web analytics

Silva’s Store Serving Ewa Beach Over 60 Years

From the biggest box you can shop at Costco, we’re now at the smallest yet most endearing box in town. Where, ask any old timer from Ewa Beach what they remember most about what was once a mainly sugarcane plantation community they grew up in, and chances are Tanaka’s, Jimmy Ha’s and Silva store will come up in the conversation. Those three mom ‘n pop stores being the primary and only game in Ewa Beach town back in the day for daily necessities, long before Ewa Beach became “Gentrified” with modern suburban development, along with the large commercial retail and restaurant sector that’s since come along with that. Safeway now being the largest player yet to call Ewa Beach their new home, having opened recently in November 2012.

“Mom ‘n Pop” being the operative tag line, as well you know, even before the likes of “category killers” such as Walmart and other “big box” type retailers, “supermarkets” were already a competitive threat to the “little guy mom ‘n pop” stores, with supermarkets having a significantly larger product selection and lower prices.

Yet through it all, like a few and proud other “mom ‘n pops” still standing in other neighborhoods, way WAY out in Ewa Beach, literally footsteps from THE BEACH, serving the community for over 60 years is Silva’s Grocery & Liquor, established in 1948. Which according to my very reliable resource, who would be one of my coworkers who grew up since he was just 4 years old back in the 50’s in Ewa Beach, say Silva’s is by far, no question THE OLDEST STORE still in business today in Ewa Beach under the same name, in the same location, in the original building.

While retaining the legacy name to this day, Silva’s has gone through several ownerships over the years. Joe Silva established and ran the business, along with his brother Frank from the early 1950’s to around 1965. Then the business was leased under the same name to the Tamura family, where from then on it passed on several other owners who continued running the business to today, where it’s currently owned and operated for over 14 years to present by Ivy Pantastico, with operational help from her son Dwayne.

A quick note about Joe Silva, like Jimmy Ha and Mr. Tanaka, Mr. Silva was known to be a rather cranky ole’ fellah who always had a cigar in his mouth. And like the other stores, Ewa Beach neighborhood kids had a “revolving credit” account at Silva’s, where parents could send them there for grocery, cigarette and beer runs and “charge it” under their parents’ name, who would pay the bill later when they came in. The “keeds” of course could also add candies and other snacks to that charge as a bonus “tip” for the deed. Nice! Which is no wonder to this day upon looking at the merchandise selection at stores like Silva’s, you quickly realize this is as much for the neighborhood kids to “shop”, as it is was back then for that sweaty sugarcane plantation worker who just got done a day’s shift, looking for some smokes and cold beer to relax with.

Other historic notes about Joe Silva is that his son Barney Silva was once a popular surfboard shaper, who’s said to be living on Maui now, still shaping surfboards. Also, right across the street from Silva’s store in the 50’s was Our Lady of Perpetual Help, a Catholic church. While Our Lady of of Perpetual Help church has since moved next to Campbell High School around 1976, the building is still there across from Silva’s store as a Samoan church. Also, the house right on the beach behind Silva’s store was where Joe Silva lived, and to this day is being leased to Ivy Pantastico by the Silva family.

Now let’s check out Silva’s store in its current form, where I visited the place this past Wednesday, April 24, 2013, around lunch hour. Please don’t mind some of the shaky photos. More on that later. Enjoy…

At the now iconic Silva Store in Ewa Beach today, it pretty much epitomizes the mom ‘n pop version of 7 Eleven, with all the usual eclectic selection of daily necessities you’d find there, albeit for the sake of convenience, at prices you’d expect to be higher than what you’ll find at a supermarket, or of course in bulk at the likes of Costco.

