NEW KIHEI PARK
Kihei just got a little greener. Last Friday was the official grand opening of the first phase of the town’s new 44-acre park. The South Maui community started asking for a park in the late 1980s, and Mayor Alan Arakawa said this has been the work of four administrations now.
“The park is next to Kihei Elementary School,” Arakawa said. “This county park was placed next to the state-run school so the students at the school would have the opportunity to have physical education programs and would be able to go directly from their school to the park safely. It should also be noted that the park would not have many of its amenities without the extreme generosity and dedication of the Kihei community.”
This first phase is makai of Piilani Highway near both Kihei Elementary and Lokelani Intermediate. The landscaped 20 acres consists of a soccer/utility field, a baseball field, night lighting, restrooms, concrete benches, tables, grilling pits and a parking lot.
Goodfellow Bros., Inc. constructed the park, which cost about $11 million to build. That price does not include an estimated $200,000 worth of playground equipment, including the rubber safety surface, which was donated and installed by Pyramid Project Management, the Grand Wailea and other volunteers. Maui Land & Pineapple Co. also donated park trees.
“We are so pleased to provide this special place where families can gather to be creative, have fun and create lasting memories,” said Matt Bailey, Grand Wailea Managing Director.
Although this first phase is complete, there is still much work to be done to complete all 44 acres of the park. Tentative plans include adding more soccer and other playing fields, two more playgrounds, a pavilion, youth center, outdoor tennis, basketball courts and a gymnasium.
MAUI STUDENTS HELP TSUNAMI SURVIVORS
When Maui Preparatory Academy National Honor Students contacted Jill Holley, the Sales and Marketing Director at Hard Rock, about hosting an all-ages concert at the Hard Rock Cafe Maui to raise money for Japanese tsunami survivors, she was quick to agree. “Hard Rock was super happy to see these students come together from all over the island for a philanthropic cause,” she said. “They reached out to us because they knew they could count on Hard Rock.”
Devon Bloss, graduating Maui Prep senior, and teacher Vania Jerome were the project leaders for this fundraiser that was organized by the academy’s National Honor Society students. The Maui Prep Academy has 188 students in grades K through 12, and all middle and upper school students are required to complete a minimum of 10 to 25 hours of community service each year.
Students have participated in a wide variety of projects like volunteering at the Maui Marathon, participating in the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life, organizing Christmas gift drives for underprivileged families in West Maui, planting native trees, protecting native bird habitats and working with animals at the Maui Humane Society. This is the first concert they’ve planned at the Hard Rock and the students worked with Holley to advertise, produce t-shirts, host a silent auction and collect a recommended donation at the door for Japan’s tsunami victims.
The stars of the show were the bands that rocked the house for the cause: “B Block” Rock from Seabury Hall; Better than Nothing from Lahainaluna High; 7 AM from Maui Preparatory Academy; the student ensemble XYZ Affair; and Camp Savage, a Lahaina local band. These students entertained a standing room only crowd at this highly successful event that generated more than $2,500.
“The students chose the charity and knew exactly what they wanted to accomplish: raise money for the less fortunate in Japan,” said Holley. “The money was sent to Honolulu American Red Cross with a direction to aid the Japanese tsunami disaster.”
FAIR GETS NEW DIRECTOR
Roy Silva has long been a fan of the Maui Fair. “My memories with the Maui Fair started with riding my bike there in the early 1960s to help my dad at Mr. Iwao Sato’s live fish booth in the Better Living Tent,” he said. “I marched in the parade as a scout in 1966 and 1967, and again in 1971 as a St. Anthony High School ROTC cadet. As I got older, I worked in the candy apple booth and the corn-on-the-cob booth. So the Maui Fair holds a special place in my heart and for my family.”
For that reason, it’s fitting that the 89th annual Maui Fair gets a new perspective with the appointment of Silva as its new director. He replaces Karey Anne Oura Kapoi. Silva spent the last eight years as the Fair’s Parade Chairperson. His new job will have him lead community relations and outreach as well as offer creative and promotional concepts toward the overall vision of the fair.
There’s something for everyone at the Maui Fair and it’s one of the best attended events on island, with approximately 95,000 folks pouring into the War Memorial property in Kahului during the fair’s four days. Still, Silva hopes to increase attendance with the improving economy.
“We are looking at starting a ‘stir fry’ event this year,” Silva said. “This event will feature our Maui Farmers and their locally grown products. Thanks to our hard working Managing Director Sherri Grimes, the ‘Healthy Baby’ contest will return to the Maui Fair this year. My personal goal is to listen to our community on what the community wants to see at the Maui Fair.”
The event requires hundreds of volunteers for the food vendor booths to the orchidland, livestock and poultry exhibits. Silva will continue to work closely with Grimes.
“After so many years working on this amazing event, I am so grateful to the volunteers, community service and non-profit groups, chairpersons and committees, Board of Directors, various state and county agencies, sponsors and the many other gracious supporters who are responsible for making the Maui Fair come alive,” Grimes said.
The 2011 Fair will open with the traditional parade on Thursday, Sept. 29, and will continue with rides, food, entertainment and more through the evening of Sunday, Oct. 2.
The Maui Fair is an icon of family tradition. It attracts locals and visitors to enjoy an alcohol-free, smoke-free and drug-free family-oriented educational event that features multicultural food, first-rate entertainment and the E.K. Fernandez Fun Zone. There’s also horticulture, bonsai, livestock, homemaking, photo, art and educational exhibits and competitions. The unique and innovative products in the Commercial Exhibitor and Hawaii Products & Services Tents (formerly known as the Better Living and Arts & Crafts Tents) as well as amazing student achievements in the Annual Robo Tech Maui Expo & Competition continue to draw the young and old.
The Maui Fair is the primary source of funding for many of Maui’s nonprofit and community organizations. It relies entirely on corporate or local business sponsorships, local donations, and volunteers for support. Corporate Sponsorship packets are also available online for download.
“In today’s tough times we need somewhere to go with our family and friends and just ‘kick back,’” Silva said. “I invite the community to meet me at the fair and share their thoughts on how we can continue to grow and improve our community’s ‘Timeless Tradition.’”