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Climate heats up

INSIDE THIS WEEK KAHU YOUTH : PAGE 9 jobs: PAGE13 sport: Page 14

New Zealand’s hottest January ever.

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Horse trek through high country TURNBULL G GLENDA editor@thewanakasun.co.nz

A

round 70 riders had an amazing adventure through three backcountry stations on a three-day horse trek organised by Central Otago Hunt. The trek started at Mount Albert Station, Makarora, on Friday February 2, headed up through the Wilkin Valley, around the back of Lake Wanaka to Minaret Station and ended at West Wanaka Station on Monday February 5. The group covered over 100 kilometres on the three-day ride and were hosted by Scott and Rachel Patterson at Mt Albert Station, Annabel and Jonathan Wallis at Minaret Station and James and Janelle Cochrane at West Wanaka Station. Organiser Ted Ottrey said their hosts were fantastic ambassadors for the high country stations. “They welcomed us onto their properties and ensured we were safe while trekking across them. Best yet, they all came along with their families to talk to us about the history of the station and to give us a view of the life they live and difficulties they face while living in such a challenging environment. A highlight of this was Jonathan Wallis’ half hour talk about the history of the Minaret Station,” he said. Ted also said that everyone on the trek found something to challenge their riding ability. “They all rode in very happy with what they had achieved, knowing the trust in their horse had grown and that horses can do some really amazing things while on tricky terrain.” The organisers had pre-rode the trek a week before and were amazed at how quickly the lake and river levels could rise and fall over a short period of time. “The first river crossing was very high, it wouldn’t want to have been any

higher, we were lucky it had dropped. It’s amazing how much it dropped in six hours. On our pre-ride, the lake level at the crossing was only kneedeep. When we got there it was over a metre higher and quite challenging for the horses, but we got through safely. ” Hilary Robinson who lives part time in Wanaka and the UK, said it was an amazing experience. “I’ve ridden all over the world, in Mexico, Argentina, Kenya, France, the UK and Botswana and in many challenging places and nothing compares with this. It was absolutely exhilarating. It was also terrifying at times, the river crossing was quite tricky, and then there was some quite technical climbs which were a bit scary. “The sense of achievement to have done this was amazing. It was a very exciting ride with the most spectacular scenery. We were so fortunate that the station owners allowed us to cross their properties. It was a once in a lifetime experience,” she said. Ted said, “We are very fortunate in Central Otago to have some spectacular country to ride in. The organisers would like to thank everyone involved, including riders for contributing to the success of the weekend.” The organisers are looking forward to planning another trek at the same time next year after a well-earned breather. PHOTO: Ted Ottrey

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Battle not over for Kai music nights

PHOTO: supplied

WHITE R ROB journalist@thewanakasun.co.nz Kai Whakapai has stepped up its fight to keep hosting live music in Busker’s Square. The Ardmore Street cafe/bar was told last month by Queenstown Lakes District Council (QLDC) to stop all live music next to its outdoor drinking area. However, owner Roger North appeared in front of the Wanaka Community Board (WCB) last Thursday (February 1) to put forward the case to resume the music nights, many of which have raised money for local good causes. Roger said the WCB was receptive and empathetic, leaving him more optimistic for the future. “All parties understood that our breach of process was related to the lack of an obvious process by which we could apply for the activity. The elected members and relevant QLDC staff members agreed to discuss a suitable mechanism privately and get back to me with a proposal. “No one seemed to oppose the idea and

some saw it as similar to the general direction envisaged in the future town centre plan. I am assured that active discussions are ongoing and am now reasonably confident of the right outcome. Hopefully the process will be simple and straightforward.” Wanaka councillor and WCB member Quentin Smith said, “The WCB received Roger’s submission in public forum on Thursday and were complimentary of his community attitude and helping resolve the issue through an appropriate process. “The WCB are working with council’s property management services (APL) and Roger to work out the most appropriate way forward.” News of the ban caused outrage on social media when it broke, with many in the community deploring the decision. Some called it a “shame” and “unbelievable”, while others accused the council of being the “fun police” and treating the town like a nanny state. QLDC will now consider the issue and report back, although no specific timeframe has been set.

