Big crowd at cultural celebration

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By Mick Jensen

With ticket sales of 14,000, this year’s Multi Cultural Bite on Monday has been hailed a huge success and the biggest to date.

Now in its eighth year, the event is an ethnic celebration and showcases food and culture from some of the district’s many migrants.

Twenty foot stalls lined the area around the Ashburton Clocktower on East Street for the five hour event.

Stalls sold food typical of the Philippines, Singapore, Samoa, Taiwan, Egypt, New Caledonia and Ukraine

Exotic food names like empanada, kofta, baklava, sapa sui and mee goreng were on the menu to tempt a crowd that featured a broad cultural mix.

The entertainment bill included local and out of town singers, Indian, Samoan and Cuban dancers and Japanese drummers.

Easy listening duo Radius provided the mellow sounds between cultural performances.

Bite co-ordinator Louise Duke said the event had been “awesome” and feedback had been very, very positive.

Although stall numbers were down, ticket sales of 14,000 meant this year was the biggest Bite event to date.

The event was growing each year and some food stalls had sold out quite early, which was a testament to the popularity of the day, said Mrs Duke.

The entertainment stage had worked well in the centre of the stalls this year and other refinements would be looked out when the event committee held a debrief session next week.