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Maui Attractions Newsletter

Maui Attractions Newsletter
January 2003

  [ Arts & Culture ] [ Braddah-Nics ] [ Local Grinds ] [ Spotlight On ]

Arts & Culture


It is featured prominently in the history books: how Simon Metcalf, an ill-tempered American ship captain, opened fire on friendly native canoes he lured into cannon-range. One account says more than 100 innocent Hawaiians were killed and another 100 wounded in revenge for the theft of the ship’s longboat and the death of the longboat guard when the merchantman Eleanora was anchored off Honuaula, a neighboring village. Dozens of bodies were never found.

Meanwhile, a companion ship, the sloop Fair American, captained by Metcalf’s son, had become separated from the Eleanora and was searching for the larger ship along the Big Island Coast. She ran afoul of Kameeiamoku, a high chief who had been insulted by the elder Metcalf during an earlier visit. The chief and his men boarded the small ship and killed her captain and most of the crew.

One man, Isaac Davis, survived the debacle when a more merciful chief intervened. Davis was turned over to an up-and-coming young Big Island chief named Kamehameha.

When Metcalf arrived at Kealakekua Bay on the Big Island, he put ashore an Englishman named John Young who also became Kamehameha’s prisoner. The chief feared that if Young returned to the Eleanora, Metcalf would find out about the death of his son and take an even more horrific revenge on the Hawaiians. Metcalf sailed off never knowing what had happened.

Kamehameha’s strategic skill combined with the sailors’ expertise with the firepower of the small cannon which was also acquired in the incident Kamehameha won his victory later that same year in the alluvial Iao Valley above Olowalu. The voice of the cannon, which had been named Lopaka (Robert) roared its bloody war cries and devastated the Maui warriors. Their blood turned the waters of the valley red.

An ancient trail through a high mountain pass once connected Olowalu with Iao Valley. Refugees from the battle fled through the pass to Olowalu, bringing the events to a full circle.

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Braddah-Nics Lexicon

Standard English: Sally tried to shorten the process, but I guess she forgot something important and now it's really a mess!
Braddah-nics: Auwe! Sally, she went go cut short 'em and now stay all hemajang!

Standard English: I believe this one's a better value than the other one.
Braddah-nics: For real, brah, mo guarans dan da oddah one!

Standard English: Oh, well, he's always trying to make you feel sorry for him.
Braddah-nics: Dat guy! He all the time make da kine pua t'ing.

[ Top ]

Local Grinds

Cold Somen Salad
Yield: 6 Servings


9 oz Package Somen noodles
1/4 c Sugar
1 c Chicken broth
1/4 c Soy sauce
1/4 c Rice vinegar
2 tb Sesame oil
7 oz Block Kamoboko; slivered
1/4 lb Char siu; slivered
1/4 lb Ham; slivered
1 sm Cucumber; slivered
2 c Shredded lettuce
1 ea Sheet Tamagoyaki; slivered


Cook noodles according to package directions. Rinse, drain, and chill. In a saucepan, combine sugar, broth, soy sauce, vinegar, and oil. Bring to a boil; lower heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Chill. To serve, place somen on a large platter. Garnish with remaining ingredients. Serve with broth mixture. Makes 6 to 8 servings. **note: Tamagoyaki is like a thin sheet of omlette. Cut it in thin strips for garnishes. Source: 100 Years of Island Cooking by Hawaiian Electric Company.

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Spotlight On…

Kepaniwai Park and Heritage Gardens
Wailuku, Maui Open daily, 7 a.m. - 7 p.m.

In 1790, King Kamehameha the Great and his warriors engaged in the bloody battle of Iao Valley to gain control of Maui. Kamehameha's army literally crushed Maui's troops with western cannons that they adopted into their fighting tactics. When the battle ended, so many of the warriors bodies had blocked Iao Stream that the battle site was named Kepaniwai, or "damming of the waters." Now Kepaniwai is a tranquil park and the realization of architect Richard C. Tongg's dream.

Kepaniwai Park and Heritage Gardens, located on Hwy 32 between Wailuku and Iao Needle, has landscaped gardens representing Hawaii's various cultures.  Iao Stream is dammed there to provide wading and swimming pools. On display are different types of re-creations of native homes and gardens, a Hawaiian grass shack, a Japanese teahouse, a Chinese pagoda, a Filipino bamboo house, a Portuguese villa, and a New England "salt box". All standing in harmony by Iao Stream. This is a great picnic spot, as there are plenty of covered picnic pavilions with tables, benches, running water, and fire pits. You will also find adequate restroom facilities.

Kids can run among the lush, subtropical vegetation. You can see ferns, the bamboo forest, banana trees, and other native and exotic plants in the Iao Valley Botanic Garden along the stream. The lush surroundings and towering mountains make this area fantastic for photographs. The county park is open 7 a.m.-7 p.m.

Next-door you will find Hawaii Nature Center's Interactive Arcade. Let the fun begin with measuring your mileage from home on a giant globe. Inside there are 30 activities to introduce you to Hawaii's natural history. Pull out a species drawer on the Rainforest Wall and take a spin on the wheel to learn how plants and animals came by chance to the islands. It's open 10 a.m.-4 p.m. daily. There is a fee. Ask about guided nature walks. (808) 244-6500

The parking lot is generally safe, but thieves do periodically go through the area. Don't leave your things unattended in your car. Be aware that you will be traveling through a residential area, with children and schools nearby. Please exercise caution. This landmark is one of the few sites that should not be missed by visiting tourists.


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