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Monday, October 30, 2023

Kaʻū News Briefs Monday, Oct. 30, 2023

Six witches showed up to dance at Ocean View swap meet last Saturday. They plan to also
dance at the Trunk or Treat event at Kahuku County Park Ocean View from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Photo by Annie Boste

AFTER RIDING INTO OCEAN VIEW ON BROOMSTICKS, six witches cast a spell over a group of shoppers at Saturday's swap meet with a terrifying pop-up dance. The impromptu performance quickly grabbed attention as shoppers were caught in the witches' web and gathered round the Halloween spirits, snapping photos of the extraordinary sight. The self-taught dancers wore full witch costumes, warts and all - including menacing make-up, pointy hats, home-made brooms, and voluminous skirts.
    Inspired by the cauldron of international witch lore, they stole from German performers, who originally set the dance to music, unsurprisingly named The Witches Dance. Witch leader, Fawn Plummer, called Saturday's performance the Second Annual Ocean View Witches Dance. She explained that the witches saw the dance on YouTube, taught themselves the steps, rehearsed and, without announcing the event,

Hunter's Moon Precedes Halloween
A Hunter's moon over Volcano House on Sunday in Hawa'i Volcanoes National Park.
NPS Photo by Janice Wei
danced last year. It was so well received, that they decided to repeat it on Saturday.
    The performers included Plummer, Agrita Butterfoss, Sharon Cunningham, Vanessa Makaio, Kathy
Matteo, and Whitney Mock.
    They plan to dance again at the Trunk or Treat event, on Halloween at Kahuku County Park in 6 p.m. - 7 p.m. Since homes in Ocean View are located far apart, traditionally trick-or-treating "door to door" is impractical for keiki. Instead, families decorate their cars and park them in the park's upper parking lot. Keiki celebrate Halloween by going "car to car" in quest of the evening's offerings.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar. See latest print edition at kaucalendar.com, in the mail and on stands.

TRUNK OR TREAT will be Tuesday, Halloween from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Ocean View Kahuku County Park. Since homes in Ocean View are located far apart, traditionally trick-or-treating "door to door" is impractical for keiki. Instead, families decorate their cars and park them in the park's upper parking lot. Keiki celebrate Halloween by going "car to car" in quest of the evening's offerings.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar. See latest print edition at kaucalendar.com, in the mail and on stands.

Shawna Tidwell
SHAWNA TIDWELL OF OCEAN VIEW IS SOUGHT BY HAWAI'I POLICE DEPARTMENT. Hawai‘i Island police are requesting the public’s assistance in locating the 40-year-old, who is wanted for questioning for a criminal investigation. She is known to frequent the Kona and Ka‘ū areas.
Tidwell is described as being 5 feet 1 inch tall, 118 pounds, with dyed red hair and blue eyes.
Anyone with information on Tidwell’s whereabouts is encouraged to contact Detective Donovan Kohara at (808) 960-3118; or via email at donovan.kohara@hawaiicounty.gov. They may also call the police department’s non-emergency line at (808) 935-3311.
    Citizens who wish to remain anonymous can make an anonymous tip through Crime Stoppers at (808) 961-8300 and be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000. Crime Stoppers does not record any calls or subscribe to caller ID.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see facebook.com/kaucalendar. See latest print edition at kaucalendar.com, in the mail and on stands.

THE ONLY IMMIGRANT SERVING IN THE U.S. SENATE IS ATTEMPTING TO REFORM FEDERAL CARE AND CUSTODY OF UNACCOMPANIED MIGRANT CHILDREN coming into the the U.S. Hawai'i Sen. Mazie Hirono, who came to Hawai'i from Japan as a child, released a statement this week, sayint,  "The Protecting Unaccompanied Children Act would address gaps in our system by improving existing safeguards for the release of Unaccompanied Children from government custody, increasing UCs' access to social services and legal protections, and creating new safeguards and services for children's safety."
    "As the only immigrant currently serving in the U.S. Senate, I am proud to join in introducing this

