Preparations begin for Frangipani Festival


PLANS are underway in Rabaul, East New Britain, for the annual Frangipani Festival to commemorate its volcanic eruptions as well as PNG’s  independence next month.
Susie McGrade, member of the organising committee, said the festival would remember the twin volcanic eruptions in 1994 and mark the 80th anniversary of the 1937 eruptions when 200 people died. It would also celebrate PNG’s 42 years of independence.
The festival will kick off on Sept 15 with the McGrade Family Cup Two Stone Kanu Race which will see local skippers paddle to the Beehives, an independence anniversary programme supported by Rabaul schools, the Engini performance – the famous Baining Fire dance at Malaguna Secondary School – and Tolai Kinavai on the Simpson Harbour Rabaul foreshore on Sept 16 followed by the annual float parade.
McGrade said this year’s theme was “Dance, dance, dance – keeping culture alive through dance was sure to result in exciting displays of flair and creativity”.
“The Frangipani Festival is a free public event and we are very proud to be able to present ceremonies such as the Kinavai and Engini without charging any admission fees,” she said.
McGrade said the support of the community was vital to the event’s success.
“This year we have a number of sponsorship packages available and would love to hear from any businesses or organisations interested in partnering us,” she said.
“We are always grateful for any donations, no matter how small.”
Registration is now open for the annual Frangipani Float Parade and prizes will be awarded for the most creative float, the most entertaining float, the best corporate float and the best community group/private float.

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