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Refreshing Watermelon ‘Otai

      photo courtesy of www.ilovecoconutcream.com     ‘Otai (pronounced OH – tie) is a refreshing summer drink that doubles as the perfect end to a summer barbecue or any summer gathering. It has its roots in Polynesia where Tongans, Samoans, Hawaiians and Fijians, to name a few, would enjoy this yummy concoction. A Samoan recipe recorded by early European visitors lists a mix of shredded vi (a Polynesian fruit), young coconut meat (which is soft and sweet), coconut water and coconut milk. This mixture was corked in empty coconuts and set to...
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PCC Guides “Dive the Extra Mile”

    “Everything was going according to plan, until the groom accidentally dropped his wedding ring into the lagoon. Not wanting to ruin the wedding, many of our employees jumped into the water to help look for the ring … but in the murky waters of this fresh mountain-spring-fed lagoon, even the mighty rays from the sun were no help. When evening came, the would-be rescuers were forced to withdraw, and the ring was written off as lost.”   “Then, out of the shadows came two brave warriors from Japan, Yusuke Hirata and Takuya Ogasawara. They could not bring...
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Top Attractions for the Time-Crunched Tr...

      Top Oahu Attractions for the Time-Crunched Traveler   By Whitney Butler   Great airfare deals to Hawaii are hard to pass up, so many West Coast travelers find themselves out on the islands for business or short weekend adventures.   When time is of the essence and you want to get the most out of your short Hawaii trip, picking attractions that feature culture, entertainment and outdoor fun are quintessential to your island experience.   Check out these exciting Oahu attractions when you’re crunched for time.   Explore the Island Nations of Polynesia   For...
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Old Hawaii Lives Again in Laie

      ‘Old Hawaii’ Lives Again in Laie   By Joe Kukura   The most up-and-coming town in Hawaii is not even a town. It’s a little sweet spot called Laie (pronounced “lah-ee-yay”), a culturally rich coastal community in the North Shore of Oahu.   Oahu is that Hawaiian island known for the big tourist spots of Honolulu and Waikiki Beach—and Laie couldn’t be any more different. Laie trades the hustle and bustle of constant commerce for a more laid-back, vintage Hawaiian paradise feel. When you see the sea turtles wandering the same beach where you’re...
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Tips for doing Hawaii on a Budget

      Tips for Doing Hawaii on a Budget   By Joe Kukura   Hawaii is rich with exotic culture and beauty, and you don’t need to be rich to enjoy it all. For all of the talk of Hawaii as an expensive place to visit, the reality is that any smart vacationer can find affordable options with some research and asking around. A little bit of comparison shopping can go a long way and keep your trip to paradise from getting pricey.   Time and money are your two most precious and limited resources on your Hawaiian vacation. You will want affordable options for your...
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Under-the-Radar Beaches of Oahu

      Under-the-Radar Beaches of Oahu   By Whitney Butler   No vacation to Oahu would be complete without a trip (or two or three) to the beach. While Oahu has several famous beach destinations, there’s a bounty of lesser-known beaches that feature exclusive shorelines and smaller crowds.   Whether you’re looking for warm sand to read a good book on or a life-changing aquatic adventure, check out these unique spots on your next trip to Oahu.   Camping and Culture Combined: Malaekahana State Recreation Area   The popularity of some North Shore beaches can be...
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News Around Laie – June 2015

    ■ PCC Maori musician named Kamehameha Schools Kapalama principal:   A contingency of officers and cultural leaders from the Polynesian Cultural Center recently presented one of our own to the Kamehameha Schools Kapalama (KSK) in Honolulu in an exchange of traditional Polynesian protocol.   KSK Po’o Kula (president) Earl T. Kim announced in April 2015 that the Kapalama school had named Sheena Fitzgerald Alaiasa as its new po’o kumu (principal), effective June 1. Alaiasa, a New Zealand Maori who still works occasionally as a PCC musician, was most recently...
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Colorful Canoe Pageant Honors Polynesian...

      From its very beginning in 1963, the Polynesian Cultural Center has featured traditional canoes and, soon after opening, launched a canoe pageant that remains an important part of our daily program. The canoes and pageant not only pay tribute to the islanders’ ancient legacy of incredible migrations and blue-ocean way-finding or navigation, but also provide a most unique display of Polynesian entertainment.   “Today, other places in Hawaii have stages on the water,” said Delsa Atoa Moe, Polynesian Cultural Center Director of Cultural Presentations, “but as...
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All Hawaii Honors King Kamehameha Each J...

      In 1871 King Kamehameha V set apart June 11th as a national holiday honoring his great-grandfather, King Kamehameha I, who first established the unified Kingdom of Hawaii through a series of military victories and alliances with other island ali’i or rulers between the late 1790s and 1810. When Hawaii became the 50th state in the U.S. in 1959, Kamehameha Day was one of the first holidays proclaimed by the governor and state legislature. Today, floral parades — including the famous pa’u or decorated horse riders representing each island, lei...
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My Stint as a Royal Prince

        During my senior year in high school, I was chosen to be the first ever prince in the royal court on the Big Island of Hawaii.   While sitting directly across of Uncle George Naope (former kumu hula, master Hawaiian chanter, co-founder of the annual Merry Monarch Festival, and leading advocate and preservationist of native Hawaiian culture worldwide), he asked me for my Hawaiian name. I frankly told him that I didn’t have any.  His response was only one that Uncle George can blurt out with embarrassment, and pardon the pidgin, “What you mean you no moa...
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The Great Pickle Mango Experiment

    This month we are celebrating an island favorite by providing two great recipes! But we want to share the backstory of WHY it has to be two first:   It is just a week or two away from mango season. Mangoes, a flavorful and easy to prepare tropical fruit, is plentiful here on the island, the two most popular varieties being the Common Green and the Haden.  The Common Green is….well, green. It is mild in flavor and is not highly thought of. The Haden, on the other hand, is a gorgeous fruit, multi-colored, sweet and extremely delicious.   The mango fruit is a...