WAIRARAPA: WINGS, WHEELS AND WON­DER

The Tribune (NZ) - - CONVERSATIONS -

There’s plenty to see and do in the Wairarapa this sum­mer thanks to an action packed events calendar and a stun­ning land­scape that pro­vides lots of op­por­tu­ni­ties for peo­ple to re­con­nect with na­ture. Aerosparx, a world renowned dis­play team fly­ing mo­tor glid­ers with wing-tip py­rotech­nic ca­pa­bil­i­ties will make their New Zealand de­but at the 2017 Wings over Wairarapa Air Fes­ti­val. The UK based Aerosparx will show­case their spec­tac­u­lar fly­ing performance at the Air Fes­ti­val be­ing held at Master­ton’s Hood Aero­drome from Fe­bru­ary 17th – 19th, just one of sev­eral ma­jor events be­ing held in the re­gion this sum­mer. As part of the Wings pro­gramme they will per­form two day­time dis­plays and a spe­cial one-off evening show on Satur­day 18th Fe­bru­ary which is a new ad­di­tion to the fly­ing pro­gramme and will be dif­fer­ent to what is seen in the skies dur­ing the day. Aerosparx will daz­zle the crowd with their smoke and wing-tip py­rotech­nics on the glid­ers that paint a re­mark­able pic­ture in the sky. They will also com­ple­ment other aircraft that span 100 years of avi­a­tion – from the world renowned WWI Vin­tage Avi­a­tor Col­lec­tion per­ma­nently based at Hood Aero­drome to the Royal New Zealand Air Force’s newly formed Black Fal­cons, who will also make their NZ de­but at Wings Over Wairarapa. Like pre­vi­ous years, there will also be on-the ground en­ter­tain­ment in­clud­ing mil­i­tary re-en­act­ments, a fam­ily-friendly area and re­tail tent vil­lage. The same Satur­day, town meets coun­try at the Trust House Master­ton A&P Show be­ing held at the Sol­way Show­grounds. This fun, fan­tas­tic day out for all of the fam­ily in­cludes prized live­stock on show, a farm yard nurs­ery, a three-day eques­trian event; a food vil­lage, chil­dren’s en­ter­tain­ment and ex­hi­bi­tion stands sell­ing both ru­ral and home­wares. An­other action packed week­end is Wai­tangi Week­end that be­gins when in­ter­na­tional singing su­per­star Lady­hawke head­lines a sum­mer con­cert in Master­ton. Lady­hawke, aka Pip Brown, will head­line the con­cert to be held at Me­mo­rial Park on Fri­day, 3rd Fe­bru­ary 2017 and is ex­cited about per­form­ing in her old home town. Lady­hawke is ex­pected to play tracks from all three of her albums in­clud­ing her self-ti­tled de­but al­bum which was No. 1 in the Aus­tralia and New Zealand’s al­bum charts in 2008; Anx­i­ety and the re­cently re­leased Wild Things. Wairarapa indie band LA Woman will open for Lady­hawke. Other events on the same Wai­tangi Week­end in­clude the pop­u­lar Mart­in­bor­ough Fair on Fe­bru­ary 4th and the Tauherenikau Horse Races on the Mon­day, which is a pub­lic holiday. Be­fore Fe­bru­ary gets un­der­way, the Wairarapa will host sev­eral events in Jan­uary in­clud­ing UB40 play­ing at Luna Es­tate in Mart­in­bor­ough (Jan 2nd); The Topp Twins head­lin­ing the three-day Wairarapa Coun­try Mu­sic Fes­ti­val at the Tauherenikau Racecourse (Jan 13th – 15th); the UCI 2.2 New Zealand Cy­cle Clas­sic, an in­ter­na­tional men’s road cy­cling event and Huri Huri: Waira­parpa’s Bike Fes­ti­val with events cater­ing to all lev­els of in­volve­ment in cy­cling. If you’re com­ing to the Wairarapa for any of these events, be sure to take the time to ex­plore the re­gion’s five town­ships of Feather­ston, Mart­in­bor­ough, Carter­ton, Grey­town and Master­ton and the nearby coun­try­side which is sur­rounded by vine­yards, olive groves, or­chards and rolling pas­tures. They’ve plenty of ter­rific cafes, restau­rants and coun­try pubs that serve lo­cal and sea­sonal pro­duce to keep peo­ple fu­elled up while the coastal com­mu­ni­ties of Castle­point, Rivers­dale and Ngawi at Cape Pal­liser pro­vide end­less fish­ing, camp­ing and walk­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties. For more in­for­ma­tion on the Wairarapa, in­clud­ing book­ing ac­com­mo­da­tion, visit www.wairara­panz.com.

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