Coming Up: events to support Edgecumbe & Matariki around the Bay


It’s mid-May – another stunningly clear, cold day. The leaves on the trees outside the Greerton Library are at their rust, orange and yellow brightest. I’ve just had morning tea in the French-style cafe, Le Chat Noir – biggest gluten-free chocolate chip and nutella shortbread – a total yes. I’m starting with events being held for Edegecumbe and surrounding districts. – while they’re not the only things on around the Bay – they most probably the most important. I’ve also tried to give you an idea of what’s happening for Matariki around the Bay. Big town Rotorua has an extensive programme, as does Tauranga, but check out what’s happening in some of our smaller towns. And take a look at the Wairoa Maori Film Festival – 2-5 June 2017 – it’s the last item of this article. Don’t forget it’s the final four weeks of Paradox indoors at the Tauranga Art Gallery.      Keep warm and remember that you can join ARTbop’s email distribution list by entering your details on the website:

Our featured image is the work of ARTbop’s John Baxter – painter, photographer, musician and Music Manager at The Incubator arts collective, The Historic Village, Tauranga

Work by Baxter shown in the recent Macandmor exhbition Ultra Modern Unit photo Macandmor Gallery



The Kawerau Drive-In Movie Night is a fundraiser for the Edgecumbe Flood Night Patrol.

We are putting on two awesome Drive in Movies at Adventure Hub Firmin Field in Kawerau next week to raise funds for the Edgecumbe Flood Night Patrol crew who keep Edgecumbe properties safe every night until the owners can return.

The gates open at  5pm on both nights & movies start at 6.30pm. There will be food vendors on site for your dinner & movie snacks. Please come at 5pm so we can have all the cars parked before the movie starts!

Entry Fee: GOLD COIN DONATION (All proceeds go directly  to Edgecumbe Flood Night Patrol)

Movie 1 – Moana – 5pm Thursday 25th May 2017

Movie 2 – Hunt for the Wilderpeople – 5pm Friday 26th May 2017

For more information visit the Kawerau District Council website.

Oho Ake – Rise Up Concert

27 May 2017 at Te Teko Racecourse.

Oho Ake (Rise Up) Concert is a collective effort created to uplift the Mauri of the whanau and rohe affected by the recent floods. All proceeds from the day will go to whanau who have been affected by the floods.

 The Concert will feature live bands, Tamariki Zone, Kai Stalls, Kaumatua Lounge, Dance Crew, Kapa Haka and more. 

Gold coin donation appreciated.   For more information visit the page on Facebook
Seussical The Musical – Whakatane Theatre Company

Litttle Theatre Short Street Whakatane  and Horizon Energy present Seussical!

This is a musical based on the works of Dr Seuss. The story weaves together his most famous tales and characters in unexpected ways. Some will fall in love, some will have desperate adventures and some will save the world. And they travel everywhere from the jungle of Nool to McEliigott’s Pool to Palm Beach. Dr Seuss believes in the pure power of imagination. Seussical incorporates elements of at least 15 of Dr Seuss’ books as well as many of his characters.

ADULT $35.00
CHILD 18 years & under $19.00

Tickets available from or Whakatane i-site Information Centre.

The Office Open Mic Night at 82 The Strand, Whakatane

Repeats every week every Thursday until Sun Dec 31 2017

Open Mic Nights at The Office Bar and Grill, every Thursday night.  Come along and be a star! With support from our full house band.  Stand up comedy, singing, poetry and more.  Prizes for the best act.  8.30pm – 11.30pm with Karaoke from 11.30pm until late. The Office Bar & Grill 82 The Strand Whakatane

Official Book Launch: STUCK at the Whakatane Library and Exhibition Centre, Sunday 28th May 12.30pm to 1.30pm

Join us for the official launch of my first book, ‘STUCK – Friends, Lovers and The Obscurity of In Between’. Pre-orders are welcome and we will also have copies available for sale at the launch.$20 RRP Cash only at the launch You can also pre-order through

Contact Email Contact Phone 0211890814 Website fivefootronna creative      

Whakatane Library and Exhibition Centre  49 Kakahoroa Drive Whakatane


The work of chalk artists Matthew Gallelli, Matariki Tauranga 2016

Celebrate Matariki in Murupara (an event for whanau & carers with tamariki (0-6years)

Nga mihi ki a koutou,

Matariki is a celebration of people, language, spirituality and history. Each year in the month of June, we celebrate Matariki with an event that involves gathering together for music, dance, fun activities and kai (food). Matariki provides an ideal opportunity for everyone to participate and share in this special time of celebration and to enjoy the activities associated with Matariki.

Our celebration for Matariki in Murupara is on Wednesday 29th June 2016 starting at 10am – 1pm at the Murupara Sport Pavilion.

