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Cyril Pahinui Will Jam at the Sunday, Sept. 5 Fundraiser

Ka ‘Ohana O Honu’apo celebrates its stewardship of Honu’apo Park at the third “Ho’olaule’a at Honu’apo: Mālama Ka’u,” Sun., Sept.5 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Honu’apo Park and Whittington Beach Park on the Big Island of Hawai‘i.

The free, multi-generational festivities are open to everyone, with great food, music, hula, ‘olelo (storytelling) and more.  Cyril Pahinui, Na Hōku Hanohano winner and sweet-voiced son of Hawaiian music legend Gabby Pahinui, will add his slack key magic in a special performance.

Traditionally, a ho’olaule’a is a gathering for a special occasion, such as May Day or school graduation, when food, Hawaiian cultural crafts and games are shared.  What sets the “Ho’olaule’a at Honu’apo: Mālama Ka’u” apart is that it’s also a fundraiser to protect the historic and culturally significant Honu’apo Park in the southern Ka’u District.

This stretch of rocky coast, tidepools and marshes has transformed many times, yet maintains its sense of place.  From ancient fisheries, to a busy sugar cane port and railroad depot (that were at least twice destroyed by tsunamis and once blasted by the military during WWII), Honu’apo remains a warm and welcoming retreat for human visitors and fishermen, as well as habitat for the black-crowned night heron, the Hawaiian coot, Hawaiian duck, Hawaiian hawk, Hawaiian black-necked stilt, the Hawaiian monk seal, hawksbill turtles, green sea turtles, and other endangered wildlife. Honu’apo is a very special rare shoreline nursery that nurtures and protects dozens of endangered marine and terrestrial plant and animal life.

Led by a diverse board of passionate volunteers, Ka ‘Ohana O Honu’apo is dedicated to protecting the 223 acres of Honu’apo Park, now the largest county shoreline park in the State of Hawai’i. Event organizers hope to raise awareness about Honu’apo, and raise funds to help maintain programs and facilities. The day includes a variety of fun-filled events for all ages, including Cyril Pahinui in concert, and free educational walking tours with Ka’u docents.

Ka ‘Ohana O Honu’apo along with Townscape Hawai’i will also present the final Honu’apo General Resources Management Plan, to which hundreds of community members contributed over the last several years. Other special elements of the Ho’olaule’a include a look at the past, with an exhibition of historic photos, and numerous food, crafters and community education booths, a silent auction, and lucky number prizes.

“Ka’u has been blessed with so many resources for self-sufficiency,” said event organizer Michelle Galimba, president of Ka ‘Ohana O Honu’apo.  “We have a lot to share, and, based on the two previous Ho’olaule’a at Honu’apo, we expect a large turnout!”

This event is being supported by the County of Hawai’i through a grant from the Hawai’i Tourism Authority.

For those who want to stay in the Ka’u area for the weekend, several B&Bs like Pahala Plantation Cottages and Leilani Bed and Breakfast are offering special discounted rates.

For more information call (808) 929-9891 or visit www.honuapopark.org.

Photo credits:  monk seal from Julia Neal/Kau Calendar, Cyril Pahinui courtesy of Cyril and Honuapo courtesy Ka Ohana O Honuapo.

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