "did the responsible thing by unanimously passing a bill to keep the government running, but the President threw a wrench in the works. There are so many negative impacts to a shutdown - and the the President didn't care." She tweeted this evening,  "Donald Trump needs to face the reality that he won't get $5 billion for his wall and keep the government running." She said on MSNBC, Trump "is in meltdown mode and the only wall that's real is the one that's closing in on him."
     Sen. Brian Schatz tweeted: "Let's give a shout out to our extraordinary federal workforce. They are the ones being harmed by this nonsense, not any member of Congress."

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A midwinter dawn at Halemaʻumaʻu on Kīlauea, December 2018. Steaming cracks tell of water and heat interacting 
beneath the summit caldera of the volcano. In the background, the first rays of sunlight illuminate Uēkahuna Bluff. 
USGS photo by E. F. Younger
A FIELD TRIP TO THE MOUNTAIN OF WATER is the subject of this week's Volcano Watch, by U.S. Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory scientists and affiliates:
     The field day begins with a summit weather check at first light. It is a reflective moment at 6:15 a.m. atop Kīlauea Volcano, and the fumarole cracks are steaming like the coffee from my thermos. The weather at Halemaʻumaʻu crater is cool and dry, with light trade winds from the northeast. We hope for these mornings.
     I text my workmates at USGS HVO in Hilo. The plans are a "go" – our sampling crew is heading to Keller Well. My checklist for today's field work reads: water, rain jacket, extra-long tape measure…
     I am one of a team of volcano scientists and technicians making this trip. Our destination is a 1,262 m (4,140 ft) deep borehole, locally called Keller Well, that is the only one of its kind on Kīlauea's summit. Since it was drilled in 1973, it has provided researchers with a view into the hydrology and history of an active volcano. Our mission today is to measure the groundwater level in the well, 506 m (1,660 ft) beneath the surface – where the groundwater level was when it was last measured 9 months ago – and to bring up a scalding hot water sample. I continue checking my list: 2 m (6 ft) metal sampler tube, clean sample bottles…
     My HVO and USGS Volcano Science Center colleagues and I will be accessing a restricted area of Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park. We check our safety gear: helmets, respirators, SO2 sensor badges, satellite tracker, and our National Park Service permit. Keller Well, located in the southern portion of the Kīlauea caldera, sits at 1,102 m (3,615 ft) above sea level. The rim of the Halemaʻumaʻu lava lake of 2008–2018 used to be about 1 km (0.62 mi) to the north.
Watch video of a drone overflight of Kīlauea Caldera after the last of the collapses. Video from USGS 
     Distance from rim to well narrowed dramatically during the eruption of this past summer, as caldera collapse explosions shook Halemaʻumaʻu and the lava lake drained out of sight. The steaming pit is now nearly a cubic kilometer (0.25 cu mi) larger, the rocky bottom is 500 m (1,640 ft) deeper, and the crater rim has expanded about 250 m (820 ft) toward the wellhead. Across the chasm from Keller Well, the evacuated HVO tower looms empty; a silent host of cameras keeping watch over Kīlauea. We will find out today if Keller Well has survived the 2018 eruption. Will it continue to yield data on Kīlauea's hydrothermal depths, or has the story been pinched off?
     At the wellhead, a capped stub of pipe protrudes from the barren, ash-caked landscape. We set up the large tape measure reel and lower the electric continuity sensor into the well. It descends quickly as we spool out the calibrated graduations into the darkness below. Down through the porous rock, we follow the path of a fallen raindrop, moving through varied layers. Some are highly porous, while others are choked by mineralization that formed as liquid water was converted to steam by geothermal heat. Ash layers confine the free movement of the groundwater, while cracks and other voids can conduct large flows.
     Suddenly, the alarm at the surface buzzes madly, signaling the tape circuit is complete. The downhole sensor has reached the water table! We have arrived at the Mountain of Water.
    Hidden beneath the surface of the volcano island, this mountain within has a character all its own. Its topography is constantly changing, seeking balance between discharge and recharge, pressure and heat. Beneath Kīlauea's summit, the altitude of the water mountain is remarkably high compared to nearby areas outside the volcanic rift zones. We measure the tape, 508 m (1,667 ft) to the reference mark on the wellhead; the groundwater is 2.1m (7 ft) lower than it was in March, before the eruption of 2018.
1973 map of Kīlauea, showing (circled in red) where Keller Well
was drilled. USGS map
     The Mountain of Water's composition is diverse. It is fresh and salt, liquid and steam, and it carries an abundance of dissolved chemicals. We withdraw the sampler, kettle-hot, and carefully bottle the sample for laboratory analyses of sulfate (SO4), chloride (Cl), sodium (Na), and potassium (K).
     Today's field work marks one new data point in a long series of observations at Keller Well. Only time and concerted effort will reveal its context within the larger story.
Volcano Activity Updates
     Kīlauea is not erupting. Rates of seismicity, deformation, and gas release have not changed significantly over the past week.
     December 18, at 1:44 a.m., a magnitude-2.8 earthquake occurred 12 km (7 mi) SSE of Volcano at 3 km (2 mi) depth.
     Deformation signals are consistent with refilling of the middle ERZ. Sulfur dioxide emission rates have been below detection limits in the lower ERZ since early September, though minor amounts of volcanic gas are still present. Sulfur dioxide emission rates were last measured at ~35 tonnes per day at both the summit and ERZ, consistent with the past few months of emissions from Kīlauea.
     The USGS Volcano Alert level for Mauna Loa remains at NORMAL
     Visit volcanoes.usgs.gov/hvo for past Volcano Watch articles, Kīlauea and Mauna Loa updates, volcano photos, maps, recent earthquake info, and more. Call 808-967-8862 for weekly Kīlauea updates. Email questions to askHVO@usgs.gov.

