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Saturday, December 16, 2023

Kaʻū News Briefs December 16, 2023


Keiki gets an early Christmas at Ocean View, courtesy of St. Jude's Episcopal Church on Saturday. Photo by Ed Rau
Santa and Mrs. Claus with gifts for keiki and mom at 
St. Jude's in Ocean View on Saturday. Photo by Ed Rau

Kady and Drew Foster provided free hair cuts during the St. Jude's
Christmas events on Saturday. Photo by Ed Rau

CHRISTMAS CAME EARLY FOR KEIKI AND ADULTS AT ST. JUDE'S Episcopal Church in Ocean View on Saturday. St. Jude's provided books, bags of cookies, candy canes, handmade red stockings brimming with toys and a small army of kittens, hedgehogs, horses, teddies, koala bears and other stuffed animals for the keiki.
    Santa and Mrs. Claus arrived with the assistance of their helpers, Thom White and Marvelle Rau. This year Mr. and Mrs. Claus wore their new Hawaiian style clothes made the just the night before their arrival by a special helper when no creatures were stirring. Last year their winter wardrobe brought straight from the North Pole was a bit too warm for their visit to Ocean View.
    Kady and Drew Foster of Foster Hair Design in Nāʻālehu provided free haircuts at the event. Gary and Deb Johnson setup up a mini library and helped the keiki select their gift books.
   Public showers were available and free food served by church volunteers was also part of the giving.

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PROTECTING THE WORLD'S FRAGILE CORAL REEF ECOSYSTEMS by restricting international imports of protected ornamental reef fish and coral species collected through destructive practices is the aim of new legislation by Hawai'i Congressman Ed Case.  His NEMO ACT -  Saving Natural Ecosystems and Marine Organisms Act, came as Hawai'i state Board of Land & Natural Resources met on Saturday to consider further restrictions on the taking of certain reef fish.  
    The BLNR meeting followed a recent study in Hawai'i showing that overfishing of certain species such as convict tang and manini can undermine the health of coral reefs. “Our oceans are indispensable to life on our planet, not only to our global environment but to the billions that are directly or indirectly reliant on its resources,” said Case. “Our oceans in turn rely on the health and diversity of our coral reefs, some of our most diverse ecosystems, with nearly 25 percent of the ocean’s fish dependent on coral reefs for shelter, food and reproduction. And our coral reefs are interdependent with healthy, diverse and sustainable marine flora and fauna.” 
    Case said his act would prohibit the import into the U.S. those protected reef species that are taken using such unsustainable or destructive practices as overcollection of species overall, overcollection of younger specimens, collection through reef- dredging, gill nets, explosives or poison and harm to specimens leading to excessive deaths in transit. 
     “Among these are prized ornamental reef fish and coral species highly valued by collectors. While it is possible to collect them at sustainable levels which do not harm the coral reef or broader marine ecosystem, high demand leads too often to unsustainable and destructive collection practices. Most of the collection occurs internationally where most of our world’s coral reefs are found, in countries, such as in Southeast Asia, which do not have strong regulation or enforcement regimens against unsustainable or destructive practices. 
    “As the largest importer of ornamental reef fish, our country has both responsibility for creating the demand that leads to such practices, and the opportunity to channel that demand to sustainable collection,” said Case.

From golf carts to jeeps, the decorated vehicles traveled the streets for the Discovery Harbor Community Holiday Parade
of Lights on Saturday. Photo by Jana Kaniho

The classic Jeep outline in Christmas lights at Discovery Harbor's parade
on  Saturday. Photo by Jana Kaniho
DISCOVERY HARBOUR COMMUNITY HOLIDAY PARADE OF LIGHTS wound through the neigborhoods on Saturday night. It began with a photo session at Discovery Harbour Community Center where folks gathered with their decorated golf cart, ATV's Jeeps, pickups, convertibles and other vehicles. 
     The parade was accompanied by noisemakers - bells, boom boxes and voices to spread the cheer, and candy to share with spectators. A gathering was held after the parade with cookies, punch and caroling at the Commuity Center.

THE WORTH OF WATER is a new exhibit at Volcano Art Center at the Niaulani Sculpture Garden, located at VAC’ s Niaulani Campus in Volcano Village.  The public is invited to attend the opening

reception on Sunday, Dec. 17  from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. with the opening blessing performed by Kumu Keala Ching. Light pupu and refreshments will be served . The display will run through January of 2026. 
    Artists with works selected for this juried exhibition include Rachel Lyra Hospodar, Owen Fritts, Renata Jaworska, Ingrid Fregeau, and Henri Bianchini. 
     "The Niaulani Sculpture Garden provides a space for Hawai`i’s talented sculptors to share their works. The dynamic interplay of sunlight, mist, and rain that is Volcano’s variable weather, against a backdrop of old-growth ‘ohi‘a – koa rainforest, provides the ideal setting for outdoor sculpture. Inspired by the unique nature of Kīlauea, artists’ creations are enhanced not only with with a sense of place, but also by the thoughtful design of landscape architect David Tamura within the Sculpture Garden," says a VAC statement.
     The Worth of Water outdoor exhibition works of art were selected by mixed-media sculptors Elizabeth Miller and Jonathan Sudler. The five sculptures juried for the exhibition explore water in all its forms; including its sound, shape and interaction with other environmental elements.
    Living Treasure of Hawai'i, Mary Kawena Pukui spoke of water and its cultural significance during an interview with Kepā Maly in 1975 and explained, “The Hawaiian word for water is wai. The Hawaiian word for wealth is waiwai; wai is doubled, or said twice. When you have wai you have life, the ability to sustain yourself upon the land. Water is believed to be from the god Kāne i ka wai ola, Kāne the giver of the water of life”
    VAC states that it hopes to honor the life giving waters of the Hawaiian rain forest with this collection of outdoor sculptures. 
    Volcano Art Center is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization created in 1974 whose mission is to promote, develop, and perpetuate the artistic, cultural, and environmental heritage of Hawaiʻi’s people through the arts and education.