PHOTO: Nikki Heath

Run-off risk remains TURNBULL G GLENDA editor@thewanakasun.co.nz The Otago Regional Council (ORC) are keeping a regular watch on the area damaged by fire last month on Mount Roy. Regional and District Council staff identified the area as at risk of mud flows with the heavy rain last week. ORC director engineering, hazards and science Gavin Palmer said, “While this rainfall event didn’t cause mud flows, the Regional Council advises that the area may remain potentially vulnerable to sediment run-off and mud flows until

vegetation growth re-stabilises the soil. “Further analysis is underway to assess the level of risk. The Regional Council and Queenstown Lakes District Council (QLDC) will work together to ensure the community remain informed.” Gavin Palmer and ORC director stakeholder engagement Sian Sutton will meet with QLDC representatives on Friday February 9 to discuss the next steps around the site and how to manage it in the future. Photo: Steam rises from the burnt ground on Mount Roy after last week’s rain.

Feedback needed on local reserves plan

PHOTO: supplied

WHITE R ROB journalist@thewanakasun.co.nz Queenstown Lakes District Council (QLDC) is seeking feedback from the community on a plan for local reserves. The Draft Reserve Management Plan looks at the future of Lismore Park, Allenby Park, Kelly’s Flat, Faulks Terrace, Domini Park and Kennedy Crescent. The draft has been created with community input and outlines

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QLDC’s vision for all six areas, covering their use, maintenance, protection, preservation and development. Members of the public or organisations are invited to give feedback on the plan, which the council will then take into account before finalising the plan in May. Submissions can be made by post or online at www.surveymonkey.com/r/ NLLWTNC before April 3. Pictured: Soccer games in progress on Kelly’s Flat.

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ORC lauds community’s water efforts

PHOTO: Nikki Heath

WHITE R ROB journalist@thewanakasun.co.nz Otago Regional Council (ORC) has praised the region’s water-saving efforts, but warned the drought looks set to continue. Agriculture and Rural Communities minister Damien O’Connor officially called a drought in the Queenstown Lakes District last Tuesday (January 30) and the ORC said despite the recent wet weather, conditions were unlikely to ease in the coming months. Chief executive Sarah Gardner said that people’s efforts had so far been impressive, but cautioned there was still work to do. “We have been incredibly impressed with the proactive commitment being made to save water and change water use habits over this time. We encourage others to take the lead and make sure they moderate their own personal water use and prioritise water saving in their homes and businesses. “With that said, the Otago community should be praised for their efforts and vigilance so far in protecting people, animals and plants, and managing their use of land and water during this drought,” she said.

Federated Farmers provincial president Phill Hunt said farmers were also facing major problems and urged them to begin planning now. “We are facing what many older farmers are describing as the worst dry spell they have seen in decades. Farmers are understandably concerned about the wellbeing of their stock and are destocking where needed. Having sufficient access to stock drinking water is critical for stock wellbeing. “For many farmers, the stock drinking water supplies we rely on in an average year aren’t available or aren’t sufficient this year. Farmers need to plan accordingly. That means looking at stocking rates and preparing to adapt these to the conditions, and having a plan A, B and C in place rather than hoping for rain. “It also means being aware of our environmental responsibilities while we’re trying to access additional stock water supplies,” he said. As a result of the drought, the ORC is coordinating a series of inter-agency meetings to ensure all communities receive the right advice. The first will be hosted in Alexandra on February 13.

PHOTO: Glenda Turnbull

Show at ArtCell for Noah TURNBULL G GLENDA editor@thewanakasun.co.nz The ArtCell is hosting a show for Noah ReganRoach, a graduate of Mount Aspiring College who is leaving for Australia to attend art school. Noah completed Year 13 last year and will fly to Sydney on February 13 to commence a Bachelor of Arts screen production course at the Australian Film Television and Radio School . Noah has been drawing since he was four and two years ago he began spray and acrylic painting. He said his Mum had been a driving force behind his painting. “My mum Gizelle Regan is an artist. She is always giving me books and finding artists to inspire my work.,” Noah said. Noah enjoys painting figures, faces and crazy people and is looking forward to the showing

this weekend. “I’m really excited. It will be cool and I get to spray paint the outside of the Cell building, so that is really cool,” he said. ArtCell member Sonia Richter said showcasing Noah’s work was what the gallery was all about. “This is a huge part of the reason we wanted to establish ArtCell, to give back to our local kids and inspire them to go into the arts,” she said. The ArtCell has now been running for two months and Sonia said there had been a really good response from the community. “People really enjoy the energy and space and talking to the artists. It is a good opportunity to see artists working and creating firsthand and to see the different methods they can take,” she said. The opening of Noah’s show is on Friday February 9 from 5-7pm and will continue at the weekend. Noah is pictured with one of his artworks.

