Retiree Hangouts

I remember when I was small and we used to go to Ala Moana.  Outside of Sears across of Security Diamond (or was that Conrad Jewelers) were all these old guys hanging out and talking story.  My dad said that that was the Pearl Harbor retiree hangout.


Ala Moana Longs_Sears
This isn’t the place, but it was the closet picture I could find.


I guess back then – when Ala Moana was a place for the locals – retirees used to spend the day hanging out at Ala Moana Center.  I suppose beside the Pearl Harbor retirees area, there might’ve been the State workers retirees area, and maybe the City workers retirees area.  Maybe the Gasco retirees, the HRT/MTL bus driver retirees, and the HC&D retirees – all with their own areas to hang out.


Then when McDonald’s opened up the big restaurant somewhere around the vicinity of where India Imports used to be, the retirees used to hang out there in the mornings sipping their senior coffees with free refills.  Some of them would get there early before the stores opened and walk around the mall a couple of times to get their daily exercise – then go to Micky D’s to meet up with their other retiree friends and talk story.


However, since AMC downsized McDonald’s – and Micky D’s had to limit the coffee refills and time to sit in the tiny dining area – retirees had to find a new place to hang out.  I wonder if they even hang out at Ala Moana Center anymore.  I sometimes see them cruising in Makai Market on the weekends.  I’m guessing that on the weekdays there are probably more of them there.  I think the weekends are too crowded for the retirees, plus they might be busy baby-sitting on the weekends so you don’t see too many of them there.


So… what’s going to happen when us MLCers retire?  Where will we be hanging out?


There’s getting less and less places for retirees to kick back and cruise.  I remember when I used to go to Bowl-o-Drome for lunch, I’d find some retirees cruising in the bowling alley.  There might be 1 or 2 guys practicing – while another 4 or 5 of their friends are sitting in the pit “coaching” them – even though they didn’t ask nor do they want to be coached.  Or there might be just a loner sitting in one of the spectator seats, counting zzzs.  When it’s too hot to stay home – just check into the neighborhood bowling alley and take a nap there in the cool comfort.


But how many neighborhood bowling alleys are around nowadays?


I think a lot of the elders are into staying healthy so there’s probably a number of them walking around Magic Island and Ala Moana park, or at Kapiolani park.  But of course, that’s weather permitting.


Some of you MLCers who are already retired – is there someplace that you go to talk story and hang out?  Or do you pretty much go exercising on your own?  I still have a number of years before I’ll be retiring – but knowing that there’s different places out there to hang out makes retiring so much more fun to look forward to.









36 Responses to “Retiree Hangouts”

  1. NKHEA says:

    if i not mistaken think Shimazu has 80 flavors

  2. HbH says:


    Now uncle thats what i call shave ice! I find stands here on mainland who call themselves shave ice but ho, no lychee? no li hing, no P.O.G? No tigers blood syrups or beans etc. What the heck! Shimazu does sound ono. Can’t go wrong with rainbow. But my fav is li hing, lychee and P.O.G with da works.

  3. Mark'75 says:

    @HbH: Yup, there’s a whole board full of flavors and additions. Didn’t know what to pick, so I went with the old standby, rainbow.

  4. HbH says:


    Mahalo, i will with all my heart be honored to support Shimazu Shave Ice when i get back on the island. If you say he is old school art form quality, then you and your friend have my vote lol. Im tired of people calling whatever ice, hawaii shave ice when its really snowcone like. I want to scream.

    Sorry for the loss of your friend too sistah. Aloha

  5. sally says:

    My friend, Kelvin Shimazu, and his son are owners. Kel passed away couple yrs ago 🙁

    He started out doing parties, setting up his tent and tables and equipment. He fulfilled his dream of having a store when he bought the B&S Store in Liliha, promising the owners he would never modernize it, which he had no intention of doing.

    Shimazu Shave Ice is, by far, the BEST. I never knew the science behind getting just the right block of ice. You don’t just get any ole ice… he inspected every block. Then his concoctions of flavors, he was the master!

    Kelvin Shimazu, btw, is part of Hawaii ’72 chee huuu!!!

    So yes, thank you for supporting Shimazu Shave Ice. 🙂

  6. HbH says:


    Is that your ohanas, friends or your small business sally?

  7. HbH says:


    Did Shimazu shave ice have all the local flavors? Like li hing, lychee, P.O.G etc?

  8. sally says:

    @Mark’75 Mahalo for supporting Shimazu’s! Just had to say that.

