Festivals, holidays and anniversaries

Festivals, holidays and anniversaries

Commemorations and celebrations in Christchurch.


January events

New Year

The tradition of celebrating the New Year as a new beginning goes back to the earliest societies. For many of us, 1 January is New Year.

Lunar New Year 2023 - Year of the Rabbit

Celebrate Lunar New Year! Events at libraries take place from 22 January to 5 February 2023.


The Sparks concert features classical music, popular tunes and stunning fireworks.


Events in February

Kite Day

Kite Day at New Brighton beach is on 4 February 2023. This page lists kite events, and kite resources at your library.

Te Tiriti o Waitangi - The Treaty of Waitangi

An agreement made between Māori and the British Crown in 1840, it is New Zealand’s founding document. Read our backgrounder to the Treaty.

Waitangi Day in Christchurch & Canterbury - Mon 6 Feb 2023

Find out about Waitangi Day celebrations to enjoy in Ōtautahi and further afield. All libraries are closed Monday 6 February 2023.


Big Bargain Book Sale - Friday 24 & Saturday 25 March 2023

Friday 9am-7pm, Saturday 9am-4pm
The Big Bargain Book Sale will be held at the Pioneer Recreation and Sport Centre.

Festivals and events in March

Children's Day

Children’s Day is the first Sunday in March. It is a special day to spend time as a family.


Find information about library events for Neurodiversity Celebration Week and resources on ADHD, Dyslexia, Dyspraxia and more.

Top of the Pods podcasting competition for Years 5 to 10

Are you an aspiring podcaster? Are you curious about what it takes to produce a podcast? The Top of the Pods competition is for you!

Events in March

International Women's Day 8 March

This global day connects women around the world and aims to inspire them to achieve their full potential.


Seaweek is New Zealand’s annual national week about the sea 4 to 12 March 2023.

St Patrick's Day - 17 March

Links and resources about the patron saint of Ireland and Irish culture.

Events in March

Race Relations Day

Race Relations Day is on 21 March each year. We recommend books and resources with a focus on uniting against racism and hate.

Margaret Mahy

Find out more about Margaret Mahy, Children’s Librarian at Christchurch City Libraries & one of the world’s most famous children’s authors.


Events in April

International Children's Book Day

2 April is International Children's Book Day. Celebrate at your library, or at home - everywhere!


Information about the origins, traditions and dates of Easter, as well as events, activities and library resources.

Anzac Day and Gallipoli

Learn more about the origins of Anzac Day and find library resources about the Anzacs and Gallipoli.

Armageddon Expo: 29 and 30 April 2023 at Te Pae

Comics, sci-fi, fantasy, anime, manga, stars, cosplay ... We can help you get your costume sorted!



NZ Music Month

We highlight local music for New Zealand Music Month. Support Local. Stream Local. Follow Local. Buy Local.

Youth Week

Find out what's happening for Youth Week. 15 to 21 May 2023.

Ōtautahi Inside and Outside - Open Christchurch 2022

Open Christchurch is about interior spaces and architecture, but also nature, the environment, history, culture, and how we live.


New Zealand Sign Language

Find out more about New Zealand sign language and browse NZSL resources. NZ Sign Language Week is from 8 to 14 May 2023.

Gasav Ne Fäeag Rotuạm Ta - Rotuman Language Week

Ḁlalum 'ḁus 'e gasav ne fäeag rotuḁm te'is. Gasav Ne Fäeag Rotuạm Ta - Rotuman Language Week is on from Sunday 7 to Saturday 13 May 2023.

Vaiaso o le Gagana Sāmoa - Samoa Language Week

Tālofa lava. Vaiaso o le Gagana Sāmoa - Samoa Language Week is on from Sunday 28 May to Saturday 3 June 2023.



Matariki: Māori New Year

Stars of the Matariki cluster set on 13 Haratua / May, and rise 10 to 13 Takuru / July. Celebrate Matariki with Christchurch City Libraries.

Matariki for Tamariki

Find out all about the traditions of Māori New Year on our Matariki for Kids page.

