Culture Arts and Food Experience

On November 14th, 2009, Gisborne's Culture, Arts, and Food Experience ("CAFE") invited the entire community to Te Wananga o Aotearoa's Whirikoka campus to celebrate the cultural diversity and interconnectedness of our cultures, indigenous or otherwise, in traditional food, art, and dance.  Celtic highland dancing, Arabian contemporary belly dancing, Indian traditional dancing, traditional Tongan dancing, and a range of contemporary songs and talented musicians from Tairawhiti region performed on a glorious sunshine day.

The Palpung Kagyu Samten Choling Buddhist Centre's booth was supported by Buddhist practioners Colin and Meikle McNab, Tracey Walker, Michelle Karauria and Mataora Tau tau.    Venerable Lama Lobsang  prepared delicious Tibetan snack food for everybody to enjoy.

Picture 003_light.jpgA selection of Buddhist booklets, Prayer flags, Prayer beads and Prayer cards were available for purchase.  Many people greeted Venerable Lama Lobsang, and this was a significant opportunity of presenting Venerable Lama Lobsang to the wider Gisborne community, profiling the local Buddhist  puja timetable and Temple location.    Visitors also received a brochure of His Holiness the Dalai Lama's upcoming Auckland teachings on December 5th and 6th, 2009.

Picture 013.jpgVenerable Lama Lobsang  chanted prayers of well being, mindfulness, respect and compassion for all sentient beings before launching the SuperGrans "Men of the Moment Cook Off".   Gisborne Mayor Meng Foon, surf lifesaving representative Matt Sutton, and New Zealand longboard champion Daniel Procter challenged each other's culinary skills in the healthy food cook off, which was educational, entertaining, and sampled with great delight by the visitors.    Mouth watering delicacies from many parts of our global village, exotic spices, native flavours and community hospitality filled the entire day.

We would like to thank Barbara Dockley of the Gisborne District Council and Wikitoria Tau tau from Te Wananga o Aotearoa who led the initiative of "Culture, Arts, and Food Experience" to recognise and acknowledge Gisborne's 86 different cultures as a gathering of people presenting their favourite food -  a wonderful opportunity for cultures to be interwoven as one, celebrating as the inhabitants of our global village.