With Auckland’s beloved pink path Te Ara i Whiti turning two, it’s time for a block party with bells on! Presented by Bike Auckland and proudly supported by Barfoot and Thompson, the 2nd annual Lightpath Festival is a free community celebration that invites the public to enjoy the city’s public spaces in a playful new way.
On Saturday 1 December, from 5:00pm-9:00pm along Lightpath/Te Ara i Whiti , Canada St and surrounding streets (just off K Road), an anticipated crowd of 10,000 will experience the city by night in traffic-free spaces brought to life with roving entertainers, live music, art, food and festivity. Festival-goers are warmly encouraged to arrive and explore on foot and by wheels, to maximise the fun.
For Lightpath Festival, Canada St will become a pop-up piazza: a convivial place to eat, drink, play, and hang out under the stars, with music from the main stage by Neck of the Woods, featuring bands Ijebu Pleasure Club, MC Slave's LOGG CABIN feat. Silva MC and DJ Hudge (The Uptown Boogie) + guests. The Mercury Plaza car park will be transformed into an open-air dining room, with delicious Asian cuisine from Mercury Plaza’s 12 food vendors, plus food trucks (Olas Latin Food, Madame George, Nata Portuguese Bakery, The Pie Piper and Bow and Tie Micro Roastery) and sweet treats from local dessert and coffee makers. And the Electric Bicycle Hub’s parking lot will turn into a cosy space where festival-goers can sample craft brew beers including Bike Auckland’s very own Bike Brew radler style beer from the Brothers Beer Garden, or chill out in the Barfoot & Thompson Lounge.
A pop-up bike-lane and performance space between East Street, Galatos Street and West Terrace will celebrate the coming Karangahape Rd Enhancements Program featuring live performances.
At 6:00pm, all are welcome to join the festival parade, starting at Lightpath’s Canada St entrance. Paraders will roll along the pink path accompanied by the irresistible New Orleans-style jazz of the Auckland City Scoundrels followed by percussion group, AK Samba, culminating in sweet treats, selfies and song with the Caluzzi drag queens, tinsel monsters and more surprises along the way.
All evening long, Lightpath and Canada St will sparkle with artful entertainment including games, performances and interactive installations, lighting and art by Angus Muir - with more programme highlights to come; follow Bike Auckland on social media for updates.
‘Lightpath is Auckland’s glorious treasure, winning accolades abroad and affection at home,’ says Barb Cuthbert, chair of Bike Auckland, which campaigns for bike-friendly streets and safer spaces to ride. ‘As the centrepiece of a safe cycleway loop that circles the city, connecting uptown and downtown, Lightpath/ Te Ara i Whiti deserves to bask in the glory of its very own festival.’
Every day more and more of us ride, walk, and travel past Lightpath’s pink glow. It symbolises our vision for the future of our city: walkable, bikeable, delightful. What better way to celebrate this shared gem than by bringing Aucklanders together for a summery street party? - Barb CuthbertThis festival is hosted by Bike Auckland, with sponsorship and support from Barfoot & Thompson, Fresh Concept, Waitemata Local Board, Auckland Council, Auckland Transport Cycling and Walking, Brothers Beer, Neck of the Woods, NZ Transport Agency - Auckland & Northland, K Road Business Association, Electric Bicycle Hub Auckland, and Mercury Plaza.