Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u News Briefs April 27, 2013

Miss Ka`u Coffee and attendants: Second Princess Rachel Ornelas, Ka`u Coffee Queen Tiare-Lee Shibuya, Brandy
 Shibuya (2011-2012 queen), Miss Peaberry Rebecca Lynn Kailiawa Escobar, emcees Bobby and Phoebe Gomes,
First Princess Seneca Lee Oleyte and Third Princess Kawailani Houvener. The queen and her court will attend
many festival events through May 5, including the day-long ho`olaulea at Pahala Community Center on
Saturday, May 4 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Photo by Geneveve Fyvie
TIARE-LEE SHIBUYA, daughter of police officer Dane and Terry-Lee Shibuya, of Wai`ohinu, became Miss Ka`u Coffee last night during the pageant that kicked off ten days of Ka`u Coffee Festival events. Tiare-Lee is a graduate of Kamehameha Schools, attends Hawai`i Community College and plans to be a nurse. Her talent was hula. She won a $1,000 scholarship presented by the Edmund C. Olson Trust II.
      First Princess is Seneca Lee Oleyte, of Pahala. She is 22 and the daughter of Ernest and Lenora Lorenzo-Oleyte. She attends University of Hawai`i in Hilo and studies communications. She is a graduate of Ka`u High School. Her talent was singing. She won a $500 scholarship presented by Ka`u Coffee Festival chair Chis Manfredi.
Tiare-Lee Shibuya, daughter of Dane and Terry-Lee Shibuya, became
Miss Ka`u Coffee last night at the pageant kicking off ten days of Ka`u
Coffee Festival events. At right is her sister Brandy Shibuya, who served
as Miss Ka`u Coffee from 2011 until last night. Photo by Geneveve Fyvie
       Second Princess is Rachel Ornelas, of Wai`ohinu. She is the daughter of Mia Ornelas and resides with her grandparents, Mario and Memmy Ornelas. She is 19, graduated from Ka`u High School and attends University of Hawai`i at Hilo, studying to be a nurse. Her talent was singing. She won a $400 scholarship presented on behalf of Sen. Russell Ruderman donating $250 and Rep. Richard Onishi donating $150.
      Third Princess is Kawailani Houvener, of Ocean View. She is 17 and the daughter of Michelle and Kenneth Houvener. She is a senior at Ka`u High School and plans to sign up for the Army and study mechanics. Her talent was hula. She won a $300 scholarship with Punalu`u Bake Shop donating $250 and Miss Bobby Tucker donating $50.
      The Talent and Gown categories were won by Shibuya. Ornelas took home the education scholarship, and Houvener took home the Miss Photogenic prize.
      The reigning Miss Miss Peaberry, Rebecca Lynn Kailiawa-Escobar, wowed the crowd with a dance, a speech and gown presentation.
      Emcees Bobby and Phoebe Gomes entertained, with Phoebe singing and playing `ukulele. Before announcing the judges’ decisions, Bobby said about the candidates, “They are all winners.”
      The queen and her court will attend many festival events through May 5, including Sunday’s Triple C Recipe Contest at Ka`u Coffee Mill for recipes made with Ka`u Coffee. There will be free entertainment with Keoki Kahumoku, coffee tasting and sampling of the entries.
      Tonight’s dinner at Kalaekilohana is sold out. Events this week include a hike in the mountains along the old plantation water system on Wednesday, visiting `Aikane Plantation Coffee farm and stargazing at Makanau on Friday, and the day-long ho`olaule`a at Pahala Community Center on Saturday, May 4 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. See kaucoffeefest.com.

