PUBLIC DREAMS CHARITABLE TRUST.
How did it start?
Fiesta of Lights was started by brothers Te Rangi and Tama Huata as a millenium project for Hastings. " Tama and I visited the Festival of Lights in Niagara Falls, Canada and loved it", said Te Rangi Huata. "The Niagara Parks Board who ran it were amazing. Their organiser showed us how they made their lights displays and ran the event. We were inspired, gave it a shot in 1998 with Fiesta of Lights and we're still going. Our community has been wonderful supporters coming out year after year. We want to build a culture of positive memories for children and provide a peak experience in the social lives of their families at this time of the year."
Who runs the Fiesta of Lights?
The event is run by Public Dreams Charitable Trust, a volunteer board with labour provided by 100 community workers from the Corrections Department. They set up the light sculptures around the site and pack everything back into storage after the event.
We employ 6 people to manage security, tickets, merchandise and repairs during Fiesta of Lights and another 20 people join us on new year's eve. We also employ 6 youth workers, 12 to 15 years old to help with our kiddies friendly activities.
Who makes the light displays?
Fiesta of Lights has commisioned Hawke's Bay kinetic artists including Jil of Aotearoa, Chris Edmonds, Ricks Terstappen, Ally Rogers, Anthony Smith, James Harris and Billy Glover. They have made 40+ light displays for us over the years.
Where does the money come from?
Our income is from grants, sponsorship and fundraising during the year. We raise around $27,000 before the gates open. This helps us to keep the cost of entry down to the public to $6 for all ages. Under 3 free.
Who funds us?
Hastings District Council,NZ Lotteries, Eastwater, Clubs Hastings, Trust House, Ngati Kahungunu Iwi Inc, Eastern & Central Trust, Lion Foundation, Firstlight Foundation, Creative Communities Hastings, Corys and other local businesses who help from time to time. We organise fireworks shows around the country and our fees contributes around 10% of our costs.
What is the money used for?
100% of income is used to make new light sculptures each year, rent Tomoana Showgrounds, pay annual storage fees, repairs, purchase power cords, event set up and promotion.
What else do we do?
We help the Hastings Blossom Parade (since 2000), Cornwall Park Osmanthus Garden Lights and Matariki.
Income we earn from other events goes to the Fiesta of Lights. These include The Dominion Road Moon Festival, Taupo Winter Festival, Splore in Auckland, Glen Innes Light Trail and fireworks displays around the country from Auckland to Dunedin.