2015 marks 40th Anniversary of ASB Polyfest

By Te Kāea

2015 marks the 40th year Anniversary of the ASB Polyfest which begins this morning.

The event will commence with a special flag raising ceremony at 7am to pay tribute to the recent passing of long-serving festival kaumatua, Eru Thompson.

Mr Thompson’s involvement was highly recognised for much of the event’s 40 year history and he played a key role at the festival flag raising and pōwhiri each year.  This year, kaumatua Martin Cooper, will be presiding over proceedings.  Mr Martin played a prominent role in supporting Eru Thompson.

A total of 64 schools from the greater Auckland Region are participating at the 2015 ASB Polyfest, with 214 groups entered.  More than 10,000 students will perform over the 4 days and it’s expected more than 80,000 people will attend the festival over that period.

ASB Polyfest has seen its fair share of bad weather.  Last year some of the performances had to be relocated due to Cyclone Lusi causing damage to parts of the North Island.  With Cyclone Pam slowly subsiding, there’s no doubt the event's organisers can now breath a sense of relief. The story on the impact of Cyclone Lusi on last year's festivities can be viewed below.

This mornings special flag ceremony is expected to last about 45 minutes, followed by pōwhiri starting at 8am.