By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor A taro patch, just one of the many culturally significant collections of flora found in the valley This weekend we took a drive up to O‘ahu’s North Shore and visited Waimea Vally. I last visited this site about 20 years—and at least two landowners owners—ago. In fact, it’s been so long that I can’t really remember much about how it was back then compared to how it is today. What I can tell you is that the Waimea Valley of today is a more than ... Read More
There's so much to learn about this tropical paradise we call Hawai'i. Start your journey today by reading more about what makes this place so special.
By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor TheBus is not only convenient, but it's also a good value One of the prices of living in paradise is the traffic we on O‘ahu have to contend with. For the last several years, Honolulu’s traffic woes have ranked among the worst in the nation. Fortunately, we have a number of alternatives to driving. Keep these in mind and you may manage to avoid a little traffic and a bunch of stress. You’re on vacation, after all! There are, of course, the countless tour shuttles ... Read More
By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor Which Spam variety is your favorite? Who doesn’t love food? Who doesn’t love a street festival? Put them together and you’ve got a street festival celebrating one of the most perfect foods around. I’m talking, of course, about Waikiki Spam Jam, taking place this Saturday, April 27, along Kalākaua Avenue. Hawai‘i has a special love for this canned meat, dating back to its introduction to the islands during WW II. Since then, Spam has become a staple of local households and cuisine, having adapted itself ... Read More
By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor Downtown Hilo wears its history on its sleeve, and that's part of its charm. Hawai‘i’s rich history is all around us, even if we’re not looking for it. From landmark tourist attractions to innocuous, yet suspiciously mainland-sounding street names, our day-to-day interactions are steeped in the past. When tourists and locals conceptualize Hawai‘i’s history, there are some obvious touchstones that may come to mind: culturally significant sites like Mauna Kea or an ancient heiau (shrine), ‘Iolani Palace, Pearl Harbor or the older parts of towns ... Read More
By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor The Chinese Courtyard, one of the beautiful open-air spaces at HoMA We’ve all got that super secret place that we like to think no one knows about except you—it could be that hole in the wall with super-cheap drinks, a municipal lot with tons of parking, or that plate lunch place with free, unlimited wi-fi. The people who do know understand the power of the knowledge they hold and will guard their secret closely. Put another way, if you know, you know, and if you ... Read More
By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor Being the most isolated island chain in the world has many, many ups, there are some downs, too. Among them is missing out on some of the shops and restaurants that the mainland takes for granted. I can’t tell you how many locals long for brands like IKEA, Chipotle and Olive Garden to make their way here to the islands. If and when our favorites do arrive, it’s a cause for celebration. It was a huge deal when Costco opened in Hawai‘i back in 1988, ... Read More
By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor 'Watcher of Waipuna' at Kumu Kahua Theatre [Photo by Chris Kwock] While Hawai‘i is often heralded for its food scene, and some attention is given to its local music scene, you hear very little about its theatre scene. Which is a shame, because Hawai‘i’s theatre scene is vibrant and unique, and worthy of our attention. Once upon a time, Hawai‘i theatre felt limited to stagings of popular Broadway musicals, like “Cats” and “Phantom of the Opera.” There's nothing wrong with those, but why support a ... Read More
By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor The ruins of Kaniakapūpū circa 2010 The editorial team here at This Week has a phrase we like to whip out now and then: “Be a traveler, not a tourist.” It can mean different things to different people, but the gist is this: When you visit a place, whether a sacred historical site, a beach, a restaurant or even a friend’s house, tread lightly and with respect. It’s not yours, after all, so treat it well. Sadly, sometimes visitors to Hawai‘i don’t practice this concept, ... Read More
By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor Lychee and avocados and dragon fruit—oh my! [Photo: Zach Villanueva] When I first moved to my current neighborhood, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that there was a weekly farmers’ market just two blocks away. There are so many reasons why this excited me, but let me run down a few reasons. Produce: Lots and lots of produce! If fruits and vegetables are a regular part of your diet (as they should be), then the farmers’ markets are the place for you. If you’re trying to eat ... Read More