Wanaka Skin Cancer Clinic Book your 30 minute appointment and see our GP’s who specialise in skin and skin cancer management. Biopsies can be taken and liquid nitrogen treatment is available if necessary. We will photograph and record anything of concern for reference so we can monitor any changes in your skin over time.

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World’s first ‘plant bottle’ Marine biologist talks dolphins debuts at Tuki WHITE R ROB journalist@thewanakasun.co.nz The world’s first-ever water bottle made completely from plants is being launched at this weekend’s Tuki Festival. The Plant Bottle, produced by Southern Lakes-based company For The Better Good (FTBG), will cost $4.50 and is made from plants such as corn, potatoes and cellulose. It will be sold to eliminate waste at the event. FTBG founder Jayden Klinac said, “The great thing about plastic from plants is that it is natural and nontoxic, so you can safely reuse it as many times as you like. If it is kept in the correct conditions, it will last until you decide to have it composted,” Jayden said. The bottles will be composted and recycled in New Zealand, and the current lid, which is made from 100

percent recycled polypropylene, will also be recycled domestically. They are also designed to break down in commercial compost within 90 to 180 days. Pointing to the fact that a million plastic water bottles are sold around the world every minute and more than eight million tonnes of plastic waste is dumped into the ocean every year, Jayden said he hoped festival-goers would purchase a Plant Bottle and refill it throughout the day. Tuki Festival assistant director Martine Harding said, “The one-use plastic model is old news, we need to act on a sustainable future for festivals and beyond.” FTBG is a social enterprise and proceeds from each bottle sold will support further bottle and system developments, whilst also contributing to clean water initiatives in New Zealand and overseas.

PHOTO: supplied

TURNBULL G GLENDA editor@thewanakasun.co.nz PHOTO: supplied

Harpist comes to community concert BUTLER D DANIELLE newsdesk@thewanakasun.co.nz Lake Hawea musician Anna van Riel will host Scottish harpist Esther Swift in a concert at the Nook on Saturday February 17. Esther will share stories and musical experiences from around the world in an eclectic blend of jazz, folk and classical music. It will be the second concert in as many months that Anna has hosted at the Nook this year, with her goal

to provide a place where parents can relax and children can play safely. “My goal is to support original music and offer great concert opportunities to the community,” Anna said. The concert kicks off at 3pm at 62 Nook Road. Entry is by donation and proceeds will go back to the artist. People are encouraged to bring a picnic, chairs and a rug to the dog and smoke-free event.

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Professor Elisabeth Slooten, a marine biologist from the University of Otago, will be in Wanaka on February 16 to talk about the protection of Maui and Hector dolphins. Professor Slooten has studied New Zealand’s dolphins since 1984 and her research has been instrumental in achieving dolphin protection. Together with her colleagues Steve Dawson and William Rayment, her research has shown that the number of dolphin deaths in fishing nets is not sustainable. The Otago University team’s research has led the way to effective dolphin protection in New Zealand. The Hector dolphin was named after Sir James Hector (1834–1907), who was the curator of the Colonial Museum in Wellington, now the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa. He examined

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the first specimen found of the dolphin. The species was scientifically described by Belgian zoologist Pierre-Joseph van Beneden in 1881. Mãori names for Hector’s and Maui’s dolphin include tutumairekurai, tupoupou and popoto. Professor Slooten’s teaching in the Department of Zoology at Otago University includes first year Ecology, a third year course in Conservation Biology and a fourth year (MSc) course in Marine Mammal Biology and Conservation. She has also contributed to the teaching of Statistics for Biology Students for many years. Her research is focused on studying human impacts on whales and dolphins. In addition to New Zealand dolphins, Professor Slooten also participates in research programmes on sperm whales in Kaikoura, right whales at the Auckland Islands and bottlenose dolphins in Fiordland.” The talk is hosted by the Wanaka Branch of the Royal Society of New Zealand at the Presbyterian Community Centre on February 16 at 6pm.

