Representatives from race relations, Human Rights Commission, Howick Local Board, police, pastors, school principals and other prominent members of the community were there in full attendance at the Annual Reunion Dinner held at the Fo Guang Shan Buddhist Temple in Flat Bush on Tuesday, February 6.
Dame Susan Devoy, Race Relations Commissioner for New Zealand said it is a great note to end the Waitangi Day celebrations at the temple that embraces diversity.
“You may wonder why the police are so closely associated with the Fo Guang Shan Buddhist Temple,” said Wendy Spiller, Area Commander Counties Manukau East, at the opening ceremony. “Our relationship is based on mutual respect and values like kindness, compassion and making different communities feel safe and welcomed.”
The evening was filled with fine food and a line-up of traditional dance performance groups that showcased rich Asian culture and heritage.
As Jami-Lee Ross MP for Botany said, “I visit the Fo Guang Shan temple on a number of special occasions but this is the event I most look forward to in the whole year.”
The evening that had around a 1000 people attend with a lot more disappointed that they couldn’t get tickets to the fixture that acknowledges the contribution made by volunteers, devotees and the community at large.
There are plenty more Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations happening in the area with the Tzu Chi Foundation Lunar New Year Blessing Ceremony on Sunday, February 11 at 9 Springs Road, East Tamaki.
The Pakuranga Chinese Association will host their annual Lunar New Year celebratory luncheon followed by entertainment at 11am on Friday February 9 at Lucky restaurant in Meadowlands.
The Year of the Dog will be celebrated on Saturday, February 17 from 3pm-6pm at the Botany Town Centre, and on Sunday, February 18 at the Pakuranga Plaza at the same time.
Botany Town Centre will be transformed into the streets of Beijing with an authentic street festival. The festival will feature a beautifully decorated Town Centre Drive adorned with Chinese lanterns, traditional food, arts and crafts vendors, as well as a variety of cultural performances on the stage and along the street.
The local board is partnering with The Pakuranga Chinese Association to bring an exciting line up of performers with more than 20 performances throughout the day. There will be a lion dance, waist drummers, singers, dancers, choirs and the Auckland Lark Orchestra.
People will also get an opportunity to enjoy demonstrations of calligraphy and Chinese painting. It’s a perfect day out for the family to celebrate the rich and diverse cultures of Asia.
If you are born in the Year of the Dog, you are loyal and honest, amiable and kind, cautious and prudent. With a strong sense of loyalty and sincerity, those born in the Year of the Dog will do everything for the person who they think is most important.