Hawaii Island

Reports from Sherry Bracken

Flickr / Eli Duke
Flickr / Eli Duke

  

  For the past year, shoppers in Hawaii County have been unable to get plastic checkout bags or have had to pay for them at the checkout stand.  But starting soon, Hawaii County will ban the use of plastic checkout bags entirely.  HPR's Sherry Bracken gives us the details.

Wendy Baez
Wendy Baez

  

 Hawaii County citizens got an unexpected gift last week.  After more than two decades of discussion, contention, and negotiation, property just south of Kona Airport and the Natural Energy Lab is now part of Hawaii County's open space and cannot ever be developed.  From the Big Island, Sherry Bracken explains.

abc15
abc15

  

 Tomorrow, New Year's Day, is often a day when families put away their holiday decorations and lights.  For at least two Big Island residents, tomorrow is Day One of a multi-day cleanup.  From Hawaii Island, Sherry Bracken reports.

Akiko Masuda
Akiko Masuda

 Mochi pounding is a New Year's tradition throughout Hawaii.  On the Big Island, one very small village has embraced the tradition and turned it into an event that attracts hundreds.  HPR's Sherry Bracken tells us more.

Waimea Middle School
Waimea Middle School

 

   The voyaging canoe Hokulea and its sister ship Hiki'analia are preparing to depart on a worldwide voyage starting next May.  One critical part of the planning involves food and water.  HPR's Sherry Bracken talked on Hawaii Island with two navigators about some of those basic trip preparations.

Waimea Middle School
Waimea Middle School

  

  Hawai'i’s voyaging canoes are a link to the past of those who first settled our islands.  But they’re also a tool for today’s students to learn not just about Hawai'i’s earliest residents but about how to practically apply today’s classwork.  HPR’s Sherry Bracken talked to a navigator about how he’s been working with one Big Island school

Sherry Bracken
Sherry Bracken

  

  A health center on Hawaiian Homelands property in Kona is one step closer to becoming a reality.  It's been a dream since 2005, and now ground has broken on the site.  The blessing means the new health center will be one of just a few on Hawaiian Homelands property.  Sherry Bracken has the story.

UH Ecology-Evolution-Conservation biology Dept.
UH Ecology-Evolution-Conservation biology Dept.

 

   Starting this Saturday, and going for three weeks, thousands of people around the country will take part in what's known as the Christmas Bird Count. The first on Hawaii Island is Saturday near the old Kulani Prison.  While over the years, the native bird population has declined, there is some positive news.  From the Big Island, HPR's Sherry Bracken tells us more.

State of Hawaii
State of Hawaii

 

  It's been more than four years since Hawaii Island's Kulani Prison closed, in an effort to cut government spending.  The facility will reopen next summer--and the new warden is already on the job.  From Hawaii County, Sherry Bracken reports.

hawaiicountymayor.com
hawaiicountymayor.com

 

 

   If you're under 21, it's about to get tougher to buy smoking products in Hawaii County.  The Big Island is the first in the state to pass a law restricting cigarette sales and more.  HPR's Sherry Bracken has the story.

Flickr / Hawaii County
Flickr / Hawaii County

 

The use of genetically modified organisms in food crops is a controversial topic around the islands.  Hawaii County has been debating the issue for about six months--and now the Mayor has reached a decision.  HPR's Sherry Bracken has the details from the Big Island.

Hawaii Meth Project
Hawaii Meth Project

 The Hawaii Meth Project's three staff members and hundreds of volunteers are spending this week talking to students at schools throughout the state.  Tomorrow, they'll be at Pahoa Intermediate and High School.  From the Big Island, Sherry Bracken tells us more.

Sherry Bracken
Sherry Bracken

 

Hawaii County's Mayor believes the time is now    to start borrowing money to improve parks, roads, and sewers.  And the County Council's Finance Committee agrees.  From the Big Island, Sherry Bracken reports.

The Food Basket
The Food Basket

The State Department of Health is proposing changes to food sanitation rules.  They're holding public hearings statewide to get input on the 172 pages of new regulations. The Department is concerned with food safety.  But there may be consequences for nonprofit agencies, including on the Big Island, that feed those who need help.  HPR’s Sherry Bracken reports.

Sherry Bracken
Sherry Bracken

With today being Thanksgiving, the holiday season is now officially underway.  Communities around Hawaii Island area are ready to go, with big plans for their festivities.  HPR's Sherry Bracken gives us a preview.

Sherry Bracken
Sherry Bracken

 The use of service dogs is becoming more prevalent.  But it's not always obvious why somebody has a service dog.  Now, a Big Island woman has a dog who uses his nose to help ensure she doesn't die from what's called an invisible disability.  HPR's Sherry Bracken tells us more.

