Join in this year’s Waitangi Day commemorations
Waitangi Day 2016 commemorations, hosted by local iwi Te Ātiawa ki Whakarongotai in partnership with council, will give people the opportunity to reflect on what it means to be a New Zealander - past, present and future.
The free event will be held on Saturday 6 February at Whakarongotai Marae, Mahara Place, Waikanae from 10am starting with a traditional pōwhiri. This will be followed by high tea for kaumātua and dignitaries, a hāngī, live bands and kapa haka by local schools, poi making, tā moko demonstrations, children’s activities and market stalls.
There will also be a historic bus tour of the town from 2pm and nearby Mahara and Artel galleries will be showcasing local art.
“Waitangi Day is significant for all people of Aotearoa and we are pleased to recognise and commemorate with our community what it means for us, both in the past and looking forward,” says Te Ātiawa Kaumātua Chair Mahutonga Blankensop.
“It’s times like these we reflect on the whakatauaki of our Rangatira, Wi Parata Te Kākākura. Whakarongo ki ngā kupu o ngā kaumātua, kākahutia i runga i a koe, mau e hoatu ki te ao. Learn the wisdom of your elders, apply it to yourself and pass it on. This sharing of our history is symbolic of what we want to achieve through our community event.”
Mayor Ross Church says the council and local iwi have been commemorating Waitangi Day together for 14 years.
“It’s a day for our community to enjoy themselves while reflecting on the shared history of Māori and Pākehā and celebrating the diversity of Aotearoa.
“This year we will also be encouraging people to work with us to honour our role as takawaenga (guardians) of our district - our land, water and air. Council has an ongoing focus on reducing our impact on the environment and on Waitangi Day we’ll be working with Te Ātiawa to help and inspire others to live sustainably.”
This will include:
- fun activities and practical demonstrations on sustainable living
- reducing waste at the event and using recycling stations
- biking, walking or using public transport to get to the marae where possible
- showcasing how iwi and other groups are working with council to protect and enhance the local environment, including the town centre and Waikanae River
- giving free advice and information on council’s range of ‘green services’,
More information about this year’s Waitangi Day event, including information on how to buy tickets for the hāngī and register for the tour of historic sites, is available here