Ahi Kā – Matariki ki Poneke

Nau mai, haere mai – come down to Wellington's waterfront to experience our family-friendly event, Ahi Kā.

Ahi Kā - Matariki ki Pōneke 2019

Wellington Waterfront
Friday 21 June, 6pm–10pm (date confirmed)
Facebook event

Celebrate and learn about Matariki, the Māori New Year, with ahi (fire), kai (food), friends and whānau. 
See some of the nation's finest Māori performers and storytellers, and experience a beautiful light procession featuring creative talent from regional schools.
Hangi, toasted marshmallows and fire on the water – there's something for everyone.

Children holding lanterns celebrating Matariki.

Tamariki carry light creatures in opening procession Nga Wai Piāta (Streams of Light)

Things to see and do

There will be four stages: Te Reo Ora Stage, Matariki Stage, Kararka Stage, Kupe Stage, throughout the Odlins Plaza area, featuring waiata, storytelling, Māori astrology, poi and Kapa Haka.

Nga Wai Piāta (Streams of Light) 

The opening procession Nga Wai Piāta (Streams of Light) will start at 6pm and feature tamariki from:

  • Clyde Quay School
  • Hataitai School
  • Hutt Intermediate School
  • Newlands Intermediate School
  • Paraparaumu School
  • Samuel Marsden Collegiate School
  • South Wellington Intermediate School
  • Te Ara Whanui Kura Kaupapa Māori
  • Titahi Bay Intermediate School

Head to Whairepo Lagoon for the best viewing spot.

Wai Ahi (Fire on the Water)

In Māori tradition there are nine stars with different meanings – Matariki and her eight children. These will be represented by nine braziers on Whairepo Lagoon.

Meet the Fish 

The opening procession Nga Wai Piāta (Streams of Light) is designed to highlight our urban streams and all the fantastic creatures that call our city's waterways home. Greater Wellington Regional Council's Environmental Scientists will be at Ahi Kā with some freshwater friends for you to meet in person (kids will love it)


6.4510pm (30 Minute show repeated) 
Te Papa Promenade, Wellington Waterfront    
Free entry                                         

A free outdoor cinematic and live show around Te Papa Lake, part of Wellington City Council’s Matariki event Ahi Kā.  

Manu honours the Matarki tradition of kite flying and creatures of the air who connect earth to sky…and beyond. See Te Papa walls come alive with stunning images and beautiful music by some of Aotearoa’s top creative talents.        

Music: David Downes, Rob Thorne and Hannah Neman
Live performers: Royal New Zealand Air Force Brass, Rob Thorne, Hannah Neman, Lotte van Ginkel and Kiss The Ground 
Recorded performers include: Mahinarangi Tocker and Zane Jarvis 
Videos: Nick Robertson (Streamliner) and David Downes 

Wellington City Events presents Manu with thanks to partners Te Papa, Royal New Zealand Air Force Band and contributors The British Museum and Te Kura Māori o Porirua.

Ahi Tipua 

Taranaki Wharf, Wellington Waterfront (in front of Circa)     
Free entry
Light, fire, sea and sound meet masked creatures in the Ahi Tipua art installation – connecting us to Aotearoa’s volcanic and geothermal worlds. 
Soundscape: Rob Thorne 
Light Art: Will Smith (MJF Lighting) 
Mask Artist: James Harcourt 
Costumes: James Harcourt and Suzanne Tamaki 
Performers: New Zealand School of Dance