Peace Corps Training on Hawaii Island – A Chapter in Peace Corps History

February 6, 2017||Big Island: History and Culture


Between 1962 and 1971, over 7,000 young American Peace Corps volunteers spent time on the Big Island, which had been chosen as the training ground for volunteers assigned to Asia and the Pacific Islands. A heart-warming film about their experiences has recently been completed after 5 years in the making.

March 28, 2016||Big Island: Weather and Nature


Citizen Science: Counting Whales in the 2016 Ocean Count 

One of the joys of living in Hawaii is seeing humpback whales in the winter months. I haven't seen many this year so I thought I would spend some time looking by participating in the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary's annual Ocean Count. Every last Saturday of January, February and March volunteers gather at designated sites around the islands to count whales and whale behavior. I chose Pu'ukohola National Refuge at Kawaihae, a great vantage point to see whales and the sunniest spot on the island. Even though the forecast was for possible heavy showers this weekend, Kawaihae lived up to its reputation; the skies cleared and you could see for miles. We worked in pairs, one scanning the ocean for whales and the other logging the number of whales, calves, breaches, tail, fin or head slaps, and dives. We started over every half hour switching roles. We only saw a few whales, which was disappointing, but not unexpected... Read More 

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December 19, 2013||Big Island Communities: News


North Hawaii Community Hospital, Queen's Health Systems Announce Formal Affiliation Agreement 

The Next Step for North Hawaii Community Hospital When North Hawaii Community Hospital (NHCH) opened in 1996 it changed the lives of many residents of our community. Before having access to care locally, we had to go to Hilo, Honoka'a, or South Kona for hospital care, which, in many cases, delayed urgently needed treatment. Having NHCH nearby it also made it possible for families to spend time with ill relatives or friends and to help in the healing process. However, as a small hospital with only 33 beds and no economy of scale, NHCH wasn't able to break even, let alone make a profit, and its future was looking dim. Yesterday, North Hawaii Community Hospital and The Queens Health Systems (parent company of the Queen's Medical Center in Honolulu) announced a new partnership that is sure to be a benefit to our local community: The Queen’s Health Systems (Queen’s), corporate parent of The Queen’s Medical Center... Read More 

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January 23, 2013||Big Island: In the Media


Destination Big Island: Hawaii Island Named One of NYT's 46 Places to Go in 2013 

Congratulations to Lava Lava Beach Club, Merriman's, 'Ulu Ocean Grill at the Four Seasons and Waimea's The Fish and the Hog for their special mention! Read More 

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August 13, 2012||Big Island: History and Culture


Dancing in the Rain: Bon Dance, Hamakua Style 

Bon Dancing at Hawaii's Oldest Japanese Buddhist Temple "Blessings from heaven!" exclaimed one of my fellow dancers as the rain fell upon on us Saturday night at the historic Hamakua Jodo Mission in Paauhau. Built in 1896 without a single nail, this Big Island temple is the oldest Japanese Buddhist temple in Hawaii. As part of the Hawaii's summer bon dance season, a traditional Obon service was held last weekend at the temple to honor the departed of the past year. The dance after the service included music ranging from traditional tunes with traditional instruments to modern twists such as the Electric Slide. One of the dances depicted planting and harvesting sugar cane, the cultivation and processing of which was the principal industry of this region of the Big Island from 1875 to 1994. Sugar not only shaped the economics of the Hamakua region during that era, the industry and plantation lifestyle also shaped the landscape and... Read More 

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