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About Town 2-2-13

Makuakane-Jarrell is park’s new chief of interpretation

Park Ranger Joni Mae Makuakane-Jarrell is the new chief of interpretation at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, and oversees visitor services and educational and cultural programs at the park. She is the first Native Hawaiian to serve in the position.

A 32-year park service veteran, Makuakane-Jarrell has worked at all five national park units on Hawaii Island. She began her career as an interpretive ranger at Hawaii Volcanoes through the Young Adult Conservation Corps program, and worked her way through the ranks, becoming the park’s supervisory ranger. Makuakane-Jarrell then worked as the interpretative specialist at Kaloko-Honokohau National Historical Park with her late husband, Park Ranger Steve Makuakane-Jarrell, and served as a law enforcement specialist at Puukohola Heiau National Historic Site.

Before becoming chief of interpretation, Makuakane-Jarrell served for eight years as the educational specialist for Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. She coordinates the annual cultural festival, now in its 33rd year, and piloted the first Summer Junior Ranger Program. She also started the Na Leo Manu (Heavenly Voices) concerts and Ike Hana Noeau cultural workshops at the park.

Knights of Columbus dinner, dance is Feb. 9

The Knights of Columbus will hold a Valentine’s dinner dance beginning at 6 p.m. Feb. 9 at King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel ballroom.

Tickets are $45 per person and include a Hawaiian buffet and music by Roy Galigo. Tickets are available after weekend Masses at St. Michael’s Catholic Church or at the door.

Proceeds will be used for the group’s activities and charity projects.

For more information, call Rod Imming at 326-1269.

IRS expands products, services

The Internal Revenue Service has opened the 2013 filing season by announcing a variety of enhanced products and services to help taxpayers prepare and file their tax returns by the April 15 deadline.

New and expanded services for taxpayers this year include a redesigned web site that’s easier to navigate and improved service options, including more video-conferencing assistance sites and additional social media tools. In addition, the IRS has stepped up its enforcement efforts to protect taxpayers from refund fraud and identity theft.

The IRS began accepting and processing most individual tax returns Jan. 31 after updating forms and completing programming and testing of its processing systems to reflect the American Taxpayer Relief Act that Congress enacted on Jan. 2. The vast majority of taxpayers can file now, but the IRS is continuing to update its systems for some tax filers. The IRS will begin accepting tax returns from people claiming education credits in mid-February while taxpayers claiming depreciation deductions, energy credits and many business credits will be able to file in late February or early March. A full list of the affected forms is available on

This year, taxpayers have until April 15 to file their 2012 tax returns and pay any tax due. The IRS expects to receive more than 147 million individual tax returns this year, with about 75 percent projected to receive a refund.

Students serving breakfast, lunch

The culinary arts program at Hawaii Community College at West Hawaii is offering breakfasts and lunches this semester.

Breakfasts are served from 9 to 11 a.m. Tuesdays, Feb. 5 and 12, March 5, 12 and 19, and April 2, 9 and 16. The fee is $6; reservations are not required and carry-out is available.

First-year students will offer lunches from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesdays, Feb. 6, 13 and 20, March 6, 13 and 20 and April 3 and 10. The fee is $18; reservations are required.

Second-year students will serve lunches from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Fridays, Feb. 8, 15 and 22 and March 15. The fee is $20; reservations are required.

Reservations will be taken beginning at 8 a.m. Monday, the week of the lunch, at 322-4850.

Surgery center shows appreciation Monday

Peri Anesthesia Nurse Awareness Week is Monday through Feb. 10. The Kona Surgery Center on Walua Road will recognize its nurses with a gift pen and potluck Monday.

The center’s nurses are trained to prepare patients for surgery, help in the operating room and recover patients from procedures and anesthesia.

Children’s craft class scheduled for Feb. 13

Hawaii County Depart-ment of Parks and Recre-ation is accepting registrations through Feb. 12 for a free Valentine’s craft class. The class for children ages 7 to 14 is scheduled from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Feb. 13 at Kekuaokalani Gym in Kailua-Kona. All materials will be supplied.

For more information or to register, call Marshall Tohara at 327-3565.

Reading group explores outer space

“Books are Building Blocks,” the Friends of the Libraries, Kona family reading program, is slated from 5 to 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Kailua-Kona Public Library. Participants will “travel” to outer space with Nancy Teshima, curator of the Onizuka Space Center. Teshima will present an overview of NASA’s current mission, with educational materials and photos.

Parents must attend the program with their children. Each age-specific reading group is led by a designated reader who also leads a discussion of the material.

Registration begins at 4:30 p.m. in front of the library. The program lasts from 5 to 6, followed by a reception on the library’s lanai. As many as 75 people may participate.

To sponsor a program or learn more, email or visit