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Jaggar event kicks off Volcano Awareness Month
Released: 12/30/2009 8:29:40 PM

Contact Information:
U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey
Office of Communication
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Reston, VA 20192
Janet Babb 1-click interview
Phone: 808-967-8844

With Kīlauea’s dramatic summit plume in the background, the U.S. Geological Survey’s Hawaiian Volcano Observatory kicks off Volcano Awareness Month in a public event at the Jaggar Museum overlook in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park on Saturday, January 2, 2010.

The event begins at 10:00 a.m. with welcoming remarks by Park Superintendent Cindy Orlando. Keola Awong, Park Cultural Anthropologist, will talk about the cultural significance of Hawaiian volcanoes.

Mayor Billy Kenoi will read the County of Hawai‘i proclamation declaring January 2010 as Volcano Awareness Month on the Island of Hawai‘i. Quince Mento, Hawai‘i County Civil Defense Administrator, will address the importance of understanding and being prepared for volcanic activity on the island.

In a special guest appearance, HVO founder Thomas A. Jaggar (portrayed by living history actor Peter Charlot) will reminisce about establishing Hawai‘i’s first volcano observatory as he marvels at the advances in volcano monitoring since 1912.

Jim Kauahikaua, HVO’s Scientist-in-Charge, will conclude the program with a message about the observatory’s current role in monitoring Hawaiian volcanoes. He will also announce planned upgrades to be completed over the next two years — just in time for HVO's centennial in 2012.

Island residents and visitors are invited to attend the kickoff to Volcano Awareness Month. Park entrance fees will be waived until 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 2, so this is a free event.

Throughout Volcano Awareness Month, HVO, in cooperation with Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, Hawai‘i County Civil Defense and the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo, will sponsor various programs and activities to promote increased awareness of and respect for the volcanoes on which Hawai‘i’s residents live.

Two of these programs will be conducted on Saturday after the kickoff event. At 11:00 a.m., discover how the volcano grows and breathes in “Life and Breath of Kīlauea,” a park ranger demonstration at Jaggar Museum. At 1:00 p.m., you can hear about the spectacular 1959 eruption in a 4-mile hike across the still-steaming Kīlauea Iki Crater.

For more information about these and other Volcano Awareness Month events in January, visit the HVO Web site.

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