Matariki in Upper Hutt 2022


Shining in the winter sky just before dawn, Matariki (the Pleiades) signals the Māori New Year. The appearance of Matariki heralds a time of remembrance, joy and peace. It's a time for communities to come together and celebrate. 

The Matariki star cluster isn’t clearly visible from all parts of Aotearoa. Traditionally, Iwi like those from Taranaki, Whanganui, The Far North and others, celebrated Puanga (Rigel). For some, the Puanga star is said to herald in the Matariki Cluster in the months of June and July. You can identify Puanga as the bright star sitting above Tautoru (Orion's Belt) during Matariki time.

Below are a list of events in Upper Hutt where you can celebrate Matariki. If you know of any other events please let us know by emailing

Maiangi Waitai, Ātea-ā-rangi – Interstellar

Open now until 3 July - Whirinaki Whare Taonga

Bursting with bright colours, magical symbols and cross-cultural characters, Maiangi Waitai is all about exploring the mysteries of the universe. In this exhibition, Maiangi re-imagines oral history traditions related to the Matariki constellation. Creating a superhero figure for each star, complete with its own packaging, she shows us a unique way to consider some of the ideas celebrated in Aotearoa New Zealand during the Māori New Year. A fun, all-encompassing experience for the whole whanau.

Cushion Concert

Monday 20 June 2:30pm - 5:30pm - Maidstone Intermediate

Bring your cushion and come watch performances performances from their kapa haka along with Fraser Crescent school and Maidstone’s Band and Performing Arts Leaders. Listen to some stories, buy jewellery and trinkets made by the tamariki, have kai from either the baked goods or sausage sizzle and enjoy the time together.

Matariki Storytots

Tuesday 21 June 10am - Pinehaven Library
Wednesday 22 June 10am - Central Library
Thursday 23 June 10am - Central Library

Join us for a special Matariki Storytots session with guest presenters, suitable for ages 0-4.

Matariki Festival

Wednesday 22 June 3pm - 7pm - Upper Hutt Primary School

We warmly invite our community, whānau and past students in celebrating Matariki - the Māori New Year. Celebrate with us by grabbing a bite to eat from one of our vendors and enjoying the Kapa Haka performances from Trentham School, Totara Park School, Maidstone Intermediate, Pinehaven School, Fergusson Intermediate and Upper Hutt School. There will also be stalls on site and the opportunity to walk through our classrooms to see how we commemorate Matariki.

Evening Matariki Storytime

Wednesday 22 June 5:15pm - Pinehaven Library
Tuesday 28 June 5:30pm - Central Library

Snuggle up for our evening Matariki storytimes. 

Seed bank opening

Thursday 23 June 5:30pm - 7pm - Central Library

Help us celebrate the opening of our seed bank, brought to you by Food 4 Thought, followed by a viewing of the documentary 'Seed'. 

Whakanuia Matariki

Friday 24 June 1pm - 4pm - Whirinaki Whare Taonga

It’s Matariki so let’s celebrate our new national holiday with a fun filled family day featuring music, food and stars. Make a sprinkled cut out star inspired by 'Maiangi Waitai: Atea-a-Rangi,' sample some Maori Fry bread (complete with golden syrup), explore flax weaving and enjoy some waiata.


  • Wednesday, 01 June 2022 | 12:00 AM - Sunday, 03 July 2022 | 11:59 PM