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Mayors to meet minister about freedom camping

grebe diary 16 February 4, 2018

Nests 1 and 3 hatched their eggs adding a total of six chicks to the population. Much to my surprise, I noted a bird on platform 14 on January 23 and checked it with Grebies Tom and Ben on January 28 and discovered she had four eggs. I noted via my binoculars that there were no birds present on January 30, so decided to take a closer look on February 2 and found that the four eggs had been replaced by three fist-sized rocks and some smaller stones. That is so sad that someone could do that. Even more perplexing is that the body of an adult grebe, clearly a breeding bird, was picked up barely 100 metres away. Dr Presswell of Zoology Department at Otago University came to Wanaka specially to retrieve the carcass for her research programme; she being very interested in the insides of the bird, and me, now very interested in both internals and externals, have asked her to conduct a detailed autopsy. To add to the activity level, some kind soul in a kayak picked up a lone grebe chick well offshore and dropped it off to the Log Cabin, who phoned DOC who then called me. I had a fair idea of where it might have come from, for I had watched some quite unusual behaviour from the newly hatched chicks on nest 1. Instead of the usual routine of being on the back of the nesting bird soon after hatching, the first chick was all over the place, including getting into the water and seemingly paddling around with no good sense of direction. The adult bird on the nest would then leave the nest, rescue the chick and then get back onto the nest. Over the day I spent quite a bit of time watching this nest and was left in no doubt that heat was the problem. The scorching temperatures we have been experiencing would make the sort of heat the chicks were exposed to just under the back feathers of the adult intolerable, and I suspect vice versa for the adult. I collected the chick from the Log Cabin and returned it to nest 1, bringing back the total number of

WHITE R ROB journalist@thewanakasun.co.nz

PHOTO: supplied

chicks to three. I have also noted that over the last few days, birds have occupied and been guarding nests 5 and 7. They seem to be off as much as they are on. It seems we may still have some fairly late starters. – John Darby

Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis has called a meeting with 22 mayors from across New Zealand to discuss solutions to issues around freedom camping. Queenstown Lakes District mayor Jim Boult is among those invited to the meeting, which will take place in Wellington in early March. Mr Davis said, “New Zealanders value their right to freedom camp and we want international visitors to explore our country, but there has to be respect for our natural environment. Responsible freedom campers are welcomed in our regions and the vast majority are respectful. But there are problems in some areas. “I’ve been hearing dissatisfaction with the current situation, with complaints relating to noise, litter, human waste, overcrowding and blocked

access to public spaces,” he said. Mr Davis also said he wanted to understand the pressure points across the country and address key issues before the next summer tourist season. “The aim of the meeting is for central and local government to discuss actions we can each take to deal with the growing numbers of freedom campers. “The issues are complex and there’s no easy fix, so central and local government need to take a collaborative approach and find solutions that will work for everyone,” he said. The mayors of Central Otago and Southland were also invited to the meeting. Waitaki mayor Gary Kircher did not receive an invitation, a move that the region’s MP Jacqui Dean called “a slap in the face for the people of North Otago.”

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Reward offered for missing cat

History of Rabbits

Upper Clutha Historical Records Society

PHOTO: Supplied

PHOTO: supplied

TURNBULL G GLENDA editor@thewanakasun.co.nz The owners of a missing Ragdoll male cat (pictured) are offering a $1000 reward in the hope of finding him. The much-loved cat, who goes by the name of Zues, is 11 years old and went missing from a Lismore Street property a week ago. Carer Kerri Ellis, who looks after Zues while his owners are away, said he was not partial to strangers, but

may come when called by his name. “He is a much-loved pet and escaped last week. I’ve looked all around Lismore Street and Lakeside Terrace, but haven’t found him. He has no road sense and if he comes across a Tom or possum, I’m not sure how he would cope as he has not encountered them before. His owners would love him back.” If you have seen Zues or have any information, contact Kerri Ellis on 027 736 8136.

