Park cleaners welcome Marriott volunteers

NAWILIWILI — The appearance of the volunteer group from the Kauai Marriott Resort and Beach Club could not have come at a better time, Thursday.

“I was just thinking we needed more people to help clear the area,” said Daniel Isobe who volunteers at the Niumalu Canoe Club hale. “Everyone needs help sometime, and even the county can use help. When I heard the Marriott people were coming, I had to be here.”

Between 20 to 30 volunteers from the resort turned out for the Nawiliwili Park cleanup under the Adopt-A-Park program coordinated by the County of Kauai.

“I’m glad they’re here,” said Herman Nunes, Na Opio coach for Niumalu CC. “I’m just the lawn mower man, here. I come every other week to mow the yard up to a designated area, but I was thinking how much more we could do if everyone in this area got together for this kind of effort.”

That kind of effort happened Thursday, thanks to the Marriott and the county.

Chuck Brady, the Marriott coordinator, said under the Adopt-A-Park program, the county provides the paint and the Marriott comes up with the manpower to help spruce up Nawiliwili Park — a popular spot that experiences a lot of foot traffic and shows the wear and tear, such as weathered or missing picnic tables, to prove it.

“It’s a real popular spot, especially on Thursdays when the cruise ship comes in,” Nunes said of the area being spruced up. “There is always a lot of people who come here to relax and enjoy the ocean.”

In fact, the volunteer clean up project interupted some park lovers enjoyment, albeit temporarily. Kathy Silva and Kailani Gutierrez used their customer service skills to relocate occupants of one picnic table so they could apply a fresh coat of paint to the table.

Just a few feet away, another volunteer spent his birthday picking up leaves. Gerald Nakashima of the Kauai Marriott Food and Beverage Department was celebrating his birthday, wielding a rake, rather than blowing out candles.

“There’s no cake for him,” said Steve Yannarell, the Kauai Marriott general manager. “He’s lucky we let him hang with us.”

Launched in 2005, the Kauai Adopt-A-Park program provides adopters with tools and supplies to help care for various parks situated around the island, according to the county’s website.

With more than 70 parks on Kauai, anyone, including individuals, families, organizations, businesses, and schools, can join in the effort to improve the parks. Under the program provisions, an entire park can be adopted, or just particular areas within parks such as pavilions, playgrounds and basketball courts.

Volunteers are also able to choose how to help and will be trained accordingly when signing up.

Info: Eddie Sarita at 241-6623

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