honomu theatre

Honomu town is just 20 miles or so north along the Hamakua coast from Hilo. It is perhaps most famous as the town you drive through to get to Akaka Falls. It is a quaint town, full of character and is surely known for other things. If the number of churches at the end of the main road are anything to go by, there is a thriving spiritual community present. The gift shops cater to the Akaka tourists but have something to offer for locals also. The antique bottle shop is a fascinating place, providing a sharp and immediate sense of nostalgia to anyone who remembers drinking out of a glass Pepsi or Coca-Cola bottle. And it also has what is probably one of our most favourite eateries in the world, making oh-so-ono sandwiches and home made ice cream.

This burgeoning vitality stands in stark contrast to the decay of the old Honomu Theatre, situated right in the middle of town. I imagine that at one time the H Tanimoto & Sons building was a proud and vibrant focal point for the community at large, a gathering place for people that also happened to present the latest movie shows. Now, the wind beats at the closed doors and boarded windows, and within, I expect the passage of time since the last gathering took place is marked by thick layers of dust carpeting the interior design.