The 2015 Full Circle and Annual Meeting was consolidated into one full-day event which took place on August 8, 2015 at Honey's Restaurant at the Ko'olau Golf Club. For those who missed it, the following is a report on the programs and discussions that took place.
The Lani-Kailua Branch Annual meeting, held at Ho'omaluhia Botanical Gardens, was highlighted by a talk on the historical significance of hibiscus in Hawaii. The featured speaker was Jill Coryell, the "Hibiscus Lady," who has devoted the last few decades to researching and continuing the hybridization of native hibiscus in Hawaii, since early in the last century. Her fascinating, informative, and entertaining lecture gave us all a unique perspective on the hibiscus, incidentally depicted in our original Outdoor Circle logo, and how most hybrid hibiscus everywhere are descendants of the Native Hawaiian hibiscus. Note also that the Hawaiian native white hibiscus is the only one in the the world with fragrance, and is the ancestor of all hybrid hibiscus with fragrance! Jill demonstrated how we could hybridize our own hibiscus in our own back yards, for color, fragrance and other features, and brought numerous examples of her unique specimens.
Waimea Outdoor Circle announces another volunteer day in Ulu La'au, the Waimea Nature Park, this Saturday, December 13, 9:00-Noon.
Jobs to do:
Taking down a multi-trunk mao hau hele which is leaning over a walking path in lower bed "E".
Taking down a dead koai'a in bed "D".
There are jobs for all ages and abilities, no knowledge of Hawaiian plants is necessary, we will happily train. Water, gloves and tools are provided as is a snack of fresh fruit and home baked cookies served at noon.
Waimea Nature Park is a project of Waimea Outdoor Circle created joyfully by 100% volunteer work from everyone, including people like you. The park is open during daylight hours and closes at 5:30 PM. The park is located directly behind Canada France Hawaii Telescope offices on Mamalahoa Hwy. Look for the Hawaiian Warrior sign on the CFH lawn and turn into the no name road there that leads directly into the park. Please do not park on the CFH lawn, the Nature Park has plenty of parking available. See waimeaoutdoorcircle.org for a map and other information. Or contact park co-chairs Carol Hendricks at 885-4453, Roz Wright at 885-2763 or park maintenance chair Ken Block at 885-4753.
Photo credit: one of our banners mounted on Ken's truck, ready for the Christmas parade, photo by Ken Block
In the first weekend of December the Waimea Outdoor Circle hosted their annual wreath-making class. They also gave away 250 trees at the Holiday Parade through Waimea town.
The wreath-making class was held at the Waimea Nature Park and featured greenery gathered from the slopes of Mauna Kea.
Waimea Nature Park -- ‘Ulu La‘au -- is a project of Waimea Outdoor Circle created joyfully by 100% volunteer work from everyone, including people like you. The park is open during daylight hours and closes at 5:30 PM. The park is located directly behind Canada France Hawaii Telescope offices on Mamalahoa Hwy. Look for the Hawaiian Warrior sign on the CFH lawn and turn into the no name road there that leads directly into the park. Please do not park on the CFH lawn, the Nature Park has plenty of parking available. See waimeaoutdoorcircle.org for a map and other information. Or contact park co-chairs Carol Hendricks at 885-4453, Roz Wright at 885-2763 or park maintenance chair Ken Block at 885-4753.
2014 Full Circle Meeting
Saturday November 15th
9 AM to 3 PM
Waimea Valley Park’s Peacock Room
59-864 Kamehameha Hwy.
We are so honored to have the North Shore Outdoor Circle host our annual Full Circle meeting this year. All our branches throughout the state will be gathering at O‘ahu’s Waimea Valley Park in Haleiwa on Saturday November 15th. All members of The Outdoor Circle are invited to attend this day-long event.
Come learn about the actions and programs of all our nine branches. After the Conference, we will be able to take a guided tour with Botanist David Orr.
Snacks and lunch will be provided with your $20.00 Registration.
