Bush Telegraph - - FOCUS ON FARMING -

The Dan­nevirke Cave Dwellers have taken top hon­ours at Tararua|s big­gest an­nual cel­e­bra­tion of vol­un­teers, the Trust­power Com­mu­nity Awards.

Vol­un­tary groups from Palmer­ston North and the Tararua and Whanganui Dis­tricts gath­ered with rep­re­sen­ta­tives from Trust­power, Palmer­ston North City Coun­cil, Tararua District Coun­cil, Whanganui District Coun­cil, and the com­mu­nity at the Palmer­ston North Con­fer­ence & Func­tion Cen­tre to hear how 15 groups and six young peo­ple are mak­ing an im­pact in their com­mu­nity.

Trust­power Com­mu­nity and Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Ad­vi­sor Alice Boyd says the Dan­nevirke Cave Dwellers stood out to the judges for the unique, ed­u­ca­tional and en­ter­tain­ing ex­pe­ri­ence they con­sis­tently pro­vide for their com­mu­nity.

yThe Dan­nevirke Cave Dwellers are a group of vol­un­teers who run The Fan­tasy Cave w a des­ti­na­tion in Dan­nevirke that con­sists of four lev­els of dis­plays in­clud­ing chil­dren sto­ries, nurs­ery rhymes, and a model rail­way de­pict­ing lo­cal scenery, com­menc­ing at the Ash­hurst end of the Gorge through to Or­mondville.z

yThe Fan­tasy Cave is a des­ti­na­tion for both lo­cals and tourists alike, and vol­un­teers re­ally help pro­mote the Tararua District with their ded­i­ca­tion and pas­sion for the re­gion.z

Boyd said that the Dan­nevirke Cave Dwellers were al­ways think­ing of ways to make The Fan­tasy Cave even bet­ter.

yA num­ber of the dis­plays are in­ter­ac­tive, and they|ve in­tro­duced scenes where chil­dren and fam­i­lies can have a photo taken like the Easter Bunny and a pi­rate ship. They|ve re­cently up­dated their sys­tems so that when pho­tos are taken they|re au­to­mat­i­cally trans­ferred to the of­fice up­stairs and printed, ready for the vis­i­tors when they com­plete their visit.z

For win­ning the Supreme Award, the Dan­nevirke Cave Dwellers re­ceived a framed cer­tifi­cate, a tro­phy, and $2,000 prize money.

The group will go on to rep­re­sent the Tararua District at the 2018 Trust­power Na­tional Com­mu­nity Awards, when vol­un­teers from 26 re­gions from around New Zealand gather in Tau­ranga next March.

It|s the first time the three re­gions have cel­e­brated to­gether at a sin­gle awards func­tion.

A full list of win­ners can be found at www.tararu­adc. or www.face­­adc

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