Poetry Competition Launches Commemoration Events - Press Release

The Battle of Gate Pa Poetry Competition launches on Friday and is the first event to mark the 150th Commemoration events being held in Tauranga.

Current National Poet Laureate, Vince O'Sullivan, will judge the competition and award the $1000 prize money in March next year.

Ross Stanway, CEO of Realty Services, said "Eves Real Estate is sponsoring this competition in acknowledgement of the Battle of Gate Pa 150th Commemoration, which is of major historical importance to the people of Tauranga."

Six finalists from the Western Bay of Plenty area will be chosen to read their work at the Poetry Competition Finals being held at Elizabeth Cafe and Larder on 6 March.

Simon Collett, Pukehinahina Charitable Trust Chairman, said "We hope to get entries in English or Maori, that creatively express what poets think of the Battle of Gate Pa".

"Our aim is to ensure that the most significant event in the birth of our city is respectfully marked with inclusive community participation. The Poetry Competition is the first of several events to work towards that goal."

"Early next year we will launch the Secondary Schools Battle of Gate Pa Essay and Speech Competitions. There will be a Contemporary Art Exhibition at the Tauranga Art Gallery and a Photographs and Drawings Exhibition at St George's Church. Public lectures will also be held at the church, which sits on the historic battle site."

"Further planned events will be revealed leading up to the Commemoration on April 29. On the day, all of the community is invited to the Dawn Ceremony at Gate Pa, morning Memorial Service and cultural performances. This Commemoration is an opportunity for us to learn from our past, as we look to the future."



Buddy Mikaere