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Monday, August 30, 2021

Ka‘ū News Briefs, Monday, Aug. 30, 2021

Da Chuns and Joe Camacho take the stage in front of Kilauea Lodge & Restaurant during the
Experience Volcano Festival. Photo by Jesse Tunison

EXPERIENCE VOLCANO FESTIVAL organizers report the Aug. 14 event as a success, in particular with its own COVID protocols of masks indoors, and distancing to go with its presentation of Hawaiian culture and Volcano art and cuisine. Organizer Jesse Tunison said about 20 volunteers helped put on the event from Rotarians to the founders of Kilauea Lodge. He said he looks forward to the next Experience Volcano Festival, hoping for a time of low or no COVID, where people can enjoy being together in larger groups. He said during the all day festival this year, only one person refused to wear a mask indoors, and was escorted away from the event. 
Kilauea Lodge offered lots of space for the Experience Volcano Festival.
Photo by Jesse Tunison
    Venues included 'Ohelo Cafe, Cafe Ono & Volcano Garden Arts, Lava Rock Cafe, Kilauea Lodge & Restaurant, Volcano Winery, Volcano Art Center, Akatsuka Orchid Gardens, KMC and its Lava Lounge, 2400 Fahrenheit Glass Studio, Tuk Tuk Thai Food Truck, and Cooper Center.
    The day began with the 'Ohia Lehua Runs, including a 5k, 10k and half marathon. See the results in the Aug. 15 Kaʻū News Briefs at http://kaunewsbriefs.blogspot.com/2021_08_15_archive.html

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Kumu Mele Manual of Ke Olu Makani O Mauna Loa. Photo by Jesse Tunison
GET VACCINATED "IF YOU FEEL IN YOUR HEART THAT IS SOMETHING YOU CAN DO," urged Lt. Gov. Josh Green, Md. today as he talked about the possibility of more restrictions to stop the soaring number of COVID cases. He was interviewed on the Honolulu Star Advertiser's Spotlight Hawai'i  program.
    To fend off more restrictions, he called for people to stay at home this Labor Day Weekend. Green, a former physician in Kaʻū, said this Saturday, Sunday and Monday could be a time of pause, "a moment to
breathe a little bit" over the Labor Day Weekend.        "There should be absolutely no gatherings outside of our family circles, our family bubbles over this Labor Day weekend. Because we cannot afford extra spread, which will mean extra 
cases and then hospitalizations and then extra fatalities. So this is the time that we don't want to have an experience like the July 4 weekends of the past where we this large number of cases and we essentially pour gasoline on the fire."
    He noted that 418 COVID patients were in hospitals across the state today. That's far higher than during the COVID peak last year which reached 318 hospitalizations. He noted there are about 2200 fully staffed hospital beds in the state and reasoned that 500 in the hospital with COVID would prompt planning for the rationing of care to patients. "If we get anywhere near 500, you are going to have to take very strong action, life preserving action, and that would likely come in the form of at least a temporary shutdown based on some standard. We've done a couple of those before and I don't want to get people thinking that Green -  that I'm recommending that at this moment, because the numbers have stayed steady but that is the standard I have, that I see." He noted that 66 people now on ventilators take a lot of extra staffing.
    He said that any lock down would be more targeted than before, a kind of Safer at Home program. He described it as people going to school and work but then going home, going out to get take out, groceries, exercise,  "that kind of thing."
    But he said he wasn't talking about shutting down schools or shutting down all business.
    The Lieutenant Governor said there are some good indicators about the future and COVID, including that 84 percent of all of the people in Hawai'i who are eligible for the vaccination have at least started it.
    He said, "It is very difficult to close down society when only 16 percent of our society who is eligible has chosen not to get vaccinated, and then some of them have actually gotten immunity through catching COVID, sadly. So, I think that's the reason things are so different."  
Lt. Gov. Josh Green encourages vaccines and thanks the
unvaccinated who wear masks and don't mix in crowds.
Photo from Lt. Gov. Josh Green facebook
    Regarding the big picture of COVID in Hawai'i, he said,"I also think that it's been basically safe," but that, "My heart breaks with anyone who is sick." He noted that only two children are hospitalized for COVID in this state and emphasized that he isn't looking for school to shut down, even though his son is quarantined at home after an outbreak in his public school class.
    Green noted that the positivity rate has been dropping, statewide. It is 7.96% statewide today. It was
8.44 percent two days ago. That's lower than the national average of 10.61 percent. "We're better than most places but sure, it is a little scary when you have our hospitals filling up." 
    Green said, "Everybody take a deep breath, calm down, we're ok."
  Green thanked those who are vaccinated and also those who are not vaccinated and wear masks and don't go into gatherings, but said there is flip side. Referring to big outdoor parties on O'ahu in August, he said, "There are the people that got into a party of 350 to 400 people last evening and wanted to just get rip drunk and make out and those guys are going to spread COVID like crazy and then they will spread it to some of their teachers and some of the grocery store clerks they see, and the nurses they bump into and everybody. And that is just not OK. So this where society has to be responsible - really each of us."
    Green contended that there are two ways to stop COVID cases. Most people get vaccinated or catch COVID and get natural immunity. He said that every 100,000 vaccinations, stop 5,000 hospital admissions and 500 deaths. In Hawai'i, "We have over 200,000 adults and adolescents who can be vaccinated," said Green. Vaccinating them would save 10,000 hospitalizations and 1,000 deaths.
Lt. Gov. Josh Green, Md. reviews Covid stats and says he hopes people 
will follow the rules to avoid future lockdowns. Photo from facebook
    While he prefers people to get vaccinated he said he advocates for employers paying for tests rather than mandating vaccines, would rather "bring people along" through education about vaccines, he said.

