In its 15th year since its inception, the annual Māui Dolphin Day and the Xtreme Zero Waste Recycled Raft Race saw the community and visitors come together to share knowledge and raise awareness around the endangered Māui Dolphin and have a fun, family-day filled with entertainment and prizes.
“Thanks to everyone who makes this day possible. We really just create the space for the event, and it’s amazing to see what everyone brings to the stage and space.”
Said Māui Dolphin Day Coordinator Bexie Towle.
“This year was a really fun day, with lots of games, entertainment and ways to learn about environmental issues. We heard about the latest science and news about Māui Dolphins.”
In addition to the traditional Māui Dolphin Day, Whaingaroa Environment centre and the Department of Conservation put on an information evening the night before the event to give an update on the status of the Māui Dolphins.
Speakers from DOC Marine Species and Threats Team, Massey University, eCoast, Waikato Regional Council, Karioi Maunga ki te Moana and Whaingaroa Environment Centre provided insight into the latest research and findings in their respective fields.
The crowds were also on hand to cheer on the competitors for the Xtreme Zero Waste Recycled Raft Race held in conjunction with Māui Dolphin Day on Saturday. With some colourful and creative rafts on the water, the raft race winners were:
1st Place – Raglan Kindergarten
2nd Place – Xtreme Jetstream
3rd Place – Waitetuna School