Festival of Carnivale

WHERE THE ACTION IS 

Throughout September and October 2011, New Zealand and its major cities are going to feel like the centre of the world, especially if you are a Rugby fan. As many as 85,000 visitors are expected to descend in Aotearoa from all parts of the world to participate in this month-long event. 

While it will take time to heal the wounds of Christchurch, our other major cities like Auck-land and Wellington have the power to wow any visitor on any occasion. With Auckland and Wellington now being the front and centre for the entire Rugby World Cup 2011 (RWC 2011), the action is going to be non-stop. And it won’t only be happening on the pitch. 

RWC 2011 is designed to be a festival of Rugby, with the emphasis very much on festival. Surrounding the matches themselves is a huge programme of events. There will also be a multitude of opportunities to soak up the festive atmosphere, even when you are not cheering on your team from the grand stand. What’s more, by the time this significant sporting world event begins in September, it will be Spring-time in New Zealand. It will be a season that will see an explosion of festivals and events popping up around the whole country. 

ADDING SOME SPICE 

As Filipino-Kiwis, we share the same tradition of warm hospitality as those who happen to be born and bred, but we’re going add some spice to the brew by contributing to the verve, excitement and vitality of the festival mood that’s now building up – the Philippine Ati-atihan Festival dance that will be performed on six separate occasions in as many venues in Wellington by a select group of the Filipino Community in New Zealand. 

The Bulwagan Foundation Trust is happy to be partnering with its affiliate organisation – Filipino Artists in New Zealand, Inc., in the ground-breaking planning, resourcing and exe-cution of the Philippine Ati-atihan Festival dance performances which are slated for Sept-ember and October this year. 

A project management team has recently been formed consisting of members and parti-cipants from Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington and other parts making it truly represen-tative of all the 45,000 Filipino-Kiwis who now reside and call New Zealand their own. 

A CALL FOR SUPPORT 

We also welcome any help we can now get through donations, corporate sponsorships and volunteers from the community here and abroad. For these matters, please email Flora Muriel-Nogoy or Karl Quirino.

As part of all this planning, we are launching a fundraiser called the Maskara Paint Your Face Photo Contest on Facebook. We are inviting everyone (not just Filipinos) to come in and join this fundraiser because every submission of a unique ‘Paint Your Face’ photo will mean raising a matching donation of NZ$ 5.00 from our contest sponsors. All proceeds of the fundraiser will be held-in-trust by Bulwagan Foundation trust as a charity organisation for the purpose of eventually building a cultural and community centre for all to enjoy. 

BUZZ IS GUARANTEED 

Watching the games and soaking up the merry-making atmosphere is going to be possible for everyone come Spring this year, even if you don’t have a match ticket. Huge FAN ZONES – including those now being organised in Wellington with help from the Wellington City Council, are going to be all part of the non-stop action featuring massive screens with large coverage, entertainment stages, food and drink. A buzz is guaranteed. 

After four years of recession that has soured moods all over the world, this is the cham-pagne ‘bottle-popper’ that is going to be a celebration of life folks and also, the coming out of the Filipino-Kiwi Community in New Zealand. We encourage all of you to come, partici-pate and watch any or even all of the wild and wacky dances that our very own ati-atihan-eros will perform. 

Dates and venues will be announced at the appropriate time on this website. 

Hala bira!  You’ve just got to be there! 

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