By Dave Donnelly

Friday, March 27, 1998

Mufi at mall

SOME folks who delight in playing with trial balloons took notice of the fact that City Councilman Mufi Hannemann attended Pearlridge Shopping Center's Center Court for the unveiling of a 100-foot mural entitled, "The Show Has Begun." And like a kid in a multiplex trying to decide which movie to see, Hannemann continues to weigh his political options. He took time to honor the 15 Leeward area public high school students who spent the past three weeks painting the mural. He was surprised to find that artist Page Chang, who led the students through the project, was the grown-up daughter of his old pal Ray Schoenke, the local boy who made a name for himself playing for the Washington Redskins. Mufi hadn't seen Page since she was a young girl, and was pleased to find she'd returned home to help out in the community. As for daddy Ray, he's already got his political bandwagon rolling -- he's running for governor of Maryland ...

THE saints kept on rolling in for jazzman Abe Weinstein over the past month -- that would be places like St. Lucia, St. Martin, St. Thomas, plus Martinique, Guadeloupe, etc. Weinstein, director of the Hawaii International Jazz Festival, was performing jazz on the Island Breeze, which is based in Santo Domingo. He also gave lectures on the history of jazz, and will be taking a similar trip through the Pacific on Cunard's Visa Fjord next Tuesday. And he's meeting with famed movie composer Lalo Schifrin, who'll be returning to the local jazz fest for its Fifth Jubilee this summer ...

MEANWHILE, Radisson Seven Seas Cruises is advertising a seven-night deluxe cruise through the isles of Tahiti, including airfare. It's $2,795 from California and $2,840 from Hawaii. Huh? ...

Thai one on, Moki

LOCAL author and performer Bruce Hale, creator of the Moki the Gecko series of books, is off to Thailand to see if they have similar stories there. Hale's been chosen for a Fulbright Program project, a storytelling camp in Northern Thailand where he'll train young storytellers, and at the same time collect Thai folktales. He'll also take along his drawings for the next adventure book, "Moki the Gecko's Best Christmas Ever." We'll have to wait to see if it has a Thai flavor to it ...

FORMER Star-Bulletin staffer Lee Ann Akaji is now living the good life in San Francisco working for Microsoft's "sidewalk" website, writing about what's going on in the city. She's just finished putting together a sampling of Hawaiian food available in the Bay Area -- check it out on the Internet. She also notes Macy's is doing a Hawaii-themed spring display instead of the usual azaleas, etc., and that ki ho'alu (slack key guitar) with Ledward Ka'apana and the Ho'opi'i Brothers will be presented in S.F. in April at the Great American Music Hall. You can take Lee Ann out of Hawaii, but you can't take Hawaii out of her ...

Snuffed out

THE Havana Pacific Club, cigar smokers' private haven in Nauru Tower, has closed its doors, apparently for good. All the plush furniture has been removed and owner Steve Sasaki's dream has been shattered for lack of members. Much of the slack from that club has been taken up by other cigar bars, particularly Havana Cabana on Nuuanu. Unlike the Havana Pacific, it's open to the public ... Lydia Mesrobian, widow of longtime Punahou director of orchestras Peter Mesrobian, has died after a long illness. There'll be a memorial service for her on Sunday at 2 p.m. at the Punahou School Chapel ...

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: donnelly@kestrok.com.

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