New sports facility Te Mataapuna officially opened in Tūrangi
Ka tangihia te pūkāea o Ngāti Tūrangitukua
Ka topa ki te tihi o Pihanga ka riro ki te hau, ai ua, ai hau, ai marangai
Whiria te muka tangata kia tīna, kia whena, kia kikī tonu
Maranga ake rā e te kahika o te whare
Maranga ake rā e te kaunoti hikahika o te whare āhuru
Kia mau, kia ita
Tūrangi’s new sports facility Te Mataapuna was blessed and officially opened today at Tūrangitukua Park.
The event, hosted by Ngāti Tūrangitukua at a 6am dawn blessing, was attended by around 200 people including Te Ariki Tā Tumu te Heuheu. The procession through the building was led by Te Owai Boyce, 7, who is a descendant of Ngāti Tūrangitukua and plays for Tongariro Junior Rugby and Tūrangi Dambusters rugby league.
The blessing and speeches were followed by a light breakfast before a programme of junior and senior rugby and league kicked off. Family activities such as face painting and a bouncy castle were also on hand to mark the occasion throughout the day.
Tūrangi Co-Governance Committee co-chair Te Takinga New said Te Mataapuna was for the tamariki and mokopuna of Tūrangi.
“Seeing the joy on the faces of the tamariki makes everything that we’ve gone through, the journey to this point and all the hui, all worth it. It’s something for them to enjoy and also for kaumatua, who now have a warm facility to watch them play.
“Te Mataapuna is a facility for the whole community of the southern area and we’re looking forward to hosting district, regional and national events here.”
Mayor David Trewavas, who is also co-chair on the Tūrangi Co-Governance Committee, thanked Ngāti Tūrangitukua as the landowners of Tūrangitukua Park for making the project possible.
“The Tūrangi community has wanted a sports facility like this for some time,” Mr Trewavas said, “a place that could be an asset for locals and also somewhere to host visiting teams in an appropriate facility. I’d like to thank our partners on this project Ngāti Tūrangitukua for making this site available and for all of the work that has gone into making it a reality.
“Thanks also to the contractors and creatives and council staff involved in making this a really fantastic and uniquely Tūrangi space – it’s something we can all be proud of.”
Te Mataapuna includes a main hall, changing rooms and a kitchen, and the project had a total budget of $3.5 million, provided for in the Taupō District Council Long-term Plan and including $300,000 from Bay Trust.
Project manager Pete Bradshaw said the project’s completion was a testament to the dedication of all involved.
“Huge thanks go to Livingstone Building and their local subcontractors for all their hard work, The Lines Company for donating a transformer to the project, and designer Stephen Roach for making this a really user-friendly building.”
Mr Bradshaw also thanked local artists Te Maari and Mikaere Gardiner and carver Te Ururangi Rowe for making the building unique to Tūrangi, as well as the Te Mataapuna Collective, made up of representatives of local sporting groups, for stepping up and taking over the ongoing management of the facility.
E ngā rangatira, e te iti, e te rahi i ō nui, i ō wehi, i ō mana, he inoi tēnei ki a Ihowa o ngā mano kia tau iho nei i ōna manaakitanga ki runga i a tātou katoa. Kia piki te ora, kia piki te kaha, ka heke.