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Monday, November 13, 2023

Kaʻū News Briefs Monday, Nov. 13, 2023

Arbor Day Giveaway in Ocean View over the weekend led to 300 seedlings going to the 
public for planting. Photo from West Hawai‘i Master Gardeners

Many native seedlings were given away at Arbor
 Day event. Photo from Master Gardeners
AN ARBOR DAY GIVEAWAY IN OCEAN VIEW enabled about 300 trees and plant varieties to find homes on Saturday. Hosted by West Hawai‘i Master Gardeners, which has members in Ocean View and beyond, the giveaway included about 20 kinds of trees and plants, including ‘Ākia, Hō‘awa, A‘ali‘i ‘Ōhi‘a, Hala, Koai‘a, Koki‘o ke‘oke‘o, Māmane. Pūkiawe, ‘Ulei, Wiliwili, Mgambo, Malabar Chestnut and more.
    West Hawai‘i Master Gardeners who helped with the giveaway include Gary Kastle, Velvet and John Replogle, Tom Kirk, Suzanne Waldman, Lillie Cogswell, David Steachy, Dennis Benson, and Mary Wilson, all of Ocean View. The Master Gardeners answered many questions from people wanting to plant more trees.

PLANT OF THE MONTH IS KUPUKUPU for Lāʻau Letters: Native Plants of Kaʻū, the monthly column about Kaʻū’s native plants and their moʻolelo (stories), uses, preferred habitats, and opportunities to adopt them for stewardship. This column, by Jodie Rosam with illustration by Joan Yoshioka, seeks to encourage making new plant friends and to reunite with others.
    Description: Kupukupu Nephrolepis exaltata subsp. hawaiiensis or sometimes called ʻōkupuku or niʻaniʻau, is an endemic sword fern, with two native Nephrolepis species found in Hawaiʻi: N. cordifolia (either considered an indigenous species or an early Polynesian introduction), and N. exaltata subsp. Hawaiiensis (an endemic species). Unfortunately, both native species hybridize regularly with the non-native (and also invasive) N. multiflora, which is contributing to the loss of genetic integrity in this species. Kupukupu fronds stand erectly about 1-2 feet tall and have a width of 2-3 inches, and are composed of smaller pinnae (frondlets). The stolons (sprawling stems which look a lot like roots) can spread across the ground and also climb up trees. A defining characteristic of this species is that it has underground tubers (or underground organs, similar to kalo corm) that not only store food and nutrients, but also generate new fern babies.
    Although the weather has been quite hot, we are in the time of Makahiki, as we transition from the season of Kau (summer, represented by Kū) into the season of Hoʻoilo (winter, represented by Lono).
Kupukupu illustration by Joan Yoshioka,
   Kupukupu is a great symbolism of both the upright and tall nature of Kū and the wide and sprawling nature of Lono. Representing growth, kupukupu also is consistent with this change of seasons as we enter into a time of abundance. Perhaps you can sit with kupukupu for some time and notice any symbolism it offers to you.
    Uses: Kupu means “to sprout”, and kupukupu are often used to decorate hula kuahu (altars), symbolizing sprouting knowledge. Fronds are also a common component of kūpeʻe (lei for wrists and ankles) and lei poʻo (for the head). Medicinally, the pressed juice is great for the skin and can be used as a remedy for multiple skin disorders. Kupukupu has a delicate scent that accompanies its beauty in adornment.
    Habitat: Kupukupu is a relatively common forest friend, growing on all of the main islands except for Kahoʻolawe. It can occupy sites between 100 and 4,600 feet elevation in mesic, wet, and even upper elevation dryland forests. In Kaʻū, there are Nephrolepis fern species all around - roadside, planters, even growing epiphytically in the trees. Unfortunately, what we see more commonly is a non-native or hybridized Nephrolepis. True kupukupu are restricted to more protected forest reserves and a little more
difficult to come by.
    Growing and Purchasing: Kupukupu are often sold at nurseries, and are relatively easy to propagate, 
they produce shoots that will quickly develop and spread into full-sized reproducing plants 
themselves. They make a great container plant and landscaping component, groundcover, and can even be planted at the bases of rock walls (where they will slowly climb up). When you plant your kupukupu, give them room - these ferns like to grow and will out-compete one another. While they can survive full sun, kupukupu really likes to keep cool, so offer them a space with at least partial shade. Do you have other native trees on your property? Pop some kupukupu at the base of their trunks! Soon your kupukupu will begin to spread and sprawl (hmmm, Lono imagery again) and you will be able to share it with friends and family. Lonoikamakahiki!

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CIVIL DEFENSE A WIND ADVISORY through Tuesday afternoon: The National Weather Service Wind Advisory continues for Kaʻū, North and South Kohala and Puna, and across the interior of the island.
     Sustained east and northeast winds of 15 to 30 mph with localized gusts of over 50 mph are forecast.
    "Due to the Wind Advisory. Stay clear of and report any downed trees, utility poles or lines to authorities. Motorist, drive with caution. Stay tuned to your radio for updates and changes in conditions. This is your Hawai‘i County Civil Defense Agency."
Alya-Joy Kaehailua plays Nani
of Kahuku Ranch on Tuesday
at After Dark in the Park

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HISTORIC PLAY ON LIVING AT KAHUKU RANCH IN THE 1880s is the After Dark in the Park presentation this Tuesday, Nov. 14 at 7 p.m. 
    Called Nani O Kahuku: A One-Woman, Living History Play, it is adapted by Jackie Pualani Johnson directly from the diary of Hannah (Nani) Piʻilani Jones, portrayed by actress Alya-Joy Kanehailua. Nani was the eleventh and second-to-youngest child of one-time Kahuku Ranch owner, George W.C. Jones. 
    In the play, Nani takes the audience through her memories of ranch life in the 1880ʻs on the lush and rugged landscapes of Kahuku. This performance is expected to be well-attended and doors will open for seating beginning at 6:30 p.m. Program co-sponsored by Friends of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Park entrance fees apply.