You can register online by clicking here or send your check to TOC’s office (1314 S. King St. #306 Honolulu 96814).
by Alexandra Avery, President
Yes, big hugs all around. Thank you to all our members who have been hard at work this busy summer. Beside the incident with that little yellow plane towing banners through our beautiful skies, here is a run-down of what we have been doing to keep Hawai‘i clean, green, and beautiful.
In June, Marti Townsend and I attended the third Land Use Division Task Force. It is a fifteen month review of the process for changing state land use designations. We are aware that this is a state mandated review, and that the last one five years ago, imploded before any reforms were decided on. We are seeing the struggles involved in this process, where few people are experts in the changing stewardship of our public lands.
May brought the formation of three new Working Groups under Public Affairs:
As it has been our goal this past year to keep general Honolulu issues within the Oahu branches, we are very grateful that our Manoa branch volunteers are leading these three committees.
Our Bill 69 Working Group, chaired by North Shore branch member Kathy Whitmire, has achieved a temporary stay with the bill that would have allowed billboards on buses. It was a lot of campaigning and testifying, which involved volunteers from all Oahu branches. Thank you!
We are hoping the recent incident with that “little yellow plane” will turn the Mayor off to the idea of ads on our buses. Still, we are collecting petition signatures, and Oahu Outdoor Circle volunteers are participating in Neighborhood Board presentations of our position on Bill 69. This needs to be done from August through November. The two NB’s that have counseled NO on Bill 69 are Kailua NB and Hawaii Kai NB.
Our Public Affairs Committee is still seeking a Chair. It has been meeting the first Tuesday of each month, in the office at noon. Neighbor island members are encouraged to call-in to the meeting. Since we have divided the efforts into Working Committees with their own meeting dates, the Public Affairs Committee can better focus on and oversee statewide issues. In addition to a Chair, the PAC seeks representatives from all branches to be able to best represent statewide interests. Please call the office to lend your representation.
In late May, I represented The Outdoor Circle in a Community Forum on Kaka‘ako. It was extremely encouraging to see that there was almost total support of enlarging the public green spaces in the area. Parks were a big concern, especially Mother Waldron Park, the epicenter of the first phase of 450’ buildings. I thank Marti Townsend and Jerry Lam who attended the evening forum as well.
The meeting was filmed by Olelo and will be rebroadcast on Chanel 54 on June 20 at 2:30 pm. An audio recording of the meeting is also available on demand at the ThinkTech Hawaii website under the title "A Vision for Kakaako”.
The biggest concern coming out of the Kaka’ako Working Group is the diminished public green space, the ground level landscaping requirements, and the pressure being put on Waldron Park. As many towns are now privatizing public parks, the working group is taking into consideration this possibility for Honolulu. We would like your thoughts on this subject. When this question came up a few years ago, TOC recommended against the C&C allowing private sponsorship of public park facilities. Is there a way public-private partnerships could be used properly to benefit our public parks?
Thomas Square park is also going to be experiencing big changes with the designed rail station and the constant pressure from adjoining businesses to spill out and feed into the park. Several trees in the park have been recently removed due to a stem gall wasp infestation. Replanting will be done after the master planning process is completed. Steve Mechler and Marty Schiller seek other interested volunteers on this working group.
It was a pleasure to attend the Lani-Kailua annual meeting at Kane‘ohe Yacht Club, with great food and views, and to hear Heidi Bornhorst speak of the tree mapping project they have just completed at the UH Manoa Campus.
Several professional arborists and landscapers on our board have been moving toward the planting of the Exceptional Tree promised to the Washington Place garden when we met there last fall. It is a long and winding tale, including finally finding the appropriate tree on the Big Isle, and as of now, wading through the process of getting it in the ground. I thank Steve Mechler for finding the Pak Lan which is to compliment the existing one at the front entry of Washington Place. We are getting closer!
The Education Committee Chair, Cindie Ogata, is organizing a school planting project available to all branches as a partnership with the Polynesian Voyaging Society. More details coming soon.
