Dose Of Reality At Waimea High

Waimea High

Waimea High students after mock car crash. Photo by Marty Amaro

I’ve got to hand it to the good folks over at Life’s Choices Kaua’i, who put together a mock fatal alcohol-related accident with the kind of realism that bordered on traumatic – but in a good way – the kind of way that gets the message across. On April 18 and 19, Waimea High School students got a taste of what it would be like should that kind of tragedy befall their school, with the “loss” of three students. Staff including Marty Amaro, Deann Yamaguchi and Theresa Koki helped make the day possible, as did countless volunteers. Koki has been particularly passionate about keeping the program, dubbed “Shattered Dreams,” alive and well over the past several years. Based on the “Every 15 Minutes” model (as in every 15 minutes an alcohol-related fatality occurs), Shattered Dreams rotates from school to school. This year’s event included mock fatalities Shelby Tangalin, Devan Banasihan-Kenney and Jae “Niko” Delos Reyes. Emergency vehicles were on hand thanks to Waimea fire station, and firefighters extricated “victims” from the cars. Mahalo also to KPD Chief Donald Ouderkirk and volunteers Mary Robinson and Linda Ibarra. The program also required traffic orchestration and public reading of obituaries of the “deceased,” with the help of Mark Stulpe and Sgt. Robert Gausepohl, Sgt. Mark Ozaki and counselor Caroline Miura. It was an emotional chain of events that really drove home the message that life is precious, and fatal accidents related to drinking and driving are absolutely preventable. Good work, everyone! …

Mike Pemberton, Jon Kegle, Melissa Burovac and Marshal MacCready

Mike Pemberton, Jon Kegle, Melissa Burovac and Marshal MacCready after the maiden voyage of Moana Kai. Amanda C. Gregg photo

It was so fun to see all the water enthusiasts turn out April 22 for the first Percy Kinimaka Kaua’i Surf Invitational. The event, a fundraiser for the Kaua’i Junior Lifeguard Association and Niumalu Canoe Club Na ‘Opio programs, included a four-man canoe surfing contest (with people attempting headstands and other tricks) and an SUPsquatch contest. For those who don’t know what a SUPsquatch is, to quote one event attendee, it’s a “standup paddle board on steroids.” Seven people can fit on the double-wide board, and kudos to those who showed up to give it a whirl, including water-women Mariko Strickland, Keala Wann, Leigh Drachman, Christine Moomaw and Kathy Braach. Kudos also to Mike Pemberton, Jon Kegle, Melissa Burovac and Marshal MacCready, who were among several teams who enjoyed themselves four-man surfing. The crew took out “Moana Kai” for her maiden voyage. Keiki Summer Tomlinson and Kainoa Merano also enjoyed playing aboard the SUPsquatch for a little bit, and who knows, maybe they’ll be part of the next generation to enjoy this new sport as it takes off. To learn more, go to …

MidWeek editor Don Chapman, who wrote the package of stories in this issue regarding the Dalai Lama‘s Oahu visit, reports Mayor Bernard P. Carvalho Jr. received a nice honor at the meeting of His Holiness with native Hawaiian leaders at the East-West Center – he was asked to lead the singing of Hawaii Pono’i to begin the meeting and Hawaii Aloha to end it … Don also had praise for two eighth-graders from Chiefess Kamakahelei Intermediate School, who were filming the event for a public TV project. Stay tuned for more …

It was inspirational to learn of all the different ways people and businesses honored Earth Day this year, and I’d like to give special mention to The Friends of Kamalani and Lydgate Park, who gathered piles of net snarls that have been a recurring nuisance at the beach. A mass of net pulled from the beach a few months ago by Island School students was cut up into manageable pieces April 22, following the tough task of shaking out a seeming 300 pounds of sand, according to Tom Noyes

Don Chapman with Kaua‘i mayor Bernard Carvalho

Don Chapman with Kaua‘i mayor Bernard Carvalho at the EWC awaiting the arrival of the Dalai Lama. Nathalie Walker photo

Kudos to winners of the Rotary Club of Kapa’a 2012 Kaua’i Green Innovation Awards: Angela Hoover of Hukilau Lanai restaurant in Kapa’a, Katy Means of the Kapa’a Boys and Girls Club of Hawaii, Nathan Wood of Renewable Energy Technologies, Michael Dexter-Smith of Twisted Plastics, Jane Kato of Kaua’i Crayon, Matthew Taeza of the Sheraton Kaua’i Resort, Douglas D. McPherson of the Westin Princeville Ocean Resort Villas and Jeremy Minschel of Islandwide Solar. Well done! …

Congratulations also to the 16 members of the Kaua’i Police Department who were honored April 20 at Kaua’i Beach Resort. Six officers were promoted to the rank of lieutenant and 10 officers were promoted to sergeant.

Kaua’i Police Chief Darryl Perry and Mayor Carvalho and police commissioners were among those to commend the officers, as were the officers’ wives, husbands and keiki, bearing an abundance of colorful lei.

Those promoted to lieutenant were: Paul Applegate, Randolph Chong Tim, Robert Gausepohl, Karen Kapua, Trent Shimabukuro and Todd Tanaka. Those promoted to sergeants were: Darla Abbatiello, Christopher Calio, Christopher Jenkins, Elliott Ke, Anthony Morita, Len Nitta, Daniel Oliveira, Jason Overmyer, Mark Ozaki and Scott Williamson

Green Winners (from left) Katy Means, Natahan Wood, Angela Hoover, Michael Dexter-Smith, Anne Akama, Matthew Taeza, George Costa and Linda Sherman. Melissa Mojo photo

The Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge will celebrate its 99th anniversary by offering free admission from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. Highlights of the free event include ranger-led interpretive talks, a drawing class with local artist Patrick Ching, demonstrations by Kaua’i Sea Scouts, Hawaiian craft activities for all, music, and a special hula presentation by Kumu Hula Kehaulani Kekua and Halau Palaihiwa O Kaipuwai!

Five days prior is actual “Lighthouse Day,” which recalls the completion and lighting of the Kilauea Lighthouse on May 1, 1913. The Kilauea Lighthouse served as a pivotal navigation aid for ships. For more information, go to