The brand new (opened on July 1, 2007) Kona Kai Coffee Company at124th 4th Avenue South in downtown Kent, WA is a strikingly attractive place! From decor (appearance) to decorum (respecting what is right and fitting), owners Mike Boiser (Kauai guy) and his wife Maryum Sayyam wanted to create (and have successfully done so) a place that portrays the aura and the beauty and the elegance of Old Hawaii! There is a neat integration of old (like the comfy Hawaiian style rattan furniture in the back corner lounging area) and new (modern style high stools and tables in the front section). I was invited there for their special “Hawaiian Blessing Opening for family and friends” event and the place was packed. Nowadays, with every Hawaiian calling every other Hawaiian “uncle” or “aunty”, I would not even attempt to guess who was “real” family at this event....suffice to say that some of the “main stars” included Hiram Harlen Correa (father of the owner) and his 80 year old uncle Alexander Mahaulu who flew in from Kalihi/Hawaii to deliver the Blessing...also there was Alex’s daughter Faith Mahaulu (formerly of Nanakuli)! Busy greeting guests was Letwell Tim (brother of the owner)....and auwe, it’s not often that you will find da three “Gorgeous Portagee sistas” (dat’s what they call themselves) sitting at the same table: Diane Tim (Kaimuki HS grad; she wouldn’t say what year, just said “was long time ago”), Sandy Perreira (Hilo wahine) and Beverly Melin (another Kaimuki HS “long time ago grad”)! Entertaining the large crowd were musicians Peter Tabali, Alika Armitage, Barbara Charland and Hiram Correa. Do stop in at the Kona Kai Coffee Company....guarantee you’ll like the place and the ono food and the great beverages!!!
Farther (much farther) away from the Seattle area is a neat little espresso place on the outskirts of Port Townsend, WA. “Maui Girls Espresso” is owned and operated by Lani Houston, a lovely wahine who was born in Waikiki but grew up in Haiku, Maui and is a Baldwin HS alumni! “Maui Girls Espresso” is located on the main road just before you enter downtown Port Townsend and has been open a couple of years. Lani says that quite a few Hawaiian Islanders stop by to say Aloha. Stop by next time you get to Port Townsend. Lani will be glad to see you.........
A year ago, I mentioned a young Hawaiian gal named Keilani Cruz, a powerful outside hitter who was playing volleyball for Curtis HS (Tacoma) versus the visiting Punahou HS (Hawaii) team. As the 2007 school year ended, Keilani has proven that not only is she an excellent volleyballer (led her team to a 12 wins-3 losses season), she was selected first team softball outfielder and honorable mention basketball guard for the South Puget Sound League (SPSL) 2007 All League teams. She was also selected to play for the SPSL Seniors All Stars in the annual Starfire Softball Challenge in June 2007. To top it all off: Keilani Cruz was recently honored as the Curtis High School 2007 Female Athlete of the Year! Ironically, Kalani Terukina (another Hawaiian) was selected as the Curtis HS 2007 Male Athlete of the Year. Congrats to Keilani and Kalani!!!!!
The 2007 Wakinikona Summer Festival was a fun event.....lots of folks came by to enjoy the good food and great entertainment! Congrats to some of the behind the scenes folks who made the event so successful.....Joan Sturrock (wife of Wakinikona Prez Mike Sturrock) was the catalyst who made the myriad of activities (vendors/food/ ticket/ music/ sales/etc) blend so effectively; Ben Baker was the do all guy who arranged the really great entertainment, also sang and was the M.C.; Chef Kimo Douglas was responsible for the soooo ono food; Joe Abad came “out of retirement” to do the huli-huli chicken; Kiha Kinney and Stan Dahlin coordinated providing staff assistance....and of course there were the countless workers, too many to name, who spent hours making the Festival so enjoyable! Some new faces at the Festival: Gary Medeiros (Kaimuki guy) totally awed the audience with his great falsetto renditions of songs like “Alika” while Hokunani Nellenbach got big applause for her enchanting hulas...then there was Shelley Fermahin, who must be a super travel agent with Carlsonwagonlit, because she was having such great success selling the odd pairing of Shave Ice and pipi kaula! Shelley’s classmate at Aiea HS was Seattle TV super star Lori Matsukawa! Mahalo to Francine Schaffert (Lana`i lady who now lives in Olympia) who brought 8 members of her family to the Festival and registered them all in the Kau Inoa program! Debby Cortez Leikvoll (Lihue, Kauai) drove all the way down from Bellingham to sell her Reflections of Hawaii gifts and accessories. Among the many enjoying the Festival were folks like Selma Rosa (Leilehua HS, retired RN) and Carole Costa (Maryknoll HS) and Roland Tam Sing (Honolulu) and his wife Pat.....it’s safe to say that everyone had a good time at the Festival!!!!!
Auwe, time to hele on.......... a hui hou e malama pono............Danny
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