The significance of Matariki is to celebrate the Māori New Year, which is heralded by the appearance of the star cluster known to most as the Pleiades.
Te Ohu Whakaita Charitable Trust launches the Matariki Ki Waikato Festival on the nearest Friday to King Korokii Te Rata Mahuta Tawhiao Potatau Te Wherowhero’s birth date.
According to Tainui history, the Matariki cluster was seen shining directly above Waahi Paa on 16 June 1906, the birth date of King Korokii. The Matariki cluster is acknowledged and celebrated by Tainui in Te Paki O Matariki—The Kingitanga insignia.
Te Karanga O Te Tau Hou Parakuhi (Matariki Breakfast) is hosted by Te Ohu Whakaita Charitable Trust and Matariki Ki Waikato. Over three hundred guests are expected to gather at Turangawaewae Marae to participate. The moving Dawn ceremony includes the ancient and sacred ceremony Hautapu (acknowledging the ascension of Matariki).
The service is conducted by Tainui Kaumatua. Guests will join Te Ohu Whakaita Charitable Trust for a light breakfast, entertainment, and presentations on the significance of Matariki and the maramataka. A time for connecting, reflecting, and planning.
*NOTE: Must RSVP. Limited seating available.