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By Dave Donnelly

Friday, December 22, 2000

Benny covers
all the bases

LIKE Chickenman, "He's everywhere, he's everywhere."Mug shot That would be Hawaii's most famous contribution to Major League Baseball, Benny Agbayani. The other day he was at the airport filming a commercial for the Jackson Auto Group under the watchful eye of the Aiea Little League Juniors All-Star Tournament Team. As winners of the national championship in their age division in August, the Aiea boys were invited to participate in the shoot as extras. For their tireless work, they were rewarded with autographs and some one-on-one with the ever-accommodating Benny. The TV spots will begin airing next month ... Speaking of Benny and TV spots, you may have recognized him as one of the stars of the new St. Louis School spots that just began airing. Only this time he was portrayed playing soccer rather than baseball. The ex-Crusader (Class of '89) is one of those advising students to make St. Louis their high school of choice. The ad also features doctor/actor/singer Dr. Kalani Brady (St. Louis valedictorian, Class of '73) and attorney Raymond Tam (Class of '51) ...


EVEN if you've already seen a production of "Stomp," the version playing at the Hawaii Theater through Dec. 31 is a delight to the ear and eye. And what a collection of characters. The lead male, for example, is a very tall, blonde-goateed, overweight and schlubby looking guy who is tireless, full of humor, and even graceful. The show's worth seeing just for him, though I must admit my eye kept being diverted by a street-wise, uncultured and attitudinal Puerto Rican woman also. The give and take of glances and body placement on stage proved the group are actors as well as dancers, dreamers as well as drummers. And for those who'd say the show has everything but the kitchen sink, "Stomp" has not one, but four kitchen sinks, used to percussive and humorous effect ...

FORMER American League umpire Mark Johnson is back from his Old Kentucky Home to spend the holidays with wife Lilia and her family who live here. Johnson hasn't called a ball since baseball called a strike and he followed umpire union boss Richie Phillips down the Yellow Brick Road. The Johnsons now spend most of their time at the home they bought in his native Louisville ... John Selya, the New York-based dancer performing in Ballet Hawaii's "Nutcracker" tonight through Sunday at Blaisdell Concert Hall, has to be keeping a wary eye on the North Shore since surfing is an avocation of his. He was even profiled in Surfer magazine recently ...

MARCH is Women's History Month, and to mark it, the Honolulu Committee on the Status of Women and the UH Center on Disability Studies is holding a special exhibit. The theme is "Women and Girl Artists with Disabilities: Challenges and Successes." If you know a female with disabilities who'd like to create an original piece for the display, call Marylucia Arace at 535-7600 ...

HUGS all around

CHRISTMAS is nearly upon us and I leave you with a last-minute gift suggestion. Liberty House and HUGS (Help, Understanding and Group Support) are teaming up to sell exclusive glass-blown aloha shirt ornaments. Part of the $22 price tag goes to HUGS, the non-profit group that provides support services for Hawaii's seriously ill children and their families ... I'm taking off for a couple of days, returning on Dec. 27 in time for New Year's alerts ...

Dave Donnelly has been writing on happenings
in Hawaii for the Star-Bulletin since 1968.
His columns run Monday through Friday.

Contact Dave by e-mail:

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