Fresh bread to “saimin”…

Beef Stew to Ragu…

Fruit Punch to Coconut Milk…

Pretty good deal on the bottled water in front…

You know, I don’t know what the HECK happened with my camera (my Canon, not the Note II) while I was in there, but practically ALL my shots turned out blurry from camera shake.. and I KNOW I had optical image stabilization turned on. Perhaps Mr. Silva woke from his grave, came back and said, “no boy, you not going take pictahz inside my store. I went buss my okole for YEARS in there. You gotta’ EARN those pictahz!”. lol

Anyhow, moving along, got a baking project and in a bind? Silva’s got your back…

Valvoline to Tampax…

I swear, Mr. Silva must have been hitting my arm while I was taking these shots…

The Hygienic Store of Ewa Beach…

Keiki Korner…

Ice cold beer, domestic to import…

Milk, fruit juice, water, fresh produce and house-made pie!…

Back in the day, this would have been Yick Lung brand…

More li hing ‘kine stuffs…

This is probably the most classic (next to some of the kiddy machines) in the store…

Well, let’s open it and take a look!…

I swear, the whole vibe in Silva’s store isn’t really like you’re in a store, but more like you’re “shopping” at grandma’s house! LOL!!!! Seriously, look at that! Isn’t just about everything you’ve seen thus far look almost like you’re in grandma’s or your mom’s kitchen?

The Ewa Plains are so hot, even the chocolate bars need to keep cool…

Milk at Silva’s runs just under a conveniently hefty $9 per gallon…

Fresh produce, from onions, celery, carrots and tomatoes, to lemon ‘n limes…

Yup, just like grandma’s kitchen…

Small keeds alway love them cheapy plastic toys!..

Dwayne mentioned that no matter what, if children come into the store with their parents, 9 out of 10 times, they’re leaving with a toy. I’ll bet!

If I were 5 years old, this is probably what I’d head straight for…

As mentioned before, I’d say half the merchandising strategy here is geared for children…

Mr. Silva’s at it again bumping my arm while I’m taking photos…

More stuff for the keiki…

Talk about maximizing storage space!

Up at the checkout counter of course we have our hard liquor and cigarettes…

Speaking of hard liquor, wait until the next post, where we stop by Ewa Pantry. My friends, you have NOT seen booze GALORE until you’ve been to Ewa Pantry, also obviously in Ewa Beach. OMG! Totally INSANE! In fact, come to find out, Danny Hwang, owner of Ewa Pantry, once owned Silva’s Grocery & Liquor 17 years ago! I kid you not! Small world, I tell ya’. I found this out upon talking to Danny over the phone while I was in Ewa Pantry to get permission to take photographs of the shop. Turns out he’s a really nice guy, who also used to own Diner’s Drive-In in Pearl City.

Back to Silva’s front counter, they also serve hot food, including on this visit, Ivy Pantastico’s own “Pantastic!” Chili and Rice…

Also stay get Manapua kine stuffs laddat…

One last tidbit about Silva’s store, is that the Hawaii Five-O reboot had actually scheduled a location shoot at the store, going as far as hiring HPD police to block off Ewa Beach Road the day of the shoot. However, something happened with their production schedule where they were filming in Kapolei that same day, so they ended up not making it for the shoot at Silva’s store. Yet I can certainly see why the producers would have wanted to use an old plantation home store like Silva’s as a prop for a Hawaii Five-O scene.

Lastly, being that Silva’s store has been around for so long, Dwayne mentioned how every now and then he’ll have folks stop by and say that they grew up in Ewa Beach way back when then left town, and can’t believe to this day that the store is still around. He also has watched neighborhood kids grow up while working there become adults with children themselves, as the store has lasted literally GENERATIONS.

Well there ya’ go. Silva’s store, serving the community since 1948, remaining to this day the oldest store in Ewa Beach!

Silva Grocery & Liquor
91-455 Ewa Beach Road
Ewa Beach, Hawaii  96706

Tel. (808) 689-0595

Business Hours:
Monday – Thursday 8am to 9pm
Friday & Saturday 8am to 11pm
Sunday 8am to 8pm

Silva’s Grocery & Liquor on Facebook
Silva’s Grocery & Liquor on Yelp

P.S. I visited Silva’s store not just for a little record keeping, but also for lunch! So I ended up sampling Ivy Pantastico’s “Pantastic” Chili ‘n Rice, along with her also “Pantastic” Pumpkin Crunch dessert…

Silva’s Grocery & Liquor in Ewa Beach – Ivy Pantastico’s “Pantastic” Chili & Rice Bowl for $3 and “Pantastic” Pumpkin Crunch dessert for $4

And? The chili was winnahz! It had ground beef in it, which I could have done without, but oh well. I’ll let this one slide. It was pretty much just a really good Chili, no more, no less. I’d say a simplified version of Zippy’s Chili if you will, with an ample amount of Kidney beans and just the right amount of onions in it, while being seasoned just right, also not being greasy at all. Definitely a deal at just $3 for a generous serving, including rice.

