Fireworks will become a spectacular beacon of light in July to mark Matariki in Hawke's Bay.
Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi Inc is mounting Matariki 2020 Fireworks, the first fireworks displays in the country since lockdown on March 23. Matariki fireworks displays in Auckland and Wellington have been cancelled due to the covid pandemic.
Fireworks to mark Matariki is a 20-year tradition we want to continue in Hawke's Bay.
It's a fantastic way of bringing together thousands of our members and the public in a shared experience to welcome the Maori new year, give thanks for the harvest and remember loved ones. We are currently enjoying level 1 after several weeks of lockdown and these events are a symbolic way to uplift our spirits after this traumatic experience.
This year's celebration has been stripped down to the bare essentials as we lost $56,000 funding due to the covid impacts on our funders.
There will be food trucks, DJ music, large screen and fireworks display to music.
To keep everyone safe we have placed QR Code posters on all food trucks. These are used in conjunction with the government covid phone app for contact tracing.
We are providing hands-free sanitisers at all entry gates. These are mounted on foot-operated stands.
We are broadcasting the whole event live on FM 87.5 so the public can tune in on their car radios from event carparks and nearby roads up to 2km away.
Our organisation has contributed $65,000 to the three events and Te Puni Kokiri has given a grant of $10,000. Napier City Council has provided funding from its Covid Recovery Fund for the Matariki Napier soundshell event.
Matariki 2020 Fireworks is free to the public and is on Friday, July 3 at Dannevirke Showgrounds; Friday, July 10 at Showground Hawke's Bay Hastings and Saturday, July 18 at Sound Shell, Marine Parade, Napier. Gates open 4.30pm. Fireworks at 6pm.
• Te Rangi Huata is event manager for Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi Inc