Hundreds of people packed into the Hawke's Bay Opera House on Sunday to experience a small taste of Thailand.
'Destination Thailand in Hastings' featured a selection of Thai culture, arts and crafts, food, music and song. The entertainment also included a Thai wedding ceremony.
The festival featured the vibrant colours of Thai pottery and silk along with elements of the Songkran Festival, which signifies the end of one year and the start of another. There was also a display from the Loy Krathong Festival, which had lotus-shaped vessels containing candles floating on water which brings good luck for the coming year. Thai movies were shown in the Opera House theatre.
The event was officially opened by the Thai Ambassador to New Zealand Mr Nopadon Theppitak and Hastings Mayor Lawrence Yule. The opening was followed by Thai dancing demonstrations, which were greatly appreciated by the audience, who packed the Opera House Plaza to sample genuine Thai cuisine and watch the Thai Boxing match. There was a real feel-good buzz in the Plaza as Hastings residents enjoyed a taste of Thailand in the balmy sunshine.
The Destination Thailand event was organised by the Hawke's Bay Thai and Buddhist communities with support from Hastings District Council, the Royal Thai Embassy, the Asia:NZ Foundation and The Radio Network.
Caption: Part of the wedding ceremony at 'Destination Thailand in Hastings'
For more information: Ross Holden Communications Manager (06) 871 5056 027 275 5205
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