  9. Mark'75 says:

    Just tried Shimazu shave ice at Hawaii’s Favorite Kitchens. OMG the small size is H-U-G-E!!! And the syrup’s great! Was just the thing for this hot, muggy day.

  10. Mark'75 says:

    Back then I recall patrolling just before sunrise and seeing the offensively armed senior citizens taking their walk. Some had a golf club, stick, or even a baseball bat and I’d think, “yeah, I don’t blame them.”

  11. Mark'75 says:

    Working nights, I’d often see retirees hanging out shopping malls, bowling alleys, etc. during the day. Was kind of funny when once in a while, some would give me looks like, “gee, get a job!” LOL

  12. Mark'75 says:

    @dihudfan: nice slideshow!

  13. dihudfan says:

    off the subject… just thought you might enjoy…

  14. HbH says:


    Yes olelo hawaiian is such a pretty and interesting language, one word can have multiple meanings or a few words can have one meaning.

  15. keoni says:

    BOT, Wai’anae side not have too many a/c places for retirees to hang out, but I do see them at Burger King in Wai’anae Mall in the morning. Especially this summer when it’s been so hot and humid on the westside, a/c is a MUST!

  16. keoni says:

    @HbH Interesting question. I’m not sure which one, u’i or nani is older, but when I searched, Nani showed 10 results, while U’i had only 6. Hawaiian has many terms that refer to similar things like “kama” and “keiki” to refer to a child.

  17. Mark Shelby says:

    I remember all my fun times with my good old neighbor Patsy Chun. She would invite me to come over early in the morning, to get in her mint Honda Accord to go drive me to have breakfast with her at McDonalds Kahala Mall.

    What fun times!

    When Patsy could no longer drive good. Her son took the Honda…..and he told her it was stolen. So he would not break her heart! She loved to drive just as much as my Dad!

    I understand! I had to take my Fathers keys away too. Very sad!

  18. Mark Shelby says:

    From what I remember. It’s always retires hanging out in McDonalds anywhere on Oahu for breakfast in da morning. Must have been da Senior discount coffee! ….hehe ; )

    I always loved hearing them chat! And sometimes I would join in the conversation! ; )

    I mainly saw them at Kahala Mall though, next to the bowling alley. My local hang out.

  19. dihudfan says:

    there a lot of retirees walking around AMC every morning… good place to take a quick walk, while the shopping crowds are still at home and plenty open parking… also I see a lot of seniors at 24 hr gym, free membership thru medical insurance… gotto exercise to be able to eat good food and stay alive…

  20. 4G says:

    @hemajang – that’s a pretty smart routine. Running might be crossing the line, but you know what? If was me, I might chance ‘um one time. If they say, “No do that”, then just apologize and no do that again . . . . 😉

    Eh, we “elder” – they not going ban us for doing um one time! LOL!

  21. HbH says:


    Both bruddah because Nani and ui both mean beautiful, beauty, pretty. Nani if I understand corretly is more of a modern Hawaiian word then UI. But I could be wrong I’m no expert.

  22. hemajang says:

    @4G Yeah I happen to be at Pearlridge early before stores open and yes there were quite a few seniors walking for exercise. I thought what a good idea, its cool, walking surface is carpeted and flat. You don’t have to deal with traffic or bad weather, how ideal. I’m a runner, I wonder if security would stop me if I started to run laps up on the 2nd level?

  23. Seawalker says:

    @DIO – Don’t hear the clatter of the pieces in Chinatown that often now. But rest assured, it’s there. All kinds of gaming action going on in the second floor above BOH and other places.

  24. Seawalker says:

    Really haven’t thought of it that far out yet. I’ll try to hang on being in the workforce for the longest as possible. Who doesn’t want to be keep getting underpaid and overworked? Yes master, whip me a little harder please. No, I don’t want to sleep in today. LOL One thing I know I’m getting in the retirement years is a steam room. One of the showers in our house is all ready to be converted complete with a steam unit and a seat. Put in a vent overhead and it’s all good to go.

    Eh @HbH, nani or ui kine?

  25. HbH says:

    Well i still have at least 20 more years til retirement, but if i was to retire in Oahu today i would be doing alot of cultural things like learning to play the ipu or learning more olelo hawaiian or hula for example. But you would also see me on the beach surfing lol and at pearlridge sc or etc people watching or with bruddah seawalker chasing da wahines. 🙂

  26. dihudfan says:

    when one of my coworkers wuz ready to retire, he gave me a lecture… he told me that I should plan what I wuz going do BEFORE I retire, DON’T be one of those guys that go sit down at AMC and watch people all day long… so kind of planned what to do when I wuz ready to retire, but now plans has changed… went to Vegas a few times, went golfing a few times, btw lots of retirees just play 9 holes and go home… also stayed home and played games on the computer, gets a little boring aftah awhile… wish I could hang around a bowling alley, but they too far away to drive everyday… anyway, ended up working part time for my sistah in law’s boyfriend, which is good, free medical for my wife and saving the moneys to spend in LV… life is GOOD…

  27. DIO says:

    4G: Yes, they used to (don’t know if they still do) play MahJong out there, on College Walk, by Cultural Plaza. I’ve also seen cards and Chinese Chess.

