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  • November 15, 2017

    "Aloha Detroit"

    Hosted by OluKai and Temple Children

     

    This year at Murals in the Market in Eastern Market, Detroit we hosted a collaboration event with our friends at Temple Children. A Big Island and Detroit based organization, Temple Children focuses on creating projects that strengthen and bridge communities through art, sustainability, food and adventure.

    We hosted a vintage Hawaiian inspired rooftop BBQ at Temple Children’s Eastern Market loft with all the artists and media attending Murals in the Market. To celebrate Murals and the local community with a Hawaiian twist, we sourced the meal and beverages from Michigan family-owned and -operated farms.

     

    Check it out in our Recap video!
  • November 14, 2017

    Murals in the Market

    Murals in the Market, Detroit’s only international arts festival, recently took place in the city's historic area known as Eastern Market. During this third year of the festival the organization brought together over 40 international and local artists to create live art installations around the local neighborhoods.

    The main mission of the festival is to utilize the power of public art to beautify the local area, create a sense of community, work with local businesses, and attract visitors to the city's surrounding towns. We have supported this movement with festivals like POW!WOW! Hawaii, POW!WOW! Long Beach and now Murals in the Market.

    Collaborating with our friends Temple Children, we were able to bring the Aloha Spirit through our event "Aloha Detroit". Check out Aloha Detroit in our next blog!

    To learn more about murals in the market visit www.muralsinthemarket.com

    Video Recap by Emad Rashidi

     

    Gallery:

  • November 14, 2017

    Kalo: Hawai‘i’s Source of Life

    Kalo, a native Hawaiian plant, has profound importance in Hawaiian culture. Seen as the plant from which Hawaiians were born, it is a staple in their diet and is consumed in its entirety, from root to leaf.

     

    Kalo came to Hawai‘i on the canoes of the early Polynesian voyagers nearly 1500 years ago. It is central to the Native Hawaiian creation story and is a significant part of Hawai‘i’s cultural, historical and culinary identity.

    The plant itself is a root with a stalk and heartshaped leaves. The tubers of the kalo are often made into poi – a nutrient dense soft food that is enjoyed by people of all ages – although all parts of this incredible plant are eaten.

    The kalo fields (lo‘i) are a familiar sight on the Hawaiian landscape, and the farmers who tend the land are stewards of this tradition. With lessons learned from hundreds of years of cultivation, they understand how to work harmoniously with nature, and are typically happy to share their expertise and stories about Hawai‘i’s most important plant.

    Kamuela Yim, one such farmer, explains how the land, or “‘āina” in the Hawaiian language, is more than a sheer commodity to them.“‘ "'Aina is the thing that defines you as a Hawaiian,” Kamuela explains. “Outside of being Hawaiian, ‘āina is the thing that supports you and gives you the resources that you need.”

  • October 4, 2017

    Sunset Elementary Mural

    Artist duo Wooden Wave (Matt and Roxy Ortiz) are currently starting two murals at Sunset Beach Elementary on the North Shore of Oahu, Hawaii. The mural that is closer to the mountains will take on a mauka theme while the mural closest to the ocean will be makai themed. The mauka-themed wall will depict a sustainable treehouse farm built into a mountainside. Similarly, the makai-themed mural will be of a sustainable ocean clubhouse community.

    The native flora and fauna of the mauka mural’s foreground layer are currently being painted by the students from grades 1-3. The makai mural shows a vibrant reef ecosystem complete with corals and fish that was painted by the kindergarten and grade 4-6 students. With each student in the school participating, this means that over 400 students will be involved in this legacy project for the school. This level of school - wide participation is designed to instill in students a sense of pride and ownership for the finished murals.

    As part of the curriculum for the project, there was an in-class activity where the students drew images of what their ideal treehouse would look like. Additionally, each class submitted ideas of what kind of treehouse features they would like included in the part of the mural Wooden Wave will paint. The grade levels voted, and the winning features will be incorporated into the mural habitats. This activity is another way that the students are able to contribute to the development of the paintings.

    The student portion of the makai mural is complete and Wooden Wave is currently working with classes on the plants for the mauka mural. The artists will then spend the next month painting in the detailed sustainable communities. Not only are these collaborative murals serving as a way to bring art lessons to the school, they are also being used to address themes of environmental stewardship, Hawaiian values, and a sense of place.

