KALAHEO — Dale Sutton has been waiting for the phone call inviting the Spouting Horn vendors to return to the new completed structure at the popular visitor destination site on Kaua‘i’s south shore.
“Advertising?” Sutton said from her Tradewinds Kaua‘i location in the Paniolo Plaza in Kalaheo. “I’ve never done anything like this, before. I’m a Spouting Horn vendor, and we’re just waiting on the phone call inviting us back.”
Sutton and other vendors at the Spouting Horn vendor stand were displaced after the county announced plans for a new structure in June 2020.
According to an article in June 18, 2020 issue of The Garden Island, sources claimed the 60-by–foot structure was to have been completed by year’s end. This was following a February 2018 Kaua‘i County Council meeting where a wording change in the county ordinance would have ended vendor kiosks at the Spouting Horn lookout.
“When I got the Tradewinds Kaua‘i space, it was because the previous manager wanted to retire,” Sutton said. “I had the Spouting Horn space where I watched my daughter grow up. So, yes, because the construction was going on, I could handle this. Now, this is my only space because we have been waiting for so long.”
Sutton said there are other vendors who are still waiting for word on when they can return as well.
“Some of them have gone out of business, waiting,” she said. “There are others who still have vanloads of merchandise with no place to sell. They told us they were going to re-do the comfort station. We’re still waiting.”
With the lifting of the eviction moratorium, Sutton is appreciative of the efforts she put in to preserve her space located adjacent to the Kalaheo Cafe.
“The visitors weren’t here because the island shut down,” Sutton said. “From early 2020 until now, I’m so grateful for the local community and their support. I was able to make enough to at least pay the rent.”
Tradewinds Kaua‘i is open seven days a week from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. offering a wide range of gift items, artwork, and designer jewelry.
“I’m here six days a week,” Sutton said. “Because we’re next to Kalaheo Cafe, people often confuse us as being part of them. When they close at 2 p.m., everyone thinks we’re closed, too. I found out that by closing at 2:30 p.m., those are nice hours.”