Indians celebrating Diwali in Auckland are in for a treat. As per a press release by the ICC World Cup 2015 authorities, New Zealand’s former test cricketer, Sir Richard Hadlee will be part of this year’s Auckland Diwali Festival, taking place on October 11 and 12 at Aotea Square and Queen Street. Sir Hadlee is the New Zealand Ambassador for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015. He will meet fans on day one of the festival at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 activity zone on Queen Street.
Brett O’Riley, Chief Executive, Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED), said Auckland is one of seven New Zealand cities that will co-host the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 with Australia.
“As we know Indian cricket fans are incredibly passionate, and it’s an honour to be hosting such a legend of the game at one of Auckland’s most celebrated festivals. This is a great opportunity to get a taste of World Cup action before it arrives in Auckland in 2015, which will be one of Auckland’s busiest-ever events seasons,” O’Riley said.
Festival-goers will also have the chance to be part of an iconic Indian cricketing moment at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 photo booth. Using green screen technology, fans will be transported to the post-match celebrations of the Indian cricket team following their victory in the 2011 World Cup final.
Therese Walsh, Head of New Zealand, ICC Cricket World Cup 2015, said that one of the aims of next year’s tournament is to embrace as many communities as possible and showcase New Zealand’s cultural diversity. “The Diwali Festival symbolises everything that we want the host city events to be – vibrant, colourful and a draw-card for families,” she said.
The Auckland Diwali Festival is a two-day celebration that brings Aucklanders and visitors together to celebrate and experience Indian culture. The event is presented by Auckland Tourism, ATEED, and Asia NZ Foundation.
Musafir Namah Bureau