The food service business of Harada Enterprises was founded in 1935 in the Central Oahu Community of Wahiawa, Hawaii. It started as a small restaurant called "Sukiyaki Inn" which served such local favorites as saimin, hamburgers, and other American and Japanese dishes.
In 1938, the increased military population and related growth in economic activity created the opening of an outdoor roller skaing rink called "Wahiawa Amusement Center." A year later, "Dots Drive Inn" was bulit to accomodate the skaters at the same location on the cornmer of Mango Street and Kilani Avenue.
The 1940s brought about changes and horizontal growth of their businesses. The war forced the closure of the skating rink resulting in the opening of an express service (trucking) and a grocery store. The popularity and growth of clientele led to further expansion of Dots into a 4200 square feet facility which featured a dining room, cocktail lounge, and a car-hop service.
The grocery store flourished and in 1947, moved to a larger facility in central Wahiawa. The market was named "Marigold Market" which also encompassed the rental of approximately 25 businesses and single family dwellings on a 15 acre parcel.
A 5800 square foot banquet facility was added to the restaurant in the early 1950s which featured top entertainers of the islands and the Pacific Basin. The facility served as a center point of gathering for the Central and Leeward communities. The restaurant also expanded through the acquisition of another facility of similar size in the North Shore area which was named "Marians at Haleiwa."
Further growth and changes of the surrounding communities led to a corresponding change in the businesses. Dots underwent a major renovation in the mid 60s to a full service sit down restaurant with a larger cocktail lounge and an expanded banquet facility. In the late 1960s, Marians at Haleiwa was relocated to Wahiawa to facilitate logistic problems of its emphasis in island wide catering.
The 1980s brought about a new 6000 square foot kitchen for Marians in Wahiawa to accomodate the increase demand for catered food service throughout the island and the ever growing tourist industry. The opportunity of providing fast food service thorugh a brand new 1400 square foot facility on a prime spot of Kuhio beach, in the heart of Waikiki, was one of the high points of the food service experience in the early 1980s.
Our long successful record of planned steady growth in the rapidly growing local and transcient communities of the islands have resulted in a solid foundation of experience and expertise in the food and related service industries. The consistency of existing, and influx of, new management working toward a common goal has insured the stability of our organization.
Shio Sakata was born on September 23, 1889 in Okashoji, Japan. She left Yatsushiro Gun Ryu Homura at the young age of 17 years old to be the picture bride of Yujiro Harada. She arrived on the Hong Kong Maru in 1907 and got married immediately.
Three weeks after her arrival, she started working for Hawaiian Pine. Her employment lasted for two years.
She then decided to open up a wholesale vegetable business in Honolulu. On the side, when time was available, she made tofu and sold it. She ran this business for two long years working diligently.
In the meanwhile, her husband, Yujiro invested in six acres of land for a watermelon business. Working hard daily, he produced fruitful melons only to be damaged by a big storm.
Therefore, Shio closed down her wholesale vegetable business and went to work for a family, until two weeks prior to the birth of their first child, a daughter, Marian Tsuruko. They then resided in an apartment housing on King Street.
Soon after, Yujiro got a job at the Waihole Tunnel so they relocated out there. He worked there for two years and when Shio got pregnant, they moved back to Honolulu. They were overjoyed at the birth of twin boys, Walter Gunki and Kenneth Gunji on August 31, 1914.
Fortunately, Yujiro got a job at Dole Pineapple immediately. In 1916, another son, Gunzo was born. Shortly after, the four children were sick constantly so they decided to move to the country. They lived in Leilehua and he worked as a watchman for the water tower. Soldiers were starting to come in so he lost his job and relacated his family to Camp 9, now Pomoho.
He worked as a "Luna" for California Packing Corp. until the contract expired. There they lost their son, Gunzo. But in 1920 their second daughter, Dorothy Yoshiko was born.
Moving to Wahiawa with their twin boys and two daughters, they started farming strawberries and various vegetables. They had two more sons, George Kenzo in 1924 and Takio in 1927.
Their eldest daughter, Marian, then 12 years old graduated from elementary school and went to sewing school in Honolulu for one year. She returned home to help her mother up the birth of their seventh child, Margaret Shizue in 1929.
Marian found a job at Schofield and worked at the laundry for five years. Being the oldest, she had to supplement the family income so also took on a night job at Sukiyaki Inn as a waitress.
One day, Margaret Itagaki approached Marian and asked if she'd be interested in working at Kemoo Farm Restaurant. After contemplating, she decided to take her offer so she could educated herself. She learned alot about table etiquette, food service and the business as a whole. She worked there for eight months learning daily. Those hard eight month had given her some knowledge towards building a successful business.
In 1935, Mrs. Kezuka, owner of Sukiyaki Inn approached Shio and Marian. She wanted to return to Japan and needed to sell Sukiyaki Inn. Marian wanted this opportunity to have a business despite her young age. She agreed to work for the rest of her life is she couldn't pay for it. Mother believed in Marian and managed to come up with the loans to purchase Sukiyaki Inn.
Shio Harada owned the Inn, but it was managed by Marian since she was only 20 years old. Father and mother worked long hours daily preparing and cooking meals. The twins helped out after their regular jobs.
The outdoork skating rink was opened in 1938 after Marian got the idea from the G.I.s from Schofied. A year later, Dot's Drive inn was built accomodating the skaters. marian had her sister Dorothy Yoshiko as assistant manager.
The war broke out and forced the outdoor skating rink to close. Dot's Inn was able to operate during the black out. They served food to the military and works who were constructing army housing.
Mr. Okumura, who worked for the Agricultural Extension Service asked Marian to open up a loading station. she had to travel around the island picking up vegetables to supply the army hospital and community.
Before the war ended, Marian decided to turn the loading station into a small market. When the war ended, she had to give up both the loading station and market.
The idea of a small market stuck in her mind, and in 1947 she opened Marigold Market. Her sister Margaret helped her brother Water, who managed and operated the market until 1971. Her brothers George and Takio also helped in all the business ventures.
Marian then bought a banquet hall after the war, in back of Dot's Drive Inn. She used it as a night club bringing in entertainers from Japan and the mainland in 1954. It was also used for dancing.
in 1956, she ventured out again and opened up Marian's at Haleiwa, where she served tourists and locals for eleven years. But the daily commute became a burden and she decided to concentrate on the catering business which started to flourish.
Her catering business grew so much that she decided her facilities in back of Dot's were inadequate. In 1980 she built a spacious kitchen with first-class equipment.
Today, Marian's and Dots employs dozens of people and their success is directly related to the help and support of family members throughout the years.