The people of the north are urging those at Waitangi to pay attention to their concerns with mining and the treaty negotiations process.
Prime Minister John Key and politicians were welcomed onto Te Tii marae just before midday on Wednesday.
A group of about 80 anti-mining protesters who had marched from Cape Reinga in the Far North had their powhiri before hand.
The hikoi was in opposition to exploration permits granted in the region.
Mana Party president Annette Sykes, who lead the group's chants, also challenged the Maori Land Court judges who were waiting to be welcomed onto the marae.
She questioned the judges for having their own powhiri and not standing with the protesters to be welcomed on.
There are also a number of banners along the road and around the grounds criticising the Crown's Treaty negotiations process, with many Ngapuhi hapu who feel left out because the Crown only negotiates with iwi authorities.
Also at Waitangi, there are also a number of banners along the roads and around the grounds criticising the Crown's Treaty negotiations process.
Many Ngapuhi hapu feel left out because the Crown only negotiates with iwi authorities.
A forum to debate the issue is being held during the celebrations.
The event - held in one of the festival tents - is being hosted by Ngapuhi sub-tribes, who have invited Labour leader David Cunliffe.
Lawyer Moana Sinclair represents a Palmerston North tribe, who complains the Crown is settling with a local urban authority.
She says claimants will use the forum to talk about what they describe as a process that leaves them marginalised.