Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u News Briefs Thursday, March 27, 2014

Aloha Bluegrass Band raised money last night for their children's education workshops with a concert at Pahala Plantation Manager's House. Photo by Julia Neal
AN ASPIRING KA`U CHAPTER of Hawai‘i Farmers Union United invites the public to a meeting on Saturday, April 19 at 5 p.m. at Pāhala Community Center. Speakers include Vincent Mina, President of the state board of Hawai`i Farmers Union United. Also on the agenda is Bob Shaffer, a coffee farmer and agronomist with Soil Culture Consulting. One of the organizers of the new chapter, Malian Lahey, said all farmers and others interested in the future of agriculture in Ka`u are invited to attend. Attendees are encouraged to bring potluck items made from local ingredients.
      Hawai`i Farmers Union United’s mission statement says the organization “advocates for the sovereign right of farmers to create and sustain vibrant and prosperous agricultural communities for the benefit of all Hawai`i through cooperation, education and legislation.” It says the Hawai`i division of the Farmers Union is “recognized and respected in representing a family of farmers here in Hawai`i. Hawai`i Farmers Union empowers island farmers to earn a prosperous living through regenerative stewardship of our lands, waters and communities. Hawai`i Farmers Union serves as a bridge between farmers and consumers through vibrant, local, community Farmers Union chapters in all districts on all islands.”
Vincent Mina will be a keynote speaker at the first Hawai`i Farmers Union United
meeting in Ka`u next month. Photo from Vincent Mina
      Keynote speaker Mina is co-owner/operator of a family farm Kahanu `Aina Greens on Maui with his wife Irene and two children. Making a living on 2,000 square feet producing baby greens in plant-based compost, he has been advocating for small farmers’ rights since being President of Hawai`i Organic Farmers Association in 1997, according to a statement from HFUU. Mina also served as secretary for the Maui County Farm Bureau from 2005 to 2008, President of the Maui Chapter of Hawai`i Farmers Union United from 2011 to 2013 and the state President of Hawai`i Farmers Union United from 2012 to the present. Along with Irene Mina, he co-founded in 2001 Maui Aloha `Aina Association, a nonprofit organization “that promotes life-nurturing practices for the body and the soil through education outreach services,” HFUU notes. Mina has produced 11 conferences since 2001.
      Mina said, “We are on the threshold of our islands becoming a leader in producing a majority of our food, fiber and fuel through the use of regenerative and restorative practices done with a whole systems approach in ecological agriculture. “
      According to HFUU, as state president, “Vincent has focused on the issues and needs of our small family farmers, building chapter strength and consistency of chapter meetings on each island along with surveying the membership to find out what direction our members want us to go in advocating for programs that serve the interest of our small ecological farmers.”
      The second keynote speaker, Shaffer, said that “the foundation of sustainability begins with respect for nature and feeding the soil.” He is a horticulturist, agronomist and viticulturist for Soil Culture Consulting. He has been consulting and training farmers in sustainable, science-based farming systems in subtropical and temperate environments for 35 years. He is a regular presenter at ACRES USA conferences.
      Shaffer has expertise in development and management of cover-crop systems for farms, orchards and vineyards. He “looks at cover crops from a whole-farm perspective including soil biology,” the HFUU statement says, including “soil physics and how the cover crop interrelates with food production and quality.”
      According to the HFUU statement, the organization “works closely with farmers to develop policy that will then be brought to legislators on the national and state level. At the April 19 meeting, we will hold a World Café session, where anyone who attends can talk about what their priorities are for agriculture-related policy.”
      HFUU also plans a legislative retreat on Maui June 22-23 to develop strategy for the 2015 legislative session.
      Specific help for Ka`u Farmers, according to the statement, involves supporting tax exemptions and deductions for farmers; support for small and medium family farmers and growers using regenerative techniques; and support for various food security task forces and help guide strategy on Hawai`i’s food production into the future.”
      For more information, contact Lahey at 503-575-9098 or malian@kauspecialtycoffee.com.

