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No. 21 (December 1957)
– 29 –

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Mr D. C. Seath, M.P. for Waitomo addresses the gathering. Behind him are the guests of honour.

SOCIAL EVENT IN TAUMARUNUI

HITTING THE SOCIAL HIGHLIGHTS

One of the last functions attended by the Hon. E. B. Corbett as Minister was a debutante ball at Taumarunui where 43 young Maori girls were presented to him and Mrs Corbett. The whole occasion was meticulously planned, carefully rehearsed and perfectly timed. Chief organizer was Mrs R. Wright, Mrs Anihira Turoa Henry, Mrs P. H. White, Mrs Meri Bell and all the Maori Women's Welfare leagues of the area. An illuminated address was presented to Mr Corbett recording the people's ‘deep sense of gratitude’ for the Minister's work and quoting the ancient Maori blessings:

Kia hora te Marino
Kia whakapapa pounamu te moana
Kia tere te Karohiroho.
May the calm be widespread
May the sea glisten like the pounamu
And may the shimmer of summer
Dance across your pathway.

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The debutantes. Some (as in the centre photograph) were presented by young men of their own age; others, like Miss Rataka Pearl Kuruhanga (left) and Miss Mateahiahi Hemopo (right) came with their parents for the great social occasion.