This event is for whanau and carers with tamariki 0-6 years old. Bring the tamariki along to engage with the Matariki themed activities. Lunch will be provided for everyone (Lunch served at 1pm).

For more information contact Rebecca at EastBay REAP, 07 366 5784.

Matariki events in Rotorua

One of the pieces of sculpture you can see all year round in the Sulphur Lake Sculpture Trail, Government Gardens Rotorua photo Lee Switzer

Join us in celebrating Matariki, with a range of FREE events around the region.

Matariki Star Search 2017 Auditions

Ngā Pūmanawa e Waru and Rotorua Library bring you Matariki Star Search 2017.

If you are aged from 8 to 18 years and live in the Rotorua District, you could sing, dance or perform your way to being this year’s Matariki Star Search winner. Noel Leeming Vouchers valued at $1,000 for the winners and $500 for the runners-up in each category.

Auditions: 6 to 15 June
Auditions on 8 June and 15 July are open to the public. Venue to be confirmed.
Finale: 19 July 2017 – Sir Howard Morrison Performing Arts Centre

Check the website for more information

Matariki Parade Art Sessions

Matariki Parade HQ, 1139 Pukuatua Street  

In the lead up to Matariki and the Matariki All Stars Parade, get crafty with weekly parade art sessions. Go crazy with cardboard… make costumes, giant constructions, hats, masks, animals and flying beasts.

Masks & Hats Workshop
Thursday 8 June, 4pm – 7pm

Backpacks & Wings Workshop
Friday 9 June, 4pm – 7pm

Lantern Workshop
Saturday 10 June, 10am – 3pm
Go to their Facebook page for more information

Matariki Whānau Day

Sunday 11 June, 10am – 3pm
Te Rūnanga Tea House, Government Gardens

Hosted by Rotorua Museum, bring the whanau along for a fun day of Matariki-themed crafts, storytelling, face painting, colouring and more.

Check out the event listing for more information

Messy Church Matariki

Sunday 11 June, 4pm – 6pm
St Lukes Anglican Church, 1223 Amohia Street, Rotorua
Enjoy Matariki activities, crafts and worship, with a light meal provided.
  Families and all ages welcome.
Contact: Jocelyn Czerwonka
P. 027 211 4440 or 07 348 5390

Stars for Stars

Friday 16 June, 12noon – 5pm
Māori Weaving Rotorua, 1144 Hinemoa Street, Rotorua

Celebrate the Māori New Year by learning how to make a star from native NZ flax to take away with you. Suitable for all ages and all materials provided.

Matariki @ the Night Market

Thursday 15 June, 5pm – 9pm
Tutanekai Street

Soak up the flavour of the night market with local kai (food) music and dance, along with a touch of Matariki seasoning. Discover what’s happening around Rotorua during Matariki, and enjoy special Matariki night lights and entertainment.

Matariki All Stars Parade

Friday 16 June, 7pm – 9pm
Tutanekai St & Village Green

Enjoy the festive atmosphere of Rotorua’s Matariki celebrations in this fun-filled evening of colour, noise and stars. Join the parade of lanterns through the city centre collecting specially themed Matariki stars along the way to make up the star cluster of Matariki. Starting at the Arts Village the parade finishes at the Village Green with music, entertainment and a magical fireworks display.

Go to their Facebook page for more information

Giant Haka – Guinness World Record Attempt

Saturday 17 June. Gates open & entertainment from 1030am. Haka starts 12noon The Village Green, Rotorua Lakefront
Come down to the Village Green and be part of this history-making attempt to perform the world’s largest haka. We need as many people as possible to participate in the famous Ka
 Mate haka – instructions will be given on the day. Our Facebook event is a great place to share practice tips, so no need to worry if you don’t know it yet!

Go to the Facebook event for more information

NZMACI 50th Celebrations – Matariki

Te Puia | New Zealand Maori Arts & Crafts Institute, Rotorua

All events are free for locals with a whānau card. Otherwise standard admission charges apply (see for admission charges).

Matariki Lectures
Monday 19 June – Friday 23 June, 9am
Learn about the history and traditions of Matariki in these fascinating lectures

Live Tā Moko Demonstrations
Monday 19 June – Sunday 25 June, 10am – 5pm
Watch tā moko practitioners in action and learn about the designs and techniques from the artists.
Tā Moko Lectures
Monday 19 – Friday 23 June, 12.30pm
Learn about the history and traditions of tā moko from respected practitioners of the art form.

Matariki Whakaari (Play)
Monday 19 – Friday 23 June, 11am and 1pm and Monday 26 – Friday 30 June, 11am only
A special one hour long Matariki Whakaari (play) presented by Ahorangi Genesis for primary school students.
Manutukutuku making (Kite making)
Monday 26 – Friday 30 June, 10am – 5pm
Traditionally kites were flown for recreation but also served other purposes; to predict whether an attack on an enemy would be successful, for communication, and they were also flown to celebrate the Māori New Year.

