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Thursday January 18, 2018

inbrief news ‘Fantabulous’ do at the Dell Fun times are to be had at the Dell in Wellington’s Botanic Garden, with a family-friendly hour-long concert with performances from Tarrant Dance Studios. The event starts at 11am on Saturday, January 27 and features a “chance to dance” with Pump Dance Studios and the Tarrant Dance Studios, with punters encouraged to slap on their dancing shoes and wear their favourite tutus. Also at noon that day the garden’s artworks will be brought to life with a council organising a magical arts trail. Children can also get their faces painted and learn how to build a bivouac. If weather is bad the event will be postponed to Sunday.

Volunteers for parenting hotline Parent Help is looking for volunteers to join their national parental helping hotline. Volunteers would be dedicating a few hours a week or fortnight and talking to families with parenting concerns on the phone. The next training course will start on February 12. Call 802 5767 or email for more details, or visit

With the lovely scent of rotten flesh By Julia Czerwonatis

The Begonia House in the Botanic Garden carries a peculiar smell since last Sunday after its stinking flower started blooming. “The Stapelia grandiflora, commonly known as carrion flower or starfish, is pollinated by flies,” Ali Whitton, Wellington Gardens’ visitor experience team manager, explains. “That’s why it smells like rotten flesh.” The flowers emit an odour as a technique to attract flies in areas where other pollinating insects are scarce. The Stapelia Grandiflora, native to South Africa, is a

cactus-like plant with fine hairs growing on its succulent leaves. In October last year, a similar plant nicknamed Stinky McStinkypants also bloomed with the aroma of rancid flesh in the Begonia House. “We don’t have a proper nickname for our Stapelia Grandiflora yet. It looks a bit like one of the monsters from Stranger Things, so perhaps that’ll be inspiring for a name,” Ali says.  The carrion flower is expected to bloom for two to three days. With any luck, it’s still flowering today. Visit the Begonia House anytime between 9am-5pm. Entry free.

Band to reunite for Gardens Magic concert

Fire in Makara Wellington fire fighters were called out on Monday at 11.30am to a scrub fire on Makara Road, between Makara Cemetery and the intersection Makara Rd/Opau Rd/Takarau Rd. While fire fighters had the flames extinct by 1.20pm, crews were working well into the afternoon dampening down hot spots. No people were harmed nor houses damaged. Fire Emergency spokesperson Carlos Dempsey says fire services didn’t know yet what caused the fire.

Stapelia grandiflora is blooming at the Begonia House in the Botanic Garden. PHOTO: Julia Czerwonatis

Darren Watson will rejoin his 1980s rhythm & blues band Chicago Smoke Shop for Saturday’s Gardens Magic ‘Lucky Dip’ concert. PHOTO: Supplied

The worst kept secret of the Summer is out - Wellington City Council’s Gardens Magic Lucky Dip concert this Saturday sees two legendary acts take the Soundshell stage. It’s been 30 years since rhythm & blues band Chicago Smoke Shop trod the boards in their hometown. The 10-piece, horn-driven rhythm & blues extravaganza features original band members Darren Watson (frontman/songwriter) Richard Te One (drums), Aaron Te One (rhythm guitar) and special guest harmonica virtuoso Terry Casey, regarded as New Zealand’s finest blues harp player and the co-founder of Smoke Shop with Watson in 1985. But that’s not all - Julia Deans finally returns to Wellington as the opening act. With a honey-sweet falsetto

as well as a menacing growl, the voice of Julia has offered light and shade to a variety of musical endeavours over the years. From fronting Fur Patrol’s muscular pop-rock to her electro-pop stylings with Tiki Taane; from co-conspirator with renowned supergroup The Adults to sultry chanteuse in Silo Theatre’s production BREL; Julia has never shied from adding new strings to her bow. The Lucky Dip concertruns from 8pm to 9:30pm this Saturday, January 20 at the Wellington Botanic Garden’s Soundshell. In the event of rain Chicago Smoke Shop will perform on Monday, January 22 instead. Keep an eye on Wellington City Council’s Facebook page for updates or postponement details.

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Cook Strait News 18-01-18  

Cook Strait News 18-01-18

Cook Strait News 18-01-18  

Cook Strait News 18-01-18