Intensive Vegan; Miss Congeniality

Mark Reinfeld may have closed Blossoming Lotus, the restaurant he founded, but not for a minute has his calling changed. Latest word is he’s accepting eight students for his Vegan Fusion Cuisine Intensive coming July 26-30 and Aug. 2-6. Check it out at

Noelani Kau’i, Miss Island Mokihana 2010, represented Kaua’i at the 2010 Miss Hawaii Scholarship Pageant in mid-June and came home with the Miss Congeniality award. She’s the daughter of Steven and Tamlyn Kau’i of Wailua. Other representatives from Kaua’i included Kawahineha’aheo Oliver, Miss Garden Isle, and Veronica Pablo, Miss Kaua’i. 2011 recruitment takes place Sept. 25. Get details at

And greetings to Kaulana Finn as the new community director for the Kaua’i branch of Big Brothers Big Sisters. She’ll oversee the community and school-based programs as well as all fundraising and marketing activities on the island of Kaua’i. Most are familiar with the name of the organization that focuses on prevention by helping children become responsible adults through matching them with qualified volunteer mentors for personalized one-to-one mentorship. Stop by and say aloha, and if you’ve got some time to give, this is one organization that can use it. Finn’s office is at 4273 Rice St., Ste. 1, in Lihu’e.

Lighting firecrackers on the Fourth? Capt. David Bukoski with the Fire Prevention Bureau advises caution when igniting fireworks because it’s so dry right now. Get a permit by July 1 – it’s required – and you can light ’em up from 1 to 9 p.m. on the Fourth only. Get your application at KFD headquarters in the Hale Pumehana building, 3083 Akahi St., Ste.101, in Lihu’e, open Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m., except on holidays and furlough days, e.g., July 2. Gotta be 18 or over and cost is $25. Call the Fire Prevention Bureau, 241-4985 for more information …

Better yet, head to the annual July 4 Concert in the Sky at Vidinha Soccer Field. Chills and thrills with music and hula make it more than just a fundraiser for Kaua’i Hospice – it’s a fun-raiser! More than 700 volunteers, including the Hawaii Firefighters Association, donate more than 3,500 hours to this annual Independence Day celebration and sponsors go off the charts with their contributions. Last year, more than 6,500 attended. Go ahead.

Attend, and make the hospice’s day …

Take an art break. KCC’s One Stop Center is the perfect gallery for The Gathering, on permanent loan to the college from Kyungsoo Lee, internationally known artist and lecturer at KCC. Her works are in galleries in

Europe and Southeast Asia, and may now be enjoyed here. Dr. Helen Cox, KCC chancellor, calls it a perfect metaphor for the college as a place where so many can gather to learn and grow together. More of Lee’s paintings may be viewed online at

Double your donation – Cal Stanny believes in giving. His foundation will match your $100 donation to the Kaua’i Police Activities League program when you give to KPAL to refurbish its future home. Says Stanny, who makes no qualms about being “out there” with donations and encouraging others, “This is not just for residents, but also for visitors who want to do something for the island they love.” The building should be open this summer, says Lt. Michael Contrades. It will have a wall of gratitude dedicated to the first 125 donors who contribute $100. KPD is accepting KPAL donations c/o Lt. Michael Contrades, 3990 Ka’ana St., Lihu’e, HI 96766; or contact Contrades at 826-6214 or via e-mail:

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