The Grassroots Trust Festival Hub is at the heart of the action, offering free and live entertainment featuring an array of Waikato musicians throughout the festival. Get amongst it and relax with a drink and enjoy some incredible locally produced food thanks to our new partnership with Waikato Food Inc and the Food Truck League

Bask at Stage of Enlightenment

Some of Aotearoa’s most intriguing performers will be popping up from 5pm weekdays and throughout the weekends.

Day Time Who What
Sat 20 5-6pm Jaqualyn T Williams Comedy and hot topics for all ages. Bring the kids!
6-7pm Parabola West New age folk electronica from Raglan
Sun 21 5-7pm University of Waikato Showcase A musical party mix of students and alumni bought to you by The University of Waikato
7-9pm Retro Valley Mellow indie rock that feels like summertime
8-9pm JP & the Drag Kings Classic rock with funk and blues undertones
Wed 24 5-6pm Vikae Sultry piano pop artist with intimate lyrics and vocal tones
7-8pm Coral Award-wining local soul singer with x-factor aplenty
8-9pm Hin & Co Popular jazz quintet put their own spin on jazz standards & modern favourites
Thurs 25 5-6pm Steve Tofa Multi-instrumentalist and singer with stunning harmonies
6-7pm Socratena Operatic comedy songs performed on ukulele
7-8pm Fifth Degree Get down and boogie to jazz standards performed with flair
8-9pm Hazy Sundays Dreamy, atmospheric violin to lull you into the evening
Fri 26 5-6pm Valere Electro pop and R&B from Auckland
6-7pm BellaDonna Punchy pop with lyrical finesse
7-9pm University of Waikato Showcase A musical party mix of students and alumni bought to you by The University of Waikato
Sat 27 5-9pm Chick Fest A showcase of Kirikiriroa’s finest female fronted acts. Feat. Kyla Greening, Phreaze, Shana, Empress, JP & the Drag Kings, and many more!
Sun 28 4-5pm Lost Tribe of Aotearoa Making music for the people, by the people; top reggae straight outta Raglan.
5-7pm Isla Indie-folk rock featuring stunning flute & violin flourishes

Roaming Acts in the Hub

Doing Pennants – Prince Geoffie 1st Arts Council Inc.

Design a flag, sew it on a bicycle powered sewing machine, and then see it added to this multi-year installation.

Every Saturday and Sunday of the festival, 10.30 – 12 noon and 1.30 – 3pm.


The Garden Delights – Crows Feet Dance Palmerston North

A dance company made up of “mature” dancers, these elegant Edwardian characters are sure to entrance as they interact with you, the gardens, and anything else they find intriguing.

Lunchtime on Saturday Feb 20 and Sunday Feb 21, and from 5pm on Saturday Feb 20.


The Drifting Theatre – Stephen Bain and Winning Productions

Equally intriguing for both audience members on the inside and outside, come and be a part of this mobile theatre space.

Between 12pm and 2pm and 5pm and 7pm on Saturday Feb 27 and Sunday Feb 28.


The Helm! Take the Helm! – Jim Fishwick

A mysterious occurrence, a whirlwind adventure, a daring escapade! What happens next in this open-ended free-form story is entirely up to you.

10-11.30am, and 2-3.30pm on Saturday February 27 and Sunday February 28.


The Garden’s Secrets

Join local storytellers for a live reading of Hamilton Garden’s magical new children’s book, The Garden’s Secrets.

10am – 12 noon every weekend morning of the festival: meet in the festival hub.


The Grassroots Trust Festival Hub is powered by the generous support of the Grassroots Trust.

Matua X is back for 2021

Your MC/Ringmaster/Provocateur Matua X is back to scintillate and inspire as the voice of the festival.

He’s often found in and around the Grassroots Festival Hub and is always happy to chat about all things HGAF. Get your timing right and you might even win yourself some free festival tickets or last minute deals.

As Waikato’s premium expert in waste minimisation and proactive circular economy practice, Matua X teaches Zero Waste throughout our region’s schools and will also be ensuring that we minimise our environmental footprint and protect our glorious gardens during the festival.

Proud to be a Zero Waste festival

In 2020 we introduced a zero waste policy across the entire festival. Managed 100% by volunteers, it proved to be one of the biggest success stories of the festival.

Total HGAF 2020 waste equated to:
8 household rubbish bags of compostable waste
7 household rubbish bags of landfill waste

The challenge is to improve on that still. So, whatever you bring into the festival, we’d be grateful if you take it home with you when you leave and keep an eye out for our volunteer team of Zero Waste heroes who will show you the way. Let’s work together to keep our beautiful city in good nick.