Paraparaumu’s Tuki Takiwa (left) spoke for a large group of manuhiri (visitors) as Waitangi Day celebrations got underway at Campbell Park in Paekakariki.
In one of the most successful Waitangi celebrations for many years, several hundred visitors took part in a day-long event.
They were welcomed by hosts Ngāti Toa Rangatira and Paekakariki hapu Ngāti Haumia — in partnership with Te Whakaminenga o Kāpiti.
A highlight of the packed day was an historical iwi exhibition and Ta Moko demonstration in the adjhacent Paekakariki Memorial Hall — as well as a waka display, and demonstration of Ti Rakau (astick game).
Stalls dotted the periphery of the Park; and the sideshows including laughing clowns, a petting zoo, inflatable slide, bouncy castle (free), miniature train, mini-pony and cart rides.
Food stalls included a Maori hangi; paua, mussel, pipi and whitebait fritters; mussel chowder; Thai food; South African biltong, and American burgers .
Music continued right through the afternoon, as large numbers of visitors continued to arrive. Many sang along with the supergroup The Yoots in full view of Kāpiti Island — where the Treaty was signed by Te Ati Awa ki Whakarongotai, Ngāti Toa Rangatira and Ngāti Raukawa 172 years ago.
The sun shone, children, teenagers and adults from a great mix of ethnic groups mixed easily and happily.
Truly a Day to Remember!