Auc­tion chips in for res­cue chop­per

Auckland City Harbour News - - NEWS - By GILL AL­COCK

The char­ity event of the sum­mer sea­son will take place on Wai­heke Is­land at Man O’ War tast­ing room on Jan­uary 20 and tick­ets are sell­ing fast.

The sum­mer lunch in Man O’ War Bay is in aid of the Auck­land Res­cue Heli­copter Trust which op­er­ates the West­pac res­cue heli­copter.

The event will fea­ture six head chefs from some of Auck­land’s most highly rated restau­rants like The Grove, Tribeca, Novo­tel, The Com­mons, The Food­store, and Euro, un­der the ste­ward­ship of MasterChef pre­sen­ter and judge Josh Emett.

A walking de­gus­ta­tion of their beau­ti­fully cre­ated food will be ac­com­pa­nied by Man O’ War Vine­yard’s award-win­ning wines.

Racon­teur John Hawkesby will be on hand to head up the char­ity auc­tion.

Lunch guests will be ca­joled into bid­ding for lots as di­verse as art and hol­i­days to the event favourite – noth­ing at all.

Get­ting to and from the venue is part of the fun with a Fullers ferry trans­port­ing guests from Auck­land to Man O’ War Bay, at the ‘‘ bot­tom end’’ of Wai­heke, via Ma­ti­a­tia.

Trust spokesman John Hooper says this year’s fundrais­ing event is es­pe­cially cru­cial for the West­pac res­cue heli­copter.

‘‘Af­ter re­cent cuts in fund­ing from Auck­land Coun­cil we will be even more re­liant on do­na­tions.

‘‘Last year we made over 790 mis­sions to Wai­heke, up from 450 res­cues in 2009. As the age­ing pop­u­la­tion con­verts their hol­i­day baches to per­ma­nent homes in places like Omaha, Whanga­paraoa and Wai­heke, the ser­vice will be­come even more im­por­tant.’’

Heli­copter high­light: John Hawkesby works his magic to sep­a­rate lunch guests from their money dur­ing the char­ity auc­tion at the event last sum­mer. Fundraiser fo­cus, in­set: The sum­mer lunch raises money for the Auck­land Res­cue Heli­copter Trust.

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