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Volunteers needed to spruce up historic cemetery

By Staff | May 7, 2009

LAHAINA — A historic burial ground of the Episcopal Church — created after King Kamehameha IV and Queen Emma acquired the land for $100 in 1863 — will get a facelift next week Saturday, May 16.

Parishioners of Holy Innocents Church and volunteers from Lahaina Restoration Foundation will join in a special cleanup effort. Everyone in the community is invited to participate.

The burial site is the resting place of many early Lahaina community leaders, including Charles and Anne Farden, parents of the musically gifted Farden family; Pioneer Inn founder George Freeland; Elizabeth St. John, lady in waiting to Queen Liliuokalani; and the first wife and daughter of Arthur Waal Sr., Lahaina’s first postmaster.

The cleanup at the 645 Wainee St. site between Prison and Dickenson streets begins at 7 a.m.

Volunteers who want to join this latest effort to help upgrade Lahaina’s historic sites are welcome to participate, said Donna Tarsitano, a member of the vestry of Holy Innocents Church, sponsor of the cleanup.

According to Theo Morrison, executive director of Lahaina Restoration Foundation, homeless people have taken up residence in the cemetery, leaving cans, liquor bottles and scattered debris.

People also walk their dogs through the cemetery, and many don’t pick up after them.  

The lights around Kahi Maluhia Columbarium, a “Place of Peace” and series of burial vaults, have also been broken.

“Lahaina Town is a National Historic Landmark, and we need to respect every place of history we have,” Morrison commented.

Holy Innocents Church plans to hold a 9 a.m. service at the cemetery on Memorial Day, May 25, and more than 200 residents and visitors will walk through the area while attending Lahaina Restoration Foundation’s Progressive Dinner on May 22 and 23 (see article on page 15).

Everyone is welcome to participate in the cleanup commencing at 7 a.m. on May 16 at the cemetery. Holy Innocents Church will provide cold drinks and snacks.