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Polyfest still going strong as storm sees event extended

Last updated 05:00 18/03/2014

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It's on with the show today as students continue with the final leg of the ASB Polyfest.

The last day of the festival, originally scheduled for Saturday, was postponed because of safety concerns as a result of Cyclone Lusi.

It was the first time in the event's 39-year history that any part of it has had to be delayed.

Event director Theresa Howard says rescheduling was the only option.

"In light of the weather conditions as a result of the cyclone, the only prudent decision was to postpone our final day.

"We want to give students the opportunity to perform on the stages and setting that they are familiar with," she says.

An exception was the division one Maori groups, which performed on Saturday at the Trusts Stadium in Waitakere as students have other kapa haka commitments this week.

Friday, the third day of Polyfest, saw Prime Minister John Key mingle with the crowds and performers at the Tongan stage.

It was the first time in at least 20 years that a sitting prime minister had visited the event.

During a speech to media and event organisers and supporters, Mr Key said he was keen to help with sponsorship for the event.

"One of the things to try and encourage is to have events that young people can go to and enjoy and look forward to," he said.

"I would be surprised if the Government can't find something [for Polyfest]."

A total of 222 groups from a record 62 schools performed this year.

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- Manukau Courier

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