The Astronomy of Matariki

Talk and book signing with Dr Rangi Mātāmua
Thursday 22 June, doors open 6pm for 6.30pm start
Sir Howard Morrison Performing Arts Centre, Fenton Street

Hosted by Rotorua Museum, acclaimed Māori astronomer Dr Rangi Mātāmua (Ngai Tūhoe), talks about Matariki from its early origins to the place it has in society today. The talk will finish with the opportunity to purchase a signed copy of Dr Mātāmua’s recently published book Matariki: The Star of the Year.
Check out the event listing for more information

Matariki Open Day

Eastern Suburbs Pre-School
Tuesday 20 June & Thursday 22 June, 8.30am – 11.30am
10/12 Bronte Place, Owhata, Rotorua

Fun Matariki activities for children up to five years old, with a morning tea for parents and whānau.

P. 07 345 5988

Matariki Rotorua Art Exhibition

Friday 23 June – Sunday 29 July
Penny Haka Gallery, 9 Tryon Street, Rotorua

With a special opening from 6pm on Friday 23 June, this exhibition includes works by New Zealand and international artists. A Matariki calendar is also available for purchase.

Guest speaker evenings (5pm – 7pm) include Friday 30 June, Friday 7 July, Friday 14 July, Friday 21 July. Closing night on Sunday 29 July, 6pm – 10pm, will include a 3D projection, movies and activities. Food will be available for purchase on these event evenings.

Matariki Celebration | A Group Exhibition

Friday 27 June – Tuesday 1 August
Helium Gallery, 1155 Hinemoa Street, Rotorua

Helium Gallery’s Matariki exhibition brings together local artists in a show of affordable artworks.
Artists were given a template and, within that, the freedom to create whatever they wished. The result is a diverse exhibition with the unique opportunity to acquire an original artwork for $200 or less.

Helium Gallery

Matariki Star Search 2017 Finale

Wednesday 19 July, 6pm
Sir Howard Morrison Performing Arts Centre

Following the huge success of last year’s event, Ngā Pūmanawa e Waru and Rotorua Library bring you Matariki Star Search 2017. The evening will include a range of performances in this fantastic showcase of Rotorua youth.
Check out the website for more information

One of Rotorua’s premier events for talented youth, Matariki Star Search, is back and promises to be even better than last year.

Organised by Ngā Pūmanawa e Waru and Rotorua Library, Matariki Star Search 2017 is open to singers, dancers and performers aged from 8-18 years living in the Rotorua district.

Prizes are reflective of the calibre of the event with:
$1000 Noel Leeming voucher going to the winner
$500 vouchers for the runner-up in each of the three categories
$250 Noel Leeming voucher will also go to the People’s Choice Award winner on the night of the finale.

New categories have been added this year and individuals, duos and groups can enter in singing, dance or ngā mahi a rēhia o te ao (global performing arts) categories.

The Ngā mahi a Rēhia category has been extended to include performing arts that draw on cultural traditions from anywhere in the world, including Māori and Pasifika performing arts.

Entries for Matariki Star Search 2017 are now open and close Monday 22 May 2017.
Auditions will be held between 6 and 15 June 2017 at Rotorua Library and the finale will be at the Sir Howard Morrison Performing Arts Centre on Wednesday 19 July 2017 at 6pm.

Download an entry form or pick one up from Rotorua Library or Ngā Pūmanawa e Waru in the ANZ Building, Rotorua Central Mall.


Matariki Tauranga Moana 2017: Kai and Kites

Memories of My Mother’s Piupiu: Storytelling Tauranga artist Deborah Forkert photo Lee Switzer

Each year, the winter stars of Matariki signal the arrival of the Māori New Year. Traditionally, the rise of Matariki was a sign to ensure food crops had been harvested and the storehouses were well-stocked for the coming year. Matariki also brought communities together to share and to learn from each other. Nowadays, Matariki has become a time of revitalisation and resurgence of te reo Māori and mātauranga Māori traditions. Matariki is an opportunity to reflect and celebrate our history and make plans for the new layers of our future. In doing so, we acknowledge our traditions, language and culture, which gives us a sense of who we are.

Matariki Tauranga Moana invites everyone to discover the significance of Matariki and explore ways to observe the Māori New Year with whānau and friends.  Matariki Tauranga Moana 2017 will see the city come alive with a four-week programme of events including live performances, exhibitions, lectures and storytelling, family events, kite making and flying, art workshops and demonstrations, nature walks and celestial navigation. Come along and learn about what Matariki means for our city and our people.

Residents and visitors will be spoilt for choice with more than 25 Matariki-themed events, exhibitions and workshops across Tauranga Moana. 

