Rotorua Weekender

Rich history the focus of Local Heritage Week

He Kete Rau Mahara Local Heritage Week

- Shauni James

Talks and events of all kinds aim to help the community take a fascinatin­g, thoughtpro­voking journey back in time next week.

For the third annual He Kete Rau Mahara Local Heritage Week, Rotorua Library, Te Aka Mauri has lined up a community-wide celebratio­n of the unique history and heritage of Rotorua.

The celebratio­ns include talks, group events, an amazing race, the museum’s special collection­s tour and a ride on a steam train.

Rotorua’s Local Heritage Week 2022 will run from Monday, November 21 to Sunday, November 27.

Abigail Wharne, Rotorua Library’s heritage and research team leader, says that for the first time, the programme extends beyond the library, with free open days at the Settlers and Steam Museum, children’s activities led by the museum team, and a oneday workshop at the Māori Land Court.

There is still a wealth of activities on-site at the library, too.

“We’re particular­ly excited to be hosting Raimona Inia, who will be discussing Mau-rākau as per the philosophi­es of Ngai Te Arawa. He was scheduled to talk last year, but Covid-19 got in the way.

“Josie Scott will be reminiscin­g about growing up in hinemutu, in conversati­on with Ann Somerville.

“We felt it was important to hear from all parts of our community, so have partnered with Rotorua Multicultu­ral Council to host a panel discussion led by members of our diverse community.”

There is also a Rotorua Heritage Road Show being held at the library on Wednesday, November 23 from 10am to 2pm.

Rotorua and District Historical Society is inviting people to bring inō a historical item to the Road Show and talk to its members about it. The members will do their best to help you find out more informatio­n.

Abigail says they are hoping the community will bring items that tell stories or hold memories.

“They don’t have to be things that have monetary value. Rather, things that are significan­t to them or their whānau. We can’t wait to see what treasures the public will bring in for the heritage roadshow.”

Another event taking place during Local Heritage Week is the Amazing Race, from 6pm to 7.30pm on Thursday, November 24 at the Government Gardens.

Teams will race against each other to find clues and get their team safely back to the start, all while uncovering the mysteries of the special, historic location.

“Government Gardens is such a beauty-filled place, filled with a rich and unique history,” says Abigail.

The Amazing Race event is suitable for eight teams with six people in a team. All children must be accompanie­d by an adult.

It is a free event, but bookings are required.

On Saturday, November 26, families can join the Rotorua Museum Te Whare Taonga o Te Arawa team in learning a selection of traditiona­l Māori games at The Arts Village.

There are two sessions; one at 10am and one at 11am. No bookings are required, and entry is free.

Throughout the week there is also activities for children in the library, waiata mai sessions, and a Māori Land Court Record Research Workshop facilitate­d by Ben Manley on Thursday, November 25.

Abigail says learning about the past helps us understand who we are today.

“The journey to the present is a fascinatin­g one, filled with rich and thought-provoking narratives.

“By celebratin­g our local heritage, we solidify connection­s to the place we call home, and better understand the people we live alongside.”

If any local groups or organisati­ons are keen to be involved next year, they can reach out to the library’s Heritage and Research Team at Library. Heritagean­

For a full programme of events, go to the Rotorua Library, Te Aka Mauri website: www.rotorualib­

 ?? Photo / Andrew Warner ?? Abigail Wharne, Rotorua Library heritage and research team leader.
Photo / Andrew Warner Abigail Wharne, Rotorua Library heritage and research team leader.

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