Now Ivy’s “Pantastic” Pumpkin Crunch?…

Ivy Pantastico’s “Pantastic” Pumpkin Crunch. $4 each while supplies last at Silva’s store in Ewa Beach.

Dude. DUDE! Shut the front door, I’m tellin’ ya’, this my friends has got to be THE BEST anything ending with the name “crunch”. This could have been called “Rubbah Slippah Crunch” for all I care and I’d have absolutely DEVOURED it. It’s like Ivy took the best Shortbread Cookie ever made, the richest New York Cheesecake, and the ultimate Pumpkin Pie, and somehow magically massaged it all together with loads of butter and sugar and came out with Ivy’s “Pantastic” Pumpkin Crunch.

If there’s ANY reason to check out Silva’s store other than the nostalgia itself, it would be Ivy’s “Pantastic” Pumpkin Crunch!  $4 may seem a bit steep at first glance for single slice of takeout “pie”, however this is easily 2 servings worth, and you WILL feel it in butter and sugar. But BELIEVE ME, it is broke da’ mout ONO! Easily this has to be the best dessert you’ll find this side of the Ewa Plains. In fact, it’s so popular, Ivy sells it on the side for her niece’s softball fundraisers, so you KNOW da’ buggah is winnahz. So go get Ivy’s Pumpkin Crunch at Silva’s store, STAT! You’ll thank me later. Just make sure to brush your teeth well and run a few laps around the park afterwards. Oh, and don’t forget that bottle of shaving cream and loaf of bread you just ran out of while you’re there.

Silva’s neighbor on the beach (literally), right behind Silva’s store on Ewa Beach Road

Ewa Beach Road, in front of Silva’s store, looking Diamond Head bound

Ewa Beach Road, in front of Silva’s store, looking Ewa bound… oh wait… we’re IN Ewa! lol


68 thoughts on “Silva’s Store Serving Ewa Beach Over 60 Years

  • December 16, 2014 at 10:14 am

    Oh my God, this article had brought back so many childhood memories for me. I lived in Ewa Beach as a kid in the mid 70’s when my dad was stationed at NAS Barbers Point. I remember frequenting Tanaka’s and buying candy and manapua on my way to Ilima Intermediate School. I now live in Florida where I am originally from but have fond memories of what you referred to Ewa beach as the Sugar cane plantation community. I am glad I came across your article..

    Thank you,

    David Bukowski

    • December 18, 2014 at 5:53 am

      Aloha David,

      If it’s been since the 1970s that you’ve been to Ewa Beach, you will be SHOCKED how much that community has changed, especially over the last two decades. Today it’s totally gentrified and growing at an insane pace with suburban development and a brand new modern shopping center. Many military folks end up buying homes there.

      • February 28, 2015 at 9:39 am

        Hi Pomai,

        My name is Michele and hopefully you were able to see my reply to Carole” on February 28.2015.Can you please elaborate a bit more on how Ewa Beach has changed? You said it is gentrified,his gentrified is it? What are the rents like? Any condos or bungalows near the beach to rent on a 2 week to monthly basis?Any nursing jobs/facilities there? We used to shop at Arakawa’s( my mom and dad loved that store ) and Gem’s in Waipahu also.I rememba a shirt bridge we used to cross and my dad would pull over,because of the “wood roses” there that ‘housed’ in it’s pods,”Jobs Tears” and then go downtown to the park( can’t’ rememba da name) and shake da Wili Wili tree for those red seeds to make Hawaiian kine jewelry.Rememba da humungous 100 year old Banyan tree in downtown Honolulu and Kaaawa Beach before it got washed out by beeg storm,and when Waikiki Beach ONLY had da Outrigger,Aloha,Ilikai( right across from Kaiser Permanent Hospital),Hilton and a couple of other hotels on it’s wide expanse of beach that was 2 miles? Man,I missed dos dayz,I really do.