King's Birthday holiday

Libraries are closed Monday 5 June 2023 for the King's Birthday holiday, except Tūranga is open 10am-5pm. Learn more about King Charles III.


Events in August


KidsFest is full of winter holiday fun for kids in Christchurch and Canterbury.

Wikin te Taetae ni Kiribati - Kiribati Language Week

Kam na bane ni mauri. Wikin te Taetae ni Kiribati - Kiribati Language Week is on from Sunday 9 to Saturday 15 July 2023.


Cook Islands Language Week

Kia orana! 'Epetoma o te reo Māori Kūki ‘Āirani - Cook Islands Language week is on from Sunday 30 July to Saturday 5 August 2023.

More August celebrations

Christchurch Family History Expo

Three days of family history fun - coming from Friday 18 to Sunday 20 August 2023 at Tūranga.

WORD Christchurch Festival 2022

WORD - Ōtautahi's own literary festival - is on from Wednesday 31 August to Sunday 4 September. Explore featured writers & festival info.


Events in September

Tonga Language Week

Mālō e lelei. Uike Kātoanga’i ‘o e Lea Faka-Tonga - Tonga Language Week is on from Sunday 3 to Saturday 9 September 2023.

Festival of Adult Learning Ahurei Ākonga

The Festival of Adult Learning Ahurei Ākonga is on Monday 6 September to Sunday 132 September 2021. Find resources and learning events.


Find literacy resources in the library collection, and adult literacy providers in Christchurch.

Celebrate Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori

Explore resources to help you strengthen your reo during Te Wiki o te Reo Māori - Māori Language Week.

Events in September

Parenting Week

Parenting Week includes seminars and workshops for parents. It takes place every two years, In 2019 it was from 9 to 19 September.

New Zealand Sign Language

Find out more about New Zealand sign language and browse NZSL resources. NZ Sign Language Week is from 8 to 14 May 2023.

New Zealand Chinese Language Week

Nĭ hăo! New Zealand Chinese Language Week 2023 is on from 17 September to 23 September. Find out what's on.

Vaiaso o te Gana Tuvalu - Tuvalu Language Week

Talofa koutou. Vaiaso o te Gana Tuvalu - Tuvalu Language Week is on from Sunday 1 to Saturday 7 October 2023.


Christchurch Heritage Festival 6 - 23 October 2023

Explore the interesting and fun local history events, exhibitions, and activities on at the Christchurch Heritage Festival.

Events in October

International Day of Older Persons

Celebrated every year on 1 October. Find resources, events and information for older people.

Macawa ni Vosa Vakaviti - Fijian Language Week

Ni sa bula kece sara. Macawa ni Vosa Vakaviti - Fijian Language Week is on from Sunday 8 to Saturday 14 October 2023.

Faahi tapu he vagahau Niue - Niue Language Week

Fakaalofa lahi atu! Faahi tapu he vagahau - Niue Language Week is on from Sunday 15 to Saturday 21 October 2023.

More celebrations in November


Diwali, a Hindu festival, is a celebration of the triumph of light over darkness, good over evil, and renewal of life.

Labour Day

The history behind the New Zealand Labour Day holiday. Our libraries are all closed Monday 24 October 2022 except Tūranga (open 10am to 5pm)


Halloween is on 31 October every year. Find books and other resources to help make your Halloween extra spooky!


Events in November

Dia de Muertos / Day of the Dead

Día de Muertos is celebrated throughout Mexico on 2 November (All Souls' Day).

Guy Fawkes - 5 November

Find out about Guy Fawkes, The Gunpowder Plot and fireworks safety.


There was a peaceful resistance to a militia invasion of Taranaki settlement Parihaka 5 November 1881. Discover the Christchurch connection.

Canterbury Anniversary Day Friday 11 November 2022

Explore the history of NZ Cup and Show Week and Canterbury Anniversary Day. All our libraries are closed except Tūranga, open 10am to 5pm.


Events in December


Links and information about the Christmas holiday - food, crafts, music, reading and more!

Christmas for kids

Background information about Christmas, great Christmas reads, craft, and fun for kids.

Library Events Calendar

Find out what's on at your local library - storytimes, book clubs, after school activities and more!

Back to Top