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Thursday, September 21, 2023

Kaʻū News Briefs Thursday, Sept. 21, 2023

Old Hawai‘i on Horseback drew a hundred riders and horses to Waiki‘i Ranch, with Lori Lee Lorenzo representing Kaʻū.
Photos from Kaʻū Multicultural Society

Lori Lee Lorenzo is Princess of Lana‘i
 at Old Hawai‘i on Horseback
OLD HAWAI‘I ON HORSEBACK welcomed Lori Lee Lorenzo from Kaʻū to Waiki‘i Ranch last weekend to honor Anna Leialoha Lindsey Perry Fiske, who founded the event from her Anna's Ranch in Waimea.
Alohalynn Vierra and Darlyne Vierra, of Kaʻū Multicultural
Society with Lori Lee Lorenzo at Waiki‘i Ranch.
The annual Old Hawai‘i on Horseback is part pageant, part parade, part rodeo grand promenade. It is sponsored by the Paniolo Preservation Society, which also hosts the Paniolo Hall of Fame that honors and tells the story of many paniolo from Kaʻū.
Old Hawai‘i On Horseback is described by Paniolo Preservation Society: "Here, horses help tell the story of Hawai‘i’s history, from the first mare and colt to set hooves on island soil, to the fabulous pā‘ū riders in their rainbow of flowing costume, and the flags and brands of proud riders repping today’s ranches."
With support from Darlyne Vierra and her Kaʻū Multicultural Society, Lorenzo participated and was the only rider from Kaʻū, joining over 100 horses and riders from Hawai‘i Island, Maui and Moloka‘i. Lorenzo rode as Princess of Lana‘i.

Her support group, who helped her make lei, some of them traveling to assist her in Waimea, included her parents Frank Sr. and Mahina Lorenzo, fiancee Ikaika Grace, and Kaʻū Multicultural Society members Winslow and Darlyne Vierra, Aloha Beck, and Alohalynn Vierra.
See more on Paniolo Preservation Society at https://paniolopreservation.org/.
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HAWAI‘I ISLANDERS WHO WANT TO HELP DISPLACED MAUI RESIDENTS to relocate here temporarily or for long-term can become involved with a County of Hawai‘i outreach. The public is invited to explore the virtual resource hub at hawaiicounty.gov/maui. It is a growing resource, and those wishing to contribute resources or support the growing resource can contact Cyrus Johnasen at cyrus.johnasen@hawaiicounty.gov. Johansen is Public Information Officer for Hawai‘i County.
      A statement from the County on Thursday says, "At the heart of this effort is a comprehensive virtual resource hub, accessible on the Hawaiʻi County website, serving as a lifeline for Maui residents relocating to Hawaiʻi Island. The virtual resource hub includes housing guidance, financial aid information, job resources, business recovery assistance, food programs, medical service details, and transportation options for displaced residents."
    Johansen said, "During crises, access to essential services and information becomes crucial, which is why our dedicated team is compiling a wide range of resources and assistance programs for those in transition. Maui and Hawaiʻi Island share many ties which might make us a natural fit for relocation as residents look to get back on their feet with dignity. That's why we shifted our focus to ensuring a smooth transition for those who decide to join our Hawaiʻi Island ʻohana. The faster we can help folks get services, the quicker they can assimilate into our community."
     As a potential second phase of this initiative, Hawaiʻi County seeks to establish partnerships to provide physical resource spaces within the community. These spaces will provide access to computers and trained staff who can assist displaced residents in navigating the resources found on the virtual hub. If found to be a viable need, this step would aim to bridge the digital divide and offer personalized assistance to those who may face challenges accessing online information and services.
    Mayor Mitch Roth said, "We are proud to continue to show a commitment to our Maui ʻohana while remaining steadfast in our work for Hawaiʻi Island residents. It's important to remember that we are all interconnected and that lending a helping hand whenever possible is innate to the spirit and vibrancy of our island and state. We welcome all displaced residents who choose to come with open arms and aloha as they continue to rebuild from the ashes."
    The unveiling of the resource hub comes in tandem with Gov. Josh Green's announcement that the State would begin to look for longer-term housing options for displaced Maui residents as temporary shelters return to normal operations.

Sunrise at Lapahoehoe Point, with the chant E Ala E, begins the day for Kaʻū Future Farmers, led by Kahua Pa'a Mua.
Photo from Kaʻū Future Farmers

THE ULU HOU PROJECT DREW KAʻŪ HIGH SCHOOL'S FUTURE FARMERS TO KOHALA last Saturday, Sept. 16. The group traveled to Makapala Retreat Center to engage with other school groups, to 
Kaʻū Future Farmers go on retreat to plan projects
 for the year. At left is DreanaVierra-Mukini. In the 
 black long sleeve is Ezekiel Kaawa-Kamimura.
 Next in tan hoodie is Jacelyn Jara. They play a
 card game with members of Hilo, Kea'au and
 Kohala chapters of FFA. 
Photo from Kaʻū FFA
get to know one another, collaborate, and make plans for the year.  They gathered at Makapala on Saturday and learned the chant called E Ala E. After an overnight stay, they awakened at 3:30 a.m. and left Makapala at 4:20 a.m. for a sunrise ceremony at Laupahoehoe Point.
    After returning to Makapala, the Future Farmers of America members separated into groups representing each school and planned projects for the year. 
    FFA member Alajshae Barrios reported that Kaʻū students "came up with two projects. Our Treasurer Ezekiel Kaawa and our Sentinel Triton Blanco will be raising a pig to cook in our Imu and plan to make kalua." 
    The second project is led by FAA President Jacelyn Jara and FFA member Dreana Vierra-Mukini who plan to produce kulolo and haupia. "To accomplish their goal they will be keeping track of the moon phases, taking care of different crops we have. 
    "This is what Kaʻū FFA will be doing for their Ulu Hou Project, which is a year-long program in collaboration with Kahua Pa‘a Mua," reported Barrios. One of Kahua Pa‘a Mua's aims is to increase community resilience, food self-sufficiency, and access to healthy, locally-grown food. See more on Kahua Pa‘a Mua and its Executive Director David Fuertes at www.kahuapaamua.org.
FFA advisors Jessie Denny (left) and Kaweni Ibarra, (center) with Ezekiel Kaawa-Kamimura, Dreana Vierra-Mukini,
 Jacelyn Jara and Cynthia Emmsley-Ah Yee during a Kaʻū Future Farmers field trip last weekend.
Photo from Kaʻū Future Farmers