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Giant ram lantern to be displayed at festival

Council announces giant ram lantern to be displayed at festival

Auckland City Council is delighted to announce the inclusion of a giant ram lantern in this weekend’s Asia 2000 Lantern Festival.

Councillor Mark Donnelly, chairperson of the council’s Strategy and Governance committee, says the lantern is a gift from Auckland’s sister city in China, Guangzhou, also known as the City of Rams.

The lantern depicts two lambs, a ram and the God of Fortune who blesses the people with gifts of gold coins. It stands four metres high and is five metres long. The lantern took one month to make by hand and has over 200 bulbs illuminating it.

“This year is the Year of the Sheep and this makes the public display of the council’s ram lantern even more special. It is a gift from the city and people of Guangzhou and is symbolic of the close cultural links that Auckland City has forged through its sister city relationships programme,” Councillor Donnelly says.

Auckland City has five sister cities. The Auckland – Guangzhou Agreement was signed in 1989 to encourage co-operation in trade, science, technology, culture, arts, education, sport, tourism, and municipal administration.

The Asia 2000 Lantern Festival will take place in Albert Park from 5pm to 10.30pm on 14 - 16 February 2003. It is the fourth to be held by the Asia 2000 Foundation in partnership with Auckland City Council. Last year’s festival attracted more than 100,000 people.

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