Promenade at the Park, Hilo-Style

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“Passage of Time,” Bob Nims. PC: Marla Walters


“Bamboo,” Diane Renchler. PC: Marla Walters

Painting comes to life. PC: Marla Walters

View of bay. PC: Marla Walters

Miss Barkley. PC: Marla Walters

Amateur plein air painter. PC: Marla Walters

The famous red bridge of Liliu‘okalani Gardens. PC: Marla Walters

A sunny day in Hilo is nothing to waste, and taking the Banyan Drive Art Stroll on Jan. 12, 2019, was a perfect way to enjoy it.

Liliu‘okalani Gardens is a jewel at any time of year, but the mild, warm, weather brought out a large crowd of art-appreciation and park-appreciation folks on Sunday, Jan. 13, 2019.

Organizer K. T. Cannon-Eger educated me that the gardens “are actually composed of four parks on the Waiakea peninsula: Rakuen, Isles, Mokuola and the tropical Japanese landscape many still call Nihon Koen.”

The total size is 24.67 acres, according to Hawai‘i County records.

Art was also available for viewing at the Banyan Gallery, the Castle Hilo Hawaiian Hotel, and the Grand Naniloa Resort. Also participating were local food establishments Hilo Bay Cafe, Suisan Fish Market and Pandamonia’s Paleta Palace at Ali‘i Ice.

Art and music go hand in hand. Puna Taiko brought their stirring performance, and we also heard from musicians Cymber Quinn, Christy Lassiter & Friends, Kainani Kahaunaele and Mark Yamanaka.

Plein Air and studio artist Kevn Spitze from Kona was working on painting the popular red bridge. He recalled that during last year’s event, we had the (false) missile alert and a wet drizzle.

Amateur painter Anne had staked out a spot in the shade. New to painting, she said her instructor said to “just put the paint down and shove it around.” Judging from the delightful painting coming to life, Anne’s amateur status may not last long.

The Naniloa’s bar was in full swing and the Palm Room was full of colorful local landscapes and sculpture.

After petting Miss Barkley, a delightful fellow art lover, we collected our paletas (mango for me, coconut for Mr. Walters) and parked it on a bench.

Awards were as follows: Photography: Jay Takaaze for Morning Moon. This photo will be the cover image for the 2019 Friends of Liliuokalani Gardens calendar. Takaaze also won a doors-off ride on Paradise Helicopters. Mary Goodrich served as judge for this competition.

Emily Catey Weiss judged the art competition. First place went to Mokuola Sunset by Jared Goodwin.

Second place went to Red Bridge by Bonnie Sol Hahn.

Jay Takaaze was again a winner for Good Morning.

Artist Kevin Spitzie painting red bridge at Liliu‘okalani Gardens during the 2019 Banyan Drive Art Stroll. Jan. 

Stephen Davies rounded out the category with an Honorable Mention for his photograph, Just Walking the Dog.

The People’s Choice award went to Jay Takaaze (photography) and Ron Louie’s watercolor, Favorite Spot, won for the art exhibit.

In the calendar photography category, exhibited at Hilo Bay Cafe, the People’s Choice went to Morning Moon by Jay Takaaze.

In the art show category, displayed at the Palm Room of the Grand Naniloa Resort, People’s Choice award went to Favorite Spot, a watercolor by Ron Louie.


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