    Project partners are the Friends of Sunset Beach, The Johnson ‘Ohana Foundation, and OluKai footwear.

    Article by: Wooden Wave

  • September 26, 2017

    Cliff Notes: Big Choices in Little Nicaragua

    Interview by: Cliff Kapono (@cliff_kapono)

    Whether it is the annoyance of another sibling, the comforting touch of an elder, or the simple smile from a distant relative, family can easily be taken for granted. Raised the second oldest of 5 children, I quickly assumed my role as “bruddah” from an early age. Although there were times it may have seemed like a chore, staying true to the values of ‘ohana was mandatory. As I travel to distant shores and experience different cultures, it is apparent that these values aren’t unique to Hawai‘i. On a recent trip to Central America, I met up with good friend Eric Nicholson who has recently relocated to the quiet Nicaraguan coast. We talked about the surf, community dynamics and most importantly the significance of family life.

    Great to see you again Eric. It’s been a minute. Is it weird to be so far away from home? I mean, where is home exactly?

    Southern California born and raised. I was born in LA, but moved to Ventura County when I was six. It’s cool to now be living in southern Nicaragua.

    Seems you couldn’t stray too far from the Pacific Coast. When was the first time you came to Nicaragua?

    I first visited Nica in 2009 during spring break my senior year of college. My friend Dane and his girlfriend at the time had driven down to Nicaragua from San Diego in a VW wagon. They were living in the city of Granada, which is about an hour south of Managua. I stayed with them and surfed around the San Juan Del Sur and Popoyo area for a bit.

    Ah the good old days. Has it changed much?

    It’s changed a lot but then again it hasn’t. Obviously surf and fishing tourism has grown.

    Why do you think that is?

    There’s a few reasons. Nicaragua is a fairly peaceful country these days where your dollar goes further. The southern region generally has 300+ days of offshore winds and it’s SW facing coast picks up swell pretty consistently. The offshore winds also provide upwelling along this stretch of coast that creates a lot of life for the fisheries.

    Sounds like an ocean-lover’s paradise. Seems like there are a lot of US citizens here in Nicaragua. What is the dynamic between the newly relocated residence and the local people?

    I guess it varies. like anywhere in the world, some locals hate foreigners and resent them living in their home and taking their resources. Others embrace the jobs that surf and fishing tourism has created for the local people.

    That sounds pretty similar to a lot of coastal communities. Do tensions ever arise?

    Definitely. Just last week this local cut in front of me in line at the grocery store, and when I politely asked him if he was aware of the line, he told me to go back to my country where I came from. Obviously that doesn’t mean everybody is like that, but it happens. Still, I have lots of good relationships with locals.

    That’s a tough one. Especially since because that local probably didn’t know why you live in Nicaragua now. Can you talk about why you are living here and what it was like making that choice?

    After I graduated from UCSD in 2009, it was super hard for me to find a job with the recession and all so I came down here for an extended surf trip. Nica may not have the world class waves that say Indonesia and other major surf destinations have, but it’s got incredibly consistent surf day in day out. And it’s a beautiful country with a very interesting history and culture. I ended up staying down here longer than I had imagined and got involved with a local woman. The next thing I knew I was having a son.

    Wow. That’s a pretty big life change. Especially right out of college.

    Yea, but being a father is tremendously fulfilling. I think kids have a way changing your perspective on life and bringing out the best in you. My son Dylan has undoubtedly given me a true sense of purpose. Initially, I wasn’t at all prepared to be a dad. It didn’t help that my parents weren’t supportive of me when they found out. I was 21 years old, fresh out of college with no money, and about to have a kid in a foreign country. It was tough for me. I struggled with a lot of internal conflict and self-doubt. Once I decided to really go all in and be a proud father to Dylan, I really grew. I found a sense of confidence and purpose I never thought I would have in my life.

    It must have been difficult to leave the States.