  28. 4G says:

    do that doing??? LOL “do that during” . . . .

  29. 4G says:

    LOL – not like I really know, but that never stopped me from giving my two-cents before, so why stop now, right? 😉

    Most of this is based on information at least a couple of years old; some of it from several (like 10+) years old, so take it with a grain of salt.

    Seems to me that the shopping malls had evolved into the exercise track for many seniors, especially early in the morning. This seemed to be particularly true for Ala Moana (before all the construction). The enclosed malls like Kahala Mall seemed to be popular with those that preferred air conditioning – the downside being you would have to do that doing more like business hours.

    I know that as of a couple of years ago, there was one senior gathering at the Burger King on Beretania (near Pensacola). Seems like Zippy’s locations with outdoor seating also seem to be pretty popular.

    It seems to me that with the increase in retirement communities (i.e., retirement homes), those residents tend to hang out with the other residents. Although housed under one roof, it seems like folks tend to separate into individual cliques.

    This is hardly a scientific observation/theory (though I swear I read an article in support of it), I could swear that in an environment that is majorly comprised of older folks, those folks sure seem to age physically faster than they did prior to joining the community. Perhaps we should be looking at ways to mix the age groups of society in a more conscious manner – especially when it comes to retirement communities.

    Hmmm – combination retirement community/daycare facility? Hahaha. Meh, I still like “LOL” better. 😉

    Oh – there are a bunch of old-timers, primarily male and Chinese, that tend to hang out at the tables on that pedestrian mall on River Street, next to the Cultural Plaza. I never really bothered to see what they were doing, but seems like something like cards or board games. I don’t think Mahjong cause I don’t recall hearing the clicking tiles . . . . It’s a pretty good-sized group.

  30. kellyk says:

    My dad used to hang out at Waikiki Beach playing cards. It’s been a while since I cruised down Kalakaua Ave, but there used to be pavilions over there by the Kapahulu Ave intersection. That section of beach had a wall that kept out the waves. I remember going with him sometimes and watching the kids on “the wall” running and sliding when a wave washed over it and wishing I was brave enough to try it, looked like so much fun. I was so uncord though so I knew I would fall and crack my head open. Otherwise, it was kind of boring hanging out with the “old timers” (funny how I’m one of those so called old timers but if anybody called me that I would smack them) so I didn’t go with him too often, but he went all the time and there were always friends there he could play cards with.
    So maybe BYO deck of cards and you can hang over there when you retire.

  31. losthawaiian says:

    I’m pretty sure once I retire, it will be near some body of water. Either a lake or the ocean. I have friends down in Florida who fish, dive or go scalloping in their retirement. Sounds like a rough life!

  32. losthawaiian says:

    I remember driving past Aala park when I was going to HCC in the late 70’s. There used to be a lot of seniors sitting on the tables and benches. Are they still meeting there? Playing Mah-jongg?

  33. M says:

    Guud morning MLCers!
    I can retire right now but I’ll work a few more years and when I do, I’ll be at the beach everyday.

  34. hemajang says:

    Yes, I remember all the retirees on the Sears side in the 60’s and 70’s. I worked briefly at Sears after my stint in the Army and the old guys with their coffee were along the planters and benches by Longs and Sears. Not sure where retirees hang out in Mililani, probably at McDonalds, Zippys or at the Town Center Mall. Wife goes to exercise classes at the Rec center and many retired women are there.

    Come January it will be 2 years since retired but don’t hang out anywhere. I go running lone wolf early in morning. Many retirees are on the street and I wave or greet each other as we pass. That’s the extent of my retiree hang out. Before my shoulder injury and the need to be at home with wife I played tennis twice a week with many who were retired. They were my tennis buddies and I enjoyed talking story and playing for a couple hours. Tennis for me was both friendly competition and socialization…good fun. I miss that and hope to return one day.

  35. ankleBYTERS says:

    Those were the stock room workers from Sears sitting there….lol. During our lunch breaks on the Saturday, most of us would sit on the Sears side, across from Long’s, and watch the traffic walk by….

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