Unaccompanied children who came across the border, held in El Paso.
Photo from Council of Foreign Relations
legislation to establish comprehensive policies to protect the safety and well-being of unaccompanied children while they navigate our immigration system," said Hirono. "I am especially pleased that this legislation includes provisions of my bill to provide counsel for unaccompanied minors, a critical support for a uniquely vulnerable population in our immigration system."
    Unaccompanied Children arrive in the United States without immigration status and without a parent or guardian to care for them. Congress passed on an overwhelmingly bipartisan basis, and President George W. Bush signed into law, the Homeland Security Act of 2002 and the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008, two pieces of legislation that improved protections for these children. These laws require screening such children for human trafficking, housing children in appropriate settings in the custody of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and family reunification whenever possible.
   Years after enactment of the HSA and TVPRA, new challenges have arisen requiring reforms to our system for caring for Unaccompanied Children. The number of Unaccompanied Children arriving at the U.S. southern border has greatly increased. Many children were separated from their parents by the Trump Administration "Zero Tolerance" policy, and continue to require

assistance.  Some states refuse to license HHS facilities, preventing children and staff in such facilities from reporting safety violations.  In light of increased child labor violations across the country, there has also been a call to improve vetting of sponsors and bolster penalties for child labor violations.  At the same time, our immigration system has grown more complex, making it difficult for UC to get the assistance they need particularly without access to representation.
    Specifically, the Protecting Unaccompanied Children Act would:
    Help Children Navigate Legal System. This bill would provide legal representation for all unaccompanied children. It would also lift numerical limitations for abused, abandoned, or neglected children granted Special Immigrant Juvenile Status, and allow those and children granted "U" visas (victims of serious crimes who collaborate with law enforcement) access to Medicaid.
    Improve Sponsor Vetting and Placement. This bill would codify certain background checks, expand home studies to better identify safety concerns prior to release to a sponsor, and increase post-release services to ensure children's ongoing safety and stability. The bill contains several prohibitions on information-sharing for immigration enforcement purposes to ensure child and family privacy.
    Protect Exploited Children. This bill would also improve immigration protections for those who report child labor violations, including by lifting the annual cap for "U" visas.
    Protect Children in HHS Custody. This bill would create an HHS Office of the Ombudsperson for Immigrant Children in Federal Custody to allow children to report abuses in custody. It would also ensure that whistleblower reports are investigated and codify background checks for staff who interact with children. It would also establish state-level coordinators to help ensure Unaccompanied Children receive appropriate services and support from states.
    Remedy Past Abuses. This bill would make families separated under Trump's Zero Tolerance policy eligible for additional public assistance, allowing such families to get the care and support they need to recover from the trauma of separation.
    The legislation is cosponsored by Senators Laphonza Butler (D-CA), Peter Welch (D-VT), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and endorsed by Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service and Lutheran Social Services of the National Capital Area.

VENDOR APPLICATIONS ARE OPEN FOR CHRISTMAS IN KAHUKU to be held Saturday, Dec. 2 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park Kahuku Unit Hwy 11 at mile marker 70.5.
Music will fill the air at Christmas In Kahuku.
Photo from Friends of Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park
    Christmas in Kahuku is free and open to the public. Music all day will feature the Hot Potaytahs band playing rock and roll, The Kipapa Sisters, and Jazz Gardeners. Crafters from Ka’u and beyond will sell their locally made items – jewelry, pottery, holiday decorations, and more. Hawai’i Pacific Park’s Association’s Book store will be open and providemany unique park associated books and items.
    Food will be available for purchase by The Hawaiian Civic Club of Kau and 4 Scoops of Aloha. Friend’s will have free shave ice minis & face painting. Santa will have gifts for the keiki. Friend of Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park logo merchandise will be for sale, with proceeds supporting park projects and educational programs.
    Crafters may apply for this event ($35.00 booth fee) by visiting www.fhvnp.org, email admin@fhvnp.org, or call us at (808) 985-7373.
    Friends of Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park is a non-profit 501(c) 3, operating under a formal philanthropic partnership agreement with Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park.

'Ohana Food Drop is for everyone. courtesy of The Food Basket, at Na'alehu Hongwanji on Halloween day, from 10 a.m. as long
as supplies last. Photo from Hilo Food Basket

THE FOOD BASKET WILL MAKE A DROP ON HALLOWEEN AT NĀ'ĀLEHU HONGWANJI at 10 a.m. Food Basket of Hilo will be on-site distributing food with the help of local volunteers as long as food lasts. "From fresh vegetables, breads, meats and other essential food items, these ‘Ohana Drops’ offer communities the opportunity to drive through the line once, and receive food to help sustain their families to the next paycheck with no personal questions asked. Everyone is welcome," says a statement from The Food Basket.

