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Elvis fans will flock to isles to experience 'Aloha' again

By Erika Engle

POSTED:

courtesy big island delightsBig Island Delights offers an array of gift boxes to choose from.

Memphis, Tenn.-based Elvis Presley Enterprises Inc. will bring people to Hono­lulu from as far away as England and Japan for the 40th anniversary of the legend's "Aloha from Hawaii" concert from Hono­lulu.

The screening will take place at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 14, the exact 40th anniversary of the original concert. Tickets are $35 and go on sale Friday through Ticketmaster.

The 1973 concert by the king of rock 'n' roll at what was then called the Hono­lulu International Center (known now as Neal S. Blaisdell Center) was broadcast via satellite to more than 40 countries around the globe and was seen by "1.5 billion people," said Kevin Kern, director of public relations. "More people saw Elvis in concert in Hawaii than saw man landing on the moon. That gives you an idea of the historical significance of this concert."

It also was the first concert to be televised via satellite, he said, which was "truly monumental" for the television and music industries, for Hawaii's visitor industry and, of course, for Presley.

Elvis Presley Enterprises has taken all the raw footage from NBC-TV, taken from various camera angles, and brought it up to modern technology standards including Dolby 5.1 surround-sound. The audience will see Presley from three different angles at various times. "It's truly fantastic," Kern said.

It will be shown on three large screens in the arena for the one-night-only, one-time showing. It will be shown nowhere else. "Not in Memphis, New York or Los Angeles … so folks are traveling from around the world to be in Hawaii" for the screening.

"Elvis never performed outside North America," Kern said. His only two non-U.S. performances were in Canada. Presley's first concert in Hawaii was pre-statehood, in 1957.

As reported previously in the Star-Advertiser, trip packages being sold through the Graceland Reservations department start at $1,700 for quadruple occupancy and go up to $2,099 for single occupancy at Hilton Hawaiian Village. VIP packages for single and double occupancy are sold out.

Concert and event promoter, radio personality and MidWeek columnist Tom Moffatt is involved as one of the five-day event's guest stars, but Kern would not say whether he would serve as master of ceremonies of the big-deal screening.

"We're actually going to follow how it all happened back in the day, and how it starts is part of the secret behind who's going to welcome you to the show," he said.

HAWAII ISLAND TREATS ON OAHU

Hilo-based Big Island Delights expands to Oahu Thursday with the opening of its first off-island store, at Ward Centre, across from UH Rainbowtique.

While it is a seasonal store, it will be at Ward Centre until April, "but if we do decide to have a permanent location, we have options to stay at the current location or move to another location" within the complex, said owner Jeff Takamine.

Established 16 years ago in Hilo, the company's treats are well-known omi­yage.

You know, the type that doesn't always make it to the intended recipient.

The Ward store will carry the goodies that made the company a local favorite, including Chocolate Chip Macadamia Nut Cookies, Chocolate Dipped Macadamia Nut Shortbread, Party Mix Delight and Macadamia Nut Snowball Cookies.

Big Island Delights typically gets super-busy this time of year, as do many Hawaii bakeries and other treat-making companies, so the store will "make it much more convenient for our Oahu neighbors," Taka­mine said.

The store will be open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays.

———

Reach Erika Engle at 529-4303, erika@staradvertiser.com, or on Twitter as @erikaengle.






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