Hawea loses Neighbourhood Support

Dovey P Pam Historical Records Society In 1844, Frederick Tuckett was looking for a site for the “New Edinburgh” (Dunedin) on behalf of the New Zealand Company. He mentioned in his journal that there was “an island well stocked with rabbits” close to Tautuku Bay in the Catlins. This could be the earliest mention of rabbits in the south. The fact that Tuckett was able to capture six of the rabbits suggests that they may have been the non-burrowing species. Perhaps an American jack-rabbit brought over by the whalers. The rabbit we know today, loved by children and dogs and disliked by farmers and gardeners, was liberated by the dozen in the 1860s. It was widely regarded as a pest by the mid-1870s and had forced itself to be recognized as a disaster in the 1880s. By 1882, it was reported that the rabbits were coming over the Kakanuis in their millions. They bred particularly on the high runs and on unoccupied Crown Land. Traps, poison, shot and natural enemies were tried, but made little impression. The rabbits delayed the bridging of the Ohau for many years, as the Mt. Cook Road Board and its successor, the Mackenzie County Council, put some trust in the river as a barrier against them. When the bridge was built in 1889, a rabbit-proof gate was also built. Old hands said that the rabbits came on to the bridge, examined the gate, shook it a little, held a conference, returned to the Otago bank and swam over as they had been accustomed to do! Rabbit districts were defined in 1881, but the

efforts to combat the total onslaught of the rabbit were quite ineffective. During the first decade of the 1900s, the export of rabbit skins from the Upper Clutha valleys became a large operation. The industry grew in the 1920s and 30s. Up to eight million skins were being exported annually and a situation arose where rabbiters were offering a premium to operate on the properties. Until 1940, freelance rabbiters were holding their own against the pest, when suddenly the price of skins dropped and at the same time the Government discontinued summer bonuses. The government then formed Rabbit Boards. The Upper Clutha basin had five Boards, The Forks, Hawea, Lindis, Wanaka and Cardrona. They were formed to carry out what was known as the “killer policy”. By 1949, over 200 men were employed and several state houses were built in Wanaka in an attempt to retain permanent staff. At the close of the Board’s first season, despite the large number of men employed and thousands of rabbits killed, the pest was more numerous than it had been before. Aircraft drops of poisoned oats and carrots were carried out, particularly in the Lindis area, recognized as one of the most heavily rabbit-infested parts of New Zealand. By 1950, it was noticed that overall numbers of the pest had considerably decreased. Sources: White Stone Country K.C. McDonald; Wanaka Story Irvine Roxburgh.

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BUTLER D DANIELLE newsdesk@thewanakasun.co.nz Hawea’s Neighbourhood Support organisation has come to an end with no volunteers to take on the role of coordinator. Founding coordinator Barbara Chinn offered “great thanks” to all who had helped to gather information from the community, which had been forwarded to the

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local Civil Defence organisation. Neighbourhood Support is a community organisation that encourages neighbours to talk to each other and share information, strengths and skills that would help in times of crisis. It also helps people know which organisations can help during an emergency and how to get in touch with them, as well as sending a message to criminals that a neighbourhood is prepared.

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QLDC removes water restrictions WHITE R ROB journalist@thewanakasun.co.nz Water restrictions in place across the region have now been removed by Queenstown Lakes District Council (QLDC). The council made the announcement yesterday (February 7) after recent rainfall, added to the rain predicted next week, eased the situation. A general request to conserve water had been made district-wide, but water restrictions were applied specifically

in Hawea, Arrowtown, Arthurs Point, Lake Hayes Estate and Lower Shotover. QLDC’s chief Ulrich Glasner said, “The public has been great at conserving water during the recent dry period. This reduced demand coupled with a break in the hot, dry weather means that we are now able to remove the water restrictions.” Despite the news, QLDC said that summer was not yet over and asked the community to be both mindful of water use and to continue to conserve it where possible.

