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April 2018: Table of Contents



HONOLULU Magazine March 2018 Cover
Nearly 27,000 students missed 15 or more days of school last year. Find out how communities are combatting chronic absenteeism on page 48.
Student: Julian Bercedoni. Photo: Aaron K. Yoshino.

Grading the Public Schools

We’ve ranked Hawai‘i’s public schools from the best performing to the worst, using official state Department of Education data. How does your school measure up?


Roll Call

Showing up to school is vital to success. But Hawai‘i’s public and charter schools are in trouble—nearly 27,000 students were chronically absent last school year. Here’s what some communities are doing to change that.

by jayna omaye


Making the Grade

After heading two very different school systems that each faced controversy, the DOE’s new superintendent Christina Kishimoto sees reason to believe Hawai‘i’s much-maligned public schools can adopt innovative reforms that help students succeed.

by robbie dingeman



We’ve long used dogs in police work for drug detection and in disasters to find people trapped in rubble. In Hawai‘i, their great sniffing ability is being used in a wider array of fields—from finding bed bugs to conservation.

by kim steutermann rogers


Guided By Voices

Starting with a student’s idea (“Let’s ask Disney!”), the saga of a Hawaiian-language translation of Moana soars into a showcase of the University of Hawai‘i’s systemwide resources in translation, ‘ōlelo and recording—with Auli‘i Cravalho back in her starring role. We take a look behind the curtain.

by don wallace



Aloha Built

A plantation-style village built to house once-homeless families has sprung up in a Sand Island field last used to play paintball.



April Picks

Celebrate Hawai‘i’s heritage (and our love for Spam), take a ride up north, get educated on climate change and more, all in one month.

BY Marisa Heung


How to Explain a Missing Mother

A new book by a successful banker who abandoned her family for drugs could prove useful to young children who’ve been left behind, whatever the reason.

By Don Wallace


Da Meter

Gauging what’s hot and what’s not in Honolulu.



Innovative Meets Old-School

This plantation-style village helps once-homeless families.

By Robbie Dingeman


Advocate for Animals

Quote Unquote: Lisa Fowler

interview by Catherine Toth Fox


Field Notes: French Kismet

Field Notes explores Honolulu’s vast and varied scenes and subcultures. This month: Alliance Française Hawai‘i.

By Don Wallace



Isn’t It Iconic

Owners Nate and Shie Clark give us a tour of We Are Iconic’s new digs.

by brie thalmann



Home Sweet Home

Cool hues for kids’ rooms, fruit plants you can grow on your lānai and more.

by stacey makiya and savannah l. murray



PUBLISHER’S PAGE: The Stories of Our City

How HONOLULU and HPR share a common mission.

by alyson helwagen


Editor’s Page: The Voices of HONOLULU

After two decades of journalism comes a daunting—but inspiring—responsibility.



Afterthoughts: Wingin’ It

He’s ruffled my feathers and put a song in my heart.

by katrina valcourt


From Our Files

HONOLULU Magazine and Paradise of the Pacific—chronicling the Islands since 1888. 

by savannah l. murray


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Honolulu Magazine April 2018
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Colin Nishida, Beloved Chef and Restaurateur, Leaves a Culinary Legacy

Colin Nishida

An entire community remembers the owner of Side Street Inn.


Closing of Popular Lanikai Pillbox Hike Delayed Until Further Notice

Lanikai Pillbox Hike

The state asks for public input as it works to repair the old concrete observation stations on the trail, commonly known as “pillboxes.”


First Look: Panda Dimsum in Kalihi

Panda Dim Sum

Frogs, hedgehogs and bees, oh my! This spot dishes up cute, Instagrammable dumplings.


Kaimukī Gets da Shop, a New Kind of Bookstore and Event Space

Da Shop

It takes guts to open a brick-and-mortar bookstore in the days of instant online gratification, but in da Shop, local publisher Bess Press has found a way to allow fickle/loyal readers to have their cake and eat it, too.


20 Great O‘ahu Hikes

Explore 20 great adventures that offer beautiful vistas, waterfalls and more.



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