|Subscribe | What is RSS|
Contact: Jessica Ferracane, 808-985-5018In 2016, Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park will celebrate 100 years of connecting people to, and caring for, the extraordinary landscape, native plants and animals and Hawaiian culture linked with Kīlauea and Mauna Loa volcanoes.
Starting in January, and running each month through December 2016, Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park will offer a centennial-themed After Dark in the Park program that highlights the natural and cultural resources of the park. The After Dark in the Park series will be offered on a Tuesday, and followed by a complementary hike or excursion the following Saturday to directly connect people to the “resource of the month” and their national park.
“We want to share stories our visitors and local residents may not be aware of through the After Dark in the Park program, then take them out into the field to experience their park in person and on foot,” said Superintendent Cindy Orlando.
For example, on Tues., Feb. 23, 2016, Park Botanist Sierra McDaniel and Wildlife Biologist Jon Faford offer an After Dark in the Park program about the natural and native treasures of the Kahuku Unit. On Sat., Feb. 27, Faford and McDaniel will lead a hike to a forested pit crater in Kahuku that provides important habitat for endangered native plant species including hāhā. Large ‘ōhi‘a trees, ‘ama‘u and hapu‘u pulu ferns also thrive in the pit crater.
Hawaiian culture will also be highlighted in the park’s Centennial series. On Tues., July 26, 2016 Park Archeologist Summer Roper will present an After Dark in the Park talk about the necessity of salt drying for native Hawaiians. The following Saturday, Roper will lead a hike to Ka‘ena, a prized salt gathering area along the park’s remote and rugged coast, near the end of Chain of Craters Road.
In August, when Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park officially turns 100, Park Archeologist Dr. Jadelyn Moniz-Nakamura will present an After Dark in the Park program, “The Establishment of Hawaii National Park,” a look at the extraordinary individuals of the late 19th and early 20th centuries who were key in creating the national park that then included the summits of Kīlauea and Haleakalā on Maui. The following Saturday, park rangers will lead a short walk to the Volcano House, and explain the significant role this iconic lodge, perched on the rim of Kīlauea caldera, played in shaping the park’s early history.
“Each of these 12 monthly programs will enlighten participants about the park’s fascinating history and evolution, but will also emphasize the role we all play in shaping our next 100 years,” Orlando said.
The Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park Centennial After Dark in the Park and Hike Series is free, and no advance registration is required, but park entrance fees apply. The series is co-sponsored by the Friends of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. See schedule for dates, times and more information.