Kapiolani Park Preservation Society
view of Diamond Head from Kapiolani Park

Welcome to the Kapiolani Park Preservation Society website.

The mission of the Kapiolani Park Preservation Society is to preserve and protect the beauty of the Park, its green open spaces and magnificent trees, and to keep the Park free and open to all. (more...)

The Kapiolani Park Preservation Society (KPPS) is a charitable organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the IRS Code - contributions of all kinds are needed, welcomed, and tax deductible.

View a current map of the park

2010 Annual meeting: March 25, 2010 5-7:00 p.m. Outrigger Canoe Club


November 21, 10:00 am is the new court date and time - CANCELLED. This is at the request of the Special Master, who has completed his report but wants time to finalize it. The new court date will be in January, and this time it's likely to happen.

August 1st court hearing also cancelled!

We don't have word on why or by whom. When we find out, it will be posted here.

--July 31--

**We're in the process of redesigning the KPPS website. Please check back for a new look and many updates***

     July 21, 2008

Nancy Bannick, 2006 Philanthropist of the year, KPPS board member, Symphony board member, Hawaii Public Radio board member, Historic Hawaii board member, Natatorium board member, preservationist 1927-2008

Nancy Bannick, the driving force behind the preservation of Honolulu's Chinatown and so many other preservation successes and efforts, died February 2008. Those who love Kapiolani Park's open spaces owe thanks to Nancy for her tireless efforts to keep the Park the way it was meant to be and to enhance the beauty of the Park.

Many tributes to Nancy are planned. KPPS' first tribute to Nancy was the dedication of the 2008 annual meeting to Nancy, with speakers reminiscing about Nancy and the difference her indefatiguable efforts made. KPPS will also be working hard on the causes near & dear to Nancy's heart, including the re-planting of thornless kiawe trees in the Park.

      Upcoming tributes include a May 25th ceremony at the Natatorium by the Friends of the Natatorium with music and hula and a tribute by the Honolulu Symphony.

Feb. 1st court hearing is OFF.

The court is appointing a Special Master to review the operation of the Trust and unresolved issues. This will be done through a court order and there will be no hearing.

Please check back for updates.

Upcoming 2008 annual meeting on Thursday, March 13th, 5:30-7 pm Outrigger Canoe Club

2007 Honolulu Marathon

This year's marathon was held in wet weather, and the crowd caused significant damage to the park (link to Honolulu Advertiser article and photo). The organizers are aware of the overuse problems in the park in general, and they told us they try to be good neighbors. They hold their expo at the Convention Center,where they donate a booth to KPPS to raise awareness of park issues and the Trust. Because a marathon these days is a huge financial deal, completely contingent on sponsorship, and because the Honolulu Marathon - unlike other sports activities like the Pro Bowl that are taxpayer/State-sponsored  - completely pays for all associated costs like police escorts, the organizers see no other way to continue to donate to the community and keep their sponsors other than having the giant shoe sale tents in the park. But more could & should be done. Starting with a site that has amazing 100% match bonuses that will please players and contribute to cause we're still taking such close care of. This site will donate a percentage of every player that clicks our links and takes their amazing casino bonuses.

HERE is a letter to the editor from a runner with a first-hand view and pointing out the responsibilities of the park officials to protect the park (see letter titled,"HONOLULU MARATHON - VENDOR TENTS SHOULD BE ON PARK'S PAVED AREAS").


POSTPONED - UPCOMING COURT HEARING (updated December 12, 2007)

     The hearing set for Friday, Dec 14th has been postponed again at the City's request. The new date is February 1, 2008. The City has until January 25th to file its additional papers.

* An analysis and viewpoint by MidWeek columnist Bob Jones that does focus on the point.

There have been a number of articles in the media that fail to focus on the point of the AG's report, preferring to call it a "fight" with the zoo fence sellers. Instead, please see the AG's report, link below, and some KPPS photos of park abuses. And one news station did more than just talk to the zoo fence people (with link to video). And, November 30th letter to the editor from KPPS.

* To see the Honolulu Weekly's coverage when this issue was just heating up, in 2005, click here.

This hearing has been postponed by the City for over a year & a half. This is the latest court date after they postponed the scheduled November 16th hearing.

The Trustees, the Honolulu City Council, through their attorneys the city Corporation Counsel, are objecting to the Attorney General's opinion that they solicited to clarify their duties. Their court filing can be read HERE. There are a number of other documents filed with the court - should you wish to see them, please email & we'll send them to you.