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THE HIGHEST POSITIVITY RATE FOR COVID IN THIS STATE IS ON HAWAI'I ISLAND, according to state statistics released this morning. The rate of those testing positive is 9.4 percent, compared to an 8% positivity rate statewide.
    In the past 14 days, 523 cases have been reported in Hilo and 465 have been reported in Kailua-Kona.
    During that same time period, 64 have been reported in Honoka'a; 106 in Waimea; 67 in the Waikoloa Village and Puako areas; 59 in Kealakekua; 87 in the Captain Cook, Ocean View and Honaunau areas; 81 in Pahoa; 154 in Keaau; and 59 in Mountain View.
    On O'ahu, restaurants, bars, gyms, fitness centers, bowling alleys, dance studios, museums, theaters and arcades, along with indoor sections of outdoor attractions, will require a COVID test within the last 48 hours, or vaccine pass to enter for more than 15 minutes. It goes into effect Sept. 13.
     The Honolulu mayor said he will shut these businesses who allow unvaccinated and untested patrons to stay longer than the 15 minutes. Employees will also require vaccinations or frequent testing. The rule does not apply to grocery stores or going to restaurants for takeout. 

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Read the entire Kaʻū Calendar and back issues at 
www.kaucalendar.com. Find it in the mail from Volcano
through Nāʻālehu, Ocean View to Miloli'i.
Pick it up from newsstands.

KAʻŪ COFFEE MILL & VISITOR CENTER. Buy online at kaucoffeemill.com and in person at 96-2694 Wood Valley Road, daily, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

PUNALUʻU BAKESHOP online at bakeshophawaii.com and in-person 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., seven days a week in x.

ALIʻI HAWAIʻI HULA HANDS COFFEE. Order by calling 928-0608 or emailing alihhhcoffee@yahoo.com.

AIKANE PLANTATION COFFEE COMPANY. Order online at aikaneplantation.com. Call 808-927-2252

MIRANDA'S FARMS KAʻŪ COFFEE. Order online at mirandafarms.com or, in person at 73-7136 Mamalahoa Hwy, Nāʻālehu.

KUAHIWI RANCH STORE, in person. Shop weekdays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday, 11 am to 3 p.m. at 95-5520 Hwy 11. Locally processed grass-fed beef, live meat chickens, and feed for cattle, goats, sheep, chickens, horses, dogs, and pigs. Call 929-7333 of 938-1625, email kaohi@kuahiwiranch.com.

HOPE DIA-MEND MINISTRIES holds outdoor services Sundays at 9:45 a.m. at 92-898 Ginger Blossom Lane in Ocean View. Masks and distancing required. For help and/or to donate, call or text 808-937-6355, or call the Ministry at 808-920-8137. See Facebook and at hopedia-mendministries.com.

DEPRESSED, ANXIOUS, NEED SOMEONE TO TALK TO? Call Department of Health's expanded Hawai‘i C.A.R.E.S. program at 1-800-753-6879 – the same number previously used by Crisis Line of Hawai‘i. Individuals in crisis can also text ALOHA to 741741, available 24/7.

