Wednesday | October 18, 2017
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Camp Kilohana to get portion of state grant

The Big Island’s Camp Kilohana will get a share of a $1.25 million state capital improvement grant to the Girl Scouts of Hawaii for wastewater systems improvement.

The funds also will finance improvements to the wastewater systems at Camp Paumalu on Oahu and Camp Piiholo on Maui, according to a written statement Tuesday by Gov. Neil Abercrombie.

“By maintaining basic facility necessities, we are ensuring that this historically rich and value-based organization can continue to be an active and beneficial contributor to young women in our communities,” Abercrombie said.

It’s not known what the Big Island’s share of the legislative grant will be, nor when construction will begin, but Marci Manker, GSH’s membership and program services coordinator for the Big Island, expressed her gratitude for the funding. She said the improvements are needed at the camp, which is adjacent to the Pohakuloa Training Area on Saddle Road.

“First of all, there’s only a limited number of actual bathrooms, and they’re tied to a catchment water system. And then there are some outhouses,” she said. “When we’ve gone camping in the past, we’ve actually had to rent porta-potties for people to use because there just weren’t sufficient sanitary facilities.”

The 6-acre camp, which opened in 1954, consists of a main community lodge and three smaller cabins.

“The legal occupancy is 80, but that’s because of the sanitation facilities,” Manker said. “We can increase that capacity by the porta-potties and having people use tents as well as the cabins, which is a nice alternative.”

She said the camp serves about 500 girl and adult members of the nonprofit organization on the Big Island. The adult members include troop leaders, adult volunteers and family members, she said.

Manker said the camp is “typically busier” in summer, but operates all year.

“We do an islandwide camp-out each June, which is open to any of the Big Island members,” she said. “Last December, we held a kickoff to our cookie season up at the camp, and that was open to all of the Big Island troops and different groups that helped them learn about the skills that they would need to be successful cookie entrepreneurs. That was a really fun event.

“They loved it and we’re really hoping to do it again.”

Manker said the camp is also available for rent to other community organizations. For information, call Janelle Harkness at (808) 675-5592.

Email John Burnett at


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