Matariki Sales for the Māori New Year
Matariki is a cluster of stars that reappear in the New Zealand dawn winter sky in June/July. The appearance of these stars (also known as the Pleiades) is the signal of the Māori New Year.
The star cluster is relatively close to Earth (around 440 light years) and consists of hundreds of stars. Only the brightest six or seven, however, are visible without the aid of a telescope.
Although there is no set date that marks Matariki, this year the public holiday occurs, and the Māori New Year begins on Friday 24th June. In recent years, the Matariki Sales have begun to get popular with more retailers taking part and offering some great discounts.
It is important, however, to keep in mind the serious and important nature of the Māori New Year period even whilst enjoying the offers available.
The Stories of Matariki
There are a number of stories associated with the brightest stars of the Matariki star cluster. One of the main stories speaks of the stars being a mother, Matariki, and her daughters, Tupu-ā-nuku, Tupu-ā-rangi, Waipunarangi, Waitī, Waitā, and Ururangi.
The mother watches over and encourages her daughters whilst they each practice and use their own special gifts and skills.
Another legend refers to Tāwhirimātea, god of the winds and weather. He became upset when his father Ranginui (sky father) was separated from his mother, Papatūānuku (earth mother). As a sign of love for his father, Tāwhirimātea hurled his seven eyes into the sky where they stuck to the chest of Ranginui and became Matariki.
Māori New Year Celebrations
There has been a recent increase in interest around celebrating the Māori New Year. This time of year has become an important facet of modern New Zealand’s history and culture. Winter festivals are held, based around Matariki and the idea of growth and renewal.
As astronomy is so interwoven into Māori culture, many events include star-gazing activities. Additionally, there are many opportunities for sharing food, stories, songs, and music with friends and family.
Many retailers have begun offering great sales as an added part of these festivals and celebrations.
Look at some of the great offers on TCL products available during the Matariki Sales. Check out your local in-store and online retailers.