Pacific Arts Festival Applauded As Delegations Return Home

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2016 Guam festival will need ‘a lot of effort’ to top Solomons

By Ednal Palmer

HONIARA, Solomon Islands (Solomon Star, July 16, 2012) – The festivity mood has rescinded but the experience encountered in the past two weeks at the Festival of Pacific Arts 2012 was something that will linger on in the minds of many forever in the Solomon Islands.

The big picture of the two-week event in the Solomon Islands was a ‘yes’ for many who have already left our shores for their home countries.

Various members of the delegates that left the country over the weekend all echoed the same sentiments.

"This was the biggest, successful 11th Festival of Pacific Arts event ever," these were the same sentiments uttered by members of different teams.

Many could hardly hold back their love for the country – such a short time but the hospitality and beauty of the Solomon Islands had already had yawning effect on them.

"I must say I have already fallen in love with the Solomon Islands, such that makes me sad to leave," one member of the Guam contingent told the Solomon Star on Friday night.

The Head of Delegation for the New Zealand contingent said the past two weeks had been awesome.

"It was an experience of a lifetime, the climate, people and food," he said.

Billy Kusupe of Papua New Guinea said he seriously would like to return and live in the Solomon Islands.

"I must tell you, this is one of the countries in the region that need to be a model in our region. The peaceful coexistence regardless of the many different ethnic people, cultures and provinces, they still live happily together without fear.

"Unlike in PNG, the freedom experienced here in the past two weeks in terms of movement, would hardly come your way back at home."

He said he look forward to Guam in 2016 although he said it might not be the same as the Solomon Islands.

"They honestly need to put a lot of effort to beat the Solomons, but as the event is meant for sharing, it doesn’t matter, we would have to support Guam to ensure everyone enjoys the next one."

The countries that already left the Solomon Islands include Norfolk Islands, New Zealand, Guam, Papua New Guinea, Australia , Fiji, Tokelau, Hawai’i, Niue and Kiribati.

Easter Islands and ROC/Taiwan groups will leave today while Samoa, Nauru, New Caledonia, French Polynesia (Tahiti) tomorrow and Vanuatu on Wednesday.

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