In 2013 there was an idea percolating in the minds of several Makawao residents and businesses – the need to record and preserve the rich culture and history of Makawao and Upcountry Maui. And in a record time of two weeks, with Judy Mertens, Mike Foley, Peter Baldwin, Glenda Berry, Cherie Attix, Carla Maury, and Philip Swatek a first class museum opened to the public in November of that year.
This first location, on Makawao Avenue was large but off the beaten track making it hard for residents and visitors to find us. After one year Judy Mertens was determined to find us a space with rent we could afford and with the security of a lease. We moved into our present location at 3643 Baldwin Avenue in November 2014.
Although the space is much smaller it more charming and is like a found treasure.
With the artistic and experienced eye of Curator, Darrell Orwig and his assistant Cheri Attix the museum always looks inviting and interesting. Each quarter they carefully research and install an exhibit that is relevant at the time, telling a story of
Makawao’s past and celebrating the Paniolo and various ranches, a business celebrating a 100 year anniversary, or a pictorial feature of the old dairy. Residents love the changing stories and often bring family members by to see “aunty” or a classmate from an old yearbook. There really is something for everyone..
After 3 years of building our foundation, The Makawao History Museum is bridging the gap of old and new by stepping into the 21st century tech world. The first new direction is this FUN newsletter, “The Guava Juice”, with “the latest, juiciest, fresh squeezed news of Upcountry Maui”. In late November we will be launching our website which will be full of stories, pictures, events, a place where you can buy our books, buttons and magnets…and a link for that ever-welcome donation to help keep us our juices flowing. A Hui Hou and see you in a month!