Information storyboard signage unveiled
Visitors will soon enjoy some of the rich history of the Cook Islands at sites of cultural and historic significance on Rarotonga once a series of ‘information storyboards’ is placed around Rarotonga.
The unveiling of an information storyboard at Takamoa Theological College on Tuesday showcased the first of twenty information storyboards being developed by Destination Development at Cook Islands Tourism Corporation.
Takamoa College was selected amongst a host of options as the first site to commence the project mainly due to the large amount of information available for this historical site, and the willingness of the Cook Islands Christian Church (CICC) administration to engage in this project.
The London Missionary Society had a considerable impact on the history of the Cook Islands and its legacy has a heavy influence on our lifestyle today. This rich history will be shared with those visiting the sites. Storyboard signs will also be placed at all the CICC churches on Rarotonga outlining the individual history of each church.
“There will be a lot of interesting information available for both visitors and locals. Some of our people may not know that most of our churches have each been built and re-built several times” said Noeline Mateariki Coordinator of the project for Cook Islands Tourism. “Visitors and locals alike will enjoy the insight the signage provides”.
Cook Islands Tourism has worked closely with Ngatuaine Maui and the Kimi Ravenga Group, and with Jean Mason of the Cook Islands Library and Museum to kick-start this project. Raymond Solomon from Raro Signs was successful in bidding for the contract to produce and install the signs.
Cook Islands Tourism Corporation CEO Halatoa Fua said “Most sites of cultural and historical significance in the Cook Islands are not well marked and as a mature tourism destination this element is lacking from a visitor experience perspective. This project addresses this issue, but will also provide well researched information on the history and culture of the Cook Islands that will benefit the local community”.
Following on from Takamoa College other sites to have signs installed include Papua Waterfall commonly known as Wigmores, The Banana Court which is the site of the first hotel in the Cook Islands ‘Are Manuiri’, and Tuoro or Black Rock which is believed to be the mythical departure point of spirits to the ancestral underworld of Avaiki.
Next steps for this project include adding these sites to published visitor’s maps and brochures, including the sites in guided and or self-guided activities, and promoting the sites through social and other media. A limited number of sites are currently being researched and explored for the island of Aitutaki.