About Town 10-7-12


Park’s chief of interpretation retires

One of the Pacific West Region’s most respected and revered park rangers, Jim Gale, has hung up his flat hat for the

last time Fridayday.

Gale served the National Park Service for 32 years, starting at Yellowstone and reaching the pinnacle of his career at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park as chief of interpretation. His work took him to some of the nation’s most treasured public lands: Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming, Kenai Fjords National Park in Alaska, Indiana Dunes National Seashore, Blue Ridge National Park in Virginia and Grand Canyon National Park. At Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument, Gale helped design two major visitor centers following the cataclysmic eruption of 1980.

Entranced by active volcanoes and dedicated to a career in conservation, Gale moved to Hawaii with his wife, Lora, and son, Forest, and spent the last 12 years at Hawaii Volcanoes, where his accomplishments continued. He led the design team for the new Kilauea Visitor Center, collaborated with kupuna on key cultural decisions and led a team charged with interpreting major events like the 2008 eruption at Halemaumau crater.

Gale earned a prestigious suite of awards during his career, including the highest professional recognition in his field, the Fellow Award from the National Association for Interpretation. He’s the recipient of the U.S. Forest Service Gifford Pinchot Interpreter of the Year Award for Excellence in Interpretation and the winner of the Freeman Tilden Award for Excellence in Interpretation from the Pacific West Region, just to name a few.

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Park program slated today

Puuhonua o Hōnaunau National Historical Park presents “Become Inspired by the Authentic” from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. today.

Two kumu hula will inspire visitors with the art of ancient hula with the iliili (pebble) as the featured musical implement. The iliili are two flat pebbles held in each hand and struck together like castanets. The nature of the musical implement was expressed through the character of the chosen hula.

The cultural event provides visitors and the community a time and place to gather, learn, share and become inspired.

Park entrance fees are $5 per vehicle or $3 per person for walk-ins.

For more information, leave at message at 328-2326, ext. 1702.