After a few starts and stops — mainly due to staff vacations — this year’s seventh annual Hawai‘i Island edition is finally in your hands, albeit a day late because of the 4th of July holiday.
The Big Island edition is always fun to put together. While most of us live in the state of Hawai‘i — we do have a good number of subscribers outside of Hawai‘i, as well — it’s really enjoyable to read about people who make their lives on islands other than our own. In this case, the island of Hawai‘i.
Mother Nature has always tested the spirit and resilience of Big Island residents. On a few hours notice, or sometimes none at all, they can find themselves facing earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanic eruptions, vog, hurricanes, record rainfall and the like. But they always overcome the adversities because the Big Island is their home.
One of the goals of all of our neighbor island issues is to take you to as wide a range of locales as possible and introduce you to its people. Last year, we were able to put together somewhat of a “circle island tour” of the Big Island. Fortunately, we can take you on a circle island tour again this year, starting in the East Hawai‘i community of Honomu, where former Hawai‘i Herald editor Arnold Hiura met with bon dance “queen” Jane Heit on a rainy Saturday night, just as she was putting her clear plastic raincoat over her beautiful kimono so she could teach bon dance steps to a group of newbies. That is dedication to the culture and the community.
And then we head to south Hilo, Ka‘ü and Waimea, where contributing writer and Big Island lover Dan Nakasone introduces us to Eric Tanouye, Michelle Galimba and Edwin Goto, three baby boomer-age entrepreneurs who are the kinds of people that New York Times columnist David Brooks calls “weavers” and who fill his heart with optimism.
Dan, who is an avid horseman, also worked on another story that examined the early history and heritage of Japanese paniolo (cowboys) on the Big Island. You will be pleasantly surprised — and proud — of what Dan’s extensive research turned up.
We also stop in Kona, where, on a personal trip, staff writer Jodie Ching made time to visit with Renee Kimura, the fourth-generation owner of the Kimura Lauhala Shop, to learn about her efforts to preserve and perpetuate the native Hawaiian art of lauhala weaving.
And, finally, we close with a food tribute to the late George Yoshida, Hawai‘i County’s beloved Elderly Activities director, who died earlier this year. George’s dedication to Hawai‘i Island’s küpuna continued long after he retired from the county by teaming up with KTA Super Stores executive vice president Derek Kurisu in presenting a television program with seniors in mind.
I say this every year when we publish our Big Island edition. I don’t mean to sound trite, but truly, we can only publish this issue because of the support of the advertisers and people listed below. When you see them, please tell them that you saw their ad or story in this issue and thank them for supporting the Herald.
If you would like to purchase additional copies of this issue, or any other Herald issues, please seek them out at all KTA Super Stores locations. KTA is still the only neighbor island retail outlet that carries the Herald and our hearts are filled with deep aloha for the entire team at KTA for their unbelievable support.
Alumside Products, Inc.
Amano Fishcake, Inc.
Big Island Delights
Dodo Mortuary, Inc. & Crematory
Green Point Nurseries
Hawai‘i Printing Corporation
Hilo Termite & Pest Control, Ltd.
Honda Foods Processing
Island Ohana Dental
Japanese Community Association of Hawaii
Kadota Liquor/K’s Drive In
Kimura Lauhala Shop
KTA Super Stores
S. Tokunaga Store
Two Ladies Kitchen
Veteran Termite & Pest Control
Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home
Arnold and Eloise Hiura