Biggest food festival yet

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The China and Indian stall at the food festival. Photo supplied

Hundreds of hungry and excited students enjoyed the tastes and smells in Howick College’s performing arts centre on Friday.

On offer was a range of international mouth-watering dishes from around 27 cultures at the school’s annual food festival organised by the cultural and community council, a much-anticipated occasion in the school’s calendar.

Students prepared food, sold tickets and organised stalls for the event during the school’s Culture Week – everything from pizza to Mexican delights.

Howick College raised $2243 and the money will be distributed amongst the six house charities.

Cultural council leader Teodora Jotanovic says the number of stands was a huge increase from last year.

“There was around 18-20,” she says. “This year it’s around 30. There are some stalls we haven’t had before like Canadian-American.”

Leader Erika Sawyers says the food festival signifies the diverse range of cultures at the school, raises awareness of those cultures and allows the students to express their culture through their mouth-watering food, dances and clothing.

“In previous years, this has been a cultural council event only,” Erika says.

“This year we decided to expand it to a collaborative event to culture and community council. This is because we’ve had a growing number of parents wanting to get involved and people want to sponsor specific stalls.”

Community council co-leader Emma Hardaker says the experience working and organising the event was an “awesome experience”.

“This event marks the end of culture week at our school. This week we’ve had a market, performance night for Pacifica/Maori cultures (Poi FiaFia) and a culture wear day,” Erika says.

The community council also organised the 40-Hour Famine which Emma says was very successful and had an “incredible turnout”.

Dean of Ingham House and teacher in charge of the cultural council Neera Sundrum has been supervising the international food festival since it started in 2003.

Not only was the food festival the final occasion on the culture week’s calendar, it was Howick College’s principal Iva Ropati’s last food festival in his 12-year tenure.

The students gave Ropati a bottomless plate and were on a mission to keep it full.

Ropati announced in May he was leaving Howick College for a position in Papamoa.