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Owner and Founder Sarah McLane Bryan has more than 13 years of experience in the field of Geographic Information Systems, 8 years working with conservation and non-profit groups in Hawai‘i and 7 years of specific project management experience.


Sarah McLane Byran


Phone: (808) 268-6680


Makali'i is the Hawaiian name for the Pleiades star cluster. It is also known as the Seven Sisters, Messier Object 45 (or M45) and is found in the constellation Taurus. The appearance of this star cluster at the eastern horizon at sunset in the fall marked the beginning of the Makahiki, or harvest festival.


Makali'i was also the navigator of the canoe of Chief Hawai'iloa, who in one tradition is identified as the discoverer of Hawai'i.1

1. Hawaiian Voyaging Traditions:




The rising of the Makali'i star cluster marks the beginning of the Makahiki season, in honor of the god Lono, the god of rain and agriculture. It is a time to celebrate the end of the harvest, when wars and battles were ceased, and sporting games commenced. The word "Makahiki" is translated as "Year" and the Hawaiian year is measured from the rising of the Makali'i star group in the Eastern horizon beginning in mid-November.


A healthy harvest meant survival, just as businesses need good products to be successful. We believe the ideals in the celebrations of the Makahiki and the symbolism of a new "Year" and new beginnings are all things that we bring to our work here at the Makali'i Group.


He waʻa he moku, he moku he waʻa

The canoe is our island, and the island is our canoe.

Makali'i was also the name of a great trans-pacific voyager and astronomer who was the trusted navigator of the Chief Hawai'iloa. The Makali'i voyaging canoe was launched at Kawaihae on the Big Island on Saturday, Feb. 4, 1995. Her maiden voyage took her to Taputapuatea, Ra'iatea, in Tahiti Nui, and Nukuhiva in the Marquesas Islands in 1995. The canoe was built with donations from the community to provide a means to teach the Hawaiian cultural traditions to its future generations.

"The beauty of the wa'a (canoe) is that it allows each person to find his or her own path, or to seek the specific roles and responsibilities that fit who they are as individuals. The waʻa is a reflection of community, of combining strengths and drawing on the individual talents of members of diverse communities to complete the tasks at hand."1

We at the Makali'i Group like to think of ourselves as teachers, as a part of a community of learners and as modern navigators of the world that we all share. Our resources belong to all of us, just as we all rely equally on them.We welcome you to join us on our journey!

For more information about the Makali’i or Na Kalai Wa’a, please visit:


Photo: Fair Wind Cruises

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