        • February 28, 2015 at 10:08 am

          Aloha Michele,

          I did read your reply to Carile. BTW, the Li HIng Mui was Yick Lung, not “Tick Yung”, whom no longer sells “crack seed”, however, they do still make NIbb-Its and Taco Tubes and Shrimp Chips.

          All I can say is Ewa Beach today is not the same “plantation era” Ewa Beach it sounds like you enjoyed back throughout 1958 to ’72 when you lived there. It’s so much different today… at least going from what I’ve been told by my old timer Ewa Beach resident who gave me most of the information for this post.

          What I mean by “Gentrified” is, a majority of what was sugarcane fields in Ewa Beach are now newly developed subdivisions of pretty much cookie-cutter homes that all look the same. Either “Zero-lot”, town homes and detached, single-family homes. Very nicely done, I might add, with beautiful landscaping. Thankfully there are currently no highrises in Ewa Beach, and I hope there never will be! From the very few times I had to visit Ewa Beach recently for work-related purposes (stress that!), I really, really liked it there. The only problem with Ewa Beach isn’t Ewa Beach itself, but the DANG FREEWAY, which if you ever read about Oahu’s problems, TRAFFIC is up there at the very top! If you live in Ewa Beach and have work in town (honolulu), fuggetabouttit!!! You’ll spend half your life crawling in traffic in your car. Thanks, but no thanks. If you’re retired or work nearby Ewa, than by all means, I think Ewa is a fantastic place to live! Very quiet. People are cool. Lots of new places coming up to shop and eat at. Check out Google Maps “Streetview” and take a virtual tour of Ewa Beach.That might help you, too.

          As for real estate, Ewa Beach is still considered one of the lowest priced on Oahu, alongside the west coast up from Nanakuli to Makaha. My best suggestion (common sense) is to find a reliable real estate website for the most current sales activity.

          Michele, what more do you remember about Barney’s Burgers and Tanaka Store? My resource had limited memory of those places. Maybe you remember more. Specifics such as your favorite Barney’s Burger menu item, the decor, etc. Tanaka store.. what else do you remember about that place? Similar to Silva Store? Did you ever meet Mr. (or Mrs.) Tanaka? What kind of merchandise did Tanaka Store carry?

        • March 4, 2015 at 9:05 am

          Hi Michele,

          I know what you mean about how you say you “miss do dayz” as I do too, I came across this site by googling Ewa Beach just to see what I could find. I lived in Ewa Beach in the mid 70’s and have a lot of fond memories but soon found that what I remember and what it is now is definitely two different things. i would love to one day be able to go back and see for myself just how much it has changed. I used to live on Pa Aloha St. and attended Ewa Beach Elementary school and then Ilima Intermediate School. One thing I remember was as a kid for a quarter I could ride the city bus line all over the island and would go to the Pearl Ridge Mall and shop at a store called Diei ( not sure on the spelling). Do you remember the old trucks that would come around during lunch time selling Manapua and fried noodles for about 75 cents? Lol!! Like you said, I miss dos dayz!! Lol!!

          • September 5, 2017 at 7:44 am

            Diei – “do you mean ‘Daiei’ ? It is also called by another popular name, “Holiday Mart.” Nowadays, Daiei has changed it’s name to “Don Quijote/Quixote” or “Donki” (donkey – a Japanese accent) for short.

    • December 13, 2017 at 10:02 am

      wow, havnt thought about Tanaka store in ages. They had great stuff. A drum stick was really a drum stick not like the skimpy ones now. I remember the corner across the store where they had Italian food and an ice cream counter. the memories I have. no one can take away.

