December 26, 2018, Kailua, Hi. On December 18, the Hawaii ALS Community on Oahu held its Annual Christmas/Holiday Party, for the first time on the lanai of the Central 7th Day Adventist Church on Nuuanu Avenue. It was a beautiful Tuesday afternoon when the Celebrations Committee descended upon the lanai with the trimmings of the decades-long annual event: food, Christmas decor, and raffle prizes!
Assistant Pastor JR Bonilla, who blessed the food, also treated the families to a photo booth. Guests enjoyed dinner catered by Uahi Grill with menu arranged by Community volunteer, Julie Hess. The Kraft Korner makes it appearance again this year despite the absence of the original crafters Penny Chun and Lorraine Tokuda. Paintbrush Santa, the craft item for this year, was prepared by ALSA’s Jennifer Schack while the Kraft Korner was staffed by ALS Ohana’s President, Natalie Fonda.
The pabitin, an attraction which is a holdover from the Philippine Consulate years, was reprised this year keeping the Under 18’s happily jumping for the treats. Musical entertainment consisted of song and dances from the family members.
Close to 75 people attended the event., Primetime Pipi provided deejay services with lovely Christmas and dance tunes in his playlist. Pipi shared emcee duties with MDA’s Rachael Loebig, while MDA ED Jade Guess (wo)manned the reception table.
The welcome surprise of the party was the appearance of Santa Marvin Claus, who made a spectacular entrance via North Pole to the balcony overlooking the lanai. Young and old alike lined up for pictures and a chance to whisper hopes and dreams into his sympathetic ear. Prizes were raffled throughout the evening while the families enjoyed pupus, dinner, and desserts while catching up with each other.
Another wonderful Christas/Holiday party brought to you by Your Friendly HI ALS Community Celebrations Committee made up of representatives from the different service providers on Oahu (ALSA, ALSFH, ASL Ohana and MDA-Hawaii) and Julie Hess, with ample help from volunteers and families.