Check out the upcoming events and news from the Hokulani Imaginarium!

Starry Heavens Newsletter
November 2020

Aloha Kakou
Thank you to everyone who continues to read the newsletter and check out our website.

We are adding new online resources to our website to bring the Imaginarium experience to you at home.  Click on "Hokulani Online Resources" (or look for the link on our home page). You will see on the left a list of topics: Curriculum Resources, Hands On Science, Hokulani At Home, Stargazing Podcast, Star Stories, and Virtual Tours.

What's new in November?
We are beginning to offer some Curriculum Resources to help support science learning at home.  Check here as we add a mix of learning resources and lesson plans!
The Hands On Science page features videos that speak about the science you can learn from the low-tech toys and gadgets found in the Aerospace Exploration Lab.  Our first demonstrations include Dr. Jacquie Maly's introduction to important words used in science, and Imaginarium manager Dineene O'Conner's demonstration of the forces of flight, using ping-pong balls and a hairdryer.
Hokulani At Home provides short virtual planetarium shows that you can watch on your own.  Each video features a different topic, like what planets and bright stars are easy to see this month,  navigating with the North Star, and the meaning of the Equinox. 
The Stargazing Podcast will soon feature our ever popular naked-eye astronomer Krissie Kellogg whose voice weaves the science of the sky with the mythology of the constellations.
Our Star Stories  section premieres with a tale of the Chinese Qixi festival and the Summer Triangle stars.
The Virtual Tours page brings a show-and-tell approach to some of the unique attractions here, like our one-of-a-kind "Ke Ao o Ka Lā" sundial, and coming soon our extensive collection of model aircraft.

 Time again for. . . . . . . . . . Makali'i and Makahiki
Late November in Hawaii is the beginning of the Ho'o-ilo (winter or rainy season) season, which lasts about four months. In the moon-based Hawaiian calendar Winter officially begins when the Makali'i cluster is visible most of the night, rising at sunset and setting at dawn. The Pleiades will rise at sunset November 17, which is the first condition needed for Makahiki but the official start of Makahiki only begins when the first visible crescent moon occurs after the rise of Pleiades.

In ancient times, Hawaiian priests would search the night sky for Makali’i, a cluster of seven bright stars. They are also known today as the Pleiades. Makali'i in Hawaiian means "tiny eyes".  The sighting of the Makali’i signified the presence of Lono, the Hawaiian god of fertility, and the start of Makahiki, the four month Hawaiian new year season.  As Lono passed over each island, the Hawaiians would stop work, make offerings to their ali’i (chief) and celebrate.  The Makahiki was a time of joy and prayer – for the prosperity of the land, abundance of harvest and good health for family.
Makahiki is a form of the "first fruits" festivals common to many cultures throughout the world. It is similar in timing and purpose to Thanksgiving, Octoberfest and other harvest celebrations. A similar celebration was observed throughout Polynesia, but in pre-contact Hawaii the festival reached its greatest expression as Makahiki. As the year's harvest was gathered, tribute in the form of goods and produce were given to the chiefs from November through December. Various rites of purification and celebration were observed during the Makahiki season. It was a time when all wars and battles were ceased, tributes and taxes paid by each district to the ruling chief, sporting competitions and contests between villages were organized, and festive events were commenced. Several of the rigid kapu (regulating religious and social laws) were eased or temporarily set aside to allow more freedom of activity and easy celebration. It was a time of rest and renewal in preparation for the next growing season.
 Did you see that?. . . . .Whaaat?

On Saturday October 24 people were confounded and mesmerized by mysterious lights above Hawaii. The AMOS observatory on Haleakalā spotted disintegrating debris of a rocket booster used to launch Venezuelan satellite, Venesat-1, back in 2008. The used rocket has been circling Earth since the launch, slowly losing altitude due to friction with the tenuous atmosphere in low-Earth orbit. On Saturday, the booster made its final orbits.

 UH scientists discover water across Moon's sunlit surface. . . . . How askamai is that?

Casey Honniball published the findings in her graduate thesis work at UH Manoa's School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology (SOEST). This is the first time a confirmed finding of water on the sunlit surface of the Moon has been made. Analysis of the data discovered water in concentrations of 100 to 412 parts per million-roughly equivalent to a 12-ounce bottle of water, trapped in a cubic meter of soil. Don't expect to start farming yet. The Sahara desert sand has 100 times the amount of water detected in lunar soil. Nevertheless, this discovery raises more questions about how water is created and remains on the Moon's harsh, airless surface.

Inset: Casey Honniball. (Photo credit: NASA/Ames Research Center/Daniel Rutter)

For more information about  Imaginarium shows and events contact:
Manager, Dineene O‘Connor, at 808-235-7350 or                                                                              


Our admission prices are:
  • $8 General admission
  • $7 WCC students, military, seniors (65 years or older), with ID
  • $6 Children (ages 4-12 years)
  • Free for children under 4 years of age (1 per paying adult), and WCC faculty or staff with university ID
Please pick up and pay for tickets at the Imaginarium Box Office at least 15 minutes prior to showtime.
Please visit and LIKE our WCC Imaginarium Facebook Page.

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As always, we welcome your feedback or questions, feel free to phone (808) 235-7350 or email to If you would like information regarding our Adopt-a-Show sponsorship program please click here.
Dineene O'Connor
Manager, Hōkūlani Imaginarium
Windward Community College
Hale Imiloa 135A
Office (808) 235-7350

Dream to Fly
future dateTBD

Phantom of the Universe 
future date TBD

Stargazing with
Krissie Kellogg
future date TBD
future date TBD
Stars of the Pharaohs
future date TBD
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