THE BIG ISLAND suffered a steep decline in U.S.
visitor numbers through the first five months of 2001 compared with
last year, according to the latest visitor statistics issued by the
Hawaii Department of Business Economic Development and Tourism.
Domestic visitor numbers to the Big Island fell 5.2% to 368,000
through May compared with the same period last year. In addition,
domestic visitors to Maui fell 4.7% to 701,000 and 4% on Kauai to
340,915 visitors for the first five months. Visitation to Oahu,
Molokai and Lanai during the period hovered near flat compared with
THE CALIFORNIA ATTORNEY GENERAL'S office
launched an inquiry into the Auto Club of Southern California after
a report by Travel Weekly revealed that the AAA affiliate secretly
acquired control of Pleasant Hawaiian Holidays two years ago.
"Since Pleasant Hawaiian Holidays is a registered seller of travel
[in California], we will look into it," said Herschel Elkins,
California's senior assistant attorney general. "We take no
position as to [whether] what the Auto Club did is in violation of
any law." Pleasant Hawaiian, Hawaii's largest tour wholesaler, said
that it has not been contacted by the attorney general's office.
"We plan to cooperate," a company spokesman said.
HAPPY TRAILS: Surf-board-shaped markers for the
new two-mile Waikiki Historic Trail here are nearly all in place,
and guides are now offering free tours six days a week. Eighteen of
the 23 bronze markers with text and graphics are in place now,
telling the story of Waikiki. Mondays through Fridays the tour
starts at 9 a.m. at trail marker No. 1, called "Beaches of Waikiki"
on the sidewalk next to the beach at the entrance to Kapiolani
Park, which also is at the corner of Kalakaua and Monsarrat
avenues. On Saturdays the tour starts at 4:30 p.m. There also is a
Web site for the trail at www.waikikihistorictrail.com.
ASTON HOTELS and the city of Honolulu are
sponsoring a series of free evening concerts at the Kapiolani Park
bandstand here as part of a new effort by the city to rejuvenate
Waikiki. Two concerts are scheduled for Aug. 4 and Oct. 31 at 6:30
p.m. The first concert will feature two local Hawaiian bands and a
hula performance. The second concert will feature a local Hawaiian
band and an illusionist.
THE HALEAKALA VISITOR CENTER and parking lot
near the Haleakala volcano crater on Maui reopened following a
four-week closure. The visitor center was closed during a road
re-paving project outside the center.