PHOTO: Metservice webcam Crown Range

No new facilities for car park TURNBULL G GLENDA editor@thewanakasun.co.nz

PHOTO: Glenda Turnbull

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With many areas around the district being affected by increasing numbers, the Crown Range lookout is one of the places frequented by tourists taking photographs on their journey over the mountains. At the moment there is no toilet at the carpark and the Wanaka Sun has received comments on social media about residents finding discarded toilet paper and faeces at the carpark. We asked the Department of Conservation whether it was considering putting a toilet at the summit car park on the Crown Range. DOC senior ranger Annette Grieve said, “It is disappointing that the Crown Range car park is being used in a disrespectful and irresponsible manner. It is a designated Freedom Camping site, requiring vehicles staying overnight to be fully selfcontained (with a toilet, waste water and rubbish facilities onboard). There are no plans at this stage

to install a toilet at the site, however this location will be reviewed as part of the development of a camping strategy in conjunction with QLDC and other agencies.” Annette confirmed that the review of the camping strategy is currently a work-in-progress. The photos, viewed from the webcam at the summit, show the vehicles at 12.04pm and 7.28pm on February 6 and again at 4.20am on Februcoming and going of vehicles, with the majority of those staying overnight being self-contained, which is permitted. The Wanaka Sun conducted a survey over the last few days vehicles freedom camping overnight at the summit, which were mainly self contained, are set out below. Date Number of Vehicles February 3 8 February 4 6 February 5 5 February 6 5 February 7 11

New Zealand’s 128th Lilliput Library is now up and running at Cromwell’s Heritage Precinct. It is located down the alleyway running alongside Scott’s Bakery. Lilliput Libraries offer free books to passers-by, with no pressure to return them. The 127th was recently started in Wanaka by Lynda Hodge outside her house in Hardie Place.

PHOTO: supplied

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Electric car charger open for business WHITE R ROB journalist@thewanakasun.co.nz

PHOTO: Nikki Heath

January hottest on record TURNBULL G GLENDA editor@thewanakasun.co.nz The National Institute of Water and Atmospheric (NIWA) Research Centre have confirmed that January was New Zealand’s hottest month since the NIWA seven-stations records began in 1909. Susan Pepperell, NIWA senior media adviser said that mean temperatures were well above average (>1.20°C of average) throughout New Zealand. Temperatures were more than 2°C above the January average for most of

Wanaka town centre’s first electric car charger is officially up and running. The charger was officially connected by ChargeNet on Monday (February 5) at 42 Ardmore Street and it is a fast charger, meaning users will be able to charge their cars 12-times faster than they could at home. It will cost around $7 to use and will take just 1520 minutes to charge to 80 percent. Nick Smith, Chief Operating Officer of ChargeNet, said the company was very happy to activate the service. “ChargeNet, in conjunction with Queenstown Lakes District Council and Aurora Energy, are ecstatic to welcome a Wanaka electric vehicle fast charger to the ever-growing nationwide network. It will reduce range anxiety for electric vehicle owners travelling to and from Wanaka and will make the region increasingly attractive to ever-increasing sustainable tourism industry. “Apart from the cost savings from a reduction in maintenance costs and not having to fill up a car with petrol, one of the main reasons that people buy an electric car is how good they are for the environment. We take this one step further by using 100 percent renewable energy provided by Kiwi company Ecotricity.” ChargeNet will now turn its attention to opening more fast chargers across the South Island.

PHOTO: Nikki Heath

the country, and parts of Southland, Otago, West Coast, Kapiti Coast and Taranaki observed mean temperatures more than 4°C above average. Wanaka reached its hottest ever day in January since records began. Rainfall was below normal (5079% of normal) or well below normal (<50% of normal) for much of Southland and Otago. As of January 31, soils were drier than normal for the time of year across large parts of Southland, Otago and the West Coast..

PHOTO: Nikki Heath

A New Year Begins Elvey R Richard Kahu Youth Worker Things have suddenly become much, much quieter down at the Crib as all the young people we’ve been hanging with all summer return to school. What a summer we’ve had too – all sorts of cool activities have been going on to keep the young people busy through the blistering heat. We began with, among other things, chocolate truffle-making, a huge Christmas lunch and a Domino’s pizza party to see out the year in style before kicking off 2018 with pool parties and water fights, slime-making and baking days, taking on the other youth centres in a paintball tournament and running another fire workshop with our resident fire expert Frenchy. To end the summer, our Go Kart workshop (pictured) was as popular as ever and of course, our very hot Amazing Race with Mitre 10 went down great on the hottest day of summer! February is one of our favourite months of the year and there’s always a sense of excitement in the air here. We get to meet a whole new load of fun-filled Year 7’s at Mount Aspiring College’s Pounawea camp and we also begin a hive of activity in our office. We are currently locking in the

