Ishihara opens under new ownership

  • Dennis Fujimoto/The Garden Island

    Jenai Sullivan Wall of the Sullivan Family of Companies applauds as Darren Curammeng, the Ishihara Market manager, invites people into the store, Tuesday following a short dedication ceremony.

  • Dennis Fujimoto/The Garden Island

    Customer flock to the seafood section of the newly reopened Ishihara Market in Waimea.

  • Dennis Fujimoto/The Garden Island

    Carrie Newcomb is back in her Ishihara Market wear as she helps service the line of customers, Tuesday following the reopening of the Waimea community market.

  • Dennis Fujimoto/The Garden Island

    Jenai Sullivan Wall of the Sullivan Family of Companies is joined by members of the Ishihara ‘ohana, including Ray, Gary Kitabayashhi, and Shawn Ishihara as Guy Ishihara sets the Sullivan piko free, Tuesday during the short pre-opening ceremony officiated by Aletha Kaohi with help from Carrie Newcomb.

  • Dennis Fujimoto/The Garden Island

    The Ishihara Market ‘ohana is ready to greet the public, Tuesday following a pre-opening employee rally at the Waimea grocery store.

WAIMEA — The common concern among shoppers was the poke, and bento lunches, Tuesday when Ishihara Market reopened under the ownership of the Kalama Beach Corporation.

“I just came to see if they still have the multi-grain rice,” said Jill Kouchi who drove in from Wailua.

Other shoppers stopped by for a container of poke amidst a common thread of “I’m having poke withdrawls because it’s been a week.”

The reopening came on the heels of a rededication ceremony led by Aletha Kaohi, a Kauai Museum Living Treasure, and Carrie Newcomb, who exchanged her Ishihara Market wear for that of a practitioner.

Kaohi said the ceremony was likened to a birth where the piko of the Sullivan ‘ohana, symbolized by ti leaf lei created by Sullivan Family of Companies (Kalama Beach Corp.) people, was set free by members of the Ishihara family, symbolizing the letting go by one family, and the setting out by Sullivan, or Kalama Beach Corp.

Darren Curammeng is the new store manager, leading his team of about 40 employees — all of them moving over to the Sullivan Corp. after serving with the Ishihara family.

“The legacy built by the Ishihara family will continue,” said Jenai Sullivan-Wall, president and CEO of the Sullivan Family of Companies. “The employees believe in the family values and we are humbled they all chose to continue with the Sullivan Corp. Our community has the same values, and it is important to continue this legacy. The Ishihara family built this store, and we are here because of them.”

Vernon Ikebe, vice president of sales and operations for Kalama Beach Corp., said the employees have a lot to teach them.

“This is the first time we’ve had a store on Kauai,” Ikebe said. “There is a lot to learn, and the employees have a lot to share. We’ve heard about the good reputation of the Ishihara family.”


Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-0453 or

  1. I saw a Vampire once August 8, 2018 9:14 am Reply

    Just 40 employees? Do you sell any pastries? Morning time.

  2. I saw a Vampire once August 8, 2018 9:21 am Reply

    How about pastry chefs? Hiring anyone? Everyone loves pastries.

  3. I saw a Vampire once August 8, 2018 9:29 am Reply

    $12.50 / hour to that daughter cooking pastries. Baking it. Not bad. Any shots stupid other town freaks at the games? I’m smarter than athletics.

  4. I saw a Vampire once August 8, 2018 9:57 am Reply

    Actually, full time $17,000 dollars per year.

  5. I saw a Vampire once August 8, 2018 3:25 pm Reply

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