Let’s get ready for big events coming to our city in the coming year
On November 15, I had great cause for celebration. For one, it was my birthday and my wedding anniversary, and two, we received the fantastic news about New Zealand’s winning bid to host the Women’s Rugby World Cup in 2021.
What a thrilling outcome to be a host city alongside Auckland. Whanga¯ rei will host 11 of the World Cup games in the tournament. We’re already in the planning stages to ensure we’ll be World Cupready when the time comes, and with a possibility of this event bringing around $6.4 million to our local economy along with many volunteer and job opportunities, this is exciting news indeed.
We’ve also just heard that the Warriors will be holding their second NRL warm-up match here in March next year, so we can safely say Whanga¯rei’s sporting and event facilities are at an international level.
The Warriors have a huge fan base here in Northland, we can be sure that the first weekend of March will be a busy one for Whanga¯ rei. You might want to make sure you’ve got your accommodation booked if you’re coming in from out of town. We might even have a few Tigers supporters crossing the ditch. Let’s make sure we show them a good Kiwi manaakitanga when they get here.
Aside from all the sporting news, we’re also gearing up for our Endless Summer Festival, with more than 100 events planned between January and March 2019. The festival is world famous in Northland, and has something for all tastes — from incredibly talented musicians, jaw-dropping performance artists, art installations, sports competitions, local craft and artisan foods at a variety of markets, cultural events and, of course, the many dining options Whanga¯ rei has to offer. The Festival is a showcase of all that’s vibrant and exciting in our District, with many of the events free and family-friendly, be sure to catch as many as possible.
As a final note, the piles for the Hundertwasser Wairau Maori Art Centre are in, the construction site is transforming into a more visible aboveground operation. We now have an enormous tower crane on site. Completion is planned towards the end of 2020, just something else to look forward to – and what perfect timing with the Women’s Rugby World Cup fixtures in 2021.
Big things are coming Whanga¯rei, bring on the summer fun!