After long days full of sweaty tops, chasing patches of shade and deep cravings for Moosies, it's hard to believe the summer could ever end. Wellington, it's been a blast this year, but autumn's coming, and you know what that means – a final summer send-off. Yeah baby, it's CubaDupa time.
If you thought last year was big, wait till you see what's coming this year. March 2018 saw over 100,000 people flock to the capital for the free two-day festival. This year CubaDupa will be held 30-31 March, and Wellington is expecting an even bigger turnout. With more than 250 performances over 17 hours across seven stages, why wouldn't you show up for the best end-of-summer festival in town?
With some of the biggest names in Kiwi hospitality partnering up to make this the sensational summer party only fit for Wellington's Cuba Street (think Havana Coffee Works, Parrot Dog Brewery and Moore Wilson's) the food and drink will be exquisite. In fact, the Moore Wilson's Street Festival is not only providing fantastic food, they're also committed to providing a sustainable future for the capital with their zero-waste initiatives.
If you're a bit of a music buff, you won't want to miss this weekend. Wellington lads Tunes of I will be taking to the stage after a hectic 2018, their playful, soulful shows having been influenced by Kora, The Black Seeds and Fat Freddy's Drop — full of Kiwi nostalgia, and a yearning for times past, the band is constantly evolving — definitely a CubaDupa hit.
Three-piece thrash metal band Alien Weaponry will also be performing — this will be your only chance to see them live in New Zealand this summer. These guys are making it big worldwide with their songs in te reo Maori, and have nabbed slots at some of the biggest heavy metal festivals in the world – make CubaDupa your chance to say, 'I saw them first in 2019.'
But with 250 performances over the weekend, they're not all going to be local performers. Electric Fields, a multi-award winning electro-pop/soul artist from Sydney, sings in the traditional language of the Anangu (Aboriginal) people. He'll be performing alongside Cha Wa, a New Orleans brass band with Mardi Gras influences. Cha Wa are a hot favourite amongst the organisers and are not one to be missed.
So as the mornings become darker, and you start questioning why you didn't wear jeans instead of shorts, just know that CubaDupa 2019 is on its way. It's free, it's sustainable, it's full of good food, good music and good times. If there's one thing Wellington knows how to do well, it's how to party – see you in March CubaDupa.
Image: Ollie Crawford.