  • January 10, 2015 at 12:58 pm

    I lived just down the road from Silva’s Store for many years ,, Grad from Campbell in ’71 ,, Starlite Lanes Bowling in youth traveling league ,, Casa Mia had the best home made pizza and meatballs around ,, The Beach was the back yard ,, The Gionson ‘s lived right across the street ,, Best Years for sure ,,

  • March 10, 2015 at 9:32 am

    Hi All! My name is Mark Wong and I too lived their  from 1960 till graduating in 1977 from Campbell High School. I do remember Tanaka, Chevron Service Station, Barneys, and the BAKER! All too good. I come to hawaii once a year and YES all has changed, except the feel and the memories.

    • May 5, 2015 at 7:18 am

      Ooooooooo…..Barney’s!!  My mom used to work there in the mid to late 60’s.  What a great hamburger joint that was.  I suppose it’s gone too?

      • May 5, 2015 at 7:53 am


        As noted in another comment:

        Barney’s Burger House – site of the current Ewa Beach Shopping Center, Ewa Beach (Longs Drugs, Shiro’s Saimin, Radio Shack, etc.) / opened by Barney Arakawa, son of the founders of Arakawa’s in Waipahu; there were actually 3 Barney’s locations on Oahu; Barney also had lunchwagons; before Barney’s in Ewa Beach, it was Tropics Drive-In; specialties included Barney’s “Smashed Cow”

  • March 11, 2015 at 9:08 am

    Awesome Ewa Beach stories, folks! Keep ’em coming! :-)

    Note, a brand new, pretty massive McDonald’s recently opened in the still-new Laulani Village Shopping Center, complete with a children’s jungle gym play area. That now makes two McDonald’s in Ewa Beach.


  • May 4, 2015 at 7:43 am

    I can’t describe how much I love this post.  Even though I don’t remember Silva’s I lived on Ewa Beach Road from 1964-68 and we used to walk to Pohakea School.  Everyday, I stopped it Jimmy Ha’s store on Ewa Beach Road.  All of us young kids (I was 8,9, and 10 years old at the time) thought Jimmy Ha was some kind of demon and his store was so spooky with all the cob webs.  I always wondered what happened to his store.  Does anyone of the address of where his store used to be?

    • May 4, 2015 at 8:55 am

      Aloha Darell,

      This morning I asked my resource who originally told me all the Ewa Beach stories I wrote about in this post, and he showed me EXACTLY where Jimmy Ha’s Store was located on Ewa Beach Road. Here’s the Google Maps Streetview location:

      And here’s the satellite view:

      If you look closely at the streetview (click on image to enlarge it), you’ll see Jimmy Ha’s Store was located on a property that now has a newer home. I can’t see the exact street address, however you can see it’s was to the left of a public right of way trail to the beach numbered 186 F on Ewa Beach Road. So Jimmy Ha’s store was about a quarter of a mile east (Diamond Head) of Silva’s Store.

      He also told me that yes, Jimmy Ha was known by the neighborhood kids to be pretty “mean”, not liking when kids came in. He said Jimmy Ha used to sell crack seed in big glass jars, which when you bought some, he’d fish it out of the jars with his bare hands. Yikes! He’d also often be found sleeping in his chair behind the cash counter.

      • May 5, 2015 at 7:16 am

        Yes, I remember well that Jimmy Ha would usually be sitting on a stool and sleeping behind the counter.  He also had a lot of hair growing out of his ears.  I think he didn’t like the children because they always woke him up and then spent a lot of time trying to pick out just the right candy to take to school.  My mom wouldn’t let us buy his Li Hing Mui because he always touched it.  She would only allow us to buy packaged candy.  By the way, do you know why the roads have a two part address, such as 91-375?  Do the different parts of the address have a special meaning?  I’m trying to find the address where we lived on Ewa Beach Road and I know that it was east of Jimmy Ha’s and next to a house that was built like a Quonset hut.  I believe the beach path next to Jimmy Ha’s former location has always been there because I seem to recall it from when we lived there.  Thanks for the memories.

        • May 5, 2015 at 8:17 am


          I spoke again with my “Ancient resource of all things Ewa Beach” this morning, and he said there were a bunch of Quonset hut homes in Ewa Beach back when he was a kid, including on Ewa Beach Road, which was a result of government construction in the islands during World II and after it.

