HANALEI — The pancake for the mayor was bigger than his plate, long-time pancake maker and North Shore Lion Gary Pacheco said Sunday during the North Shore Lions Club Pancakes and Hula fundraiser at Hanalei Elementary School.
“We almost didn’t have this,” Pacheco said. “But we were talking with temporary assigned principal Tahara Stein from January, and with her help and Marcus Punzal, the acting cafeteria manager, we are here. We’re too established as a community event not to have it.”
The event brings the North Shore community together for a morning of pancakes and hula in the comfortable cafeteria which was ringed with community donations for the silent auction, as well as a station offering themed shirts.
“We normally serve up about 800 meals, the biggest portion coming after church lets out,” said Louis LaFratta, the North Shore Lions Club president.
“This is our biggest fundraiser for the year,” LaFratta continued. “Proceeds go toward providing kids from the North Shore scholarships. Last year, the North Shore Lions Club provided $19,000 in scholarships for our North Shore youth. Some of the past accomplishments the club has achieved using proceeds from this fundraiser include building dog shelters for the Kilauea Dog Park.”
LaFratta said the North Shore Lions Club built the bus stations at Kilauea and Princeville and uses funds from Pancakes and Hula to maintain it.
He said the North Shore Lions Club also helped to build the beds for the gardens at Kilauea Elementary School, whose ukulele band youngsters waited their turn to entertain.
“Our most important task is to provide vision screening for the youth in our North Shore schools,” LaFratta said. “This fundraiser, and the other, the North Shore Lions Golf Tournament played on the second Saturday in January, provide the funds we rely on to accomplish this.”
The North Shore Lions Club meets on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month starting at 7 a.m. at The Lighthouse Bistro in Kilauea.