Muia pai te pāka o Johnson ki Kawakawa i te Rāhoroi kua hipa e te tini me te rau ki te whakanui i te reo Māori.

Oti ana te hikoi Kirihimete ki te tāone, ka whakaterehia te tuatahi o ngā ngahau e whā ko "Oho Whakarere", tōna ingoa, he kaupapa reo Māori mo te katoa ahakoa to taumata reo.

He ngahau te mahi, i uru mai te kaupapa o "reo café", nga tūnga hoko kai, me tētahi wāhi tākaro, haumaru mo ngā tamariki.

Hei tā Helen Locke, te kaiwhakarite o te rā, i oho ia i te tini o ngā tangata i hāere mai ki te noho tahi.

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Te tuarua kā tū a te 5 o Pepuere ki Waitangi, tētahi anō ki Kaikohe me Kaitaia.

Nā Ngāti Hine FM me Te Hauora o Ngāti Hine mā te āwhina a moni nei o Te Mātāwai i puta te ihu o tēnei kaupapa ki te āo.

Na Peter de Graaf ngā pikitia, na Amber Smith i whakamāori.

Hundreds of people gathered in Johnson Park after Kawakawa's Christmas parade on Saturday for the first Oho Whakarere Māori Language Festival. The event, the first of four around Northland this summer, was a chance for fluent speakers to put their reo to use and for beginners to get started. Attractions included live music, a "reo café", debates, a beginners' station, free Wi-Fi so people could access more information online, food stalls, and bouncy castles for the kids. Coordinator Helen Locke said she had hoped for 200 people so was very happy with the turnout, which was "way more than that". The next festival will take place at Waitangi on February 5; others will be held in Kaikohe and Kaitaia. The event was organised by Ngāti Hine FM and the Ngāti Hine Health Trust with funding from Te Matawai. Photos by Peter de Graaf; translation by Amber Smith.

Relda me Aaliyah he tuakana tēina, me te tamaiti o Aaliyah ko Makoare Clarke-Kopa e rua ōna tau. / Sisters Relda and Aaliyah Clarke with Aaliyah's son Makoare Clarke-Kopa, 2.
Relda me Aaliyah he tuakana tēina, me te tamaiti o Aaliyah ko Makoare Clarke-Kopa e rua ōna tau. / Sisters Relda and Aaliyah Clarke with Aaliyah's son Makoare Clarke-Kopa, 2.
August Apiata, e whā ōna tau. Pārekareka ki a ia te wāhi tākaro. / August Apiata, 4, has fun on the bouncy slide.
August Apiata, e whā ōna tau. Pārekareka ki a ia te wāhi tākaro. / August Apiata, 4, has fun on the bouncy slide.
Maryanne Baker, Astor Toia me Edward Beattie o te Hauora o Ngāti Hine. / Maryanne Baker, Astor Toia and Edward Beattie from Ngāti Hine Health Trust.
Maryanne Baker, Astor Toia me Edward Beattie o te Hauora o Ngāti Hine. / Maryanne Baker, Astor Toia and Edward Beattie from Ngāti Hine Health Trust.
Sonny Brown tekau mā rua nga tau, James Bristow, tekau, me Angela Thomson, iwa. Hāere ana mā te waka patu ahi me tana kaitaraiwa a Roger Dephoff. / Sonny Brown, 12, James Bristow, 10, and Angela Thomson, 9, get a ride in a fire engine with Roger Dephoff driving.
Sonny Brown tekau mā rua nga tau, James Bristow, tekau, me Angela Thomson, iwa. Hāere ana mā te waka patu ahi me tana kaitaraiwa a Roger Dephoff. / Sonny Brown, 12, James Bristow, 10, and Angela Thomson, 9, get a ride in a fire engine with Roger Dephoff driving.
Martin Nisbet, Gail Wilson me Helen Locke e whakakoi ana i ō rātou ārero me nga mahi ātārangi. / Martin Nisbet, Gail Wilson and Helen Locke use coloured rods to practise their reo.
Martin Nisbet, Gail Wilson me Helen Locke e whakakoi ana i ō rātou ārero me nga mahi ātārangi. / Martin Nisbet, Gail Wilson and Helen Locke use coloured rods to practise their reo.
Te pūru o Ngāti Hine a Len Bristowe e patu ana i te rakuraku. / Len Bristowe from Ngāti Hine FM plays the guitar.
Te pūru o Ngāti Hine a Len Bristowe e patu ana i te rakuraku. / Len Bristowe from Ngāti Hine FM plays the guitar.