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» Piano Planet is hosting a private party Thursday to celebrate its designation as official dealer of Steinway pianos. An earlier version of the brief below incorrectly said the party was open to the public.


On the run with Hospice Hawaii

Solve riddles and puzzles and race to the finish line as Hospice Hawaii hosts its second annual Hot Pursuit fundraising event on April 16. The race starts at Ward Warehouse and proceeds down Ala Moana Boulevard.

Participants receive clues to mystery destinations throughout Ward Centers. The first three finishers will be awarded prizes, which include an iPad, iPod shuffle and Flip video camera.

Registration fee is $25 before April 1 and $35 thereafter. Fees include a T-shirt, special offers and access to a website where pledges can be collected. The race begins at 9:45 a.m. at the amphitheater stage. Call Cyndi Sheehan at 791-8011, e-mail or visit

Steinway party at piano store

Piano Planet, a piano store in the Gentry Pacific Design Center, is celebrating its designation as an official dealer for Steinway and Sons with a private party and performance on Thursday.

"The greatest honor that any piano retailer could have is to be a Steinway dealer," said Piano Planet owner George Nellas. "It’s considered to be the best piano in the world, and it certainly dominates the concert stage."

The designation means that Piano Planet will focus on the Steinway "family" of pianos, which includes the Boston and Essex brands, and will allow those brands to be traded for a Steinway for full value within 10 years of purchase, said Nellas, who has been in the piano business for 35 years.

"Some of the kids are super-talented, but you’re not going to go and buy a $50,000 piano for them," he said. "But if they show that promise, I think a lot of families like the idea of ‘Yeah, one day maybe we will want a Steinway, and it’s nice to know our piano will still have value.’"

The celebration will include performances by students of the Royal Academy of Ballet and Hawaii Education of the Arts, who will be accompanied by a pianist on a Steinway. Through April 17, Nellas is also donating a portion of his profits to Hawaii Education of the Arts.

The free event will be from 6 to 9 p.m. and includes refreshments. Piano Planet is at 560 N. Nimitz Highway, Suite 115-A.

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