Be There: 28th Annual Memorial Day Observance at the Nat

A picnic or a paddle? Do it. A family get-together or a round of golf? By all means. That’s part of what holiday weekends are for. But the Memorial Day holiday has another, more central purpose. One we shouldn’t forget: to remember and thank the men and women who have sacrificed their lives to defend our country. There have been an estimated 1.3 million such sacrifices, from the time of the American Revolution to our most recent conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq. Memorial Day Weekend Observance at the Natatorium You are cordially invited to the 28th annual Memorial Day Weekend
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Categories: Events, Friends of the Natatorium, Hula, Memorial Day, Uncategorized, and Veterans.

'The Tank' Now Available on DVD

We’ve just received a DVD version of The Tank, the great short documentary on the Waikiki War Memorial Natatorium that aired a few months ago on KHNL-TV. Many of our friends on the Mainland and around the world couldn’t see the broadcast; many here in Hawaii want to see the film again and share it with friends and family. You asked for it. No problem! Now you can get it. Here’s How to Get Yours While supplies last, we’ll send a DVD of The Tank as a thank-you for a tax-deductible donation of $25 or more to the Friends of
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Categories: Documentary, Friends of the Natatorium, Support, and Uncategorized.

The Granddaughter of the Natatorium's Builder Returns

Knowing history is one thing. But seeing it, hearing it, talking with it is another thing entirely. That’s why we were so thrilled and grateful to meet Marti King over Thanksgiving weekend. Our Link to the Man Who Built the Natatorium Marti is the granddaughter of John Llewellyn Cliff, the Honolulu contractor who built the War Memorial Natatorium. She was in Hawaii for the holiday and stopped by to see the Natatorium again and chat with members of the Friends of the Natatorium. She also presented a donation to help repair and reopen the facility that is so much a
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Categories: Friends of the Natatorium, History, Support, and Uncategorized.

Honor Veterans at the Natatorium on Wednesday

It’ll be a busy hour on a busy day in the midst of a busy week. But it would be well worth your time to stop by the Veterans Day observance at the War Memorial Natatorium in Waikiki. The brief ceremony is scheduled, of course, for 11 a.m. this Wednesday, Nov. 11 – the traditional 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month. That’s the day and time in 1918 when the armistice ending World War I took effect. This will be the 19th annual Veterans Day commemoration at the Natatorium sponsored by Honolulu’s Veterans of Foreign Wars
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Categories: Friends of the Natatorium, Uncategorized, Veterans, and Veterans Day.

Prime Time Slot for 'The Tank,' New Natatorium Documentary

Honolulu’s NBC affiliate KHNL-TV will premiere The Tank, a one-hour documentary on the Waikiki’s War Memorial Natatorium, this Sunday, Nov. 8, at 7 p.m. The Tank premiere falls three days before Veterans Day. The holiday was created in 1919 to mark the first anniversary of the 1918 Armistice ending World War I. The Natatorium is the official memorial to Hawaii’s veterans of that conflict. What ‘The Tank’ is About In The Tank, the filmmakers at Oahu’s TalkStory Productions have completed a herculean task: compressing nearly 100 years of Natatorium history and over 40 hours of footage into a one-hour prime
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Categories: Documentary, History, and Uncategorized.

Book Tells 'Three-Year Swim Club' Story, Natatorium's Role

The Natatorium is important not just because it’s an official state war memorial, because of its architectural significance, or because of its unique place in local history and culture. It’s also important because of the people who have swum there. In just a few days, a new book is coming out about some of those people, a fascinating group of youngsters from Maui known as “The Three-Year Swim Club.” Julie Checkoway’s book of that name tells the story of Maui public school teacher Soichi Sakamoto and the impoverished Depression-era sugar plantation kids he coached, at first in an irrigation ditch
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Categories: History and Uncategorized.

The Natatorium’s Friday ‘Taps’ Tradition Grows: Bagpipes and Trumpet

Our bagpipe contingent is up to three! Last December, piper Kim Greeley began playing at the War Memorial Natatorium every Friday at sunset. She volunteered for the gig – playing tunes like Coming Home and Amazing Grace before sounding Taps – as her weekly tribute to the 10,000 World War I servicemen and women from Hawaii whose memories are enshrined at the Natatorium. Later, fellow piper Hardy Spoehr joined in. More recently, piper Theresa Bell, like Kim a member of Celtic Kula Pipe Band, has also helped to patrol the Natatorium gates on Friday evenings. Guest Trumpet On Friday, Oct.
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Categories: Events, Friends of the Natatorium, Uncategorized, and Videos.

Your Family Photos in a Natatorium Film?

Do you have classic Natatorium photos like these? Hawaii’s TalkStory Productions is working on a film about the War Memorial Natatorium. You’ll see it this fall. This great film can be even better … if it includes your family photos, your home movies, your slides, videos or vintage post cards. How You Can Help Good times at the Tank back in the day? Check the photo albums, the slide carousels and those dusty boxes of 8 millimeter film. Let’s see ‘em! Send what you’ve got to producer Jason Lau at JLau@talk-story.com. Details, Please! Please be sure to send along caption
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Categories: Documentary, History, Images, Uncategorized, and Videos.

The Natatorium: For the Weight Ohana, It’s Personal (See the Video)

The Weight/Napoleon ohana cares so much about the War Memorial Natatorium, for so many reasons. — Their ancestor, Sam Kainoa, who died in the service in World War I, is among the 10,000 volunteers from Hawaii honored at the Natatorium. –Another forebearer, Walter Napoleon, was superintendent at the Tank and captain of Hawaii lifeguards. –The family’s matriarch, Naomi Weight, daughter of Walter, practically grew up at the Natatorium on the shore of Waikiki, as did so many Oahu residents for generations. So you’ll see dozens of members of this great ohana at the Natatorium each year for the Memorial Day
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Categories: Friends of the Natatorium, History, Memorial Day, News coverage, Support, Uncategorized, and Videos.

Photos from the 2015 Natatorium Memorial Day Service

If you were there on Sunday for the annual Memorial Day Weekend observance at the Natatorium, here’s a second look with lots of photos. If you couldn’t make it, here’s just a hint of what you missed: Ceremony Recap –Lead-off speaker Brig. Gen. Christopher J. Mahoney, deputy commander of U.S. Marine Forces Pacific. He’s a topgun fighter pilot and combat veteran with more than 5,000 hours of flight time logged, including more than 4,000 in F-18s. His career, his demeanor and his message make you proud to be an American. —Betsy Merritt, deputy general counsel of the National Trust for
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Categories: Events, Friends of the Natatorium, Hula, Images, Memorial Day, National Trust for Historic Preservation, and Uncategorized.