The Lani-Kailua branch spearheaded comments criticizing the development proposed for Kawainui Marsh. And the Waimea branch participated in a major clean-up of downtown Waimea Town in partnership with Matson Company.
Please mark your calendars for our August 14th Annual Meeting and installation of new officers in Manoa. Our next Board meeting will be August 15th.
And support The Outdoor Circle with the purchase of a $5 pass to savings at Macy's on August 23rd.
On Sunday, June 29th, eleven WOC volunteers worked for about three hours cleaning, weeding, trimming and sprucing up the center of town by taking part in Matson's Ka Ipu Aina community program. We made a noticeable difference and it was a fun project. This event raised $1,000 for Waimea Outdoor Circle!
Volunteers with the Lani-Kailua Outdoor Circle mentor female prisoners through gardening and life in the “Learning to Grow” program at the Women’s Community Correctional Center. This hydroponic vegetable and herb garden was one of many projects showcased for visitors from the World Indigenous Peoples Conference on Education (WiPC:E 2014) in May. Conference participants -- indigenous leaders in education from around the world -- were introduced to current program participants, program graduates, and LKOC volunteers who showed them how the inmates raise the nearly 1,000 heads of lettuce, herbs and other vegetables used in prison meals every week. LKOC’s “Learning to Grow” program helped usher in several other food-growing projects at the center including groves of ‘ulu (breadfruit) and mai‘a (banana), and lo‘i (taro patches).
Twice a week, every week of the year, LKOC volunteers visit WCCC bringing soil, seeds, and their know-how to support inmates in the program. Inmates learn to cultivate food crops from seed to harvest and then prepare them for fellow inmates through the culinary program.
The Learning to Grow program is supported solely by donations from individuals and the proceeds of an annual plant sale. If you would like to support LKOC’s “Learning to Grow” program, click here to make a donation through our website (before completing your transaction, add “WCCC” or “Learning to Grow” in the notes section).
Local woodworkers volunteered to turn trees killed by vandals into beautiful works of art, and donate the majority of proceeds to the Waimea Outdoor Circle. 20 years ago, WOC helped volunteers landscape and plant trees in the newly opened Anuenue Playground. Two years ago, vandals stripped the outer bark from seven of the trees, ultimately killing them. While WOC volunteers set to work re-planting the playground with Ohia trees, woodworkers set to turning the dead Koa trees into bowls, bracelets, and another beautiful works of art. The woodworkers have generously given 75% of all proceeds from the sale of these pieces to WOC in support of keeping this amazing community clean, green, and beautiful.
By Kau‘i Lucas
April brought more than showers to Hawaii shores. Some of the worlds leaders in addressing Climate Change visited the islands, as well. UH Sea Grant & Sen. Brian Schatz brought together national and local leaders to develop, promote, and finance sustainable solutions to the problems we face in Hawai‘i along with key stakeholders from government, industry, academia, the private sector, on April 15th to recommend specific action steps. Presenters included former Vice President Al Gore and US Senator Barbara Boxer. The following week Bill McKibben, author, environmentalist, and founder of 350.org, the first planet-wide, grassroots climate change movement, spoke to a packed house, at UH Art Auditorium. Gore and McKibben were both passionate and fact filled. Gore, ever the politician, sounded the alarm more gently than McKibben, but one fact both shared was this stunner: The total amount of man-made global warming pollution surrounding the planet and the atmosphere today now traps enough extra energy every 24 hours to equal the energy release by 400,000 Hiroshima atomic bombs going off every single day. (http://cnsnews.com/news/article/gore-energy-release-equal-400000-hiroshima-atomic-bombs-going-every-day)
Not surprising then that the take home message was: we can win this, but we ALL have to take action NOW.
The 21st Annual "I Love Kailua" Town Party on Sunday was another huge success thanks to the Lani-Kailua Outdoor Circle. The best of Kailua was on display this past weekend from food, clothing, jewelry, art and more. People also learned about the bike share program in Kailua, the efforts to "Keep it Kailua", updates from the Kailua Urban Design Task Force, and the effort to protect Kawainui Marsh.
