Kaik­oura 2012 – the year in re­view

In the last of the 2012 year in re­view, Emma Danger­field looks back over the fi­nal four months of the year, Septem­ber to De­cem­ber.

Kaikoura Star - - NEWS -

A pe­ti­tion against the pro­posed new civic build­ing which will house the li­brary, mu­seum and coun­cil of­fices was started by con­cerned res­i­dent John Tag­gart in Septem­ber. Mr Tag­gart was con­cerned that the com­mu­nity had not been ad­e­quately con­sulted over the project, and he called for it to be stopped and re­con­sid­ered. Mr Tag­gart was also wor­ried about the cost of the project and its im­pli­ca­tions for the ratepayer some light en­ter­tain­ment in the form of a text­book ‘‘cat-up-a-tree’’ story. Two-year-old tabby Libby was stuck up the tree for three days be­fore be­ing rescued by the Kaik­oura vol­un­teer fire bri­gade.

The Kaik­oura po­lice team was up to full force by Septem­ber with the ar­rival of the last new con­sta­ble, Mark Ad­di­son, from Haw­era.

In con­ser­va­tion news, a large area of the Waiman River Re­serve was given an op­por­tu­nity to flour­ish thanks to a col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween En­vi­ron­ment Can­ter­bury, For­est and Bird and a lo­cal farmer. A num­ber of na­tive trees in­clud­ing kahikatea, red beech and rimu were planted among a kanuka for­est by a group of vol­un­teers, and the area has been fenced off to stock-proof it and al­low the plant­ing to grow.

Lo­cal school­child­ren also played a part in look­ing af­ter their sur­round­ings in Septem­ber for the Sir Peter Blake an­nual beach clean. Among items re­trieved from around Kaik­oura were a large num­ber of tyres, fur­ni­ture and a tele­vi­sion set.

Septem­ber in Kaik­oura will with any luck be­come syn­ony­mous with clas­sic car event the Kaik­oura Hop. Or­gan­iser Doug O’Cal­la­han pulled out all the stops for the 2012 event which, in just its sec­ond year, at­tracted a stag­ger­ing 500 clas­sic cars, their own­ers, friends, fam­ily and car fa­nat­ics.

And on the same week­end, Kaik­oura’s very own bird, the hut­tons shear­wa­ter, was wel­comed home with a street party, with an of­fi­cial cer­e­mony, street pa­rade, stalls and much more.

For some of Kaik­oura’s teenagers the last week of Septem­ber will have been spent re­cov­er­ing from the gru­elling pace of the year’s Cac­tus pro­gramme, which cul­mi­nated in the long­est day on Septem­ber 23. For more than two months they had been put through the or­deal of early morn­ings, drill and dis­ci­pline, be­fore they rose to the great­est chal­lenge of all, push­ing them­selves to their lim­its to com­plete the course be­fore grad­u­at­ing in front of their proud par­ents.

Kaik­oura songstress

Te Aomi­hia Te Huia be­gan to get her name and voice out there when she en­tered the wild­card sec­tion of the New Zealand’s Got Tal­ent com­pe­ti­tion.

This was just the first step to Te Ao per­form­ing out and about in the com­mu­nity and she is now gear­ing up for an au­di­tion on the up­com­ing X-Fac­tor New Zealand show.

The first week­end of Oc­to­ber was, of course, Seafest, and things seemed to go off with min­i­mal dis­rup­tion and dis­or­der this time. Po­lice praised the be­hav­iour of the vast ma­jor­ity of rev­ellers, their only point of con­tention be­ing the num­ber of drink-drivers still out on the roads.

But the sad news of a burnt out van, found at Meat­works, con­tain­ing a body, brought the com­mu­nity back down to earth two days later. The van turned out to be that of surfer Adam Tole­man, whose re­mains were lo­cated in­side the ve­hi­cle. Adam, 28, had lived in Kaik­oura on and off for about four years, and had many friends in the area. He was farewelled later in Oc­to­ber by friends and fam­ily with a beachside me­mo­rial. The lo­cal surf­ing fra­ter­nity pad­dled Adam’s younger brother out to scat­ter his ashes.

The com­mu­nity also said good­bye to Doug O’Cal­la­han, who moved up to Welling­ton to pas­tures new af­ter can­didly talk­ing about his strug­gles run­ning a busi­ness in Kaik­oura. Doug, who ran his Photo and Frame busi­ness in West End for more than 20 years, was the in­spi­ra­tion be­hind the hugely suc­cess­ful Kaik­oura Hop event and has vowed to re­turn each year to keep this go­ing.

Kaik­oura Race­day, at the end of Oc­to­ber, was its usual mix of glam­our and sun­shine, with the weather turn­ing on its charm to pro­duce a great day’s rac­ing and so­cial­is­ing.

On-course turnover was up on the pre­vi­ous year, sig­nalling a pos­si­ble sign of things to come for the econ­omy.

In rac­ing, the crowds flocked to see favourite I Can Doosit romp home to claim his 15th vic­tory on end.

The beau­ti­ful McGovern sis­ters im­pressed again in the Best Dressed com­pe­ti­tion, but this year’s de­served win­ner was an­other lo­cal lady, Polly Ruawai.

Cat res­cue

Mark Ad­di­son

John Tag­gart

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