Friday, April 24, 2015

Pasifika Festival chitchat

There's been a lot of noise in Auckland about the Pasifika Festival.
Some prominent members of the Pacific community have expressed disappointment about the event. (google the news about it coz I aint got no time for that).

The thing is,
They have a reason to be disappointed. The Festival has shifted in focus and it is now an event run by ATEED, which is a council controlled organisation under Zthe Super City.
Pacific people no longer have much say in how the event is executed and so forth.
But the reality is, the event costs a heck of a lot of money and I'm also sitting here thinking:


Another question:

"How can we channel that anger and passion towards issues that are more relevant? Why don't we have these passionate voices booming inside school halls and from church pulpits about the betterment of communities?"

Next question.

"What stops you or me from celebrating our cultures in New Zealand, as we see fit?" Nothing, Nobody stops go ahead., celebrate. There are many parks, just set up your own platform and break out into song. Easily done."

"Why are we even having this discussion here when we have elected representatives who we should be lobbying and harassing and communicating with? They are our voice and they have the power to change things at the policy/strategic level"

"Why don't we treat Pasifika Festival as part of a week which we as Pac people use to raise issues relevant to us? Treating it like a symposium type event rather than a day of dance and song and eating authentic pacific food like errr, chopsuey from china?"

"Why aren't we alerting people to climate change, the high rates of domestic violence, the prevalence of rheumatic fever among our region, the atrocities occurring next door at West Papua and so forth?"

One of the things I found amusing were the people who were saying "Where is the information?" "Why wasn't I informed"

I think we are really shit at getting ourselves informed. We suck at connecting and being involved in the world we live in. OPEN YOUR EYES and get to know your world today. Talk to your kids and read what's on community notice boards, GET ACTIVE and GET INVOLVED.

okay, may I stop here before I get my own g-strangle in a Twist.

Have a fabulous weekend peoples

History of Pasifika Festival (posted on the Auckland Council website):
The Pasifika Festival began in 1992, and has grown into one of Auckland’s biggest cultural events.
The Pasifika Festival came to life through a joint initiative between the then Auckland City Council and the South Pacific Island Nations Development Association. The Festival aimed to bring Pacific Island communities closer together and to celebrate the richness and variety of their values, culture and lifestyles. The village concept was introduced in 1998 as a way of demonstrating each Pacific Island’s diversity.
History of Pasifika
  • 1992 – First Pasifika event
  • 1993 – A Pacific Island fashion show and theatre performances were introduced. Over 20,000 people attended in only the Festival’s second year.
  • 1995 to 2000 - An estimated 30,000 to 50,000 people attended each year.
  • 2001 – A record number of people attended the Festival. The initiative to perform an opening night concert, showcasing the Pacific talent scheduled to perform on the Festival day won the Creative New Zealand’s Creative Places Award in 2001.
  • 2002 to 2004 - Community stallholder numbers exceeded 300 for the first time. It’s estimated that over $1 million changed hands during the 2002 Festival.
  • 2007 celebrated the Festival’s 15th anniversary, and Pasifika won the Best Established Event Award from NZAEP (New Zealand Association of Event Professionals).
  • 2010 – Introduced a six-day programme, including a number of ticketed events at other venues, some of the best acts from performer auditions, and 'Po' - a tribal pop opera by Mika.
  • Since 2011, Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED) has delivered the Pasifika Festival with the essential support of Auckland’s Pacific Island community. A Village co-ordinator from each Pasifika Festival village is to create approved menus; only authentic dishes that showcase traditional cuisine from the respective island nations are chosen for these menus and presented by stallholders.

Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED)

Pasifika is one of several major cultural events on Auckland’s major events calendar, forming part of Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED) summer of events, and this year the Festival is being delivered by The Orange Group.
ATEED is an Auckland Council controlled organisation that aims to improve New Zealand’s economic prosperity, by leading the successful transformation of Auckland’s economy. ATEED facilitates tourism, major events, business and industry sector development and activities to attract investment.
Find out more about ATEED
To contact Pasifika organisers email

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