Get ready for Diwali Festival
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.’’