XCOR Aerospace wants to lease a spacecraft to a Hawai`i-
based operateror. Image from XCOR
LOCATING A SPACEPORT IN HAWAI`I is once again on the radar, and proponents are saying that the location should be remote next to water. It’s a proposal that has drawn attention to South Point and the adjacent Ka`u Coast in the past, since Ka`u is far from population and air traffic. However, the planners may want to use an existing runway.
      According to Pacific Business News, which ran a story by Mark Abramson yesterday, “A commercial space tourism company that has its sights set on rocketing tourists into orbit from Hawai`i could create up to 150 jobs locally. Mojave, Calif.-based XCOR Aerospace officials said they want to find an operator in Hawai`i to lease at least one of their spacecraft so tourists can fly as high as 350,000 feet into the atmosphere. The leases on that equipment would cover 5,000 flights, which is expected to cover a period of four to seven years.”
      The story said the cost of each 30- to 40-minute flight would be about $95,000 per passenger and would include lodging and training. PBN reported XCOR’s CEO Anderson Nelson saying, “It’s going to draw a lot of people to the Islands. There will be a lot of people who just want to come watch these things fly.”
      Hawai`i Tourism Authority chief Mike McCarney also weighed in, telling PBN that a spaceport would support luxury resorts, high-end restaurants and other enterprises catering to the ultra-rich.
      A similar proposal is being negotiated for Curacao, an island off Venezuela, the story reports. Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic and Rocket Crafters Inc. are also interested in possibly operating in Hawai`i, PBN reported.
      The business journal stated that “XCOR’s spacecraft, which will use a rocket to take off from a runway and glide back to the landing site, are about as noisy as a Boeing 747.”
      An Environmental Assessment would be required ,“but a more time-consuming Environmental Impact Statement won’t be needed if the assessment doesn’t find any significant impacts,” reported PBN, referencing the chief of the state Office of Aerospace Development, Jim Crisafulli. “Other studies around the country for these so-called ‘spaceports’ haven’t required an EIS,” PBN reported.
      The state would need a spaceport license from the Federal Aviation Administration, which already provided $250,000 to the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism. A half million dollars in federal matching grants would help fund the project, with at least 10 percent of the spaceport cost coming from private investors, reported PBN. See more at bizjournals.com/pacific.
      Another spaceport plan was promoted at the Legislature in March by Fred Eissler and Kama Kekoa, a defense contractor. Eissler said that a space launch facility “will be powered by the latest green technology and will incorporate the most innovative, cost effective, and proven engineering practices, while maintaining and enhancing Hawai`i’s pristine environment and ecosystem.” He compared the Big Island to Orlando, FL, saying “Orlando tourist locations during any given launch week saw a 50 percent increase in patronage.”

Shalan Crysdale
THE NATURE CONSERVANCY has named Shalan Crysdale as its Big Island program director. Crysdale has headed TNC’s Na`alehu office for over two years. Trae Menard, TNC’s director of forest conservation, described Crysdale as “a strong and capable leader that clearly has the vision, experience, pragmatism, patience and sense of humor required for this challenging job.”
      In his announcement, Menard said Crysdale has done “his fair share of weed and ungulate control, fencing, and monitoring. He knows what it means to be cold, wet, sore and tired. He knows what it takes to get the job done in the field. He’s also navigated some pretty complex issues with agencies and landowners and maintained excellent working relationships with the partners on the Big Island.”
      Menard also said Crysdale “leads a fantastic team that does excellent, inspiring work.”
      In Ka`u, The Nature Conservancy manages the Ka`u Preserve and Kamehame Beach. Ka`u Preserve consists of four separate parcels of nearly pristine native forest that form a boundary between the largely intact native alpine and subalpine forest above and the agricultural land below. Kamehame is “the most important nesting site in the U.S. for the endangered hawksbill turtle,” says The Nature Conservancy website. The Conservancy, National Park Service and U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service cooperate on managing the site and operate a volunteer turtle-monitoring program to protect nests from rats, mongooses, and other predators.

JUNIOR CLASS RODEO is happening now. Sponsored by Ka`u Roping & Riding Association, the rodeo takes place at the arena behind Na`alehu Park. Tickets are $7, and keiki ages 12 and under get in free.

Encaustics artist John Matsushita discusses his work this evening.
Photo from Volcano Art Center
VOLCANO GARDEN ARTS in Volcano Village hosts Artists in Action today until 3 p.m. The event features demonstrations and hands-on activities and is a fundraiser for the art program at Volcano School of Arts and Sciences.

VOLCANO ART CENTER PRESENTS John Matsushita and Elizabeth Miller discussing their works currently on display in The Nature of Nature exhibit today at 6 p.m. at the gallery in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. The program is free; park entrance fees apply. Call 967-7565 or see volcanoartcenter.org for more information.

CINCO DE MAYO FESTIVAL takes place Friday, May 3 at St. Jude’s Episcopal Church in Ocean View. Doors open at 6 p.m.; dinner with live music is at 6:30 p.m. Menu items include enchiladas, rice, beans, salad, dessert and beverage. Tickets are $12 each or two for $20. Call 939-7555.


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