Cel­e­brat­ing Wai­tangi Day

Upper Hutt Leader - - OUT & ABOUT -

It was a day full of cel­e­bra­tions at the Oron­go­mai Marae as it cel­e­brated Wai­tangi Day with an open day.

Food was cooked for visi­tors on the day and proved pop­u­lar among the crowds.

‘‘The hangis were the first to go,’’ Kaimahi Cameron Ka­pua-Mor­rell said.

About 500 peo­ple stopped by the marae through­out the day with peo­ple drop­ping in and out to see a range of cul­tural shows.

Ka­pua-Mor­rell said it was amaz­ingto see so many peo­ple of dif­fer­ent cul­tures and back­grounds come to­gether to cel­e­brateWai­tangi Day.

‘‘There were peo­ple from eastern Su­dan, main­land China and Hong Kong. The day wasn’t just for us, it was for ev­ery­one,’’ he said.

Three or four kapa haka groups per­formed at the marae, in­clud­ing one from St Bernard’s Col­lege. Five­piece coun­try band Rimu­taka Trail Group also came along for a con­cert and spent some time tak­ing re­quests for songs from the crowd.

Peo­ple gath­ered to watch a bright dis­play of Chi­nese danc­ing too, as the Ori­en­tal Cul­tural and Per­form­ing Arts group put on a per­for­mance.

Ka­pua-Mor­rell said the amount of peo­ple at the day was in­cred­i­ble to see.

‘‘It was a sig­nif­i­cant dif­fer­ence, far greater than we have had in re­cent years. The last time we had that amount of peo­ple was three or four years ago.’’

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