Get ready for Di­wali Fes­ti­val

Auckland City Harbour News - - NEWS -

Ex­pe­ri­ence all the sights, sounds tastes and tra­di­tions of In­dia at this year’s Auck­land Di­wali Fes­ti­val on Oc­to­ber 11-12.

The event is sup­ported by me­dia part­ner Fair­fax Me­dia – owner of the Auck­land City Har­bour News – and runs from noon to 9pm in and around Aotea Square and Queen St in the cen­tral city. It is or­gan­ised by Auck­land Tourism, Events and Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment (ATEED) in part­ner­ship with the Asia New Zealand Foun­da­tion.

ATEED chief ex­ec­u­tive Brett O’Ri­ley says: ‘‘Di­wali Fes­ti­val gives our large and vi­brant In­dian com­mu­nity an op­por­tu­nity to come to­gether and share this much-loved cul­tural tra­di­tion with all Auck­lan­ders in a truly joy­ful oc­ca­sion that the whole fam­ily will love.’’

Asia New Zealand Foun­da­tion chair­man Phillip Burdon says Di­wali is an an­cient Hindu fes­ti­val that has been em­braced by other faiths.

‘‘The fes­ti­val was cel­e­brated pri­vately in New Zealand homes for decades – with fam­i­lies light­ing small oil lamps and can­dles around their homes to sig­nify the tri­umph of light over dark­ness – be­fore the Asia New Zealand Foun­da­tion ini­ti­ated the first ma­jor pub­lic cel­e­bra­tion in 2002 in part­ner­ship with Auck­land Coun­cil.

‘‘Since then the fes­ti­val has grown in size and di­ver­sity, thanks to the con­tri­bu­tions of Auck­land’s In­dian com­mu­nity which num­bered more than 106,000 at the time of the 2013 cen­sus.’’

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