Kaʻū News Briefs Sunday, Oct. 29, 2023

Ho'okupu Hula No Kaʻū Festival this Saturday
Indigenous dance from Mexico will be performed at this Saturday's Ho'okupu Hula No Kaʻū Festival
at the Ke Ola Pu'uhonua cultural grounds in Nāʻālehu. Photo from Kumu Debbie Ryder

COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT focuses on Nāʻālehu on Thursday, Nov. 16. It will host the next public community meeting for the Naalehu Large Capacity Cesspool Closure Project at 6 p.m. at Nāʻālehu Community Center.
     The large capacity gang cesspool is illegal under federal law and the county is seeking to replace it with a system approved by the Environmental Protection Agency and state Department of Health. The old gang cesspool is a remnant from the old, defunct sugar company but is still in use and doesn't comply with modern laws regarding waste disposal.
    The county statement says it mailed surveys to the owners of 164 properties in Na'alehu that are connected or accessible to the gang cesspool, and the owners of 30 parcels that would become accessible. The surveys will be accepted at the public meeting. Those who own an affected lot should be receiving a survey at the address listed in real property tax records. Those who do not own an affected lot, live in the Na'alehu area, are still welcome to come as the selection of the type of wastewater disposal system to be installed will impact everyone.
    Those responding and the general public are invited to click on the recently posted Preliminary Engineering Report for Naalehu and consider attending the meeting with any questions for staff of the Department of Environmental Management. See https://www.hawaiicounty.gov/departments/environmental-management/pahala-naalehu/

AN UPDATE ON RAMONA OKUMURA, TRAPPED IN GAZA, has come from her brother Glenn Okumura who lives in Pāhala. The family statement says:
    "More than three weeks in, American aid worker Ramona Okumura continues to be trapped in Gaza along with 45 other aid workers and an estimated 500-600 other Americans as violence intensifies in the region and food, water, and fuel supplies dwindle. The Okumura family has joined their desperate pleas with that of other trapped Americans, who say they have been in regular communication with their elected officials, yet there has been no update or timeline for an evacuation of a single American citizen from war-torn Gaza.
    "The Okumura family and others continue to pressure senators and the Department of State with calls, emails, and meetings to demand a ceasefire and humanitarian corridor for safe passage out of Gaza with military support if needed. Otherwise, they say, their loved ones will continue to be hostages of the situation, held in a war zone against their will, all while hundreds of children and citizens continue to be killed a day."
Ramona Okumura and Dr. Barbara Zind were working together in Gaza
when they became trapped by the war. Photo from Okumua family
    Ramona's brother in Honoka'a said, "In addition to the 220 hostages taken during the October 7 attack by Hamas, 500 American citizens are being held hostage by the situation in Gaza due to the lack of action between the US, Egyptian, Hamas and Israel. Any day now there could be a tragic accident or intentional bombing of their present location near the border of Egypt. Jet planes fly over and bombs are heard falling in the area all night long. They can hear the missiles being launched nearby by Hamas. They can see drones flying above, surveying their locations. "
    The family statement says, "Ramona Okumura and her colleague, Dr. Barbara Zind, were on what should have been a routine medical mission to provide prosthetics to child amputees but have now been trapped in this dangerous war zone and humanitarian nightmare for nearly three weeks. The Americans are under constant bombardment and facing limited access to the most necessities, including clean water and food."
   Ramona Okumura texted, "Tens of thousands of IDPS, internationally displaced persons, are at the place we were last, without food and water and shelter. They are in dire need of massive humanitarian aid. More arrive every day as the areas around where they live get hit by missiles and bombs." Okumura,
Ramona Okumura has been locating materials, making and fitting prosthetics
for amputee Palestinian children for years. Originally from Hawai'i, with her
brother living in Pāhala, she became trapped when the war began Oct. 7 and has
 moved to a camp near the border, hoping to cross into Egypt.
Photo from Okumura family
herself, is bunkered in an UN compound. She said there have been people banging at the doors, and several members of her contingent have stomach symptoms due to the limited food available. They have begun rationing supplies as they have already been trapped for 22 days without any option to evacuate and with no news of how much longer they may remain."
   The Okumura family statement says, "Other Americans trapped in Gaza have reported that they have resorted to drinking salt water, including a young family from Medway, Massachusetts, Abood Okal, his wife Wafaa Abuzayda, and their one-year-old son Yousef Okal. They are represented by Sammy Nabulsi, who has said in several interviews with ABC News that "Everyday it's getting worse and worse for these citizens and this family.'
    The Okumura family says, "As the situation grows more and more dire with each passing hour, these families have renewed questions about why the United States has taken so long to organize a civilian evacuation of Gaza, when the U.S. government has successfully evacuated hundreds of American citizens out of Israel via chartered planes and cruise ships, with evacuation efforts from Israel ongoing.
    "Many have expressed feeling abandoned and disregarded by the Biden Administration and the State Department. While their representatives have assured them that they are tracking the situation, they have now gone weeks without any clarity on how – and when - Americans in Gaza can hope to escape."
    Nabulsi said,  "We are barreling towards a situation where American made weapons paid for American dollars may be used to either harm or kill American citizens. It's incomprehensible to me." 

