SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii -- U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii is delighted that its popular Hawaiian cultural classes have resumed.

For the last few years, Soldiers and family members have enjoyed the opportunity to learn about Hawaiian culture through a variety of weekly courses, workshops and special events.

The cultural offerings include hula, lei making Hawaiian history, feather work, carving and other traditional crafts.

"We are extremely excited to have this opportunity to share our culture and the aloha spirit with Army families," said Dr. Trisha Kehaulani Watson, project manager and proprietor of Honua Consulting, a contract company developing the cultural immersion program.

"As someone who grew up in Mililani, I feel a deep personal connection to this area," Watson said, "and I am honored to have this opportunity to get to know this community better."

USAG-HI's new cultural program and classes will give Army families an opportunity to work with a wide range of Hawaiian cultural practitioners and participate in cultural experiences, both on and off post.

In cooperation with Army Community Service's Relocation Readiness Program, educational trips and tours to off-post locations will soon be offered every month.

"The new off-post experiences are a unique opportunity for Soldiers and family members to really engage and embrace the Native Hawaiian culture and community," said Charlyn Sales, ACS relocation readiness program manager.

Sales and Watson plan to offer group visits to 'Iolani Palace in downtown Honolulu, Bishop Museum and the Hawaiian Plantation Village in Waipahu. Additionally, unique hands-on experiences, such as a visit to a functional lo'i (taro) patch and an ancient fish pond are also being considered.

Community members wishing to find out more about the classes may subscribe to the new Native Hawaiian monthly newsletter, "Ho'ona," expected to launch in December.

"'Ho'ona' means 'to calm,' as this program is meant to give relocating families a sense of comfort with their new duty station," Watson said.

Ho'ona Classes

To sign up for the Hawaiian Liaison newsletter or to receive updates on classes, email