Marriage equality advocates in California, Oregon and Washington now have the opportunity to make a real difference in making the freedom to marry a reality in Hawaii. On Thursday, October 24 at 7:30 p.m. PT, the National Equality Action Team (NEAT) is having a national “Night of Action” for Hawaii in which volunteers can phone bank from home and other locations.
NEAT is a nearly 50-member action-oriented coalition of national, regional, state, and local organizations chaired by Marriage Equality USA (MEUSA).
Tracy Hollister, MEUSA Program Manager explained: “Just as loving, committed couples’ genders should not restrict their freedom to marry; neither should their state of residence. The rest of the country, particularly National Equality Action Team partners and volunteers on the West Coast, who are in a better position to phone bank for Hawaii, stands with Hawaii in their historic bid for marriage equality.”
“We are excited that fair-minded people on the West Coast and around the country can easily make a difference simply by going to www.theneat.org and signing up,” said MEUSA Board Member Brendan Brawner. “Even in New York, the ‘City That Never Sleeps,’ we will have an in-person luau phone bank party happening live in Times Square at 10:30 p.m. ET on October 24.”
Brian Silva, MEUSA Executive Director, concluded: “Since 1991, Hawaii has been at the forefront of the fight for equal rights for LGBT families. Today, MEUSA takes another important step as an early member of the Hawaii United for Marriage coalition by organizing supporters across the country to take action in support of our friends and family in the Aloha State.”
By Brandy Black
It’s that time of year, when the sun pops out from behind the clouds and we all begin to think about traveling with our families over summer vacation. I found that planning a trip to Hawaii is daunting. I scoured through websites looking for the perfect house to rent and either ran into red X’s on the preferred dates of travel or simply couldn’t find anything in our budget. After much angst we settled on Hilton Waikloa Village in Kona on The Big Island. We stayed in a two bedroom suite with a balcony overlooking the ocean in one direction and an open lawn with a hammock in the other.
Although this resort is huge, so spread out that you can take a tram or a boat to get to dinner, it was a blast for the children.
At night we played freeze tag with the kids on the grassy grounds. Once tucked in and with the babysitter we had picnics by the water.
There were several restaurants to choose from including Chinese, Italian, Mexican and the children’s favorite, the morning buffet!
It was a great place to stay with kids and although we struggled traveling with three little ones. The resort did not disappoint. If you are off to Kona with kids you must check this place out!
By Brandy Black
We spent my 40th birthday in Hawaii, all 6 of us – me, my wife, our three kids, and the nanny. I had been planning this for months. Who better to spend my big milestone birthday with then my wife and children?! After packing and planning for days we were off to the airport, big floppy hats and all. The flight started off rather pleasant, one twin my me, my wife with the other, and our 5-year-old pleasantly entertained by the mini screen on the seat back in front of her. All was smooth until she spilled orange juice all over herself and the seat. Suddenly I had to pass a twin over to Susan while trying to juggle our food trays and manage a screaming kid who was now wet and uncomfortable and oh yeah, I packed a back up plane outfit for each baby, but didn’t consider needing one for our oldest! This began the long list of complications that came with our trip to Hawaii.
By the time we arrived we were all thoroughly exhausted and hungry. We gobbled down pizza, leaving food all over the floor around us, and raced back to the room to put all the kids to sleep. We had a date on my birthday night after all the littles were tucked snuggly in their beds. I cried over late-night drinks about how grateful I am to have the family that I do and all the sweet friends that sent in letters and videos for my big day. My wife had compiled everything and played me a DVD upon arrival. It was all that I could have asked for.
But what was about to come in Hawaii was not at all what I had bargained for…
This article is brought to you courtesy of The Seattle Lesbian
What to take:
The plans were complete, however the packing was not! Being a person who hates to be caught unprepared, I packed all of those just-in-case items –you know, just in case I’d need them. When it’s 36 degrees in Seattle, it’s difficult to even imagine what 80 degrees feels like, so of course my REI Wheely Beast was jam-packed with anything I might need for sun, rain, wind, heat, cold, or comfort. I would come to regret this later, so my advice for those who have not yet made the journey: pack light, but don’t forget your sunglasses, sunscreen and chargers. If you enjoy the water, you are likely to spend most of your time in swimwear. Not to worry, if you forgot something you can probably find it at the ABC Store. You can find them on nearly every block.
Let’s talk about flights. Nobody wants to arrive in Hawaii after dark; somehow it feels like you’ve already wasted a day of your trip. Which is precisely why taking the 6am flight and arriving by noon in Honolulu makes sense. That being said, rising at 3am and hitting the road to the airport by 4am is a difficult thing, not to mention that asking for a ride to the airport really tests a relationship, so pay a driver. I usually prefer non-stop flights, but made an agreement with myself that this would be a trip that had a low impact on my savings account. The connection through San Francisco was tolerable, and upgrading to economy-plus seats for extra leg room from San Francisco to Honolulu made the trip much more comfortable. Using air miles and making at least one stop will help to reduce the cost of your trip if you can handle sitting the extra hour or so. Don’t forget to bring a book/kindle/ipad/ipod on the flight to help pass the time, and earplugs if you are bothered by the sound of chatter or screaming children.
Read more of the story here: The Seattle Lesbian