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July 13th, 2009

Submitted by on July 13, 2009 – 5:39 pm



Editor’s Pick: 

It must have been spine-tingling.  Over the weekend, three hundred of New Kaumatua KapahakaZealand’s most experienced Kapahaka groups performed in the grand finale of Te Papa’s Matariki celebrations.  We’re talking Kaumatua Kapahaka – Maori elders – performing song and dance on stage for Matariki.  How exciting is that?  All those elders, from across the country, coming together to share music that many have been performing all their lives.  What a special event it must have been.  I worked with a Kapahaka group once (I was their karate fitness instructer!) and I was blown away by the hours and sheer effort those kids put in.  Check out this great photo (from last year) of some of the kuia in action on the front page of Happyzine.  And here’s the official website for the Kaumatua Kapahaka – this year they streamed the performance live online.  Stay tuned for next year’s event.  I am.

Charlotte Squire 

PS – if you’re interested check my my ‘behind the scenes’ blogs on what it’s like setting up a Positive News website.   

Good News Roundup
Wanaka man Quentin Smith, who broke his back  in a paragliding accident in 2008, was recently touched by the kindness of his community when they raised the funds to buy him a ‘sit-ski’ (Otago Daily Times.co.nz).
Also in the Southern regions, Otago based Marion van der Gos has been appointed the Department of Conservation’s consevator, becoming only the second woman in New Zealand to hold this role (Otago Daily Times.co.nz).
Over in Saltlake City a man who stole a Stop sign three decades ago has sent the Utah Department of Transportation a $600 cheque to cover the costs of replacement.  In the accompanying letter he said that he had prayed that no one was injured because of his act and that he wanted to set things right.  A spokesperson for UDOT said that the cheque would cover more than three signs (Associated Press).
Onto the art of comedy, now you can watch joke after joke uninterupted on You Tube via a new feature called Jokey Phone (Voxy.co.nz).
Thanks to the discovery of ancient treasures lurking beneath new soil, the downtrodden city of Lod in Israel hopes to reinvent itself into a major tourist destination (nytimes.com).
Onto positive environmental news – a new report on the natural features of the Kaipara Ecological District has highlighted some of Northland’s most impressive natural features (Department of Conservation).
A scienitific exhibition along the moutainous forests of the Cordillera del Condor of South Eastern Ecuador has uncovered an amazing array of new species (Happynews.com).
And in Brazil, a new monkey has been Brazil Monkeydiscovered in an area that is currently threatened by proposed dams and other developments (Sciencedaily.com).

Residents of Bundanoon want to protect their natural species too, they’ve banned bottled water from their town, for the good health of their planet and their finances (salon.com).
Now you can live your childhood dreams, whilst being assured that the planet’s getting a good deal out of your adventures at the World’s Greenest Country Fair on Earth (inhabitat.com).


Ferris Wheel

This is a great case of innovative design – in the Phillippines two taxis made from ninety per cent bamboo and fueled by coconut biodiesel are now in action thanks to the forward thinking Mayor of Tabontabon (inhabitat.com)

Recent Happyzine comments:  

Hi Happyzine,
Here is some news for you to share (I got from the Age of Stupid newsletter)
‘But the good news is that those extremely brainy people at NEF (the New Economics Foundation) have conclusively shown  that… stop press… there is no link between human happiness and more stuff. Their Happy Planet Index works out how well each country is using their environmental resources to deliver happiness and well-being to their people. Top of the class is… Costa Rica. And, interestingly, nine of the top 10 nations are in Latin America. Big cheer. Saudi Arabia is 13th, China is 20th, India 35th. Not a single European country made it into the top 50, for shame… Germany is highest at 51, Sweden 53, Italy 69. Blair must be relieved that the UK (74) just managed to beat that well-resourced and happy country known as Iraq (79). Australia (102) beat New Zealand (103) and the USA (114) is no doubt breaking out the champagne for managing to triumph over Nigeria (115) by one whole place. Not surprisingly, Zimbabwe is languishing at the bottom (143).’

Keep spreading your joy,
Carl Chenery
Te Henga

Thank you also for the wonderful Happyzine, it used to be a bit of a chore wading through the doomy-gloomy to find happy, but now i just go to my homepage……


Francisca Griffin


Make Happyzine your homepage and access good-news each time you use the internet.  Here’s the Wikipedia lowdown on how to do it.
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