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CUSTOMERS WHO LEFT PAYMENTS AT HAWAI‘I ELECTRIC LIGHT COMPANY DROPBOX IN HILO at 1200 Kīlauea Ave. between 2:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 14, and 7 a.m. Monday, Dec. 17, are asked to call HELCO Customer Service at (808) 969-6999 to check payment status.
     HELCO is investigating the theft of payment envelopes. Video surveillance shows a man prying the payment box open late Friday evening, Dec. 14, according to a statement from HELCO. The utility says they are working with authorities to investigate the incident.
     As a reminder, customers should not place cash payments in the drop box, says the announcement.
     For other payment options, visit hawaiielectriclight.com.

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Caution: Fun at the Library. Yesterday's Cookie Decorating event at Nāʻālehu Public Library - held
safely outside, away from books - was a successful afternoon of sticky fingers and creative keiki.
See more photos and story, below. Photo by Geneveve Fyvie
NĀ’ĀLEHU LIBRARY'S COOKIE DECORATING EVENT on Thursday drew keiki to show some holiday creativity, smearing of icing, and layering of sprinkles.
A keiki, showing off his cookie creation
at Nāʻālehu Public Library yesterday.
Photo by Geneveve Fyvie
     Keiki decorated a range of cookies: sugar, chocolate chip, M&M, and oatmeal raisin. Topping options included chocolate, red, blue, or white icing, and metallic, green, blue, gold, white, red, snowman, and snowflake sprinkles.
     Contact Nā’ālehu Public Library Branch Manager Sara Kamibayashi, at 939-2442, for more details on next year's event.

Safety first: This keiki, garbed in an apron, just might make 
it to the sprinkle stage before getting covered in frosting.
Photo by Geneveve Fyvie
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Print edition of The Kaʻū Calendar is free to 5,500 mailboxes 
throughout Kaʻū, from Miloliʻi through Volcano, and free on 
stands throughout the district. Read online at kaucalendar.com
Kaʻū High Winter Sports Schedule
Girls Basketball:
Dec. 17, Mon., host PA, 6pm
Dec. 19, Wed., host Kohala, 6pm
Dec. 22, Sat., host JV Christian Liberty, 2pm
Jan. 4, Fri., host Hilo6pm
Jan. 7, Mon., @Honokaʻa, 6pm
Jan. 9, Wed., @Kamehameha, 6pm
Boys Basketball:
Dec. 18, Tue., @Keaʻau
Dec. 22, Sat, host Parker
Dec. 27, Thu., @Kealakehe
Jan. 3, Thu., host Honokaʻa, 6pm
Jan. 5, Sat., @HPA, 6pm
Wrestling:
Dec. 22, Sat., @Oʻahu
Jan. 5, Sat., @Waiakea
Soccer:
Dec. 19, Wed., host HPA
Dec. 22, Sat., host Waiakea
Dec. 29, Sat., @Kona
Jan. 3, Thu., Girls @HPA
Jan. 5, Sat., Boys host Kealakehe
Jan. 7, Mon., @Hilo
Jan. 9, Wed., @Keaʻau
Swimming:
Dec. 29, Sat., @Kamehameha, 10am
Jan. 5, Sat., @KCAC, 10am

