Pacific Night at NZ Embassy attracts hundreds
The New Zealand Embassy in the United States hosted the annual Washington D.C. Pacific Night, Wednesday 22 June, which celebrates and raises awareness of the Pacific in America’s capital city. The event had spirit, style and substance. In a first, prior to Pacific night reception, a seminar focusing on Pacific Issues was held, in collaboration with the East West Center.
Heads and Representatives from American Samoa, Australia, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Guam, Hawaii, Marshall Islands, Nauru, New Zealand, Northern Mariana Island, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu all came together for the seminar and reception.
Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Dr. Kurt Campbell and Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs Dr. Esther Brimmer spoke at the event. Dr. Campbell, who is travelling next week to the Pacific region, spoke of the friendship that the U.S. had with Pacific Island nations, adding that the U.S. intended to step up its engagement in the region.
Following speeches, guests enjoyed New Zealand and Australian wine and food, as well as dishes such as Chicken Estufao from Guam, Fish Kokonda from Fiji, Hawaiian Lomi Salmon, Bobo Rice from the Marshall Islands, Chicken Calderetta and Grilled Milk Fish from Papua New Guinea, and Cooked Plantain with Baked Fish from Micronesia.
“Pacific night was a stunning success at every level,” said New Zealand Ambassador to the United States, Rt. Hon. Mike Moore.
“It was more than just a great party. For the first time, we had the UN Ambassadors with us, as well as a serious seminar where we can begin to drill down into the substance of our region's real needs.”
Throughout the night, guests were entertained by a continuous stream of performers including dancers and artists from New Zealand, Samoa, Fiji, Australia and Hawaii.