VOLCANO ART CENTER HOSTS JAZZ IN THE FOREST on Saturday, Nov. 11. It is a Potpourri of Jazz and features a selection of classics from the last hundred years of America’s greatest music. The Jazztones will take listeners through the last century with the participation of JP Thoma on saxophones, Asha Azama on keyboard, Joey Carroll on bass, Owen Matsui on drums, and featuring the vocal artistry of prize winning Owana Salazar. Venue is VAC's Niaulani Campus on Saturday, Nov.11, at 5:30pm. 
JP Thoma, on sax with the Jazztones,
will perform Saturday, Nov. 11 at VAC.

     The show begins with the Louis Armstrong and King Oliver’s, New Orleans and Chicago soaring introduction to modern jazz in 1928 and the resounding introduction to West End Blues that led from Dixieland to BeBop. Miles Davis said Armstrong paved the path for all of jazz in this landmark performance. 
     New York has been home to much of American jazz influence, from the Cotton Club of Duke Ellington and his band, here performing I’m Beginning to See the Light and across the country in various styles, here highlighting The Big Noise From Winnetka featuring a whistling and swinging bass solo – here performed by Joey Carroll of the Jazztones. 
    Sliding smoothly into the swing era are romantic vocals of Body and Soul featuring the stylings of vocalist Owana Salazar, and You Stepped Out of a Dream. Then on to BeBop with the music of Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, with Now’s the Time and Thelonious Monk’s Blue Monk, Miles Davis’s classic from his album Kind of Blue – All Blues, caries into more recent history, and from his historic partner John Coltrane, a moving spiritual rendition of Wise One from his Love Supreme period.       The Jazztones symbolically end the program with Duke Ellington’s wise observation – Things Ain’t What They Used To Be
     Tickets are $25 for VAC members ($30 non-members). Ticket holders will be able to purchase pupu, beer and wine. Tickets are available for sale online at www.volcanoartcenter.org.

VOLCANO ARTIST HUI OFFERS THANKSGIVING WEEKEND STUDIO TOUR: Volcano Village Artists Hui will host its 37th Annual Studio Tour & Sale Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 24 - 26, from
`Ōhi`a, Metrosideros polymorpha, watercolor on paper by Joan
 Yoshioka, is one of the offerings at Volcano Artist Hui Studio
 Tour & Sale on Friday - Sunday, Nov. 24-26, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.

10 a.m. - 4 p.m. each day. Five studio and gallery locations will open their doors to the public for the tour with a wide range of artwork on display and available for purchase in a variety of styles and price ranges. The following studio locations and artists will be featured:
     At Studio # 1, Pam Barton Studio, will be Pam Barton (fiber work and more), Zeke Israel (raku, jewelry, affordable surprises) and Randy Sutton, guest artist (textile art, cards, wall vases).
    At Studio #2, J.M. Fusions will feature the work of guest artist Jaime Lesourd (kiln formed glass).
    At Studio Studio #3, Volcano Garden Arts, will be Ira Ono (fine art and exquisite gifts).
    At Studio #4, the Margaret Barnaby Studio, will be Margaret Barnaby (woodblock prints), Mike and Misato Mortara (hand blown glass & wood), Lisa Louise Adams (inspiring art treasures) and guest artist Nash Adams-Pruitt (functional glass art).
    At Studio #5, Niaulani Campus of Volcano Art Center, will be Charlotte Forbes Perry (ceramics and stained glass), Joan Yoshioka (original paintings, prints and bags), Ricia Shema (vintage silk clothing, bags and more) with guest artist Scott Pincus (handmade silver jewelry).
    Check the Hui website for more information and the map to the studios AT http://www.VolcanoVillageArtistsHui.com