NEW and UPCOMING
Nā‘ālehu Tee Ball team learning and practicing new skills.
New members welcome. See story for details.
Photo by Geneveve Fyvie
NĀ‘ĀLEHU TEE BALL WILL RESUME PRACTICE IN THE NEW YEAR with a new start time of 4:30 p.m. The team is accepting players 5 or 6 years old. Practice takes place on Mondays and Wednesdays in the Nā‘ālehu Ball Park. Nā‘ālehu Coach Pitch practice to be announced - those interested may practice with the Ocean View Coach Pitch team until then.
     Practice for Ocean View Tee Ball, from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m., and Coach Pitch, from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m., continues through winter break on Tuesdays and Thursdays at Kahuku Park in Hawaiian Ocean View Estates. Tee Ball team is accepting 5 and 6 year olds, while the Coach Pitch team accepts 7 and 8 year olds.
     Participation fees are yet to be announced. For more, contact organizers Josh and Elizabeth Crook at 345-0511. All teams will continue practice through mid-February.

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SATURDAY, DECEMBER 22
Stewardship at the Summit, Sat., Dec. 22. Meet Paul and Jane Field at 8:45am in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park at Kīlauea Visitor Center. Volunteers help remove invasive, non-native plants species that prevent native plants from growing. Wear sturdy hiking shoes and long pants. Bring hat, rain gear, day pack, snacks, and water. Gloves and tools provided. Parental/guardian accompaniment or written consent required. Free; however, park entrance fees apply. No advance registration required. nps.gov/havo

Birth of Kahuku, Sat., Dec. 22, 9:30-11:30am, Kahuku Unit of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Explore rich geologic history of Kahuku on this easy-to-moderate hike. Free. nps.gov/havo

Kīlauea Crisis Support Group Meeting, Sat., Dec. 22, 10-11amOcean View Community Center. Drinks and snacks provided. Last Saturday, monthly. Sponsored by CARE Hawai‘i, Inc. - Team Ahā, Crisis Counseling Program. 329-4817

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 23
‘Ōhi‘a Lehua, Sun, Dec. 23, 9:30-11am, Kahuku Unit of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Learn about vital role of ‘ōhi‘a lehua in native Hawaiian forests, and many forms of ‘ōhi‘a tree and its flower on this free, easy, one-mile walk. nps.gov/havo

MONDAY, DECEMBER 24
Christmas Eve Service, Mon., Dec. 24, Christmas Carols at 5pm, Service at 6pm, St. Jude's Episcopal Church, Ocean View. Aloha hour after service. Bring a dish to share. 939-7000, stjudeshawaii.org

Candlelight Christmas Eve Service, Mon., Dec. 24, 7pm, Nā‘ālehu Methodist Church. Lessons and Carols service where Christmas story will be told, interspersed with Christmas carols. Everyone is welcome. 929-9949

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 25
Christmas Day Buffet, Tue., Dec. 25, 4-7pm, Kīlauea Military Camp's Crater Rim Café, Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Entrees: Prime Rib, Roast Turkey w/Stuffing, Holiday Lamb Stew. $28.95/Adult, $15.95/Child (6-11 yrs). KMC open to all patrons and sponsored guests. Park entrance fees apply. 967-8356, 967-8371

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 26
Kōkua Kupuna Project, Wed., Dec. 26, 9-11am, St. Jude's Episcopal Church, Ocean View. Seniors 60 years & older encouraged to attend, ask questions, and inquire about services offered through Legal Aid Society of Hawai‘i - referral required from Hawai‘i County Office of Aging at 961-8626 for free legal services. Under 60, call 1-800-499-4302. More info: tahisha.despontes@legalaidhawaii.org, 329-3910 ext. 925. legalaidhawaii.org

