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Lapakahi State Historical Park Closed for Weekend

October 26, 2012, 11:59 AM HST
* Updated October 26, 12:04 PM
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A state park in South Kohala that features the remains of an ancient Hawaiian coastal settlement will be closed through the weekend, the Department of Land and Natural Resources said Thursday.

Lapakahi State Historical Park will be closed beginning today to allow for the 18th annual gathering of traditional native Hawaiian healers.

Members of Na Haumana La‘au Lapa‘au o Papa Auwae organize this annual event to share cultural healing practices with one another in order to perpetuate these traditions.

The organization’s founder, Papa Henry Auwae, who died in 2000 at the age of 94, is recognized as a Hawaiian elder who practiced and shared healing traditions with other native healers and students for many years. Healing traditions include use of herbal and remedies from nature, lomilomi massage, prayer and other methods.

“The Department is pleased that we can partner with Na Haumana La‘au Lapa‘au o Papa Auwae in the perpetuation of Hawaiian traditional practices, as one of our core responsibilities,” William J. Aila Jr., DLNR Chairperson, said in a statement.

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The Board of Land and Natural Resources has authorized the annual event in recognition of the needs of the native Hawaiian community to perpetuate and improve the health conditions of the native people. The park is closed during the proceedings to prevent disruptions.

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The 262-acre park located 12 miles north of Kawaihae takes visitors back in time. It features plants and examples of structures, implements and even games that were central to Hawaiian life.

Lapakahi State Historical Park will reopen to the public at 8 a.m. on Monday, Oct. 29.

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