The Nāulu Center, a previously unused area on the ground floor of Campus Center, will have a grand opening on April 10 after extensive work to transform the space into a lounge, culinary arts lab, multipurpose area, as well as offices for PIKO Project staff. An adjacent fitness center housing UH Intramural Sports will also be opening.
The spaces within the Nāulu Center can be grouped into three areas, The Hoʻonanea Room, the Ho’okipa Room and PIKO Project offices. Funding for the renovations came from a grant from the U.S. Department of Education that was obtained by the PIKO Project, which holds the grant. PIKO has a number of activities planned for the areas, but is the possibility of hosting new activities within the spaces.
“We are also currently creating the vision, goals, and activities for the Nāulu Center which will definitely add new programs/events/workshops/activities,” wrote Puʻu Zablan, PIKO Project assistant director and junior specialist, in an email. “We are open to hosting various groups on campus and in the community and to allow them to use the spaces.”
The Hoʻonanea Room
The Hoʻonanea Room (to lounge, to be relaxed, or to be engaged with) will consist of the culinary arts lab, prep kitchen, and lounge area that includes a keiki corner where children, watched by their parents, can play or read. It can hold up to 68 people.
The spaceʻs culinary arts lab and prep-kitchen will host cooking and other demonstrations such as PIKOʻs ʻĀina to ʻŌpū food preparation and medicinal workshops that are currently operated outdoors at Hale Kuahuokalā in the Student Organic Garden. Beginning fall 2018 food/medicinal workshops/presentations will move from the hale to the center’s culinary arts lab. Running new programs within the space are a possibility also.
“The culinary area will definitely allow us to start new programs/ activities,” said Zablan.
Zablan said one goal for the space is to hire a part-time kitchen manager who could supervise use of the space/equipment and workshops/presentations, and other social activities for students, faculty, staff, administration, and community.
The lounge area with the Hoʻonanea Room may be used as a study area, or for individual or groups to meet, talk story, eat, or just to hangout or lounge. It will also be used for workshops, presentations, and activities.
Also in the lounge area is a small keiki corner for kids to play or read with children having to be supervised by their parents at all times in this area. It is not meant to be a childcare center, but a keiki corner where children can have fun educational toys, Hawaiian and other books, art and crafts supplies.
The Hoʻokipa Room
The Hoʻokipa Room (to entertain, to treat hospitable, to visit) is a multipurpose area that can be used for various activities. The room can hold up to 73 people.
The room will be used yoga and perhaps Zumba sessions, small seminars, presentations, workshops, small concerts, social gatherings, movie nights, and other activities. The room can be cleared of lounging furniture to make way for tables and chairs and setup like a classroom or meeting space.
PIKO Project offices/conference room
At the back of the Hoʻokipa Room are offices for the PIKO Project team, including Melissa Saul, head of PIKO, and student workers. Aunty Lynette Paglinawan, the resident kupuna at UH West Oʻahu, also will have a space within the offices.
There also will be a conference room adjacent to the offices that will be open for use by the entire campus. All inquiries on space availability and use for events/activities at the Nāulu Center should be sent to Nāulu operations manager – Kimberly Reed at firstname.lastname@example.org. Campus folks can email Kim beginning May 7 for space availability/use for events, though none can be booked for the 2018 Spring Semester because policies and procedures are still pending.
According to Zablan, Nāulu is the name of the sudden rains in this area- ahupuaʻa (sub district) of Honouliuli. He said the group that selected the name reasoned that the Nāulu rains bring growth and prosperity to our university in a place that could seem dry, arid, desolate area. When the Nāulu rains shower the lands of Honouliuli the landscape changes to a thriving, green environment. A small amount of rain can make that change.
The regular hours of operation through the remainder of the spring semester will be 7:30 a.m.to 7 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Fridays. It will be closed weekends and holidays.
The gym features Freemotion Fitness machines, ranging from treadmills that can angle upwards by 20 degrees, to a Tour De France Bike that riders can put through the paces on interactive routes, and weight machines. There also are dumbbells and weights for students, faculty, and staff who can use the facility. The fitness space also has an office for Ryan Perreira, head of UH West Oʻahuʻs intramural sports program.