Matariki Library Matariki Library CREDIT: Christchurch City Council

Welcome the Māori New Year at Christchurch City Libraries

Tuesday 5 June 2012, 12:39PM
By Christchurch City Council


New Zealand’s very own superhero, the demigod Māui, is a key figure in this month’s Matariki celebrations, as Christchurch City Libraries (Ngā Kete Wananga-o-Ōtautahi) welcomes the Māori New Year.

Matariki takes its name from the star cluster whose rise marks the beginning of the New Year according to the Māori lunar calendar. In 2012, this takes place on Thursday 21 June.

Libraries and Information Unit Manager Carolyn Robertson says, “This year’s events will have the theme of pūrākau and pakiwaitara (myths and legends). It’s a whole month of activities designed to promote Māori culture and knowledge.”

Activities include:

Matariki Story Time
Join us and share stories, rhymes and songs themed around Matariki, with a focus on pūrākau and pakiwaitara. Sessions are 30 minutes, and suitable for tamariki aged 2-4 years.

Matariki School Sessions
Classes are invited to these free 90-minute sessions at the South Learning Centre. Learn all about the Māori Demigod Māui and his amazing feats. Students will view legends of Māui, take part in an interactive quiz and create their very own set of stickers.

Food@Home is a journey through the new 'foodways' that are evolving in New Zealand. Come chat with author/gardener/cook Christine Dann about the rediscovery of the home food gardening traditions of both Māori and Pākehā. Her journey has taken her to community gardens, farmers' markets, māra Māori, artisan food producers, organic orchards, backyard edible empires, the Spud in a Bucket programme, foraging, freeganism and fine ecological dining. Take home seeds and a free tasty recipe to start your own delicious and healthy home kai.

Story Blankets
Visit Rehua Marae to enjoy a display of story blankets that tell of legendary Māori  exploits and reflect on Māori  traditions and values. The blankets will depict stories told by prominent New Zealand writers, including Witi Ihimaera's The Whale Rider, Gavin Bishop's Taming the Sun, Patricia Grace's The Kuia and the Spider, Melanie Drewery's Stories from Our Night Sky, Ben Brown's Fifty-five Feathers and Robyn Kahukiwa's The Forgotten Taniwha.

Whānau Fun Day
Join us at Rehua Marae for storytelling, activities, stalls and much more.

Light Display
Witness the stunning Matariki light display at Ngā Hau E Wha National Marae.

Activities are free. For times, information, or to collect a brochure, visit your local library or service centre or visit the Christchurch City Libraries website.