    Leaving my life in the states was actually the easiest part. So, I was here in Nicaragua when Dylan was born back in 2010 and shortly thereafter I went back to work in the states. I was a field biologist working as an environmental inspector. I made a few trips down to visit on my vacation time, but when Dylan was 2 I had a major falling out with his mom. We lost contact and I just felt like the world was against me. I gave up on trying to be a father, but eventually the stress and emotions caught up with me. Last year I went down to visit after all of those years of no communication. Once I finally reconnected with my son and saw the pain he had been going through all those years not knowing what had happened to his father. Like I said, the decision to leave my life in the states was easy.

    That’s solid. How long do you plan to stay down in Nicaragua?

    Right now, my plan is to live here and put Dylan in an English grade school for the next year or two. It’s the easiest transition for both of us and I enjoy the lifestyle down here. I never thought I’d say this, but raising Dylan in a developing nation like Nicaragua is actually a lot more stress free than being back home in the states. It just gives you perspective on how much we get caught up in the rat race.

    I know you’ve travelled and experience a lot of the Hawaiian culture. Do you see any parallels between your lifestyle you are living now and your time spent in Hawai‘i?

    Definitely. Aloha is the essential element in every ‘ohana. Loving and caring for each other is the glue that holds families together. It’s easy to get sidetracked with all the noise in today’s world, but if we make a concerted effort to come back to these values of ‘ohana, life rewards us. I try to remind myself of that and the rest takes care of itself.

  • September 7, 2017

    Legacy of Lei Making: Meleana Estes

    Interview by: Daniel Ito

    Lei making is deeply rooted in the DNA of Meleana Estes. Her grandmother, Amelia Ana Kaopua Bailey, was a master lei maker, whose craft was widely respected in Hawai‘i. Much like her tutu, Meleana has a following for her haku lei or what Snapchat defines as the “flower power crown.”

    Lei making is not a Millennial fad for the 27-year-old, Native Hawaiian. Rather it’s one of the many talents of this creative. Meleana is also a photo stylist and designer who went to fashion school in New York after graduating from Boston College. When she returned home to Hawai‘i, she rediscovered her passion for lei making. As a result, she is perpetuating her grandma’s legacy while stoking out the next generation on this Hawaiian cultural practice.

    While unpacking from a Kaua‘i trip and repacking for a Colorado, we talked with Meleana about her grandmother and the recent resurgence of the haku lei’s popularity.

    Who taught you how to make a lei?

    My grandmother was a very renowned leimaker in Hawai‘i so I learned from just being with her all the time. Sitting with her and watching her make lei at her house in Mānoa. Helping her at her workshops and when I was younger I would drive her around. I learned how to make leis when I was young, and I would make them on Mei Day and those occasions, but I was much more interested in surfing and playing sports. My sister was the big lei maker because she was a hula dancer. But [lei making] was always around me and apart of me, but I didn’t take on my own style and my own particular interest until five years ago. Moving home from New York I sort of started to feel a responsibility to make a beautiful haku for someone’s birthday. It sort of evolved into something I would do all the time.

    How did living in New York influence your passion for lei making?

     I think that was a cool experience because when I was [in New York] and designing for companies I had a really specific person that I wanted to design for and dress. I realized when I was there that I love fashion, but I really did have a particular customer in mind and definitely my muse has always been Hawai‘i and the Hawai‘i girl. On top of that, I think where the flowers play in is that the essence of this girl is wearing a lei in my mind because that is how I grew up. I always had a lei on my head and I was always adorned by my grandmother.

    Is there a difference between a haku lei and a lei po‘o?

     They are actually interchangeable. “Po‘o” is “head” so a lei po‘o is a “head lei.” A haku lei is a lei made in the traditional style without any thread. There are three different techniques within that term “haku lei.”

    What are these techniques and which do you teach at the workshops?

    The technique I teach is “wili” which is “to wrap” or “wind.” I like that technique personally because I have that control of the flowers.  The other technique is actually called “haku” and “haku” actually means “to braid.” You braid two or more stems of green and flowers that is more the Tahitian style when you see them braiding the ti leaf and adding a flower. That style is super beautiful and I love that, too. Then “hili” is the third style and that is when you just braid one type of string.

    The haku lei is more popular than ever! What would attribute to this resurgence?