By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor Photo: La Mariana Sailing Club Tiki. Love it or hate it, the imagery of this unique style permeates our thoughts of old Hawai‘i and what some people think the islands were, are, and/or supposed to be. The mere mention of the word ‘tiki’ evokes images of tacky aloha shirts, grass skirts and plastic lei while strumming on a cheap, toy ‘ukulele. Throw in a carved wooden representation of an indeterminate deity and a colorful rum cocktail with an umbrella or another prop sticking out of it and, ... Read More
By Richard Melendez "Going out" doesn’t always mean going out. It can just mean going out. Okay, okay, what I’m trying to say is that going out doesn’t need to mean heading out to a restaurant or event. It could just mean stepping outside to enjoy the sun and fresh air. Not only is Hawai‘i a paradise like no other with more than enough in natural wonderment to keep us both enthralled and appreciative; Hawai‘i also does a great job of keeping its beauty accessible and enjoyable by all. Think ... Read More
By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor A selection of vintage Aloha shirts at Bailey's Antiques & Aloha Shirts [Photo Bailey's Antiques & Aloha Shirts] Hawai‘i is well known for its shopping opportunities—from Waikiki’s luxury stores to its kitschy souvenirs, from big-box outlets to small pop-ups by local artisans. But for some, shopping isn’t all about hunting down the hottest brands or trendy designs. Sometimes, a little trip into the way-back machine is in order. Hawai‘i’s unique history and isolated locale make it a great spot for seeking out vintage goods. Visit ... Read More
By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor Yesterday’s announcement that a baby bongo antelope was recently born at the Honolulu Zoo got me thinking about what a great resource our zoo is. If you hadn’t heard, the Honolulu Zoo’s two eastern lowland bongo antelope, Topenga (the mom) and Cory (the dad), gave birth to an as-yet-unnamed calf who is pretty darn adorable. See? Sheʻs adorable, right?? There are currently an estimated 28,000 bongo antelope existing in the wild, and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has categorized them as “near ... Read More
By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor GET IN MAH BELLY! What fits in the palm of your hand, is easy to eat while on-the-go, can serve as either a snack or a meal, is inexpensive and is oh-so-delicious? Okay, in all fairness, a lot of food items fit the description—anything from fruits to Pop-Tarts—but there’s one that is uniquely a product of Hawai‘i. I’m talking, of course, about the ever-popular Spam musubi. Take some white rice, pack it into a brick shape, place a slice of Spam upon it, wrap it ... Read More
By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor Once upon a time, “geek” meant the opposite of cool. If you read comic books or played Dungeons & Dragons, if you enjoyed math or science or had a hobby outside “the norm,” you were often the target of ridicule and shunned by the popular crowd. Today? Media inspired by comics and games is big business, geeks like Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg have inherited the world, and everyone from Hollywood to your grandma is in on the action. Geeky passions run deep and they ... Read More
By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor “Going out” means different things to different people. Varying factors include age, location, and whether or not there are children in the picture, among other things. In Hawai‘i, going out can mean club hopping in Waikīkī or just cruising with “the guys” in someone’s carport with some poke and a cooler full of beer. Going out can mean dinner with your significant other, night fishing with family, sushi for one at your favorite hole in the wall, Friday night fireworks off of Magic Island, or ... Read More
By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor So, you may have heard that the Pali Highway is closed until at least August. While there’s limited access during rush hours, for the most part, this vital—and scenic—artery connecting Honolulu to the Windward side of the island is off limits. Don’t fret, though. If you were planning a circle island drive or a jaunt over to Kailua-side, you can still get there through a few other routes. Likelike Highway is probably the least-disruptive as it runs basically parallel to the Pali. H-3 also works ... Read More
By Richard Melendez, Digital Editor Have you ever wanted to work in a treehouse surrounded by cool toys? Well, Crazy Shirts’ headquarters in Halawa isn’t that, buuuuut it kinda sorta is. A few of us from This Week were lucky enough to be granted a tour of the Crazy Shirts facility, and I gotta say, this is easily one of the coolest offices I’ve ever seen. Built in 1983, the entire structure is made from wood, making it stand out from the neighborhood’s other more warehouse-y type buildings. As we ... Read More
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