Editorial: Festival should stay in our city

By Greg Taipari

1 comment
Te Matatini national kapa haka festival at Rotorua International Stadium.
Te Matatini national kapa haka festival at Rotorua International Stadium.

What a shambles Christchurch has made of the 2015 Te Matatini Kapa Haka Festival.

The city's event organisers have managed to book two events at the one venue on the same day. In yesterday's Rotorua Daily Post, it was reported Hagley Park, the venue for Te Matatini National Kapa Haka Festival 2015, had been double booked with the opening match of the Cricket World Cup on February 14.

If only someone could come up with some way of keeping a record of an event booking so another one isn't booked on the same day. Oh wait, they have - it's called a diary.

With the two events clashing, it more than likely means Te Matatini will either move venues or have to change dates.

This means some iwi (Te Arawa included) will have to rethink their plans. Nga Uri o Te Whanoa kapa haka group leader Anaru Grant said they had already made tentative accommodation plans at a Christchurch hotel. Normally a smart move to make, even though no team is guaranteed they will qualify for the nationals, as accommodation can be hard to secure as the event draws nearer.

It's no secret I've always thought the festival should be kept here, on Te Arawa soil. In my opinion, they are the masters of hosting a kapa haka festival. Just look at this year's Te Matatini, it drew more than 40,000 people over the four-day event.

However, I do understand the reasoning behind sharing it around the regions and letting all the iwi have the chance to host.

I don't think this sort of mishap would have happened here in Rotorua.

- Rotorua Daily Post

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