    You know what? It’s crazy and I totally agree! You know I hate to say it out loud, but I’m totally going to: I think things like Coachella and other Bohemian trends started bringing attention to the “flower crown.” So I think that the “flower crown” is sort of like a lei po‘o. I think that trend has actually brought a lot of attention to the haku lei because a lot of people are wearing flowers on their head. I think it’s really cool that people don’t just want to wear a flower crown. They want to know how to make something in the traditional way because the flower crowns are actually just made from cardboard. I think the flower crown gets a lot of play and so do the haku lei, but I just love when people want to learn a traditional way.

  • August 29, 2017

    Q&A with Lindsey Higa

    Introducing Lindsey Higa (left), a native Hawaiian with a unique twist on fashion. Lindsey is well known for blending street style with laid-back island vibes, which she uses to inspire followers of her blog Pineapple Ice. We were fortunate enough to collaborate with her on our recent Sneaker Campaign. Let's get to know her! _40A4255_RC_EDIT_01_V1_rgb

     

    How does Hawaii influence your style?

    Living in Hawaii totally influences my style. Our warm weather and casual and relaxed lifestyle calls for breezy and cool clothing on the daily. More than half the time I feel like I live in my bathing suit (which I don't mind), but after living in San Francisco for 6 years it's definitely a challenge to constantly be creative in putting outfits together without being able to layer. I try to stick to the basics, while always staying cool and comfortable!

    Favorite hangout spots/stores? Especially old-school ones related to the shoot.

    Oahu has so many great hangout spots. We spend a lot of our weekends on Waimanalo beach because it's such a breathtaking view. I love picking up fresh poke and poi at the Co-Op and eating it down at the beach.

     

    Where do you draw inspiration? 

    I draw most of my inspiration through social media. I'm constantly on Pinterest and Tumblr trying to keep up with the latest editorials, street style, and trends. My personal style is definitely influenced from the fashions I see abroad.

    What is your favorite everyday OluKai product and dress-up OluKai product?

    Luana is my favorite everyday shoe. I have them in almost every color! They're perfect for when I'm on my feet all day because they're so incredibly comfortable! The 'Upena is my favorite dress up sandal. I have them in the Pewter color which is perfect for night time looks!

    _40A4431_RC_EDIT_01Tell us something we don’t know about you.

    I'm a pretty open book, but if you don't know me well you probably wouldn't know I'm really into yoga. I spend a lot of my time at the studio doing sometimes 2 classes a day. I've been practicing for about 6 years now, and it's definitely been life changing mentally and physically!

    What can you not leave without or what do you take with you every day.

    There's so many things I can't leave the house without! Recently I've started using this line of amazing all natural facial oils from Maui. Because I'm usually hitting the beach or going to yoga, I carry a small bottle in my bag wherever I go so my skin stays hydrated after workouts and the beach!

     

    Thank you, Lindsey!

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  • August 29, 2017

    The Kaimukī Shire

    The Perfect Day in Honolulu Written by Daniel Ito

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    The Kaimukī Shire is a section of urban Honolulu that you can’t necessarily find on a map of O‘ahu, but is a gathering place for creatives, surfers, hippies, designers, and tourists. Although the moniker, coined by younger residents of Kaimukī, conjures images of hipster hobbits, puffing vape pens, sipping coconut water, and stroking their beards at tables outside of Whole Foods, the Shire actually gets its name from an ancient Hawaiian definition of neighborhoods: ahupua‘a.

    Traditionally, each ahupua‘a extended from the mountain to the sea, and was so-called because the boundary was marked by a heap (ahu) of stones surmounted by an image of a pig (puaʻa), or because a pig or other tribute was laid on the altar as tax to the chief. Before Western contact, a Hawaiian could find everything they needed to thrive in their ahupua‘a. And today, the Kaimukī Shire has everything a foodie or millennial could ask for on the weekend: restaurants, libations, nature, culture, shopping, art, and surf.

    The three ahu, or landmarks, that define the Kaimukī Shire are Kahala Mall, the Ala Wai Canal and Pālolo. The heart of the Shire is the town of Kaimukī, whose name translates to “the tea root oven” in English. My wife, Kahina Ito, was born and raised here. I’m originally from Hawai‘i Island, but we’ve been thriving in the Shire together for the past six years. We both work in downtown Honolulu, but our perfect day is close to home in the Shire because it contains everything we need to be happy. It’s best to heed the advice of the kanaka maoli (native Hawaiians), so let us show you some Aloha by showing you around the Shire.

