Island Snow

Yu Shing Ting
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Wednesday - September 02, 2009

After nearly three decades in business, Island Snow founder and president James Kodama has decided to semi-retire and keep only one of his stores open, the “fun beach store” located in his hometown of Kailua.

At one time, there were Island Snow stores in Hawaii Kai, Mililani, Ala Moana and Waikiki. The company started as a shave ice store that also carried “cool” clothing and eventually became one of the popular places to find the latest surfwear, snowboard gear and streetwear.


It also received national attention when President Barack Obama and daughters Sasha and Malia stopped by the Kailua store last December for shave ice. Employees recall his order as choo-choo cherry, tangy guava-orange and da-kine lemon lime.

But despite the great exposure, Kodama, a 1971 Kailua High School graduate, has chosen the more quiet route. He now spends his days “relaxing, enjoying life and chilling” with wife Lisa and sons Adam and Brockton.

Island Snow continues to carry exclusively the Island Snow, SRF and Kailua Boys clothing lines on a limited basis, and recently became the only Oakley sunglasses dealer in Kailua. Island Snow is located at 130 Kailua Road. For more information, call 263-6339 or visit its online store at

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