Time To ‘Go’
What started in the ‘90s as a childhood fantasy world with television and video games has turned even more interactive with the introduction of Niantic’s augmented reality app-based game Pokemon Go. The game quickly has become a trend with longtime fans and newcomers alike.
And it’s gaining traction. Only a month after the U.S. release, SALT at Our Kakaako has planned a one-day Pokemon GO Fest this Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. — and hundreds are expected to attend.
“The event was developed out of a necessity because there are some nights where you can find over 100 people interacting with the game late at night,” explains Kamehameha Schools communications manager Aron Dote. “Rather than discourage game users after hours, the event will allow users to access the location during normal operational hours, and create a safer environment for users of all ages.”
In addition to a line of lures along Cooke Street (which will be dropped at Pokestops in the area every 30 minutes), the event will feature Pokemon-themed activities including a costume contest, Instagram raffle, day-of deals from SALT merchants, prize giveaways and photo opportunities with the Hawaii Pokemon GO girls dressed as Pikachu, Charmander, Squirtle and Bulbasaur.
“The vision for Our Kakaako has always been based in leading-edge thinking. As Our Kakaako continues to grow and the community becomes more vibrant, Pokemon Go (Poke)Stops will continue to pop up,” confirms Dote.
Eateries such as Highway Inn and Hank’s Haute Dogs will create exclusive menu items for the Aug. 6 event.
For those familiar with the gameplay, it’s understood that conserving battery life can be a struggle, so organizers have planned charging stations for various areas.
“It is fascinating to witness the correlation between the augmented reality of Pokemon Go and the real world of SALT at Our Kakaako,” Dote continues. “The physical trendiness of this community translates nicely into the digital world.”
MORE PLACES TO GO!
Businesses participating in Saturday’s fest aren’t the only ones getting in on the Pokemon trend. Here’s what some other local business have to offer for Pokemon trainers:
1293 S. BERETANIA ST.
10 percent off cut fl owers when you show you’re a Pokemon trainer. “Beretania Florist is the perfect place to catch Pokemon, refuel at a PokeStop and get flowers for the girlfriend you’ve been neglecting since Pokemon Go was released.” — Reece Farinas, sales and marketing director
Mr. Tea at SALT Kakaako
660 ALA MOANA BLVD.
10 percent off for Pokemon Go players. Hours also have been extended to for the late-night crowd (until 9 p.m. Sunday and 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday). “SALT has been pretty crazy since there’s about nine stops in a two-block span on Coral Street.” — George Huang, owner
2777 KALAKAUA AVE.
$5 for Pokemon Go players from 2 to 4 p.m. until Sept. 30 (regular price is $12 general admission, $8 for kamaaina) “When the app launched, we quickly became aware that the aquarium was a hot spot within the game, attracting a number of water-related Pokemon. We wanted to provide an opportunity for those playing the game to learn more about how to protect our real-world marine life while working to catch digital ones.”–Dadia Ellis, visitor services supervisor
Pokemon Go Bar Crawl
A number of Chinatown businesses also are participating in the Honolulu Pokemon Go Bar Crawl on Aug. 20. With the slogan “catch a buzz while you catch ‘em all,” the bar crawl will start at 7 p.m. Aug. 20 at Scarlet Honolulu (registration begins there at 6), and then move to various venues including Nextdoor, Bar 35, Downbeat Diner, Proof Public House and Cake Envy. At each site, attendees can expect drink and food specials, as well as lures around the areas.
Wristbands cost $20, via Eventbrite, and proceeds benefit one of three local nonprofits: 808 Cleanups, Hawaiian Humane Society or Autism Society of Hawaii.
For more information, find Pokemon Go Bar Crawl on Facebook.