“We are so excited with Puanga - our Maori new year - coming to Parihaka next month. We will celebrate with festivities by lighting the first fire on Friday symbolising the star of Puanga. On Saturday we will acknowledge Matariki a constellation celebrated by other iwi and light seven fires representing each sister” says Maata Wharehoka, kaitiaki of the Parihaka marae Te Niho o Te Atiawa.
“Enjoy the rising stars performing on the stage, including superstar Mihirangi, Te Kohikohinga Kohatu and local youth.”
“This is the second time our community has come together to celebrate Puanga and we are inviting the whole region to come and join in the festivities and activities. Bring the children there will be activities for them. Once again this is a drug and alcohol free festival.”
“Puanga (Rigel) is a star that marks the Māori new year for Taranaki tribes and it’s a special time of year to give thanks to our tupuna (ancestors) and to prepare the soil for planting for the coming year. So it is fitting that after our powhiri on Friday 7 June at 5pm, we will bless our new orchard site and plant our first tree together.”
“On Saturday 8 June, we will have a busy day with a working bee in the community garden, film screenings of documentaries about passed Parihaka leaders, five workshops on maori music, art, dying and death, permaculture and Pare Kore, as well as live bands on Toroanui Marae.”
“During the day, our cooks will be busy feeding the people and showcasing some of our excellent Maori cuisine.”
“At night, we will gather around Puanga and the seven fires representing the sisters of Matariki. This will be the time for story telling, music, fun and laughter, sharing your stories, sharing your music - jam sessions welcome!”
“We are very much aware of our environmental footprint and encourage people to car-pool and also make sure to use our recycling facilities here at Parihaka.”
“Come and spend this special time of the year with us at Parihaka - Aotearoa's centre of peace. Together we can continue the legacy of our leaders, Te Whiti o Rongomai and Tohu Kakahi” concludes Maata Wharehoka.
Puanga Kai Rau