Press Release – Auckland Tourism Events and Economic Development
Aucklanders can get ready to island hop til they drop on 8 and 9 March as Western Springs Park is transformed into 11 Pacific Island villages for Pasifika Festival 2014. The event is the biggest celebration of Pacific Island culture and heritage …Aucklanders can get ready to island hop ‘til they drop on 8 and 9 March as Western Springs Park is transformed into 11 Pacific Island villages for Pasifika Festival 2014.
The event is the biggest celebration of Pacific Island culture and heritage in the world, giving people the chance to experience the sights, sounds, tastes and colours of the Pacific – without even leaving Auckland.
Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED) manages the delivery of the festival with the essential support of representatives from the local Pacific Island communities.
ATEED Chief Executive Brett O’Riley says the event is a coming together of Auckland’s Pacific Island communities to celebrate their identity in the largest pacific city in the world.
“For the first time in the festival’s 22-year-history we welcome a new island nation – Hawaii – to the festival family, alongside Aotearoa, Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati, Niue, Samoa, Tahiti, Tokelau, Tonga and Tuvalu,” says Mr O’Riley.
“With 1000 performers on 11 stages, 200 food and craft stalls cooking up over 150 different food dishes for two days in one place, Pasifika is set to be a fantastic event.”
Saturday 8 March will be a day of high energy and bustling markets. As well as main stage performances and incredible island flavours, visitors can see demonstrations, such as traditional tattooing, and take part in workshops to learn authentic island crafts and customs, including garland making and drumming.
Workshops will take place in each village at their uniquely decorated fale – the traditional meeting place in any Pacific Island community.
Sunday 9 March will start with an interdenominational church service and have a more laid back programme of entertainment including church choral groups – reflecting the values of faith and family that are celebrated throughout Pacific Island communities on a Sunday.
ATEED acknowledge the support of sponsors AUT, 2degrees, Tip Top, Pepsi (Frucor), Pacific Media Network, Mai FM and Fairfax Media and supporters GLO-BUG and Mercury Energy, Hawaii Tourism Oceania, US Embassy and More FM.