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Rotorua Rocks To Raggamuffin

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Rotorua Rocks To Raggamuffin

Events & Venues Rotorua general manager Peter McLeod has confirmed that the popular Raggamuffin music festival will be back in Rotorua in the summer of 2011 and 2012, bringing new line-ups of top local and international artists.

Mr McLeod said discussions were also underway with the event promoters about the possibility of Raggamuffin being signed up beyond 2012 and he was optimistic this could be achieved for Rotorua given Saturday's highly successful Raggamuffin 2010.

In one of the biggest events ever staged in the city, more than 30,000 fans descended on the Rotorua International Stadium on Saturday (23 January) for eight hours of reggae, hip hop, soul and dub music provided by a star-studded line-up.

International acts included Lauryn Hill, Sean Kingston, Shaggy, Sly & Robbie, Julian Marley and Steel Pulse, along with New Zealand performers Katchafire, Sola Rosa & Iva Lankum, Sweet & Irie, and House of Shem.

Mr McLeod said the highlight for both organisors and performers was the incredibly enthusiastic response from fans to the different acts. He said the crowd had been "brilliant and very well behaved", with very little trouble to be seen anywhere.

"Ragga fans turned up with happy faces ready to have a good time and the good vibes stayed throughout the entire show. The smiles were still there hours later as people filed out of the stadium following a lively onstage finale by Jamaican-American reggae star Shaggy.

"There's no doubt the event reinforced Rotorua as the reggae capital of New Zealand and it's boosted Raggamuffin's reputation amongst international reggae artists as a 'must do' event.

"We were also very pleased with the food, beverage and toilet arrangements provided this year. The village on our No 2 ground at the international stadium was very popular and while there was the expected pressure on some facilities and services from time-to-time, they coped extremely well with demand given the large number of people in attendance.

"However we won't be resting on our laurels and we're planning a full debrief with all parties so we can continue to improve on arrangements for future events.

Mr McLeod paid tribute to Rotorua residents for the welcome they extended to the thousands of out-of-town visitors attending the festival.

"The spirit of manaakitanga was alive and well in the city last weekend, that's for sure. We know that an event of this size can be intrusive for some, especially people living close to the stadium, and we certainly appreciate their tolerance and the support they've shown.

"Raggamuffin is really great for our city. It injects millions of dollars into our local economy, so support from Rotorua residents for this annual event is highly valued and appreciated by organisers and festival attendees alike."

"Staging a festival of this size is a very demanding task but it's certainly rewarding when we see 30,000 people coming together in such a positive atmosphere and getting so much enjoyment out of a wonderful world class music festival in a great venue.

"It certainly makes the hard work and the logistical effort seem worthwhile, and we'll be doing everything we possibly can to ensure Raggamuffin stays in our city for the foreseeable future.

"Well done Rotorua."

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