Hau‘oli Lā Hānau: Celebrating Local Company Anniversaries—June Edition
Every month, we celebrate the anniversaries of local companies and organizations. This month: Local icons of publishing, seafood and car-washing.
Journalists Dave Pellegrin, Denby Fawcett and Bob Jones.
Photo: Courtesy of Brett Uprichard
Honolulu Publishing Co.
These days, Honolulu Publishing Co. puts out a range of visitor publications including the Hawai‘i Drive Guides and Waikīkī Menus. But it was born in 1977 when it acquired HONOLULU Magazine, launching with six employees. Dave Pellegrin, who began as both publisher and editor of the company, dramatically evolved the magazine, switching it from a mostly free publication to one with 25,000 paid subscribers. He also gave HONOLULU a more local, serious focus, with stories about politics, social issues and Hawaiian culture—a DNA that remains with the magazine to this day. By 1989, Honolulu Publishing Co. had more than 90 employees, and publications on all five major islands. In 2001, Pellegrin sold HonPub’s resident-based publications, including HONOLULU and Island Business, to focus on its visitor magazines.
Did you know that Honolulu got one of its best-loved poke and seafood shops because of a tsunami? After a destructive wave hit Hilo’s business district, Chogen and Yoshiko Tamashiro decided to move their shop from the Big Island to O‘ahu in 1947, to avoid future catastrophes. At that time, the market specialized in freshly grown pork, but when eldest son Walter Hajime Tamashiro took over in 1954, he started offering more seafood, and it soon because Tamashiro’s specialty. The market is now in its third generation: Today, Walter’s sons Cyrus, Guy and Sean continue the tradition of super-fresh seafood, everything from poke to shellfish to whole fish, caught locally and flown in from around the world.
McKinley Car Wash
Yukio Yoshikawa founded McKinley Motor Service with his three brothers, Tsuneo, Hiro and Sueo, in 1947, when he was just 22. At that time, the station was next door to where the car wash is today, at the current Pro Am Golf Shop location. Yoshikawa opened the car wash in 1964 with just eight employees. These days, the wash employs more than 70 people, and Yukio still shows up to work regularly, even at the age of 92. This spring, he was honored for his “decades of service to our small business community and the motoring public of Hawai‘i” by a House Resolution of the Hawai‘i State Legislature.
Did You Know?
In the 1980s and ’90s, HONOLULU Magazine operated out of the newly renovated Yokohama Specie Bank Building at Bethel and Merchant streets. There were often parties out in the courtyard, including “No Free Lunch” in which major political candidates pitched their campaigns (employees got lunch in return), the HONOLULU Magazine Photo Contest parties and galas for the annual Hawai‘i International Film Festival, attended by the likes of Jack Lord and Roger Ebert.
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