          He grew up living near Ewa Beach Road, right behind on Fort Weaver Road during the 1950s to 1960s. He mentioned some names of families he knew well on Ewa Beach Road, that perhaps you may remember when you lived there, including the Pedro (Mr. Pedro was a known fisherman in the area), Anderson, Pratt, Vierra, Sadowski, Pruce, Kuwalapai, Vierra, Cuewa, Parrera and Ferrara ohana. Those were all kids he hung out with “back in the day” on Ewa Beach Road. He wondered if you also remember chasing the DDT Truck?

      • December 13, 2017 at 10:07 am

        This is exciting and remarkable. I seem to recall Jimmy Ha’s but not to the fullest. We lived on the corner of Pohakupuna Road and used the right of way a lot to go to the beach. Miss the old days. My cousin lived on the other end of Oneula and sometimes we could go through his yard to the beach but not always. My friend Billy said the beach is so changed. I guess we have to accept that. Enjoyed your post very much. God bless. N. S

  • May 5, 2015 at 9:13 am

    Are you kidding??  The DDT truck was a big highlight for us – the insecticide fog reminded us of the Outer Limits or the fog that the Ventures were using around that time.  All the kids would run after the truck like it was an ice cream truck or something.  I actually loved the smell of DDT in the evening.  I had actually forgotten that we used to run after the truck and I hadn’t thought about the smell in a long time.  I don’t remember any of the names listed, but the following are names of neighbors at the time:  Sprouse, Box, Quick.  I believe David Quick’s dad worked at the tsunami warning center and I remember well spending nights in the shopping center parking lot only to learn that the tsunamis were usually about 6 inches high when they reached shore.  The other thing we used to love to do on Ewa Beach Road is walk down the street on New Year’s Day and pick up all the dud firecrackers.  We would then collect all the gunpowder from those “duds” and light it up for a New Year’s treat.

  • May 7, 2015 at 4:22 pm

    Born and raised in Ewa Beach on Ewa Beach Road, infact my mother still lives in the same house I grew up in.  Reading these stories brought back lots of happy memories of the 1950s.  Remember there were no schools in Ewa Beach, all the kids were bussed to Ewa Elem School and Waipahu HS.  In fact, we had no city bus service into Ewa Beach, we had to catch the bus in Ewa (Oka Garage on Ft Weaver Road) into town and return the same way.  It cost a dime for the phone booth to call my dad to come pick us up. We use to save the dime and go into the service station and ask to use the phone…sometimes we got a dirty look, but they always let us call. We all worked at the cannery during the summers and got paid $1.60 an hour. Remember the train track that separated Ewa and Ewa Beach, it is still there.  In my life time, which is 60 plus years, I only recall seeing a train on the tracks one time.  My dad had to stop to let the train pass, don’t remember seeing any train warning signs.  I remember when there was no shopping center, no Leeward Estates or the sub divisions down on Papipi Road.  Ewa Beach was surounded by endless miles of sugar cane and kiawi trees.  Oh, remember Christmas time when Santa and his sleigh with Rudolph would come down the road and throw us kids candy!  Recalling the neighbors boys playing in front of our house “sky inny” with the baseball and bat, while we played jacks or hop scotch on our sidewalk.  I almost forgot to add my Silva Store stories.  When I was about seven or so, I had a kidney problem that required me to have no salt in my diet.  My parents arranged with Mr Silva and Loves Bakery to delivery a loaf of unsalted bread once a week.  How about that!  Another story is, remember Frank Silva use to have his nice fluffy white dog that hung around the store.  Well, one day my sister was playing around with my brother walking to the store.  My brother dared her to walk backwards until they got there.  The dog was sitting outside and then my sister accidently stepped on his foot, so she was bitten on her butt.  She was taken to Ewa Hospital for a tetanus shot.  The Silva’s paid the medical bills incurred and Frank’s dog was gone from the store!  Such innocent times!  Happy memories!

    • May 8, 2015 at 7:48 am


      “Sky Inny” is actually called “Sky Inning”, meaning you keep batting the ball yourself until someone either catches it in the air, or rolls the ball downhill to your bat, and when the ball bounces off the bat, you miss catching it. Hence, that would turn over the ball to the next (opponent) player, hence the next inning in baseball vernacular. We used to play Sky Inning all the time!

