Hurunui springs back to life
Momentum is building around the Hurunui district for a coordinated approach to marketing and running events, kicked off with a launch on Thursday evening of Spring Time Hurunui.
Mayor Winton Dalley has been a strong proponent of such a project for some time, and has attempted to encourage businesses to take up the idea but with little success until now.
The difference could be the ‘delegation’ of four women who approached him about six months ago with their vision to celebrate springtime, all of them business owners and proud supporters of what Hurunui has to offer.
The group found a sympathetic ear in Dalley, who wanted them in fact to broaden their scope to go further than a spring celebration — he wanted to see a promotion of the district in winter, summer and autumn too, and he believed the region had enough going on to achieve this.
Dalley said it was vital to support the smaller community events in order to keep the local community healthy and happy. There was no point promoting the district to outside visitors if the community itself was not thriving, he said.
It was important to support such ventures, like flower shows, the smaller A&P shows and other rural events, because it was these which shaped the district and gave rural communities a sense of pride. A good example was the Scargill Spring Show which was made homeless by November’s earthquake but with help found a new venue at the Tipapa Woolshed in time for this year’s show, he said.
Some of the events had been going for more than 100 years and provided a sense of Hurunui’s history, in particular the A&P shows, Dalley said.
Meg Macfarlane is one of the group who set up the initial meeting with Dalley, and she was thrilled with the support shown so far for the project. She presented a flyer which had been developed featuring a map detailing local businesses, community events and landmarks.
She hoped the collaboration would promote a sharing of resources and expertise. Dalley echoed the sentiment that this was an opportunity for businesses and events to work smarter and promote the district together, with a parting message of ‘‘join in or get left in the dust’’.