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dates of Matariki and Takin’ Over Amigos amongst other dates. We will welcome new members to the Upper Clutha Youth Council, Bluemoon crew and SAGA group and begin planning all of our afterschool activities. This term sees the return of our very popular Youth vs. Wild on Thursdays, Boys and Girls Adventure Clubs on Fridays and Wednesdays respectively and our cauldron of ideas is bubbling away happily as we look to fill the blanks with more fun activities. The end of this week sees the return of Angie from a year’s maternity leave on a part

PHOTO: Rob White

time basis. For the first time in Kahu Youth’s 14 year history, we will have three youth workers here, which will allow us to do even more fun, interesting and exciting things for our fantastic local young people. There are some exciting times ahead indeed. We’d also like to take this opportunity to thank the community for your ongoing amazing support. We really couldn’t do what we do without you all. Here’s to a fun filled 2018! For any more information on anything mentioned here, please drop us a line on 443 5880 or email kahu.youth@xtra.co.nz

THURSDAY 08.02.18 - WEDNESDAY 14.02.18

NATURAL LOG HOMES LTD Handcrafted, beautiful, timeless, log homes, cabins, lodges. Kennedy St, Geraldine 027 221 3812 www.naturalloghomes.co.nz PAGE 9


Sun News

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public notice

N O T I C E B O A R D Amendment to February Meeting Schedule Additional Meetings: Appeals Subcommittee – Council Chambers, 10 Gorge Road, Queenstown. Thursday 15 February 2018 at 10.30am or at the conclusion of the Planning & Strategy Committee meeting, whichever is the latter. Hearing of Submissions on Proposed Long Term Lease – Ngai Tahu Tourism Hot Pools – Council Chambers, 10 Gorge Road, Queenstown. Monday 19 February 2018 at 10.30am.

Navigation Safety Bylaw - Uplifting Public Notice is hereby given that pursuant to the Queenstown Lakes District Navigation and Safety Bylaw 2014 that Bylaws 31 and 35 have been uplifted to ensure the safety of all lake users and those travelling to the Tuki Music Festival by boat. Prohibited area is as shown in the map below. Date: Time:

Saturday 10 February 2018 11:00 until 24:00 midnight

Place: Glendhu Bay, Prohibition/Reserved area as detailed below and highlighted by a black line. Buoys will be in place to mark the Prohibition/Reserved area which will be patrolled to ensure this area remains secured. NB: Private boaters wanting to launch their boats in Glendhu Bay will still be able to use the new Boat Launching Ramp in Rotary Park during the Festival. These restrictions are necessary in the interests of public safety given that large numbers of attendees will be travelling to this event by water. The directions of the Harbourmaster’s staff and or security personnel must be followed. Only those parties involved in this event are exempt from the provisions of the Bylaws.

PHOTO: supplied

New signs for Albert Town TURNBULL G GLENDA editor@thewanakasun.co.nz

Dated at Queenstown 29 January 2018 M A Black, Harbourmaster

Closure of Streets to Ordinary Vehicular Traffic PURSUANT TO THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT 1974, notice is hereby given that the following roads will be closed to ordinary vehicular traffic for the purpose of holding the annual Challenge Wanaka 2018: Infrastructure build up and breakdown Road to be Closed: Ardmore Street from Dungarvon Street to McDougall Street Period of Closure: 0800 Wednesday 14 February 2018 to 1800 Sunday 18 February 2018

Riesling receives five stars

Infrastructure build up and dismantle at end of event Road to be Closed: Dungarvon Street from Dunmore Street to Ardmore Street Period of Closure: 0300 Saturday 17 February 2018 to 0300 Sunday 18 February 2018 Infrastructure build up and safe passage of athletes and dismantle at end of event Road to be Closed: Ardmore Street from Dungarvon Street to Lakeside Road Period of Closure: 0300 Saturday 17 February 2018 to 0300 Sunday 18 February 2018 For safe passage of athletes and motorists Road to be Closed: Single Lane closure of Mount Aspiring Road from Old Station Road to Hospital Flat Period of Closure: 0615 to 1200 Saturday 17 February 2018 For safe passage of athletes Road to be Closed: Ardmore Street from McDougall Street to Meadowstone Drive Period of Closure: 0615 to 1730 Saturday 17 February 2018 Road to be Closed: Period of Closure:

