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Matariki Arrowtown Kā-Muriwai Set To Bring Whānau Together

Matariki Arrowtown Kā-Muriwai is returning to Buckingham Street for its third year, and alongside its new name, there is also a new event organiser and local committee.

With the theme of “Bringing Whānau Together”, the event will extend further along Buckingham Street with educational experiences in Arrowtown Athenaeum Hall, Lakes District Museum and two stages for entertainment. Buckingham Green will feature Kapa haka performances by tamariki from local preschool and schools and Library Green will showcase solo performers and poetry. Woven throughout the event line-up are educational features to learn more about Māori culture and the significance of Matariki.

Arrowtown Community Trust (ACT) secretary Nicky Busst has been involved with the Matariki event since its inception and is delighted that a committee has been brought in for the next iteration.

“The aim for 2024 is to bring Matariki back to its roots. It started as a community event with the Arrowtown Preschool over a decade ago and at its heart, it is an event by the community, for the community. We have made meaningful changes this year which we believe will surprise and delight those that visit, but especially those who have come in previous years. ACT is proud to be the main sponsor of this event and we expect Arrowtown and the wider Queenstown community will particularly enjoy the refreshed programme,” said Nicky.

Watson & Wyatt director Ann Wyatt is spearheading the Matariki Arrowtown Kā-Muriwai event preparations and says the feedback from previous years has been invaluable in evolving and future proofing the event.

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“This year we are bringing the timings forward to suit more families, with a punchier schedule between performances and the storytelling light projections, and Māori educational experiences inside and out. There is also a more diverse and plentiful kai offering, roaming entertainers and event hosts, and it truly is a chance to bring the whānau together,” she said.

Watson & Wyatt and the committee have also worked closely with local iwi to ensure the essence of Matariki is maintained and honoured throughout the event.

“Alongside celebrating the public holiday, it is a chance for people to connect – to remember the past and our tīpuna, to be present, and to also look to the future”, added Ann. “One experience I am particularly excited about which encapsulates this is Rākau takitoru/The Trio. It includes a wishing tree, memory tree, and a family tree and we will be encouraging people to leave a memory, add a photo of a family member, or leave a wish for the next year.”

Matariki Arrowtown Kā-Muriwai will run from 3:30pm until 8:30pm on Friday 28 June. The schedule will be published in May at and the event is free to attend. For those who wish to make a koha donation to go towards future Matariki Arrowtown Kā-Muriwai events, there will be koha donation buckets available.

The Arrowtown Charitable Trust would like to thank the following organisations for their generous funding and sponsorship of the event: Lottery Grants Board, Central Lakes Trust, Queenstown Lakes District Council, Community Trust Southland, New Zealand Community Trust, Arrowtown Promotion & Business Association, Ray White Arrowtown, and Millbrook Resort.

© Scoop Media

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