Samoa getting ready for an epic week of Independence Day Celebrations
Samoa is due to close out its 60th Independence celebrations and bring in their 61st year of Independence with an epic program which starts on Friday 26th of May.
So if you're heading back to the Motherland we've outlined some of the events during the week, wrapping up with the 'Motherland Samoa' festival on Saturday the 3rd of June below ...
The legendary fautasi races are back this year with five long boats confirmed to compete including a crew from the island of Manono Tai.
The five long boats are Tolotolo o Tamauli from Salelologa, Don Bosco, Segavao, Toamua & Telefoni o le Vainu'u (Manono Tai's entry) and the regatta is scheduled for the morning of the 26th of May.
Watch this piece below on the first woman to ever skipper a Samoan fautasi - Zita Martel - breaking with years of tradition for this ancient Samoan sport, and facing insurmountable odds in doing so.
In the evening, beloved Samoan band Punialava'a will host a Family and Friends charity concert to benefit the National Kidney foundation of Samoa at the To'oa Salamasina Hall in Apia.
The passing of their beloved grandfather, the late Nonumalo Aiono Nanai Leulumoega Sofara, who was a dialysis patient, has led the Punialava'a Family and Friends to help shoulder the government’s continuous efforts to provide for the growing demands of this service.
All proceeds from the concert will go towards the National Kidney Foundation of Samoa (NKFS) to purchase dialysis chairs and medical analyzers for the people of Samoa.
In a press release issued earlier today a spokesperson for the family Nanai Manutoipule Viellani Peteru said "We are proud to support the National Kidney Foundation of Samoa and their important work in providing dialysis services for our people, we encourage everyone to attend the concert and help us raise funds for this worthy cause."
A personal connection to dialysis after the passing of their beloved grandfather the late Nonumalo Aiono Nanai Leulumoega Sofara, who was a dialysis patient has led them to want to donate more for the growing demands of the service.
The NKFS relies on government funding, patient fees, and donations from the public to fund its activities. Since 2005, the number of patients undergoing dialysis treatment has increased from 5 to 218 as of March 31st, 2023. Currently, there are 30 dialysis machines in operation, catering to 193 patients.
Tickets for the event will be available for purchase in the coming days. Email email@example.com
Watch their full performance from the Pacific Music Awards when they were the recipients of the Lifetime Achievement Awards at the 2018 VPMA's
On Saturday the 27th of May the government will be in Savai'i to participate in the commemoration of the arrival of the Catholic church in Samoa (nai Malaeola ma Gafoaga) in Lealatele.
On Wednesday the 31st of May there will be an official service to officially close out the celebrations of the 60th anniversary of Independence with a lotu / thanksgiving service which will be held at the Malae i Ti'afau in Mulinu'u followed by a free concert in the evening after the lowering of the flag.
According to the Samoa Observer the official conclusion ceremony will be an eventful one as people who have served the country with pride and honour will also be recognised and presented with patches of recognition.
Thursday the 1st of June is Samoa's Independence Day and there will be an official ceremony to commemorate the country's 61 years of Independence including the raising of the flag and the parade by schools and ministries. There is also live entertainment scheduled for the day which will be closed out again with the lowering of the flag.
There will be other commemoration activities that are yet to be announced.
On Saturday the 3rd of June PacifiCast presents 'Motherland Samoa' a cultural music festival celebrating Pacific heritage and reconnecting communities to the homeland of Samoa and you'll be happy to know the festival GA tickets are FREE!!!
Motherland is presented by PacifiCast who strive to elevate and celebrate Pacific culture and talent, and to showcase the Pacific region to the world. They focus on celebrating and preserving cultural heritage and achieve this through promoting sports, music and cultural events that highlight the unique talents of Pasifika people.
The festival will be held at Apia Park and features an epic lineup of Pacific artists from around the world led by the godfather of Pacific music, Fiji; international star J Boog and a strong contingent from both Australia and New Zealand, including HP Boyz, Lisi, Savage, DJ Noiz, Kennyon Brown, Tomorrow People and Wayno.
The line up also includes local Samoan artists including Mautoatasi & Matalena, Zipso and the Pacific Love Band. Wanting to provide Samoa with a festival of international standard, it was intentional to select artists from across the globe, to firstly provide the best line up and to also provide the opportunity for the artists to reconnect with Samoa. Each of the artists jumped at this chance to return home.
PacifiCast founder Julius Tuigamala said “This festival was built from the heart to serve both our Pasifika community and our extremely talented artists. After a successful world cup campaign with Toa Samoa and Mate Ma’a Tonga Rugby League teams it was important for PacifiCast to now support our musicians and deliver a world class music event.
Our team is comprised of experienced organisers, cultural advocates, and industry professionals who are dedicated to creating an unforgettable experience for our attendees. I believe our festival is the solution that Pacific Islanders have been waiting for, and we're excited to share it with the world.”
In the press release which was sent out earlier today it touched on how Pacific people are facing issues of identity and for many, they are at risk of losing their language, traditions, and cultural practices. This loss of identity can have a profound impact on mental health and well-being. PacifiCast recognise this and it was a key motivation for them to create the Motherland Festivals, to ensure that future generations can connect with their roots and maintain a sense of identity and belonging.
Motherland has the potential to reach millions of people worldwide, creating a global community that celebrates and preserves Pacific cultural heritage and encourages them to commute home.
Check out the Motherland Festival site to purchase tickets - even though the GA tickets are free you'll still need to download your free pass for admission into Apia Park. There are VIP and other ticket options available as well.
In the meantime watch Fiji's 'My World' here where he shares his humble upbringing, his love for the Herbs, growing up in Fiji and how he got his music career started in Hawai'i.
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