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BKH News Round Up

Wow! It has been way too long between blog entries. My web people would be very disappointed. It’s a double edged sword that with so much really amazing stuff happening with Bula Kava House there are so many things deserving of blog posts, but much less time to do them. I’ll go ahead now and do my best to cover some of the news worthy events over the last couple months.

A couple months ago our beloved manager, Lucie Hogan left us for a position helping developmentally challenged people live their lives to the fullest. Social work has been an interest of Lucie’s for a long time. We were very sad to see her go, but happy for her and we know that the folks she’s working with are gaining an awesome person in their lives. Luckily for the success of Bula Kava House, Jamie, who has been with us since early on, quickly offered to take on day to day management of the kava bar. Jamie has experience in management, knows kava, and has always been super helpful and fabulous with our kava swilling guests. The transition has been almost seamless.

With the loss of Lucie, there were a few more hours to be filled and Mariama was an easy choice to fill them. Mariama had been a happy customer at Bula Kava House since soon after we opened. Already being a kava lover and being super friendly and smart made her a natural fit. Mariama has fit in beautifully and we’re happy to have her as part of the family.

Regular kava bar visitors may have noticed that after some lean months of exposing Portland to kava, we’ve gotten quite a bit busier. We expect to be even busier in the coming summer months which will likely require us to hire another employee to ensure everybody gets their shells in a timely fashion. Keep an eye out for a new face and say “hi.”

The week beginning March 18th kicked off our one year anniversary celebration. We had a nice private party for some of our regulars that we were able to round up. They were treated to food by Noho’s Hawaiian Cafe, a kava ceremony with fresh root Hawaiian Isa kava, and Bula Kava House t-shirts. We had a blast. Don’t feel bad if you’re a regular and didn’t get an invite. We probably just didn’t see you in the days leading up to the party when we collected contact information. We’ll try again next year. Besides, you probably got to try the special kava as we made it twice over the next few days.

Monday, the 19th was “Melo Monday” where we had a special price on Melo Melo. Tuesday was “$2 Tuesday” with $2 off sandwiches. Wednesday was “Waka Wednesday” so we prepared a special Fijian kava known as Waka. Thursday the 22nd was the big anniversary party in which we sold punch cards for $5 that were good for five shells of kava. Two of our favorite performers did their thing, Dino Gipaya with his classic island sound, and The Secret Whistle with their chill electronic beats. If you were there you know that both are perfect sounds for a kava bar. We finished off the week with “Fu’u Friday” when we had discounted Fu’u kava.

For the entire week we donated a portion of our sales to “Waves for Water” which is an organization that provides sources of fresh drinking water to communities that don’t have it. They’re known for avoiding red tape and governmental restrictions to bring in help “under the radar” for a quicker response. We were happy to send them $280 after our five days of celebration.

A big thank you to all the customers over the last year who have helped us stay in business by spending time with us and bringing in friends. We consider many of you our own friends and part of a special Bula Kava House community. With all you do for us there will surely be many more anniversaries to come.

To the folks that buy kava online out there, we appreciate your business just as much. You too have been instrumental in our success with repeat business, referrals, and excellent online reviews. We started selling kava online knowing that we have some of the best kava out there, and that many online vendors simply charge a little too much. We figured if we took care of you with fair prices and fast shipping, you would take care of us, and we were right. Check back on the site regularly because we’re always looking for new kava products we think you’ll like.

Owning a kava bar is like owning many other businesses in that we sometimes need to take business trips. It’s just that my trips take me to tropical paradises to spend time studying an intoxicating root beverage and learning a little bit about an exotic culture (I know you feel bad for me, but it comes with the territory). I, Judd Rench, am happy to say that I am scheduled to be in the islands of Vanuatu from May 17th until the 27th, but after looking at all the possibilities of things to do and see I am already considering extending for a few more days. I will be spending the first couple days in the capital city of Port Vila where I will meet our main supplier and see his facilities. Also while there I look forward to enjoying the local nakamal (kava bar) circuit. I will leave Port Vila to go to a neighboring island to view kava plantations, meet farmers, and drink kava in some of the villages. Much to the chagrin of many friends and loved ones, I fully hope and plan to drink kava made from chewed kava root. For now, the trip is planned to end with a couple relaxing days on Espiritu Santo where there is meant to be some of the best scuba diving in the area. A dive fanatic like me doesn’t go to a south pacific nation without submerging a few times. If I am able to extend the trip I will likely spend a few days on Tanna which is home to the world’s most accessible volcano and possibly the world’s strongest kava. I’ll be happy to judge for myself. Blogs and pictures will definitely be coming.

Well I suppose that’s all for now. Thanks for your time. I’ll try to keep posts more frequent in the future to avoid throwing so much info into one entry.

Happy chugging.

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