National | Māhau

Te Matatini mahau unveiled

The chairman of Te Matatini hailing the event as a homecoming for the competition, as the first Te Matatini event was held in Rotorua in 1972.

Standing over 13 metres tall the new Te Matatini archway is now up and ready.

This year marks the competition's 40th year and around 100 people attended this morning's blessing.

The archway was a joint venture between Te Matatini and Te Puia and took a team of 20 carvers around four months to complete.

Monty Morrisson of Te Arawa says, “this is one of the many things we have to get ready but it's an honour for us to have this blessing this morning.”

This archway was gifted as a treasure for Te Matatini and will remain a key part of the stage in the competitions ahead.

41 teams will compete on the stage next week, marking the 21st Te Matatini festival, and competition is building  in Rotorua.

Reporter: Mere McLean.