      As I mentioned to Darrell Fox, did you also chase the DDT mosquito truck down Ewa Beach Road? Never had that in the neighborhood I grew up in, that’s for sure!

      • May 10, 2015 at 3:45 pm

        Yes, loved the DDT truck monthly visits down Ewa Beach Road.  Who would known that the spray was toxic!  :D. I remember how some of the neighborhood kids would follow the truck on their bikes all the way around the block.   A lot of the old families from back then still live there!

  • April 25, 2017 at 8:03 am

    I lived in Ewa Beach from 77 to 84.  We lived in the Ewa Kai apartments for awhile.  I went to Ilima and Campbell.  Stayed away from Hu’s, but Silva’s was Da kine   Tanakas almost every morning for now a laters and chico sticks.  Every day at school I got lunch from the Manapua wagons, 2 manapua, grape nehi, half moon cake.   Took Hula lessons from an old Tutu on Ewa Beach Road close to Silva’s.  Mom made me, glad I did now.  We used to cut class and go surf at Ewa park.  I cant remember his name but a big bugga come for drag us back sometimes.  As a kid I liked going to Sloop John B’s  for shirley temples and french dips.  Maybe stay next to a Woolworths then.  Not sure.  My friends dad used to take us to Waikiki, Davy Jones Locker bar under the pool, we would try to get the girls to swim by the underwater window.  Ewa was still run by a Kahuna, and they had good cock fights.  I could go on all day.  Barneys stay da kine all the time.  Aiea still had shanty town when I was there too, near Pearl City.  We’d go camping north shore, Pupukea.  We used to spend alot of time in the boonies playing in the old ww2 bunkers and tunnels.  They are everywhere.
    Shout out to Charlie Won Dok.

  • April 29, 2017 at 5:17 am

    Unfortunately, not having lived in Ewa during the “old days” I have no knowledge of the Silva or Jimmy Ha stores (or any other old landmark).  But in the 1960’s I was an avid spearfisherman with a partner of mine.  We used to go spearing outside of Ewa beach a lot and speared a lot of papio, mempachi, and even a lot of awaawa.  We also used to go spearing a lot in front of the old Kamokila Campbell Estates, sneaking in thru the brush and kiawe trees to get to the water.  Man, lots of good old memories about fishing in those areas.  I think the area that was once the Kamokila Campbell Estates is now Koolina (I think).

  • August 30, 2017 at 11:36 am


    I’m now living in Germany, but my father was stationed at Barber’s Point and we lived there and at Iroquois Point between 1969 and 1980. Before school we bought “crack seed” at Tanaka’s – a dark little hut across the street from Ilima and in the lunch break Manapua or shaved ice from the trucks parked across the street from Campbell High. Being a Haole, I also remember getting beaten up in the school bathrooms on several occations…

    My mother played softball for the “Sloop Jone B” Team and our whole family went bowling on Sundays. That is also where I was introduced to “McDonald’s” for the first time in my life. We were allowed to buy a small portion of French Fries and a Coke after our games. Sunday’s we also went to Mr. Foe’s bakery, who was a Lion’s Club friend of my father’s – back then, being a Lion’s Club member meant putting up the Christmas decorations around town, grilling a pig to raise money for the needy in Ewa Beach or doing mostly anything to help the community.

    I remember Barney’s had a window where you placed your order and then you sat at the tables outside on the corner and ate your sloppy Joe or burger. Across the street was the Ewa Beach Professional Building where Dr. Obataky(?) fixed our teeth. The dentist always wore a face mask and some magnifying glasses. I do not remember ever really seeing his face in the ten years I went there. There was a little window in the wall where the receptionist slid open a glass panel and told you to go to room one or two. Then you got some floride stuff that tasted like bubble gum put onto your teeth.