Jade Tredinnick, of Volcano School of Arts and Sciences,
and Keoni Taylor, of Ka`u High School, are regulars at
Keoki Kahumoku workshops. Photo by Julia Neal
A CONCERT AND FUNDRAISER for the educational programs of the Aloha Bluegrass Band drew about 85 people to Pahala Plantation House last night. The group, which plays Bluegrass and Piligrass music, features stand-up bass, fiddle, mandolin, banjo, guitar and `ukulele with Keoki Kahumoku. The band plays at Blue Dragon Restaurant in Kawaihae tonight and at the Palace Theatre on Friday. The musicians teach music at children’s workshops on the Big Island, Maui and on the mainland with a concert each year in Pahala.

DANIEL MORIARTY IS RECOVERING from being shot at his home in Ocean View two weeks ago, reports Chelsea Jensen in West Hawai`i Today. He is receiving treatment at the Rehabilitation Hospital of the Pacific on O`ahu. “I am doing exceptionally well. Everybody is saying I am doing good, and I feel I’m at 150 percent,” he told Jensen. “It’s looking like I will walk again at some point — but the extent of that is impossible to say.”
      Moriarty said he expects to be back home in a couple of weeks. He said friends and family are getting the house ready to accommodate him.
      Moriarty told Jensen he attributes his recovery to a combination of “using every possible tool we can,” including modern medicine and energy prayer.
      Regarding his assailant, longtime friend Clyde Hawse “Cris” Criswell, Moriarty said he forgave him “when I was still laying on the floor. I knew in his right mind he would never do something like that and he could never see himself doing something like that.” He said Criswell had “too much alcohol, and something snapped in his brain.”
      A fundraising account to help the family with mounting bills has been set up under the name of Brooke Moriarty at HFS Federal Credit Union. Call Ray Henderson at 929-9693 for more information.
Ka`u's U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard
      Donation jars have also been placed in Ka`u businesses. In Na`alehu, jars are at Hana Hou Restaurant and Island Market. In Ocean View, jars are at Rancho Ace Hardware, Ocean View Pizzeria, Kahuku Country Store, Replay, Ka`u Business Services, Coffee Grinds Restaurant, DJ’s Pizza and Bakeshop, Ocean View Auto Parts, L&L Hawaiian Barbecue and Spin Zone Wash.
      See westhawaiitoday.com.

“I WELCOME THE NEWS OF THE PRESIDENT moving toward ending the sweeping collection of our personal data, and look forward to reviewing the President’s legislative proposal,” said Ka`u’s U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard. The President’s proposal to overhaul its surveillance programs includes ending bulk collection and storage of phone records.
      Gabbard said, “For years, millions of Americans have been kept in the dark about the collection of their personal data by their own government, in the name of national security, without any evidence that such intrusive actions were effective in preventing attacks on our country. I will continue working toward bringing about reforms that strike the necessary balance of protecting our constitutional right to privacy and maintaining strong national security. The American people should not have to choose between the two.”

Mother and father nene seen on O`ahu are from Hawai`i Island.
Image from Hawai`i News Now
NEW PARENTS OF THREE NENE GOSLINGS on O`ahu are from Hawai`i Island, according to a story in Honolulu Star-Advertiser. They are the first nene to be seen on O`ahu since the 1700s. Scientists suspect the birds were on their way to Kaua`i for the nesting season when they stopped in Kahuku. Originally from Kaua`i, the birds, tagged K59 and K60, were previously moved to Maui and then Hawai`i Island. 

TONIGHT IS KARAOKE NIGHT at Kilauea Military Camp’s Lava Lounge in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. Beginning at 7 p.m., the activity is open to authorized patrons and sponsored guests. Park entrance fees apply.

VOLCANO ART CENTER GALLERY in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park presents Aloha Friday on the porch from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., with variable hula art offerings of hula lessons, lei making, storytelling, lauhala weaving or `ukulele lessons. Everyone is welcome to this free event. Donations are welcome, and park entrance fees apply.

KILAUEA LU`AU BUFFET TOMORROW from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. features a free hula show at 7 p.m. At Kilauea Military Camp’s Crater Rim Café in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park, the menu includes kalua pork and cabbage, shoyu chicken, breaded ono, chicken long rice and more. Adults $15.25; $8 children 6-11 years old. The event is open to authorized patrons and sponsored guests. Park entrance fees apply. For more information, call 967-8356.


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