What's the best way to celebrate Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori - Māori Language Week? In the hāngi pit! That's exactly what students at Edgewater College did today, learning all about the ins and outs of traditional hāngi custom.
Te Tahawai Marae at Edgewater College in East Auckland was abuzz this morning as the "big day" had finally arrived.
Preparation by students and the whānau of Te Tahawai Marae were well underway this week, from selling tickets to shopping for food, from preparing the food to digging the hole, packing the hāngi trays to special deliveries - it was definitely all hands on deck!
The group had set a goal to sell enough hāngi to raise funds for new korowai (cloaks) for their haka uniforms and are hoping to have some in time for next year's Auckland Polyfest in March.
Staff member Kororiamai Herewini says the efforts by the students and their whānau this week has been outstanding.
She says, "Being able to celebrate Māori Language Week with a traditional hāngi from start to finish is no easy feat, our students and marae whānau have surely done us and themselves proud."
"What better way to promote te reo Māori in, around and outside of the hāngi pit!" says Kororiamai.
While today's efforts have been a huge success, the group is already looking into when the next "hāngi adventure" will occur.
Te Whānau o Tahawai Marae would like to thank their community for their support.
Watch their performance at this year's Polyfest here: