Mangawhai Beach was alive with the rousing sights and sounds of mass kapa haka recently, when the village primary school played host to the annual Kaipara Festival on Saturday, November 11.
The school welcomed 19 different groups from primary schools and colleges throughout the region, from Auckland’s North Shore to the far reaches of Northland and
everywhere in between.
After a traditional Maori welcome and blessing through Mangawhai Beach School’s new waharoa, or entrance-way, there was a constant display of performance and song from students throughout the day until late afternoon. Performers wore stunning costumes and impressive moko face stencils.
School principal Aaron Kemp says it was a fabulous day.
“It was a fantastic event, everything went really well,” he says. “This is our third year of taking part, and out first year of hosting. Because of our new waharoa, which was installed this year, we thought it would be a great way to promote Maori culture.
“It’s something we’ve always wanted to do, so we put our hand up.”