Our first ‘Outings’ submissions

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Although I’ve been an editor for many years, I still never know when an idea for a new feature will hit it with readers or flop at its inception. Years ago, before the Internet and instant reader comments, it was difficult to gauge whether something ever worked editorially. But now, editors get instant feedback and can pursue or nix ideas right from the start.

So last week, I wasn’t sure what kind of reaction I would get when I told you about my idea for Outings, a new feature on Nonstop where amateur and professional photographers submit galleries of their adventures. Soon after the blog ran, I heard from about a dozen readers, interested in participating. There were also lots of positive comments and “likes” on the post itself. And our first featured photographer Sarah Kawachi said a lot of people reached out to her, with good things to say about her gallery. She was eager to do it again and already has her next assignment planned.

The concept of using photo galleries to tell stories about living in Honolulu also sparked ideas among the Nonstop team, and we have at least three group photo galleries planned for the holidays that we’re pretty excited about. Best yet, I actually received three solid submissions from Yen Phan, Mike Sumida and L.P. Neenz Faleafine (best known as “Neenz”).

So all in all, the message to me is yes, let’s do these galleries. And let’s open it up to readers to share their pictorial stories. I think over time I’ll have a good handle of how to best instruct participants and make these galleries must-view content on Nonstop.

Anyway, here are this week’s Outings galleries. Thank you so much Yen, Mike and Neenz for contributing and sharing your photos! (And yes, that’s an exclamation mark.)

Yen Phan

Outings: Loy Krathong Festival

By Yen Phan
Special to Nonstop

The Loy Krathong (Festival of the Floating Bowls) occurs in Thailand on the night of November's full moon. Here in Honolulu, the Thai community came together last Saturday at Kapiolani Park to celebrate the event at a festival that featured traditional Thai dancing, Muay Thai kickboxing, a beauty contest and of course Thai food.

I love cultural festivities and especially Thai food, so this was a must go-to event. I’m an events seeker who loves land and sea adventures. For this event, I used my Olympus Tough 8010 camera to capture the sights and scenery around me. Although photos can only capture a piece of the beauty and awe, I hope you come away with the same appreciation for the cultural traditions that I witnessed.

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Mike Sumida

Outings: Honolulu Zoo

By Mike Sumida
Special to Nonstop

Last Sunday, my son and I took a little excursion to the Honolulu Zoo. The purpose of this "Outing" was to give my wife some time to work on her term paper. It’s a great place to take a highly energetic 3-year-old. I remember many field trips to this iconic Waikiki landmark during my elementary school days, and it’s always somewhat nostalgic to go back. The parking is still scarce, and the instructions on the new machines are convoluted at best. You can pay with coin or card, but not cash?!

When it comes to digital photography, I’m old school. I shoot on a Canon Rebel XT. John Garcia and his fancy 5DMkII rig got nothin’ on me and my trusty 350D!

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L.P. Neenz Faleafine

Outings: Pineapple maze @ Dole Plantation

By L.P. Neenz Faleafine
Special to Nonstop

Although we were both born and raised on Oahu, my girlfriend Noe and I had never taken the challenge of traversing the Pineapple Garden Maze at Dole Plantation. So last weekend, with our children in tow, we took Exit 8 through Wahiawa on our way to Haleiwa.

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