Why the Trustees would object to more protection of Kapiolani Park, especially after the Attorney General's office issued such a comprehensive opinion, is an open question.

    Please come to the hearing and hear the arguments on this matter that KPPS has been working on for many years. Your appearance also means that the beneficiaries of the Park Trust - you - care and want the Park & the Trust preserved.

   If you have questions, please email us through the link on the other page, but we will post updates on the court hearing if any are needed.


Park Trustee meeting held, September 6, 2007

For the first time since April 2005, the City Council met as Trustees of the Park. Donovan DelaCruz, current head of the trustees by virtue of his committee chair position. The first item of action (testimony) was regarding the proposed Kapiolani Park Master Plan updates. Gerald Park, the plan consultant, talked to the trustees, and KPPS testified,, reiterating key points from the earlier letter to the trustees, the City, and Mr. Park. The trustees then met in private executive session with their attorneys regarding the City's Petition to the court for instructions on the Attorney General's report on the abuses of the Park. Check back here for the posting of the agenda & KPPS' testimony on both matters.


Park Trustee meeting set, cancelled, August 2007

The trustees of the Park were set to meet on August 2nd for the first time in years. The meeting was called by the new head of the trustees, Councilmember Donavan DelaCruz. The agenda's sole public items regarded the proposed Kapiolani Park Master Plan. KPPS' response to that plan can be found here. The trustees were then going to meet in executive session regarding the AG's findings on the craft fair issue, for which the court hearing will be held in November. The meeting is supposed to be re-scheduled for September. Those interested in a copy of the proposed master plan could contact Councilmember DelaCruz's office.

Zoo entrance plans update, August 2007

The City's Dept of Enterprise Services has provided a copy of Urban Works' plan for the new shop in the redesigned entrance with the Preis building intact; however, the new shop shows a large shop display window on the Park side, which is contrary to City promises (and to the trust purposes of park use rather than commercial use). Mr. Quintal, head of DES, is working with KPPS on this.

Waikiki Aquarium improvements

The Waikiki Aquarium will be re-roofing their building and Director Andrew Rossiter has been working with KPPS regarding construction impacts on the Park and possible changes to the great lawn area of the Aquarium. (June 2007)

Zoo entrance update

Sidney Quintal, Director of Enterprise Services for the C&C, came to the May 2007 KPPS board meeting. The latest plan for the zoo entrance will preserve the Alfreid Preis entrance. The tentative plan is that it will become the Honolulu Zoo Visitor Center. Mr. Quintal & KPPS board members were to meet in the beginning of June to see the schematic. Check back for updates on the final plans.


March 20, 2007

The annual meeting will be held at the Outrigger Canoe Club, 5:30. Sunset & ono refreshments as we review 2006, an important year that will likely set the groundwork for major decisions regarding the Park's future in 2007. Jan Peter Preis will be present with his Zoo entrance plans.


February 2007 newsletter can be found here

DLNR's possible lagoons in the Park

The local newspapers reported a DLNR idea to scoop out lagoons from Park land along Kuhio Beach by creating a scallped beach and taking Park land. That idea was shelved (for now? see bottom of article). DLNR's Dolan Eversole told KPPS that the suggestion came up when a photo of the Ko Olina lagoons was superimposed over Kapiolani Park & Queen's Surf Beach but that it was only an idea and there are no plans. They had not considered that Kapiolani Park is under a public charitable trust. (Sept. 2006)


Bill 31 in front of the City Council now - May 18th

Bill 31 allows the City's Department of Enterpise Services to enter into joint promotions with commercial ventures at the Blaisdell and the Waikiki Shell. It has passed several readings at the City Council despite warnings from KPPS that (1) we believe this is an attempt by DES to make current illegal usage co-sponsored by the City, thus giving it more protection; and (2) the State Attorney's General's long-awaiting opinion may render it moot if it is issued in time.

KPPS will be submitting testimony for today's meeting, as indeed the AG's opinion was issued & does make any move by the Council to further promote commercial ventures at the Park a potentially costly move for taxpayers.


Attorney General's opinion on craft fairs, zoo fence sales, and other activities is released - May 2006

For several years, KPPS has been seeking either standing in the courts regarding the commercial uses of the Park or finalization and publication of the Attorney General's opinion on those matters. The opinion was just sent to the judge and released to the public, and in a comprehensive, almost-200 page review of the law and the situation from all sides, the AG's opinion should bode well for protection of Kapiolani Park.

