The first two events celebrating New Zealand's cultural diversity will be taking place this weekend after multiple events were cancelled following the Christchurch terror attacks.
Auckland Council has confirmed that both the Diversity Festival at Hayman Park, Manukau, and the Auckland International Cultural Festival at the Mt Roskill War Memorial Park will be going ahead.
Following the Christchurch mosque shootings on March 15 several cultural events around the country had been cancelled.
Among them were the Auckland Pasifika Festival, Polyfest, the Wellington Pride Festival hikoi, and Out in the Park.
But Otara-Papatoetoe local board chair Lotu Fuli said she was glad this weekend's events were going ahead, as they displayed the "true picture of New Zealand".
"This is who we are, a nation that embraces different cultures," Fuli said.
"By celebrating these cultures ... we are reminding and reassuring our communities that they are, and will always be, part of us."
She said safety of people would remain a top priority at the local board-backed Diversity Festival.
"I have been informed by the organisers that proper security measures will be in place and police teams will be present on the day," she added.
Festival organiser Rana Judge said the Otara-Papatoetoe Local Board made a decision to go ahead with the event after speaking with the police.
However, he said some Muslim groups had pulled out because they felt "uncomfortable to be celebrating" after what happened in Christchurch.
"We don't think going ahead with the event is in any way being disrespectful, but rather a way of bringing our communities together," Judge said.
"Learning and understanding about the various cultures that live among us is an important step we must take in moving forward."
Festival highlights include cultural and ethnic fashion shows, food stalls, dance competitions and celebrity meet-ups.
Rasli Ramlan, 39, deputy chair of Malaysian group Anak Malaysia di New Zealand, said he saw the group's participation in the Auckland International Cultural Festival as a "new beginning".
"Most of us still feel sad about what happened in Christchurch, but we are feeling safe because the police and New Zealanders have made us feel safe," Rasli said.
"After discussing with the group, we decided that celebrating diversity and promoting cultural understanding is what's most important after what has happened."
The group hoped to share Malaysian culture through cultural dance performances, traditional games and a costume parade.
Sunday's cultural festival, which is in its 20th year, will feature food, dances and games from 56 countries.
Food on offer include South East Mediterranean Nomadic cuisine, Hungarian goulash to Chilean delights and Spanish paella.
Entertainment will include cultural performances, a Chinese face-changing opera and Taiko drummers.
A new activity to be introduced this year is Huger Ball, a bouncy ball form of football by Refugees as Survivors, a group that had been instrumental in establishing the first Auckland International Cultural Festival.
"We think it's important to recognise and acknowledge our cultural differences and come together as one," said Auckland Council events manager David Burt.
"The festival reflects contemporary Auckland and we want people to enjoy each other's company through music, dance, food and a touch of sport."
Saturday April 6, 10 am to 5pm
Hayman Park, Manukau
AUCKLAND INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL FESTIVAL
Sunday April 7, 10am to 5pm
Mt Roskill War Memorial park