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DEMOCRATIC PARTY OF HAWAI‘I COUNTY invites people to join and members to come to its meeting this Sunday, Nov. 19 from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the newly renovated ILWU Local 142 Hawai‘i Division Harry Kamoku Hall in Hilo. Address is 100 West Lanikaula St. Zoom option will be available.
Party organizers Patti Cook and Chair James Hustace said the meeting will be in-person with zoom option. Democratic Party members will be planning for the 2024 Biennial District meetings, County and State conventions, and the Party-Run Presidential Primary.

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See https://www.planning.hawaiicounty.gov/general-plan-community-planning/gp

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The event, on Friday and Saturday at the Herkes Kaʻū District Gym, raised money for eighth and ninth grade teams to travel to O‘ahu for competition in 2024. Winners of the Veterans Day: In the 14 & Under, Alaka‘i took first and Hokulele took second. In the 12 & Under Kona Stingrays took first and Hokulele second. 
    Hokulele is a Kaʻū-based basketball training organization for youth. It is led by Hokulele Club & Organization President & Head Coach Ravel Kaupu Jr., Vice President Jan Kaeza Penera and Coaches Chrysa Dacalio and Jaron Garcia.
    To join the club, register for a tournament, volunteer, and sponsor, contact Jan Kaeza Penera by email at kaeza.hokulele@gmail.com.
7,500 printed, 5,000 in the mail.

Kaʻū News Briefs Sunday, Nov. 12, 2023

Honey Girl dances hula at Veterans Day celebration at Nāʻālehu Hongwanji on Saturday, backed up by musician
Sonny Ramos, himself a Navy veteran w
ho sang and played music. Photo by June Domondon

VETERANS DAY was celebrated Saturday at Nāʻālehu Hongwanji. Vietnam War veteran Wayne Kawachi President of ‘O Ka‘ū Kākou, hosted the event. Joining him were veterans, including musician Sonny Ramos, OKK members, hula dancer Honey Girl and the Pāhala Hongwanji Taiko Drummers. Lunch and snacks were served to all.
Pāhala Hongwanji Taiko traveled to Nāʻālehu for the Veterans Day celebration on Saturday.
Photo by June Domondon

THE FATAL DOG ATTACK IN OCEAN VIEW on Aug. 1 has led to a story in Hawai‘i Tribune Herald by John Burnett, who reports the case has gone to the Prosecuting Attorney for Hawai‘i County to consider charges against the owners of the dogs.
    Bob Northrop, 71, of Ocean View, died after being attacked by four large dogs when he was walking
Bob Northrop was killed by four dogs in Ocean
View on Aug. 1. The case involving the dog
owners is being considered by County Prosecutors.
Photo from facebook
along Outrigger Drive to a friend's house.
    Burnett wrote that Northrop's ex-wife is calling for prosecutors to speed up their investigation and make charges. While the dogs that killed Northrop were turned over to Animal Control for euthanasia with ten puppies, Stephanie Northrop said that she heard that the same dogs attacked another person, before killing Northrop. She said police were called and that no one was charged. 
    Hawai‘i Tribune Herald reported that "The police investigation into Bob Northrop’s death was classified as a negligent failure to control a dangerous dog case. A Thursday call by the Tribune-Herald to county Prosecutor Kelden Waltjen wasn’t returned in time for this story. The dogs’ owners, whose names haven’t been made public, haven’t been arrested or booked on suspicion of the charges — which could be as serious as a Class B felony with a potential 10-year prison term."
  Sharon Matson, daughter of Bob Northrop, earlier told The Ka‘ū Calendar that his death seemed unreal since he was such a dog lover. She adopted her dad's puppy after he died and said the young dog has adjusted to living at her home with farm animals. 
    Matson, who is active in public service, is an aide at the County Council and is working with council members to see if the laws regarding dangerous dogs can be strengthened. She said she is shocked her father's death represents the second time the new law has been used this year alone to prosecute and investigate deadly dog attacks.
    Council member Michelle Galimba, who represents Ocean View was quoted earlier by Big Island Now concerning Northrop's death. “If the dogs had been secured in a fenced area or kennels, this would have been preventable.”
    Northrop was a school bus driver at the time of his death and also a retired county inspector and a glazier and carpenter. A Life Celebration was held at St. Jude’s Episcopal Church in Ocean View.

POLICE HAVE ISSUED A STATEMENT ABOUT THE EARLY MORNING WRECK that killed a Nāʻālehu woman on Sunday shutting down Highway 11, around 2 a.m., near the 83 Mile Marker, west of Ocean View.
Responding to a call at 2:06 a.m., police investigators determined that a silver 2011 Mazda CX-9 was traveling south on the highway when it ran off the right (makai) shoulder, went down a 20-foot embankment, rolled over, and caught on fire.
Responding Hawai‘i Fire Department personnel extinguished the blaze at which time a female body was located within the vehicle. The woman, who was the sole occupant of the vehicle, was transported to the Kona Community Hospital where she was pronounced dead at 8:32 a.m.
Police said they believe that speed and impairment are factors in the crash. The driver was not wearing her seatbelt. She has not been positively identified, pending the notification of next of kin.
Area II Traffic Enforcement Unit has initiated a coroner’s inquest investigation and is asking for anyone who may have witnessed the collision to contact Officer Dayson Taniguchi at (808) 326-4646, ext. 229, or email at dayson.taniguchi@hawaiicounty.gov. Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at (808) 961-8300.