Sherry Bracken
Sherry Bracken

  The State Department of Land and Natural Resources wants to increase the number of moorings in Keauhou Bay on the Kona coast from the existing 9 to 16.   Bay users have expressed concerns about overcrowding in the narrow bay and about lack of community input on the project.  And now, another organization is weighing in with its concerns.  From the Big Island, Sherry Bracken has the story.

Cpl. Ben Eberle
Cpl. Ben Eberle

Trash is a fact of life.  And any actions that reduce trash are likely to get attention, especially on an island.  And that includes on the Big Island--and the military that uses Pohakuloa Training Area. HPR's Sherry Bracken talked with PTA's commander.

Flickr / rollanb
Flickr / rollanb

It's not at the top of the list of the problems of humanity, but dogs that won't stop barking can be annoying. Since the start of this year, Hawaii County Police have responded to 90 calls involving nuisance, barking, or aggressive dogs.  And it's enough of a problem in Waikoloa that Waikoloa Neighborhood Watch has reached out for help.  As HPR's Sherry Bracken explains, they've called in a dog psychologist.

IRONMAN
IRONMAN

This weekend, television viewers around the state and around the country will get a look at the Ironman Triathlon World Championship.  The broadcast will not only recap the Hawaii Island event, it will also highlight the personal struggles of several athletes.  Sherry Bracken has the story.

Sherry Bracken
Sherry Bracken

Pohakulo Training Area on the Big Island is the largest military training base in the Pacific.  It was created in 1943 to train Marines going to Iwo Jima.  It continues to serve several branches of the military.  The Nuclear Regulatory Commission recently announced it would be granted a license for depleted uranium already present on the base.  HPR's Sherry Bracken talked to PTA's commander.

Bob Fewell
Bob Fewell

Hawaii Island will pay its respects this week to a woman who was one of the oldest members of the island community.  The family of Shizuko Mary Teshima, known by most as Grandma Teshima, have set a memorial for Friday.  For the Big Island, here's Sherry Bracken.

Carol Spierling
Carol Spierling

Many parts of Hawaii Island are horse country.  Farms and ranches are located in all districts around the island, and working cowboys often test their skills at shows and competitions.  This weekend, the Hawaii Island Cutting Horse Association is sponsoring the 15th annual Big Island Cow Horse Championship.  HPR's Sherry Bracken has the story.

Sherry Bracken
Sherry Bracken

Hilo Medical Center is celebrating a pair of recent developments.  From the community’s standpoint, it’s all pointing towards getting more medical care on the biggest Neighbor Island.   From the Big Island, HPR’s Sherry Bracken has more. 

Sherry Bracken
Sherry Bracken

Several years ago, two Hawaii Island artists decided they wanted to expand horizons....and not just their own.  This is Year Three for the Hawai'i Artist Collaboration.  It brings together artists from around the world to create new art.  From the Big Island, HPR's Sherry Bracken tells us more.

Some users of the Big Island's Keauhou Bay are not happy right now.  The state is planning to increase the number of moorings by nearly 80%.  Current Bay users say, that's a problem.  But DLNR is moving forward, waiting final approval from the Army Corps of Engineers.  HPR's Sherry Bracken has more.

Sherry Bracken
Sherry Bracken

Our state's waters are a source of joy and fun for residents and visitors alike.  But in the last four years, drowning was the leading cause of death among Hawaii's visitors.  So Governor Abercrombie has declared this week as Hawaii's first Ocean Awareness Week.  At a statewide ocean safety conference, the focus was on drowning prevention.  And as part of the event, three Hawaii County Ocean Safety specialists were recognized for their work in saving a visitor.  HPR's Sherry Bracken has more.

Flickr / DucDigital
Flickr / DucDigital

If you're a smoker, Hawaii County is one of the toughest parts of the state.  The county bans smoking at beach parks and also in cars where Keiki are present.  Now the County Council is taking steps to make it more difficult for young people to get tobacco.  HPR's Sherry Bracken talked with the Council member who is introducing the bill.

Flickr / dannyman
Flickr / dannyman

This week, HPR news is doing a series of reports we call Neighbors an Island Story.  One troubling fact around the state is that part of the population of each island is homeless. And while Oahu captures many of the headlines, homelessness is an issue on the Big Island as well...especially on the west side.  HPR's Sherry Bracken has more from Kona.

Nils Nilson
Nils Nilson

Seasonal events in Hawaii vary according to location.  On the Big Island, it's time for one of the biggest events of the year, the Ironman Triathlon World Championship.  The race itself isn't until this weekend, but as HPR's Sherry Bracken reports, participants have already begun to arrive.

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