      7:00AM

    Hawai‘i is one of the most stunning places in the world and you don’t want to miss any of its natural beauty by sleeping in. So wake up early and do something active. I’m a surfer so I like to start my perfect day with a “dawn patrol” at Diamond Head crater. Diamond Head is great because it has the full gamut of surf breaks, from beginner waves all the way up to more advanced offerings. The Hawaiians named the crater Lē‘ahi, which means “forehead of the yellow-fin tuna,” because of the way it looks from the ocean. If you’re not a wave slider then go for a swim at Kaimana Beach or run around Kapi‘olani Park. Or if you’re looking for an envy-inducing Instagram post and a leg-burning workout, then hike Diamond Head State Monument.

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      8:30AM

    Now that you’ve built up an appetite walk east on Monsarrat Avenue, right next to Diamond Head, for breakfast. There is a plethora of options, ranging from healthy to hearty.

    Want a plant-based breaky? Hit up Banán or Diamond Head Health Cove Bar for an acaí bowl. Looking for a more traditional American breakfast? Go to Diamond Head Market and Grill for a fried rice, breakfast meat, eggs and an exceptionally tasty blueberry scone. My wife and I usually go to ARS Café for avocado toast and cortados—it’s a nice spot to read the newspaper and features a monthly art exhibit.

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      10:00AM

    Every Saturday there is arguably the best farmer’s market in Honolulu at Kapi‘olani Community College, known for the quality of its produce and variety of locally-produced food and drink. If you’re here on the right day, walk east on Monsaratt Avenue until you reach it. Pick up some mangos from Ma’o Organic farms, and some poi lavosh from La Tour Cafe. Top the lavosh with honey from All Hawaiian Honey, and you’ve got yourself a stellar mid-day snack.

    Be sure to visit the Little Hands Hawai‘i booth and cop some sunblock. It’s the only organic sunblock that is locally-produced, made from natural products and it does not damage coral reefs (commercial sunblocks contain ingredients that can stress marine phytoplankton, and thus the reefs.)

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      11:00AM

    Good thing you got the sunblock and snacks because it’s time to go on a canoe ride. Stop at Fort Ruger Market to pick up a six-pack and head to the Kahala Resort & Hotel for a sailing canoe tour (exactly what it sounds like) with Holokino Hawai‘i. This tour is owned and operated by my friend Austin Kino, who is an apprentice navigator on Hōkūle‘a, a sailing canoe similar to those used by the ancient Polynesians. You’ll enjoy Captain Kino’s explanation of ahupua’a from the ocean, and his ability to point out the variety of seabirds that were once used to find signs of land by Polynesian navigators.

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      1:00PM

    After getting off the wa‘a—canoe—head to Haili’s Hawaiian Foods on the corner of Kapahulu and Palani Avenues. This family-owned lunch spot has been in business since 1950, and their Hawaiian food is so ono (delicious) that they catered my wedding. Share a Big Kahuna plate with rice and be sure to order a side of poi and dried aku—skipjack tuna—as well. You’re in for some major deliciousness here: kalua pig, pulled pork that is slow cooked until it is moist and savory; chicken long rice, like the Hawaiian version of chicken noodle soup, and lomi salmon, a Hawaiian love child of ceviche and salsa, without the lime. The plate also includes poke—my favorite is with ahi—and haupia, which is like a coconut jello.

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      2:30PM

    By now you’ve gotten your exercise, laid down a solid base of sustenance, and might have even already started drinking. Now it’s time to really get after that afternoon buzz. Head to the new Maui Brewing Co. brewpub on Kalākaua Avenue for the best locally-produced craft beer in Hawai‘i.

    My all-time favorite is the Bikini Blonde, which is like a tastier version of a light beer that you can drink all day without becoming sleepy. One of the coolest parts of living in Hawai‘i is that prime time on the U.S. East Coast is Hawai‘i’s afternoon, so you might be able to catch a game at Maui Brewing Co. When you find a favorite craft beer buy a crowler—a canned version of a growler that’s actually canned at the bar—before you leave.