How to Make Haupia - ‘Ike Hana No‘eau (Experience the Skillful Work), Wed., Dec. 26, 10-2pm, Kīlauea Visitor Center lānai, Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Made from the pia root (arrowroot) and mixed with coconut milk or cream, then steamed, boiled or baked into a pudding, haupia is a popular and authentic cultural dessert. Free; park entrance fees apply. Co-sponsored by Hawai‘i Pacific Parks Association. 985-6011, nps.gov/havo

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 27
Craft Class, Thu., Dec. 27, 9:30-10:30am, PARENTS, Inc., Nā‘ālehu. For keiki 2-12 years old and caregivers. Free. 333-3460, lindsey@hawaiiparents.org

Ka‘ū Community Children's Council, Thu., Dec. 27, 12-1:30pm, Punalu‘u Bake Shop. Monthly meeting provides local forum for all community members to come together as equal partners to discuss and positively affect multiple systems' issues for the benefit of all students, families, and communities. Chad Domingo, text 808-381-2584, domingoc1975@yahoo.com, ccco.k12.hi.us

Volcano Friends Feeding Friends, Thu., Dec. 27, 4-6pm, Cooper Center, Volcano Village. Free community dinner for all. Additional packaged goods to take home - for those in need. Donations and volunteers encouraged. 967-7800, thecoopercenter.org

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 28
Nature & Culture: An Unseverable Relationship, Sat., Dec. 29, 9:30-11:30am, Kahuku Unit of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Moderate guided hike along the Palm Trail, approx. 2 miles. Learn about native plants that play a vital role in Hawaiian culture, and observe the catastrophic change and restoration of the land as it transitions from the 1868 lava flow to deeper soils with more diversity and older flora. Free. nps.gov/havo

ONGOING
Kīlauea Drama & Entertainment Network's A Gilbert & Sullivan Christmas Carol runs through Dec. 23, with shows on Friday and Saturday at 7:30pm, and Sunday at 2:30pm. The show performs at Kīlauea Military Camp Theater inside Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Tickets are $20 per person, cash or check, available at door. KMC is open to all authorized patrons and sponsored guests. Park entrance fees apply. KDEN, 982-7344

Substitute School Health Assistant Positions are available. Qualifications: CPR and First Aid certifications, and a high school diploma or equivalent. Training begins in 2019. Contact Kristy Loo for more at look@hkkk.k12.hi.us.

Christmas in the Country and 19th Annual Invitational Wreath Exhibition are open at Volcano Art Center Gallery in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.
     Christmas in the Country runs through Wednesday, Dec. 26. Enjoy an abundance of art and aloha as VAC creates a merry scene of an old-fashioned Christmas inside its 1877 historic building. In addition to artwork, find unique holiday offerings of island-inspired gifts, ornaments, and decorations made by Hawai‘i Island artists, including VAC exclusives.
     The Wreath Exhibition is available through Tuesday, Jan. 1. The exhibition presents one-of-a-kind wreaths in a variety of imaginative media, techniques, and styles, from the whimsical to the traditional, with this year's theme of Home for the Holidays - inspired by the four month closure of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park.
     Admission is free; Park entrance fees apply. For more, call 967-8222, or visit volcanoartcenter.org.

Kīlauea Military Camp's Holiday Challenge is open for viewing through Monday, Dec. 31. The event features a row of cottages along the front of the camp decorated in with various characters and Christmas decor - with Kīlauea Military Camp employees responsible and competing for a popularity vote. The public is invited to admire the decorations and vote for their favorite decorated cottage. Kīlauea Military Camp is open to all authorized patrons and sponsored guests. Park entrance fees apply. Call 967-8371 for additional information. See kilaueamilitarycamp.com.

Registration for P&R Boys & Girls, T-Ball/Coach Pitch Baseball League open through Jan. 16, Kahuku Park, H.OV.E. For ages 5-8. Programs run Jan. 22-Apr. 18, game and practice times tba. 929-9113, hawaiicounty.gov/pr-recreation

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