Newtown Festival

I finally brought my camera to a social event in Wellington. I feel that it’s really important to step outside of your comfort zone in order to grow, and I’ve been meaning to do this more with photography. I did move across the world to New Zealand, after all, so pushing the boundaries of my photography should seem like a baby step in comparison. Although I didn’t create anything revolutionary here, I think utilizing my camera for something beyond landscape shots can only lead to positive experimentation and new ideas.


The Newtown Festival is held once a year in, you guessed it, Newtown. Conveniently located just down the hill from Brooklyn, Newtown is a quirky, diverse, quickly growing suburb of Wellington. The festival has been going strong for 18 years and apparently drew an estimated 80,000 people in 2014. Sunday, the day of the festivities, dawned sunny and warm. Around noon, I made the descent from Brooklyn with my roommate Nick, and we met up with my friend Emma in Newtown.


As soon as we made it to the closed-off streets where the festival takes place, the crowds, music and atmosphere enveloped us.


Shops of every variety lined the streets and the aroma of delicious international food wafted through the air.



Then, there was a gorilla wearing underwear hanging out with a giant banana…


The unique architecture of Newtown provided a great backdrop for the festival.


Various stages were scattered around, so we got to watch some interesting performances.


I also recognized a street performer from my old roommate Hazel’s circus group. (The little boy climbing in the background is not part of the act… that I know of).


That can’t be comfortable.


Nothing like a good McDonald’s (or Macca’s, as they say here) sign to liven up any picture.


It was really hard to decide on food with so many great options, but I eventually got samosas and some chicken/beef skewers with peanut sauce.


This was before my friend dripped peanut sauce all down her pants and purse before realizing it. Oops.

I was tempted to get more food but managed to restrain myself.


We browsed through some of the many small shops, and I actually managed to walk away without buying anything, which is quite an accomplishment for me.



I’ll admit, the “Thunderpants” were tempting, especially after seeing a gorilla wear them. Who doesn’t want to wear the same underwear as a cool gorilla?


This sheep were also pretty cool, but not for sale.



There were some great artsy booths as well. If only I didn’t have to fly back home with everything I buy in this country.


Maybe I could fit this tea towel in my luggage?


The most entertaining aspect of the festival had to be all of the interesting characters.


I think this next guy is Gandalf’s hippie cousin. Check out that funky staff. “YOU SHALL NOT PASS. Actually, wait. You SHALL pass that joint.”


And what day would be complete without fairies?


Although it was a great time, the crowds and heat eventually started to take their toll and we decided to make our exit.


Overall, a very successful afternoon spent in the lovely city of Wellington.

4 thoughts on “Newtown Festival

  1. Looks like it was a lot of fun. Your shot of the Newtown architecture looks a lot like an Old West town in the U.S. — at least the ones in the movies.


    1. I thought that, too. Such a neat feel.


  2. Nice little photographic taste of your day at the festival. Good job, Kelsey.


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