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Wilson’s Blog

Did you ever see a gopher hula dance everywhere he went? I have. Ditch did the hula on beaches and mountains, around palm trees and coconut trees, on a boat, in a pool, even on a surfboard. Surfboard hula didn't go so well. He wanted to hula on a volcano but a Park Ranger said, "No dancing near lava!" Us GoBros visited two of three active volcanoes in Hawaii. In Volcanoes National Park we saw Mauna Loa – the biggest volcano in Hawaii! It still makes volcano smoke and could erupt at any minute. So, Ditch, don't hula near it! The other volcano we saw is called Kilauea. That means "much spreading" in Hawaiian language. Kilauea spreads a lot of lava! Why? Because it erupts all the time. Stay away, Ditch, that lava flows down the mountain very fast and is very hot!

I then took Ditch away from volcanoes to a place with no hot lava. Waimea Canyon is a huge canyon - one mile wide, 10 miles long, and over 3,600 feet deep. It is called the "Grand Canyon of the Pacific." So many plants and trees grow inside it, and many animals live there. We think we saw a nene goose – that is the Hawaii state bird – fly by!

Of course, Ditch is always hungry so we had to go to the Aloha Festival near Pu`uhonua o Honaunau National Park! Ditch ate so much pineapple that I thought, well, soon I'll have a large pineapple gopher as a brother. But, guess what made him stop eating pineapple? More hula dancing! Ditch danced and I learned how to play music using a conch shell – a big Hawaiian shell that you blow into!

Tomorrow, GoBro and I will try to scuba dive. Yup – scuba-diving gophers. I bet Ditch hula dances underwater! Aloha!

Apple Pie Picks

Dole Pineapple Plantation

The Dole Pineapple Plantation first opened in the 1950s as a fruit stand. Today, a visit to the plantation is one of the most popular stops on Oahu. Visitors can take a 20-minute, two-mile narrated ride around the pineapple fields of Oahu on The Pineapple Express Train. Listen and learn the true story of how the small fruit stand of the 1950s became one of the world's biggest pineapple plantations. The Pineapple Maze at the plantation holds the Guinness Book of World Records title as the world's largest maze. The maze is more than three acres large and has almost two and one-half miles of paths. What an adventure! To learn more about the workings of the plantation, take the Plantation Garden Tour to learn how pineapples are picked, processed and packaged. This walking tour leads visitors through eight beautiful mini-gardens and shows off the plants, trees and crops of Hawaii. Don't forget to sample the pineapples before you leave!

Iolani Palace

Did you know there was a royal palace in the United States? Visit Iolani Palace in Honolulu and see for yourself! The palace was the official residence of the Hawaiian Kingdom's last two monarchs, King Kalakaua and Queen Liliuokalani. The Palace was built by King David Kalakaua in 1882. When it was built it was a grand and important palace. The royal residence was home to Hawaii's first electric light system, flush toilets and telephones. The inside of the palace has a beautiful Hawaiian koa wood staircase, portraits of Hawaiian royalty, decorative furniture and royal gifts from leaders around the world. Wander through the palace's throne room, dining room and the private living quarters of the royal family. Admire pieces of Hawaiian royalty from swords and jewelry to the two golden crowns of the King and Queen. Visit the Iolani Coronation Pavilion on the grounds of the palace where in 1883 King David Kalakaua was crowned king. Across the street from the palace is the famous 18-foot bronze statue of King Kamehameha I. A great warrior and leader, King Kamehameha I united the Hawaiian Islands into one royal kingdom in 1810 and became its first king.


Waikiki is a very famous area in Hawaii! It has been featured in lots of movies and television shows about Hawaii. More than 4 million people visit Waikiki every year! During the day, the beaches of Waikiki are filled with sunbathers, surfers, bodyboarders and kayakers. The gentle and steady waves at Waikiki Beach make it a perfect spot to learn how to surf or paddle canoe. In front of Kuhio Beach, a statue of Duke Kahanamoku welcomes visitors with open arms. Duke was a Hawaiian hero and one of the world's greatest water sports athletes. He was the first person to be inducted into both the Surfing Hall of Fame and Swimming Hall of Fame. Other beaches in the area include Kahanamoku Beach with its man-made beach and lagoon, Fort De Russy Beach with a coral reef a little offshore, and San Souci Beach, a quiet spot protected by a reef. The Waikiki area is not only famous for its beaches. While in the area be sure to visit Kapiolani Park, the Waikiki Shell amphitheater, Waikiki Aquarium and the Honolulu Zoo.

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Local Chow


A malasada is a Portuguese treat, made from balls of dough that are deep-fried in oil and dusted with sugar. They are a delicious doughnut without the hole! The word "mal-assada" in Portuguese means "light-roasted." Before the balls are fried, the dough is formed by hand into balls and then set out to rise. The balls are then fried until the crust is a golden brown and the insides are light and fluffy. Delicious! The traditional malasadas recipe brought to Hawaii by Portuguese immigrants did not have holes or fillings. Today, some bakeries now offer the treats with flavored cream or fillings such as Mango, Macadamia Nut, Guava, Pineapple or Banana. Eat like a local in the Kapahulu neighborhood with a tasty malasada from Leonard's Bakery. Leonard's Bakery has been putting out sweet piping hot malasadas on Oahu since 1952. Try the different types of malasadas on the menu to decide your favorite. One is never enough!

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Digging History


British Captain, James Cook, discovers the Hawaiian Islands and names them the Sandwich Islands in honor of Britain's Earl of Sandwich.


Kamehameha I conquers many of the Hawaiian Islands and crowns himself King.


Kamehameha I establishes the Kingdom of Hawaii.


Coffee and pineapple are first introduced to Hawaii.


Liholiho, son of Kamehameha I, rules as King Kamehameha II.


Kauikeaouli, the second son of King Kamehameha I, rules as King Kamehameha III.


First sugar plantation is established in Koloa.


Hawaii adopts its first constitution.


First House of Representatives meets.


Honolulu becomes the capital of Hawaii.


Alexander Liholiho, the grandson of Kamehameha I, rules Hawaii as King Kamehameha IV.


Prince Lot Kapuaiwa, last of the Kamehameha kings rules Hawaii as King Kamehameha V.


William Lunalilo rules as Hawaii's first elected King.


David Kalakuau serves as the last ruling king of Hawaii.


Macadamia nuts are introduced to Hawaii.


First pineapples are planted in Hawaii.


Liliʻuokalani, King Kalākaua's sister, rules as the last monarch and only Queen of Hawaii.


The monarchy of Hawaii is overthrown.


The Republic of Hawaii is established.


The U.S. Congress passes a resolution to take over the territory of Hawaii.


Hawaii becomes a U.S. territory.


The first commercial flights between the islands begins.


The first trans-Pacific flight from San Francisco to Hawaii begins.


The Japanese attack U.S. forces in Pearl Harbor.


Hawaii becomes the 50th, and last, state to join the Union.

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