LEARN SELF-CARE THROUGH Big Island Substance Abuse Council's Practice Self-Care Series. For additional series that feature refreshing wellness tips, follow the Behavioral Health & Homelessness Statewide Unified Response Group at facebook.com/bhhsurg

KAʻŪ WOMEN'S COLLECTIVE OFFERS HEALTH PROGRAMS. Piko focuses on reproductive health; increasing access, respect, cultural competence, education, and choice. Pilina aims to grow membership and establish a culture of collaborative decision-making. Follow @kau_womens_health_collective. Contact rootsmedieshawaii@gmail.com. Call 808-450-0498.

YOGA WITH EMILY Catey Weiss, Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. at Volcano Art Center Niʻaulani Campus in Volcano Village. Advanced registration required; $5 per class. volcanoartcenter.org/events, 967-8222.

CHOOSE ALOHA FOR HOME is available to families, to provide a healthy way to grow together using neuroscience and positive psychology. Program uses a series of self-guided videos, activities, and "dinner table discussion topics." Sign up at chooselovemovement.org/choose-love-home.


Resilience Hub at Nāʻālehu Hongwanji, Monday-Wednesday-Friday, 12:30 to 4 p.m. Drop-in wifi and laptop access. Free meals. Follows all county, state, and federal COVID-19 guidelines. Contact Michelle Galimba, 808-430-4927.

Register for Boys & Girls Club Mobile Outreach and Tutoring Programs at rb.gy/o1o2hy. For keiki grades 1-6. Contact Boys & Girls Club of the Big Island Administrative Office, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., at (808) 961-5536 or email mobiletutoring@bgcbi.org or info@bgcbi.org.

ʻOhana Help Desk offers online How-To Guides for Chromebooks and iPads at rb.gy/8er9wm. ʻOhana Help Desk also available by phone, weekdays, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., Sundays from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Invite Park Rangers to Virtually Visit Classes, through connecting with teachers and home-schoolers with distance learning programs and virtual huakaʻi (field trips). Contact havo_education@nps.gov.

Weekly Virtual Town Meetings, hosted by https://www.usgs.gov/observatories/hawaiian-volcano-observatory High & Pāhala Elementary, Wednesdays at 5:30 p.m. Discussion topics include attendance, best practices, Grab-n-Go meals, school updates, questions and feedback, and more. Go to KHPES.org for Live WebEx link.

Public Libraries are open for WiFi, pick-up, and other services. Nāʻālehu open Monday and Wednesday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Pāhala open Tuesday, noon to 7 p.m., Thursday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., limited entry into library with Wiki Visits. Schedule a Library Take Out time at picktime.com/hspls. Open for library card account help and reference assistance from the front door. WiFi available to anyone with a library card, from each library parking lot. See librarieshawaii.org.

Free Book Exchanges, at laundromats in Ocean View and Nāʻālehu, provided by Friends of the Kaʻū Libraries. Open to all. Keep the books, pass them on to other readers, or return them. Selection of books replenished weekly at both sites.

Read Report on Public Input about Disaster Recovery from damage during the 2018 Kīlauea eruption.
View the Civic Engagement and Comment Analysis Report at rb.gy/awu65k.

Learn About Hawaiʻi's History & Culture through Papakilo Database, papakilodatabase.com.
Virtual Workshops on Hawaiʻi's Legislative Processes through Public Access Room. Sign up by contacting (808) 587-0478 or par@capitol.hawaii.gov. Ask questions and discuss all things legislative in a non-partisan environment. Attend Coffee Hour with PAR: Fridays at 3 p.m. on Zoom, meeting ID 990 4865 9652 or click zoom.us/j/99048659652. PAR staff will be available to answer questions and to discuss the legislative process. Anyone wanting to listen in without taking part in discussions is welcome. Learn more at lrb.hawaii.gov/public-access-room.

Online Directory at shopbigisland.com, co-sponsored by County of Hawai‘i, has a signup sheet for local businesses to fill in the blanks. The only requirement is a physical address on this island.

Food Assistance: Apply for The Volcano School of Arts & Sciences COVID-19 Family Relief Funds. Funded by Volcano Community Association, and members of the VSAS Friends and Governing Boards, who have donated, the fund supplies KTA or Dimple Cheek Gift Cards, or gift cards to other locally owned business, to VSAS families in need. Contact Kim Miller at 985-8537, kmiller@volcanoschool.net. Contributions to the fund can be sent in by check to: VSAS, PO Box 845, Volcano, HI 96785 – write Relief Fund in the memo. See volcanoschool.net

ENROLL CHILDREN, from first through eighth grade, in Kula ʻAmakihi, a program from Volcano School of the Arts & Sciences. It started Aug. 3. Call 808-985- 9800 or visit www.volcanoschool.net.