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      6:00PM

    All you need now is a place to watch the sunset while you drink your crowler (bet you are going to wish you could say those words again when you get back home). Head toward Diamond Head from Kalākaua Avenue and stop at Makalei Beach Park. Keep the crowler on the down-low—drinking isn’t technically allowed on the beaches in Hawai’i, though many do it anyway—with a brown bag or towel and enjoy the Hawaiian sunset.

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      7:30PM

    Chef Ed Kenney is a living legend in the Kaimukī Shire, and along with his business partner and fellow chef, Dave Caldiero, is a champion of farm-to-table dining. Depending on how big your dinner party is, you should go to Town or Mud Hen Water. Kenney and Caldiero own both. The latter is for dinner parties of six or more, and the former is a more intimate experience for smaller parties. Whatever you decide to order for an entrée at Town be sure to start with the pa‘i‘ai and cured opelu. Thank me later.

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      9:00PM

    After dinner head over to 12th Avenue for dessert. If you have a sweet tooth then go to Via Gelato, but my wife and I suggest drinking your dessert at 12th Avenue Grill. They have an ever-changing menu of craft cocktails and a late-night menu that is all kinds of radness—I’m partial to the meatloaf melt. Order any cocktail made with Pau Vodka, which is made from pineapples on neighboring Maui.

      11:00PM

    If you still have the energy to party head here to Karaoke Hut, known to locals affectionately as K-Hut. If you’re with at least four people try to book a karaoke room, where you can sing whatever you want without judgement.

    Although many people think the word “aloha” is a satisfactory translation of “good bye,” the indigenous Hawaiian language doesn’t actually have such a word. Rather than saying “good bye,” we say “a hui hou,” which means ’till we meet again;” Hawaiians believed that you would always see someone down the line in one form or the other. I bid you a heartfelt “a hui hou” from the Kaimukī Shire and hope this slice of paradise has found a place in your heart like the one it has in mine.

  • August 29, 2017

    Bar Leather Apron Aims to be a Destination for World Class Cocktails

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    Photo courtesy of Tom Park

    Written by Daniel Ito

    There is something magical about a great, handcrafted cocktail. When done properly the alchemy of premium alcohol and ingredients make an intoxicating concoction. Combine this with an enchanting atmosphere of muted-lighting, exotic wood furniture and intimate seating for only 25-30 people, and you have the magic of Bar Leather Apron.

    The magicians behind this new craft cocktail destination in downtown Honolulu, which officially opened yesterday, is Justin Park and Tom Park. Despite having the same last name they are not related, but both bring the experiences of their travels around the world and a mutual desire to make Bar Leather Apron a unique and excellent experience.

    “Our whole thing was to create a culmination of all our travels ... we took what we thought was the best of each place and we’re trying to box it up in one place," says Justin Park, who is the former bar manager of the popular bar and café in Chinatown, The Manifest. "There's a lot of European style cocktail influences, a lot of classic-style cocktail influences, a lot of Japanese-service oriented aspects that we’re doing, so [Bar Leather Apron] is a worldly bar." 

    In 2012, Justin was awarded the honor of creating the “Best Mai Tai” and two years later won United States Bartenders Guild’s Shake It Up.  “My whole thing isn’t to list the most obscure liqueurs, bourbons, whiskies and scotches from around the world ... That’s not the point of what we’re doing. Food will be served with our cocktails and that is kind of a Japanese thing. So throughout your drinking experience there will be little food things.”

    In addition to the appetizers that will be served with cocktails like the “BLA Old Fashioned” and “The Brooklyn,” the word “bar” in the name is an “homage” to Japan says Tom, who is also the CEO and founder of Leather Soul, a high-end, men’s shoe boutique located in downtown Honolulu and the Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center. According to Tom, the small cocktails bars in the Land of the Rising Sun have the word “bar” in front of the rest of the name. While the Park duo draws inspiration from Japan, Bar Leather Apron is designed to be something that Hawaii can be proud of. 

    “One of our goals is to do something really special for Hawaii," Tom says. "With Leather Soul I really wanted to have a world-class men’s shoe store in Hawaii, and that’s something that motivates me in everything I do. With Bar Leather Apron, I really want to have a world-class experience, world-class cocktail bar in Hawaii, where everybody in the world is like, ‘Wow, one of the best bars in the world is in Hawaii.’

