Santa Cave is still all the rave


‘Twas the first Christ­mas Eve fol­low­ing the end of the Great War on Novem­ber 11, 1918.

A time of cel­e­bra­tion for the end of hos­til­i­ties, it was also a time of mourn­ing for the ones who did not re­turn.

New Zealand was also in the grip of the world-wide in­fluenza pan­demic – more than 8,600 would suc­cumb to the dis­ease. The na­tional mood was grim.

Back in more op­ti­mistic pre­war times, 1912, El­wor­thy Dod­drell, a young English­man em­ployed at Palmer­ston North depart­ment store Collinson & Cun­ning­hame, had sug­gested to man­age­ment that they cre­ate a Santa Cave in the store’s 280 square me­tre base­ment.

Six years later in a bid to lift lo­cal spir­its, the idea be­came a re­al­ity with the cave and its elec­tri­cally en­ter­tain­ment 12noon – 2pm; Pa­rade 2pm, The Square. FEILD­ING SPIR­I­TUAL & Aware­ness Cen­tre: 10.30am, Feild­ing & Dis­trict Cale­do­nian So­ci­ety Hall, 55 Weld St, Feild­ing. All wel­come. YOUNG WIDOW and Wid­ow­ers Club: Sup­port and so­cial group for peo­ple of all ages who have ex­pe­ri­enced a loss. Lunchtime meet­ing. Enquiries Pat 354 3654 or Lor­raine 354 6420. MANAWATU MI­CRO­LIGHT Club: Fly­ing lessons, Taonui Air­field, Feild­ing. Enquiries 323 9861 (Sun­days). SPRING CHICK­ENS IN CON­CERT: Over 50s dance troupe with steam­punk­ish ukelele ladies the StrumPettes, 7pm, Globe The­atre. Enquiries Lor­raine Hay­dock 356 7476 CLAIR­VOY­ANCE and Heal­ing: Manawatu Spir­i­tual & Heal­ing Cen­tre, Milson Com­mu­nity Cen­tre, Milson shop­ping cen­tre, 7pm. ALCOHOLICS Anony­mous: Fox­ton Beach Com­mu­nity Cen­tre, 7.30pm. Enquiries 363 6126 or 0800 AAWorks.

Mon­days pow­ered an­i­mated fig­urines open­ing on Christ­mas Eve 1918.

and Wed­nes­days, 9 – 10am, Bar­ber Hall, Arena 5, Walde­grave St. $3. Enquiries Sport Manawatu 357 5349. SUPERGRANS: Knit­ting & Cro­chet class 10am – noon; Sewing class noon – 2pm, 74 The Square. Gold coin koha. Enquiries Cyn­thia or Lisa 354 3804 ext 700/701 to reg­is­ter, ser­vices@sg­ OR­GAN & KEY­BOARD Club: All lev­els and styles of play­ers and lis­ten­ers wel­come, Manch­ester Unity Hall, 26 Wald­ing St, 1pm. Small door charge in­cludes af­ter­noon tea. Enquiries Bev 358 5769 or Tri­cia 357 5518 evenings. FRIEND­SHIP CEN­TRE En­ter­tain­ment Mon­days: All Saints Com­mu­nity Cen­tre, 2 – 3.30pm. All se­niors wel­come, af­ter­noon tea pro­vided and trans­port avail­able, $2 do­na­tion. Enquiries Judy or Theresa 355 1204. PLAY BRASS: Learn a brass in­stru­ment with PN City Brass, 57 To­tara Rd, 5.45 – 6.45pm. Enquiries David Maas 021 455 327, Chrissie Butts 027 308 6644 or email palmy­ BAD­MINTON: Ju­nior Club, first night free, PNBHS New Gym, Welles­bourne St, 6 – 7:30pm. Ca­sual play­ers $5 per night. Yearly subs

Ad­mis­sion was one shilling – the equiv­a­lent of be­tween $12 – $15 in to­day’s money. Chil­dren

$70. Enquiries Steve, PN Bad­minton Club 021 027 53825 or MANAWATU EM­BROI­DER­ERS’ GUILD:Red Cross Rooms, 245 Main St, 6.30pm. Visi­tors $3. Enquiries Trish 357 1862 TA­BLE TEN­NIS: 7pm, Hokowhitu School Hall, Al­bert St. Enquiries Allen 356 4522 email BAD­MINTON: Mon­rad Club, St Peter’s Col­lege Gym, Ren­nie Ave, 7 – 9.30pm. Mem­ber­ship $100 or $8 ca­sual. Enquiries sports­­rad bad­minton. PIPERS and drum­mers: Wanted for non-com­pet­i­tive Feild­ing Pipe Band. Enquiries Pipe Ma­jor Colin Sin­clair 359 2862. TOAST­MAS­TERS: Toast­mas­ters In­ter­na­tional is a com­mu­ni­ca­tion and lead­er­ship train­ing or­gan­i­sa­tion. PN club meets 7.30pm, Hear­ing House, 435 Church St. Visi­tors wel­come. Enquiries Elise 0274 966 533. WOMEN’S SINGING GROUP: Mainly Celtic tunes, Mon­days 7.30 – 8.30pm. Friendly, re­laxed at­mos­phere. Enquiries Jeanne 353 0399. ESTREL­LITA LATIN DANCE: Salsa, merengue, bachata, cha-cha-cha, Ar­gen­tine tango and ki­zomba. All abil­i­ties and ages, 7.30 – 9pm, Square Edge Dance Stu­dio, Jer­sey Lane, $5. Enquiries Linda 323 0408 or estrel­lita.latin­dance@ya­ AIKIDO: New mem­bers wel­come. IPC Dojo (off Pa­cific Drive), 8 – 9.30pm. Mon­day & Wed­nes­day. Enquiries Ian 021 036 1423 email or www.aikido-manawatu.


‘‘Christ­mas Land’’ in the Collinson and Cun­ning­hame Santa Cave, 1937. The dis­play had been es­pe­cially im­ported from Lon­don, and had over forty dif­fer­ent mov­ing fig­ures. The Santa Cave is now cu­rated in Te Manawa, where the long­stand­ing sea­sonal tra­di­tion is main­tained.

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