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Voting Open to Name KHS Baby Donkey

Posted February 7, 2017, 06:00 PM HST
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This 6-month-old baby donkey at Kona Coffee Living History Farm needs a name. Photo courtesy of Kona Historical Society.

Kona Coffee Living History Farm recently added a 6-month-old female donkey to their animal family and the public is being asked to help decide on a name for her.

Starting Feb. 7, anyone can vote for their favorite name by making a $1 donation at the farm or online at Kona Historical Society’s website. Donations will be used to care for animals at the farm, and any donations in excess will support educational programs and other needs at Kona Historical Society.

The baby donkey arrived at the farm on Jan. 31 to partner as a companion with 30-year-old donkey, Charlie.

After a call for suggested names, Kona Historical Society received 125 submissions from the public. The top five finalists to vote on are:

Florence (“Flo”)
Nominated by John Gavelek, Cathy Watkins, Terri Olsem, Balbi Brooks, and Leilehua Yuen

Kona’s coffee farm donkeys are known worldwide as “Kona Nightingales” for their distinctive song. Another famous Nightingale is Florence Nightingale, a social reformer and founder of modern nursing.

Lucy
Nominated by Mary K. Soria and and Jody Holman Webster

After Lucy van Pelt, in Charles Schultz’s comic strip “Peanuts,” who is one of Charlie Brown’s closest friends. Her character is temperamental, bossy and opinionated would could be a good name for a stubborn donkey as well.

Manini
Nominated by Lindsay Sieberg

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Manini are small fish found in Hawaiʻi’s coral reefs with distinctive black stripes, similar to the stripe on the baby donkey’s shoulders. To avoid predators, manini live in large schools. With the addition of the new donkey, Kona Coffee Living History Farm will have its own “school” of donkeys.

Mele
Nominated by Cindy Wittemore, Ashley Chamberlain, Donna S. Starr, and Jiraphon G.

“Many Kona coffee farmers used Mele as their name for female donkeys,” says Miki Izu, a local kupuna and long-time coffee farmer. Mele also refers to the chants, poems, and songs of Native Hawaiians.

Shizu
Nominated by Pixie Navas and Leslie Christman

In Japanese, “shizu” means quiet and clear. Shizuka Uchida was a proud daughter of the Kona Coffee Living History Farm’s founding family. Shizuko Teshima was a long-lived, successful businesswoman who established Kona’s famed Teshima’s Restaurant. Shizu Kahikina was a dedicated woman who worked on Puʻu Waʻawaʻa Ranch.

“We narrowed the nominations to names that were clearly very popular among social media followers and names that are significant to Kona’s history and culture,” said Kona Coffee Living History Farm Museum Manager and Kona Historical Society Assistant Program Director Gavin Miculka. “We love that everyone is as excited about the new donkey as we are. We’re grateful to everyone that suggested names.”

Voting will be open from now until Feb. 27, and people may vote as many times as they like. The winner will be announced on March 1.

For more information, call Kona Historical Society at (808) 323-3222 or visit www.konahistorical.org.

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