  • August 16, 2017

    Hōkūleʻa’s Mahalo Hawaiʻi Sail to Launch at Honolua Bay

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    On August 16, 2017, voyaging canoes Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia will depart the Marine Education Training Center (METC) at Sand Island to begin the Mahalo, Hawai’i Sail. The first stop will be at Honolua Bay, Maui, where Hōkūleʻa first launched for her maiden voyage in 1976 and where she will now begin to mahalo and mālama Hawai’i with a planting of 4,000 koa seedlings as part of a series of events in West Maui. After the Honolua Bay visit, the canoes will continue to approximately 40 additional ports and connect with nearly 80 communities throughout the Hawaiian Islands.

    The Mahalo, Hawai’i Sail will give Polynesian Voyaging Society (PVS) an opportunity to thank Hawaiʻi’s people, bring Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia home to all of Hawaiʻi, share lessons learned from the Mālama Honua Worldwide Voyage and deepen the organization’s connection and understanding of the important work being done here in the islands to care for the earth. During the port visits, PVS will engage with schools and organizations through outreach events, service projects, crew presentations and canoe tours.

    “Now that we have returned from our three-year voyage around the world, we are looking forward to reconnecting with and thanking the people of Hawai’i,” said Nainoa Thompson, president of PVS. “It’s also time now to discover and shine the light on what people and organizations are doing to turn inspiration into action for the betterment of our island home and the earth. This first engagement planned at Honolua Bay and Waokele ʻo Honolua by the West Maui community is an example of what we are hoping to support during this sail,” he added.

    Honolua Bay was chosen as the first stop on the Mahalo, Hawai’i Sail because it was the location where the Hōkūleʻa’s maiden voyage to Tahiti was launched in 1976. In partnership with the Maui Land and Pineapple Company, Inc. through the conservation department of the Pu’u Kukui Watershed Preserve, State of Hawaiʻi DLNR, The Nature Conservancy of Hawaiʻi and Kamehameha Schools Maui, Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia crew members will be engaging with schools and the community in West Maui where they are scheduled to conduct presentations and canoe tours (see detailed schedule below). On Saturday, August 19, crew members will join the community and participate in a project to plant 4,000 koa trees and thousands of other native plants in the Pu’u Kukui Watershed Preserve ma kai conservation area. At one time, koa trees were used to make voyaging canoes, but today there are few of these native trees remaining which are large enough to do so.

    Honolua Bay Engagement Schedule: *All dates and times schedule to change

    • Wednesday, August 16, 11 p.m. – Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia depart METC at Sand Island
    • Thursday, August 17, 4 p.m. – Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia arrive at Honolua Bay
    • Thursday, August 17, 6 p.m. – Mālama Honua Voyage sharing by crew members of Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia at Kamehameha Schools Maui, Keōpūolani Hale (Free and Open to the public)
    • Friday, August 18, 9:30 – 12:30 p.m. – Kamehameha Schools Maui visit with Hōkūleʻa crew and planting
    • Saturday, August 19, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. – Planting of 4,000 koa trees and thousands of other native plants at Pu’u Kukui Watershed Preserve ma kai conservation area (limited parking available)
    • Saturday, August 19, 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. – Public canoe tours, Honolua Bay Ramp
    • Sunday, August 20, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. – Public canoe tours, Honolua Bay Ramp
    • TBD– Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia depart Honolua Bay

    About Pu’u Kukui Watershed Preserve: Pu’u Kukui Watershed Preserve is the largest private nature preserve in the state of Hawaiʻi. Extending across more than 9,000 acres from ma uka to ma kai of Mauna Kahālāwai on Mauiʻs West side, it is home to some of the rarest endangered flora and fauna in the islands. This pristine area is a vital water source for Mauiʻs community and one of the wettest spots on earth. Most recently, under new management, the ancestral wisdom of Hawaiian elders has been laid as the foundation for conservation efforts in the preserve; providing a culturally sensitive and informed approach to managing the thriving native ecosystem of Puʻu Kukui. Conservation endeavors include non-native invasive species control, weed control, monitoring, research and most importantly protecting rare species.

    Article courtesy of www.hokulea.com and www.puukukui.org

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