    Driving out of Barber’s Point, I remember driving through the sea of sugar cane fields that surrounded the town and Base. These giant trucks would just appear out of nowhere and disappear back into the field on the other side of the street. Scary… When they burned the fields for harvest, the sky was filled with long delicate ashes that we called “black snow”.  The long hot summer days turned the leeward side of the island into burnt grass and dust – the few rain drops that made it over the mountains we called appropriately “liquid sunshine”.

    And yes it’s true, many of my classmates did skip class after lunch to go surfing and yes the school did send someone down to the beach to herd the kids back into class. And speaking of school, I remember trying out for a new kind of sport they introduced while I was in the ninth grade. Soccer… I think it was our English or Math teacher who was named coach. She had been given a rule book and just read it to us how this game was to be played. The high-light of that season was the one game we won because the other school’s bus broke down on the way to the game and had to forfeit.

    Like 3018 F Boxer Circle, Barber’s Point is just a fond memory now – Torn down and forgotten. As I look at the maps and pictures of Ewa Beach today, it seems that once simple plantation town has grown into just another faceless suburb that could be anywhere in America – with its planned housing, golf courses and shopping centers. Admitted, it is Hawaii, but it is not really Ewa Beach anymore.

    Thank you for the memories!

    Mahalo nui loa

    • August 30, 2017 at 1:20 pm


      Wow, that was some fantastic memories you shared of living in Ewa Beach back in the day. I got all my information about Silva’s Store from a former coworker who grew up in Ewa Beach, from back in the time when you lived there.

      Again, great stories of Ewa Beach. Mahalo for sharing!

      Tasty Island

  • December 13, 2017 at 9:56 am

    I loved your store when I was growing up and living in Ewa Beach. I am ecstatic to see that it is still going. Wow lotta years. Bless you all. Since I left Hawaii in 1979 I havnt been back. My dad worked for Hawaiin Electric as far as I can remember. My mom was a dental assistant in Waipahu. I think the store looks remarkable and I wish the best for all of you who have worked hard to keep it going. My friend Billy Kaleiwahea has told me that Ewa Beach has really grown. I can look at the internet but still cant see the little things that get overlooked. Looking at the yummy sandwiches made me hungry. I miss the manapua, and all that is Hawaiian food and Your store makes me so homesick. Would love to go back just to go to Silvas Store. sincerely, a Souza girl.

  • December 13, 2017 at 11:10 am

    NJ Raven Souza,

    Mahalos for adding to the memories of Silva’s Store. Yes, Ewa Beach has grown immensely since 1979, becoming “Gentrified” with cookie-cutter housing developments right up and down Fort Weaver Road.

    If you check out the post “Oahu Eateries Memorialized” on this blog, there’s a few other notable old school eateries and establishments in Ewa Beach you may also remember, just as you also mentioned Jimmy Ha’s and the Tanaka Store.

    Old school establishements in Ewa Beach:

    • Barney’s Burger House – site of the current Ewa Beach Shopping Center, Ewa Beach / opened by Barney Arakawa, son of the founders of Arakawa’s in Waipahu; there were actually 3 Barney’s locations on Oahu; Barney also had lunchwagons; before Barney’s in Ewa Beach, it was Tropics Drive-In; specialties included Barney’s “Smashed Cow” (Bacon?) Burger, Sweet & Sour Spare Ribs / currently Shiro’s Saimin Stand
    • Casa Mia’s – Ewa Beach
    • Jimmy Ha’s – Ewa Beach Rd
    • Kam Drive Inn – Ewa Beach
    • Kaneko’s – Makule Rd, Ewa Beach (near the triangle) / saimin stand
    • Sloop John B’s – site of the Ewa Beach Shopping Center, Ewa Beach / named after the Beach Boys song; BBQ ribs, fish ‘n chips, beer; lacquered burnt plywood wall panels created a nautical theme / currently Ewa Beach Shopping Center (about where Radio Shack is)
    • Starlite Lanes – Ewa Beach / bowling alley; previously conjoined with the old Ewa Beach
    • Tanaka’s – Makule & Fort Weaver Rd, Ewa Beach / 50’s to early 60’s / currently 7-Eleven
    • Tastee Freeze – Ewa Beach (by the Chop Suey place )



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: