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Saturday, August 05, 2023

Kaʻū News Briefs, Saturday, August 5, 2023


The massive Keauhou Ranch Fire in 2018 within Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. With the
prediction of severe fire weather next week, the Park is closing down the highest-risk areas
to vehicles and campfires. NPS Photo
SEVERE FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS ARE FORECAST for next week and Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park plans to close areas at most risk for wildfire to vehicles beginning Sunday, Aug. 6 at 5 p.m. Campfires will be prohibited.
    Mauna Loa Road will close to vehicles past the gate at Kīpukapuaulu and Hilina Pali Road will close to vehicles past the gate beyond Kulanaokuaiki Campground. Pedestrians and bicycles are allowed.
    In addition, all campfires and open flame cooking fires will be prohibited at Kīpukapuaulu day-use area, Nāmakanipaio Campground, and the fire pit near the Kīlauea Military Camp ballfield.
Hurricane Dora is forecast to create dry, windy weather as
she passes south of the island, starting Monday. NOAA image
    "Although rain is common at the summit of Kīlauea, other areas in the park are extremely dry with low humidity and the park has entered into a high fire risk index in those areas," said Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park Fire Operations Specialist Matt Desimone. "Safety is always our top priority, as well as the protection of the park's cherished natural and cultural resources."
    Limiting vehicle access to remote areas with dry vegetation and low humidity is necessary for wildfire prevention. Hot exhaust pipes and mufflers are a common cause of wildfires. A hurricane entering the Central Pacific is exacerbating the fire risk.
    According to the National Weather Service, Hurricane Dora, coupled with high pressure to the north, is expected to bring strong tradewinds and more dry conditions as soon as Monday, Aug. 7 as it passes well to the south of the island of Hawaiʻi. At 5 p.m. Dora was a Major Hurricane with 145 mph winds.
    Check the park website https://www.nps.gov/havo and social media for updates.

The Wall that Heals will be coming to Hilo in early 2024 to honor those who died in the Vietnam War.
It is a two-thirds size replica of The Wall in Washington, D.C. Photo from U.S. Air Force
THE TRAVELING VIETNAM VETERANS MEMORIAL WALL will come to this island next year. Mayor Mitch Roth announced that The Wall That Heals, a three-quarter scale replica of the revered Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., will make its way to Hilo to pay tribute to those who made the ultimate sacrifice for this country. The Mayor said, "The Wall That Heals continues to serve as a powerful symbol of remembrance and respect. By bringing it to Hilo, we hope to offer our community the opportunity to honor the sacrifices of our service members and gain deeper insights into this pivotal period in our history."
    The Wall That Heals, established by the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund (VVMF), offers visitors a unique opportunity to experience the grandeur and emotional impact of The Vietnam Veterans Memorial,
affectionately known as The Wall. Designed by Maya Lin and dedicated in 1982, The Wall bears the names of more than 58,000 servicemen and servicewomen who lost their lives during the Vietnam War. The monument stands as a testament to honor and remember the brave individuals who served in Vietnam, seeking to heal the wounds left by one of the most controversial wars in American history.
    The statement from the Mayor's office says, "The arrival of The Wall That Heals in Hilo highlights its mission to bring the Memorial's poignant experience to communities that may not have the chance to visit Washington, D.C. The exhibition aims to educate the public about the Vietnam War and its profound impact on American history while providing a platform for veterans and their families to find closure."
A rolling education center comes to town with 
The Wall that Heals. Photo from Founders of the Wall
    The exhibition includes a mobile Education Center featuring digital photo displays of "Hometown Heroes" - service members whose names are on The Wall and who listed a Hawai'i address as their official home of record. Additionally, an In Memory plaque honors those who returned from the war but later died from causes related to their service in Vietnam. The exhibit also comprises video displays that provide comprehensive insights into the history and impact of the Vietnam War and The Wall.
    Michael Doolittle, Co-Chair of The Wall That Heals Hawai‘i County Committee, commented on the extraordinary journey of bringing The Wall That Heals to Hawaiʻi, saying, "Starting with an idea, an army of selfless volunteers have worked tirelessly behind the scenes to make this tribute a reality."
    The County invites all residents and visitors to Hilo in early 2024 to witness this moving tribute. Event details, volunteer opportunities, and more information will be announced closer to the event date.

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    The monthly pancake breakfast is Saturday, August 12, 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. at Ocean View Community Center. Cost is $7 for a big plate of food.
    Yoga classes are Thursdays at 5 p.m. and Sundays at 3:45 p.m. at the Center. 
    Aikido Classes are Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6:15 p.m. at the Center.
    County Council member Michelle Galimba from District 6 will hold an outreach event at the OV Community Center on Friday, Sept. 1 at 5 p.m,
    Teen Night is the first Saturday of the month. The next one will be Saturday, Sept 2. from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. with Pingpong, air hockey, games and snacks.