The four-week programme includes a variety of exhibitions, live performances, library lectures for adults and storytelling for little ones. Join one of the Incubator’s art workshops and demonstrations celebrating Maori artists and their art forms. Step outdoors and enjoy an early morning walk up Otanewainuku or Mauao, and learn about celestial navigation. Take the family along to the Te Puna i Rangiriri Trust’s Matariki marquee at the base of Mauao, or to Ferguson Park to watch some amazing kites fly high above. Head out on a two-day cultural training, or join EmployNZ in an interactive workshop for rangatahi (youth).
There will be something for everyone, young or older. Things to learn, things to do, things to discover and things to inspire. 

Find all event details and booking information at

Join us on Wednesday, 24 May at 5.30pm for the launch of Matariki at the Simpson Grierson Gallery (Creative Bay of Plenty, 95 Willow Street). 

The Matariki 2017 programme of events is proudly brought to you and supported by Tauranga City Libraries, Baycourt, Te Puna i Rangiriri Trust, the Incubator, Department of Conservation, EmployNZ, Ngai Te Rangi, Creative Bay of Plenty, Tauranga City Council and Western Bay of Plenty District Council

Nau Mai! Nau Mai! Haere Mai! Wairoa Maori Film Festival 2017!

Deborah Forkert Memories of My Mother’s Piupiu: Dawn Photo Lee Switzer

Join us for the 12th annual Wairoa Maori Film Festival, to be held at Kahungunu Marae (War Memorial Hall), Nuhaka, and Gaiety Theatre. Wairoa, from Friday, June 2 to Monday, June 5.

We have a full weekend of films in Nuhaka, and an exciting Wairoa Maori Film Awards event in Wairoa!

Ticket costs:
A full Festival Pass and tickets to the Wairoa Maori Film Awards can be pre-purchased online.
All other tickets are door sales as follows:
Kahungunu Marae – Day Pass (films) $10 (Friday night, Saturday or Sunday)
Marae Stay $25 night. Meals at the marae are $10 each.
Gaiety Theatre – Feature Films $10, Short Films $5

Here is the line-up of events at the Wairoa Maori Film Festival. Our full film programme will be launched in late April.

Friday, June 2:
Kahungunu Marae, Nuhaka
3 pm Official Festival Powhiri
6 pm International Shorts
7 pm Maori Shorts
8.30 pm Feature Film

Saturday, June 3
Kahungunu Marae, Nuhaka
All Day (10 am to 3 pm): Short Films, Feature Films, Documentaries
A collection of works will be themed on “Slow Cinema” and “Slow Food” looking at indigenous food traditions

Gaiety Theatre, Wairoa
2 pm Feature Film
6 pm Gala Reception
7 pm Wairoa Maori Film Awards
With live music, short films and awards presentations

Sunday, June 4
Kahungunu Marae, Nuhaka
All Day (10 am to 4 pm): Short Films, Feature Films, Documentaries

Gaiety Theatre, Wairoa
All Day (10 am to 10 pm): Short Films, Feature Films

Morere Springs
7 pm Bush Cinema Closing Function

Monday, June 5: Kahungunu Marae, Nuhaka
9 am Poroporoaki and Formal Closing of Festival

About the Festival
The Wairoa Maori Film Festival is a film festival like no other!

Guests are welcomed in a traditional Maori powhiri welcoming ceremony and can stay at the marae (in the cinema!) or at nearby Morere mineral springs, Mahia beach, or Wairoa township.

We pride ourselves on a laid-back and relaxed energy, a spiritual nourishment both on screen and off. We have a reputation for rich and sincere narratives presented in a gentle and healing marae space. We give voice to the radical, on screen presence to the activist, our audiences feel and resonate with the filmmaker’s messages.

We are also a collaborative space where filmmakers and creatives can connect; short film, documentary and feature dramatic projects have developed over a cup of tea in our marae, and some of these new works will be screening for the first time this year, at our 12th anniversary gathering.

For the third year, we’re also spreading our wings and incorporating the Gaiety Cinema in Wairoa into our festival. On Saturday. there will be a special Wairoa Maori Film Awards evening, preceded by a special reception event.

On Sunday, films are on all day at both the Gaiety Theatre, Wairoa, and Kahungunu Marae, Nuhaka.

Join us to celebrate twelve years of the Maori Film Festival in Wairoa!

Nau Mai! Nau Mai! Haere Mai!
Wairoa Maori Film Festival. A Film Festival Like No Other.
First Nations. 4th Cinema. Sacred Screen. Spirit Natives.

And don’t forget it’s the last four weeks of PARADOX at the Tauranga Art Gallery

Sofles on glass upstairs – an amazing art work…photo Lee Switzer

Yes it’s me having a great time at the opening of the Gallery Exhibition – there’s also a trail of street art you can see around Downtown Tauranga

In case you don’t know when it’s on….make sure you check out the TAG’s website and take a look at mytauranga…



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