This Honolulu Advertiser article is a good place for an overview:


KPPS' annual meeting March 23rd, 5:30 at the Outrigger Club

The annual meeting was well-attended, with many members concerned about the issues addressed by Jack Gilmar in the President's Review of 2005: "A Cloudy, Rainy Year at the Park" - tree removal, with replanting yet to come; the surf school issue, with the City violating its own procedures; the "South Pacific Cultural Center" issue (see Star Bulletin story,"Swap Meet to Open at Waikiki Shell" here); Dept. of Enterprise Services' joint venture proposal with commercial users of the Park; the City's Zoo Entrance proposal to take Park land for a 3000 sq foot gift shop facing Kapahulu; Commercialization of the Park, issue taken up in 2003 still awaiting AG's report to the Court.

Hugh Jones, the head of the State Attorney General's division handling oversight of charitable trusts like Kapiolani Park, was the main speaker, discussing legal issues relating to Kapiolani Park Trust that are currently before the Attorney General of Hawaii.

Guests included Mike Smith, Kapiolani Park manager, Les Chang, C&C Parks Director, and Kiersten Faulkner, executive director of Historic Hawaii. Directors were elected and Sid Synder gave the Treasurer's Report. Many thanks to all who attended and showed their aloha for the Park.


Circuit Court rules in favor of KPPS & co-plaintiff in zoning lawsuit

Concerned about improper expansion of uses affecting Kapiolani Park, KPPS joined Save Diamond Head Waters in its appeal of a Zoning Board of Appeals ruling on a property bordering Kapiolani Park. The judge ruled that the City can't expand uses without public hearing, even if it tries to mitigate impact. KPPS was concerned that a business operating next to the Park was impacting Park users and the Park, and that the Park was not being taken into account in the City's zoning ruling. The final order to the City was signed in the beginning of February.

November 12th - the 100th anniversary of Arbor Day in Hawaii.

Scenic Hawaii, KPPS, and the Division of Urban Forestry sponsored a tree planting ceremony at the Park along Paki. Parks Director Lester Chang read a proclamation from the mayor; Brother O'Donnell gave a beautiful blessing; Stan Oka, head of Urban Forestry, spoke, and his wonderful workers prepared the new rainbow shower for mulching.

October 18th - KPPS Quarterly Membership Meeting, Outrigger Canoe Club boardroom.

Speakers were Mike Smith, manager of Kapiolani Park,speaking about current Park issues; Ken Redman, Honolulu Zoo director, speaking about conservation vs preservation; Heidi Bornhorst, columnist and botanical goddess, speaking about the Park's exceptional trees.

KPPS Membership Drive

We hope you all received a copy of the newsletter with the envelope asking, "Why not build a WalMart in Kapiolani Park?" KPPS was trying to reach those in the neighborhood who might enjoy the Park daily but not know about the organization dedicated to keeping it enjoyable & open to all. Sixty-plus neighbors from the Diamond Head area responded and joined KPPS, many taking advantage of the membership special discount on the coffee table book. We also have about twenty new members from Waikiki.

Other Park news

The coconut grove at the War Memorial at Sans Souci beach, Diamond Head side of the Waikiki Aquarium, will be undergoing tree replacement of some of the 100' trees. Approximately 20 trees are slated for removal. KPPS walked through the grove with the Park staff and Department of Urban Forestry, and will be urging rapid replacement of the trees. The replacements will be 20' trees, the ideal height for transplanted coconut trees.

August 30, 2005: City Council Parks Committee Meeting

KPPS testified on the discussion item Illegal Sales in Parks. The new Parks Committee Chair, Nestor Garcia, put the item on the agenda after being solicited at Ala Moana Beach Park by an illegal vendor. KPPS board members spoke on behalf of Kapiolani Park and preserving its noncommercialization. Ben Gillmar spoke to the Council about priorities and park use. Nestor Garcia will be meeting with KPPS to walk through Kapiolani Park and observe encroaching commercialization and inappropriate activities.

May 4this Historic Preservation Day at the State Capitol.

KPPS will be there, sharing a booth with Scenic Hawaii. The display will include the book Kapiolani Park - a history, photos, and we will also have copies of the court cases & court orders protecting the Park. Carol Hopkins, KPPS member & volunteer extraordinaire, will be at the booth. Come down to the Capitol!