REGISTER FOR THE KA‘Ū COFFEE TRAIL RUN, which returns on Saturday, Sept. 18. See more on the OKK event at https://www.kaucoffeetrailruns.com/

WALK THROUGH A GUIDED NATURE TRAIL & Sculpture Garden, Mondays, 9:30 a.m. at Volcano Art Center Niʻaulani Campus in Volcano Village. No reservations for five or fewer – limited to ten people. Free; donations appreciated. Email programs@volcanoartcenter.org. Garden is open to walk through at one's own pace, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays. www.volcanoartcenter.org. Call 967-8222.

KAʻŪ ART GALLERY is open Wednesdays and Saturdays from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. in Nāʻālehu. It features and sells works by local artists and offers other gift items.Vendor applications are being accepted for its Holiday Arts & Crafts Sale on Saturday, Nov. 13. Kaʻū Art Gallery's website has 24/7 access online and is frequently updated to show current inventory items. "We are always looking to collaborate with local artists in our community," said assistant Alexandra Kaupu. Artists with an interest in being featured at Kaʻū Art Gallery and Gift Shop, contact gallery owner and director Corrine Kaupu at kauartgallery@hawaiiantel.biz.

GOLF & MEMBERSHIPS for Discovery Harbour Golf Course and its Clubhouse: The Club offers Social Memberships, with future use of the clubhouse and current use of the pickleball courts as well as walking and running on specified areas of the golf course before 8 a.m. and after 3 p.m. to enjoy the panoramiocean views. Golf memberships range from unlimited play for the avid golfer to casual play options. Membership is required to play and practice golf on the course. All golf memberships include Social Membership amenities. Membership fees are designed to help underwrite programs and improvements to the facilities.Call 808-731-5122 or stop by the Clubhouse during business hours, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily at 94-1581 Kaulua Circle. Email clubatdiscoveryharbour@gmail.com. See The Club at Discovery Harbour Facebook page.

ALOHA FRIDAY MARKETPLACE, hosted by Kaʻū Main Street, is from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., grounds of Kauahaʻao Congregational Church 95-1642 Pinao St. in Waiʻohinu, corner of Kamaoa and Hwy 11. Farmers Market, Arts & Crafts, Health Practitioners, Food, Music, Yoga, Keiki Fun & More. Inquiries: AlohaFridayMarket@gmail.com.

VOLCANO FARMERS MARKET, Cooper Center, Volcano Village on Sundays. 6 a.m. to 10 a.m., with much local produce, baked goods, food to go, island beef and Hawai‘i Coffee. Cooper Center's EBT Machine, used at the Farmer's Market, is out of service until further notice. EBT is used for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly Food Stamps. Call 808-967-7800.

OCEAN VIEW COMMUNITY MARKET, open Saturdays and Thursdays, 6:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., on the corner of Kona Drive and Highway 11, where Thai Grindz is located. Managed by Mark Council. Masks mandatory. 100-person limit, social distancing required. Gate unlocked for vendors at 5:30 a.m., $15 dollars, no reservations needed. Parking in upper lot only. Vendors must provide own sanitizer. Food vendor permits required. Carpooling encouraged.

O KAʻŪ KĀKOU MARKET, in Nāʻālehu, open Wednesday, and Saturday, 8 a.m. to noon. Limit of 50 customers per hour, 20 vendor booths, with 20 feet of space between vendors. Masks and hand sanitizing required, social distancing enforced. Contact Sue Barnett, OKK Market Manager, at 808-345-9374 (voice or text) or kaufarmer@aol.com for more and to apply to vend. See facebook.com/OKauKakouMarket.

OCEAN VIEW SWAP MEET is open at Ocean View makai shopping center, near Mālama Market. Hours for patrons are 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Vendor set-up time is 5 a.m. Masks required.

VOLCANO ART CENTER ONLINE, in person. Shop at Niʻaulani Campus in Volcano Village, Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Gallery in Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park, open Wednesday through Sunday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Virtual Shopping Appointments offered via Skype or FaceTime. Book at volcanoartcenter.org/shop for $5. Shop online gallery 24/7. Orders shipped or free local pickup available. See the VAC Virtual Classroom, which features over 90 videos. See volcanoartcenter.org/events, call 967-8222.