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Your high five events for Friday 19 October

This daily feature lists a selection of Wellington events accessible today for $20.00 or less. You may want to check previous entries for recurring events. And there are many more options in the What’s On, Active/To Do, and Community sections of The Wellington App.

Leading up to Halloween, find out about The Cultural Evolution of Supernatural Beliefs and Practices at lunchtime today with Dr Joseph Watts of the University of Oxford, and Max Planck Institute for Science of Human History. He will explain how he identifies broad cultural-patterns in historical social systems, testing theories about the functions of ritualised human sacrifice, the spread of Christianity, and the overlap between religious and secular leadership in early human societies, and also online experiments to study how individuals apply natural and supernatural explanations to the world. The free session runs from 12.00 to 1.00pm at EA527, on the fifth floor of Easterfield Building, Kelburn Parade.

The 7×7 Ideas Forum, created way back when by Sweeney Vesty and Jan Bieringa, will celebrate some of the best New Zealand ideas in GovTech, as seven speakers with seven slides and seven minutes each, deliver a concentrated mix of new ideas, success stories and provocations. It’s a free event from 6.00 to 9.00pm, with networking time over drinks and nibbles after the presentations, at the Ministry for the Environment, 23 Kate Sheppard Place. Register here.

Wellington Young Actors, the Capital’s award-winning youth theatre company, are presenting a Shakespearean double bill this weekend, opening tonight at Wellington Girls College in Pipitea Street, Thorndon with The Winter’s Tale from 6.00pm, followed by The Merchant of Venice at 8.00pm. On Saturday, the order is reversed, with 2.30pm and 4.00pm starts, and that programming is repeated on Sunday. There’s a range of affordable ticket options, depending if you want to see one play or both.

Tonight’s Poetry Slam with the theme 125 Years, So What? is part of a two-day inclusive event to commemorate 125 years of suffrage in New Zealand, hosted in collaboration with Poetry in Motion and Wellington Museum, 3 Jervois Quay. It’s free entry to the Flux venue within the Museum (donations at the door appreciated) with snacks and beverages on offer. Doors open at 6.30pm with the Poetry Slam from 7.00pm. Tomorrow night, same venue, there are speeches and debate on a similar theme.

Last year, the debut HighLight: Carnival of Lights attracted 120,000 people over Labour Weekend to Lower Hutt’s Riddiford Garden. This year will be even bigger and better as five zones with a “Wild Things” theme showcase amazing light installations accompanied by live performance events, light-oriented activities for children, 17 food trucks and four sit-down eateries, and fireworks each night from 9.30pm. HighLight: Carnival of Lights is on from 7.00 to 11.00pm every night from 19 to 22 October with free entry. But be generous to the volunteers raising money for Te Omanga Hospice, the carnival charity partner.

Octopoda, the interactive steampunk octopus (bang the tentacle drums) at HighLight