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Further up the street, at the corner of Mamo Street and Kilauea Avenue, is a well-settled building, freshly painted in luminous greens and yellow. The words "Ka Hui Na" (huina means "the corner") have been painted on the front above an ancient awning.

Belsky is inside. He's an old lefty from New Jersey who's lived in Hilo since 1973.

Ka Hui Na, which just opened this winter, is an artist's cooperative featuring a gallery and a performance space for musicians, poets and whoever else needs it. Recently a guy calling himself Blackberry Rabbit did an educational presentation for children on real-life bunny care.

The best way to find out what's going there is to drop by and check the schedule on the window, Belsky tells me. Usually there's something happening on Fridays and Saturdays. There's no admission.

I ask him how Hilo has changed in the 30 years he's been here, and he tells me about two things: drugs and newcomers.

I ask Belsky if he gets out to the mall much, and he says there's no way around it.

D.R. Thompson,
Honolulu Weekly
April 9, 2003