Around 1000 children converged on Richmond Primary School in Maraenui today for the Ngāti Kahungunu Kapa Haka Festival.
The festival has a proud history of more than 40 years of seeing primary and intermediate age students performing for friends and family.
The four-day festival will see 39 schools from across the Hawke's Bay Region, some as far as Wairoa, taking the stage.
Organiser Michelle Brown says the student numbers this year have increased compared to last year, "I think it's something that is valued in our schools a lot more, it is really good to see that more kids are participating in kapa haka."
A sentiment echoed by Richmond School Principal Maurice Rehu, "It was awesome to see all different nationalities, Māori, European and Chinese involved, they really did go all out, it was great."
Tomorrow the bilingual schools will get a chance to take to the stage and the final day on Friday will see the competitive section.