A special mahalo to everyone who helped to make the plant sale so amazing! There were orchids for days, as well as anthuriums, native plants, food-bearing plants, and lots of expert advice on gardening.
Proceeds from the "I Love Kailua" Town Party support community planting projects in the Kailua area, including maintenance for exceptional trees, traffic triangles in Kailua, and other beautification efforts. Thank you for your on-going support of LKOC's efforts to "keep Kailua clean, green, and beautiful."
Photos from the 2014 Town Party
See, Hear, and Taste Kailua, Midweek April 9, 2014
See more event photos and receive updates by liking LKOC on Facebook
Members of The Outdoor Circle came out to support Malama Manoa's regular 1000 tree giveaway this year. For several years, Malama Manoa has given away one tree per person with the help of countless volunteers. This year, more than 1,400 plants were available for pick-up at Manoa District Park and more than 100 volunteers pitched in.
They also had expert arborists and horticulturalists on-hand to answer people's plant questions. The Honolulu Woodturners demonstrated bowl-making and other interesting woodworking skills.
The plants were raised by volunteers -- at their homes and schools -- and donated to the give-away. If you are interested in helping to raise plants for the next tree give-away, contact the 1,000 Tree Giveaway Committee.
"Tree-For-All" by KITV news
Photo album for the 1000 Tree Giveaway
See more event pictures by liking the Manoa branch of The Outdoor Circle on Facebook!
Ring the bell!!! The Environmental Court is headed to conference committee. Woot, woot! This is the farthest this bill has ever gotten in the legislative process.
Mahalo to the members of the Senate and House Committees on the Environment and Judiciary and the House Finance Committee for shuttling this bill through the legislative process in an efficient and transparent way. We are so close to passing this bill.
But there is still much to do to ensure this bill gets to the Governor's desk. Some business trade groups strongly oppose the bill on the misguided theory that establishing an Environmental Court would be bad for business. Quite the opposite!
Establishing this court will help to further ensure that those businesses who pride themselves on environmentally-friendly operations are competing on a fair playing field against those businesses that have, up till now, simply incorporated harm to the environment as a cost of doing business.
This bill is important because it will establish a fairer and more efficient process for adjudicating violations of the protections established for our forests, oceans, wildlife, and public health. For all of the illegal dumpsites and abandoned vehicles, all of the fishing and hunting violations, for all the spills into our oceans and streams: the environment deserves its day in court.
The environmental court would function much like drug court, where cases concerning laws to protect our environment will be heard together on one docket by a judge focused on this area of law. With this focus comes more consistent outcomes. And with more consistent decisions comes more consistent enforcement and compliance. Residents, visitors, and businesses will know that Hawaii’s environmental protections are not just talk, but are truly and regularly enforced.
Now is the time to make sure all of our elected officials in the State Capitol understand the importance of this bill. Please take a moment to contact the Representatives and Senators in your area. Here is a link to a list of all Hawaii's state elected officials and their contact information. When you visit this link, input your zip code in the upper right-hand corner to find out which elected officials represent you.
The Circle’s newest branch -- Manoa Outdoor Circle -- is supporting Malama Manoa’s regular tree giveaway at the Manoa District Park on Sunday, April 6th, 8 AM - Noon. The featured tree this year is the Hong Kong Orchid.
Let’s welcome the Manoa branch to the Circle right by helping them out with 10 volunteers at their first event. The giveaway runs from 8 am - 12-noon at the Manoa Valley Park Pavilion; volunteers are needed from 7 am - 2 pm. Show our newest branch the love by coming out to support them! Contact the Circle office at 593-0300 to let us know you can be there. Mahalo!!
Greenleaf is the online newsletter and blog of The Outdoor Circle. Here you will find updates on the projects and accomplishments of our many branches throughout the state, as well as programs with statewide impact.