Sandy surprises await treasure seekers
Families will be rounding up the kids and hitting the beach in search of buried treasure on the day after New Year’s Day.
The annual Levin & Districts Brass Band Big Dig has been a family favourite for more than 28 years.
Band president Chris Craddock said it gets ‘‘bigger and better’’ each year.
Generous donations from local businesses and the community, and family and friends of band members mean more than 300 prize tokens, with a total value of $7000, will be hidden in the Waitarere Beach sands.
‘‘There are two prize pits - one for adults and the other for kids 14 and under. That doesn’t stop kids from digging in the adult pit, or adults helping out in the children’s pit. It’s just that the types of prizes are different.’’
The top prize in both pits is a watch, but Craddock said there would be plenty of other highlights, with each of the hidden tokens worth at least $20, and some between $50 and $100.
The rule is that it is hand digging only. No tools or implements are allowed.
With crowds of between 800 and 1300 people, depending on the weather, Craddock said there was roughly a one-in-three chance of finding a prize.
Successful treasure hunters were able to take their tokens to the surf lifesaving clubhouse where the prizes were displayed and swap it for the corresponding item.
‘‘It’s a great fun family activity.’’
Proceeds from the dig go towards buying instruments for the band’s youth education pro- gramme.
Waitarere Beach is south of Foxton, off State Highway 1 north of Levin. The flat rate $3 tickets will be available at the tent near jthe main beach entrance from 9am on Monday, January 2, with the Big Dig under way at 2pm.
Treasure hunters Emily Thomas, 4, and Shaun de Mamanche scrabble in the sand for prizes during last year’s Waitarere Beach Big Dig.