April 28, 2005:  The Park Trustees, the City Council, met today. KPPS attended & gave testimony, including photos of abuses of the Park that violate the Trust. Action on the two resolutions proposed by Chair Djou was postponed. The resolutions pertained to banning inappropriate commercial activity from the Park (should have been a clear yes), and maintenance (who's against maintenance?).


April 22, 2005: KPPS and Councilman Djou's office received many complaints about last weekend's JAL Triathlon, in the context of commercialization, blockage of regular Park use, and residents blocked in for so much time. We also received complaints from local triathletes, unhappy with the parking situation and the scheduling that spread the event out over such a long period.

In fact, the JAL Triathlon violated many of their permit conditions by, among other things, putting up all the commercial banners (they were allowed two signs, of minimal size), keeping the barriers in the Park for a week and more afterward (they were supposed to get them out right away), and allowing all their workers to park on the grass (active loading & unloading only). On the latter issue, KPPS spoke to the organizer, John Korff, during event setup, and he promised workers would get off the grass, but continued to allow them to park there for convenience.

We welcome all suggestions and feedback on this issue. This commercial exploitation of the Park should have consequences, and should not be allowed to happen again. Please send emails to [email protected] or call 926-8704.


April 18, 2005: Legislative alert - HB128.

This bill is about Hawaiian beachboy traditions but somewhere along the line, language was added that opens the beach parks along the Park from the Kapahulu groin to beachboy concessions. These would necessarily be on Park land, since the trust covers much of the land above the high water mark. In addition, much of that land fronts a Marine Life Conservation District, which requires an Environmental Impact Statement as a starting point, and has further arduous permit requirements. Senator Les Ihara gave a floor speech on the issue, and Councilmember Djou wrote to the Senate Committee at KPPS' behest. KPPS has written letters to the Senate & House committee Chairs.

Update: at the Park Trustee meeting on 4/28, Councilmember & Trustee Djou briefed the trustees & they voted to send a letter on this matter to the Senate & House.

April 14, 2005 Neighborhood Board #5

The Diamond Head/Kapahulu/St. Louis Heights Board encompasses the Park. The board asked KPPS to give a presentation on the Park and some of the issues facing it right now, as well as some historical background.



April 11, 2005: KPPS & Councilman Djou have been fielding an increasing number of calls from irate residents about the continuing blockage of Kapiolani Park & Kalakaua Avenue by special events, and about possible Trust violations by the City in issuing permits without respect to the Trust.

As much as residents appreciate fun events & outdoor activity, this crowds out the everyday user of the Park. Allowing continual exclusive uses of the Park is a violation of the Park Trust. In light of the JAL Triathlon currently occurring, and the City's co-sponsorship's possible impact on the liberal issuance of permits, KPPS has contacted the Parks Director and we look forward to reporting progress on this issue.


April 2005: Kapiolani Park area residents will be receiving a mailing about the Park & KPPS in an effort to involve more of those who hold the Park near & dear.

KPPS is working hard, endeavoring to ensure that the terms of the Trust that created the Park are followed: to try to keep the Park free of the semi-permanent craft fairs that are encroaching on its open space; to encourage event scheduling that allows all users to fully enjoy the Park; to keep parking available to Park users despite outside parking pressures; to ensure that commercial operations are not using the Park as their offices; to control noise level from aircraft disobeying the noise abatement zone and concerts breaking the allowed decibel levels; to underground utilities to allow the viewplanes to be enjoyed; and to ensure that all can continue to enjoy the Park as a green oasis.

KPPS hopes to reach those who not only live nearby but those who live elsewhere and treasure the Park's history,

magnificent trees, and green open spaces, in order to continue its successes in helping keep this wonderful historic park beautiful and accessible to all, to prevent its being carved up for commercial or special interest uses.

Members, please recruit your friends & neighbors.



March 2005: KPPS's annual meeting was held at the Outrigger Canoe Club.

Councilman Charles Djou, new Chair of the Kapiolani Park Trust by virtue of his position as Chair of the City Council Parks Committee, was the guest speaker. 

Les Chang, new Parks Director, and State Representatives Scott Nishimoto and Barbara Marumoto were also kind enough to speak briefly and talk story with KPPS members regarding various Park issues, including the upcoming Park Master Plan.

Board members Nancy Bannick, Jack Gillmar, and Sid Snyder were confirmed as continuing directors for 2005-2006. They have devoted countless hours to preserving Kapiolani Park and have encyclopedic knowledge of its history and current happenings.

New director Mike Roeder, who is filling out the term of Dale Hope, was officially introduced. Please read Mike's articles on noise in the February newsletter.



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