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5th Annual Tsunami Story Festival
"A Taste of Mamo Street"

April 1, 2007 at the Sangha Hall, Hilo, Hawai'i


There are many colorful and story laden neighborhoods in Hilo, and Mamo Street is definitely one that stands out as a source of wonderful anecdotes and stories of life in old Hawai'i. Pacific Tsunami Museum board member Barry Taniguchi and former Mamo Street resident himself, served as Master of Ceremonies for this year's Story Festival. The blessing was given by Reverend Bruce Nakamura of the Honpa Hongwanji Hilo Betsuin.
Left: Barry Taniguchi Right: Reverend Bruce Nakamura
Barry Taniguchi Reverend Bruce Nakamura

People talking
The focus of this event was to tell the stories of old Mamo Street, the Mamo Street of the 40's and 50's, when families lived upstairs of their businesses, their restaurants, their bars and their pool halls. Even if you didn't live or grow up on Mamo Street, everyone in Hilo, and in fact all of East Hawai'i, came to Mamo Street at some time or other to partake of the good food and social life in many restaurants and bars on the street. It was family and commerce all wrapped up into one.

Over thirty businesses lined both sides of the street and it was once considered the busiest street in all Hilo. Since many lived upstairs of their shops, they stayed open well into the evening hours. It was a street known for the large number of restaurants and bars who kept even longer hours. Kazuo Ogi said that two a.m. was normal for the Ogi Noodle shop, and Ayato Sakaki likened weekends on Mamo Street to New Orleans, it was open all day and all night.
Left to right: Patricia Kapui, Nick Balingit, Mrs. Carol Diama Brown, Sadao Aoki
Nick Balingit, Sadao Aoki, Patricia Kapui, Mrs. Brown

Alpha Delta Kappa
"The Taste of Mamo Street" celebrated the lives and livelihood of ten families who represent a cross section of a fraction of the families who called Mamo Street home.
The dinner was prepared and served by Sadao and Annie Aoki and Honpa Hongwanji Hilo Betsuin members. Desserts were furnished by the Alpha Delta Kappa Society of Hilo.

Seated at the table: Some Alpha Delta Kappa members

Ronald Sakaki and wife Laura Chock and sister Ernie Kurohara, Mr. and Mrs. Howard
Ogi
Some of our interviewees relaxing together

Photos of our Mamo Street interviewees
Nick Balingit
Nick Balingit
Dot Mitamura
Dot Mitamura
Ronald Sakaki
Ronald Sakaki
Eleanor Oshiro
Eleanor Oshiro
Howard Ogi
Howard Ogi
Laura Chock
Laura Chock
John Yuen
John Yuen
Ayato Sakaki
Ayato Sakaki
Ruth Fujimoto
Ruth Fujimoto
Ernie Kurohara
Ernie Kurohara
Ann Maesaka
Ann Maesaka
Kazuo Ogi
Kazuo Ogi
Faith Dulay
Faith Dulay
Masaya Miyao
Masaya Miyao
Carol Brown
Carol Brown
Don Amano
Don Amano

To watch video of Eleanor Shinohara Oshiro, a 1946 Mamo Street tsunami survivor, click on the left arrow on the Quicktime screen.

Elsie's Fountain
Elsie's Fountain

To watch video of Kazuo Ogi, a 1960 Mamo Street tsunami survivor, click on the left arrow on the Quicktime screen.

Ogi Noodle Shop
Ogi Noodle Shop on Mamo Street

Test your knowledge with our Mamo Street Quiz!

1960 Mamo map
Centerpiece example



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130 Kamehameha Ave Hilo, HI 96720 tel: 808-935-0926 FAX: 808-935-0842 email:
Last Revised July 2010