Mt Aspiring Road from Old Station Road to Meadowstone Drive 0615 to 1730 Saturday 17 February 2018

Road to be Closed: Period of Closure:

McDougall Street from Brownston Street to Ardmore Street 0600 to 1200 Saturday 17 February 2018

For safe transition of cyclists at aid station Road to be Closed: Kane Road between Camphill Road and St Ninians Way Period of Closure: 0815 to 1700 Saturday 17 February 2018 It will be an offence under the above regulations for any person otherwise than under authority of an authorised permit to use the roads for ordinary vehicular traffic during the period of closure.

Private Bag 50072 | 10 Gorge Road Queenstown Phone 03 441 0499 | www.qldc.govt.nz

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Members of the Albert Town Community Association (ATCA) committee unveiled three new “Welcome to Albert Town” signs on Friday February 2. Two signs are on State Highway 6, with one on the Hawea side of the Clutha bridge and the other near the junction with Aubrey Road. The third is on Aubrey Road near the Aubrey-Gunn Road roundabout. The new signs are made of plate steel and replace the old wooden ones. Bruce Hebbard, Chair of the Community Association and driving force behind the new signs,

was keen to capture the curve of the Clutha River at Albert Town, the iconic Poplars and the golden colours of the landscape. “Albert Town may now be seen as just another suburb of Wanaka, but it has a special place in the history of the Upper Clutha area and locals like to think of it as being just a little bit different, hence the signs,” Bruce said. The signs were erected after permission was granted by the Wanaka Community Board in November 2016. Pictured are ATCA committee members pictured toasting the new sign (L to R) Chris Aspinal, Jim Cowie, Marie Lewis, Gary Templeton, Raewyn Robertson and Bruce Hebbard.

TURNBULL G GLENDA editor@thewanakasun.co.nz The Archangel Halina Riesling 2014 has been awarded five stars in the latest Cuisine magazine Riesling tasting. The Halina Riesling is grown at the Archangel Vineyard in Queensberry and is named after Halina Raszewski, the grandmother of Archangel’s general manager Zenek Zurakowski. Halina’s daughter is a co-founder of Archangel vineyard. “It’s really rewarding to receive this sort of recognition as it is testament to all the hard work our team puts into Archangel, from the vineyard to the winery and everyone in between. The name Halina translates to “sun ray” in Polish, a fitting name for a medium-dry style Riesling and fitting its namesake too. “My grandmother had quite the sweet tooth and lived life to the fullest, she would have definitely enjoyed the Halina Riesling for the residual sugar and its lively acid balance,” Zenek said. Not only was the Archangel Halina Riesling named number one, but the Archangel Stefania Riesling, named after Zenek’s paternal grandmother, was also awarded four stars by Cuisine in the same tasting. Zenek is pictured at the winery.

THURSDAY 08.02.18 - WEDNESDAY 14.02.18

PHOTO: supplied

THE WANAKA SUN


Sun Views

thewanakasun.co.nz

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Freedom campers

Dear editor, It’s good to see the Wanaka Sun finally wearing its political heart on its sleeve by devoting the front page to a reactionary view of tourism. But why blame Jim Boult for a tourism shambles of our own creation? Wanaka consistently voted for Jacqui Dean and her leader, John Key, erstwhile minister of tourism (and greed). We got what we asked for. But singling out some disrespectful freedom campers for the mismanagement of tourism ignores the truth. So let’s be honest, instead of still paying out millions of dollars to draw the crowds to clog our inadequate resources, let’s put up a cheap sign: ‘Welcome to Wanaka if you’re wealthy. If you’re not wealthy, you’re not welcome.’ While I applaud the Wanaka Sun for ‘coming out’, I am so tired of the assumption that right wing views reflect us all that I am calling for those of us with left wing views to form a Counterbalance Group. Chris Horan

Sponsored by

PHOTO: supplied

Make freedom camping illegal

Dear editor, To me it’s simple - make freedom camping illegal. We have camping grounds in the district. We could provide certain designated areas with toilets and showers for these campers, but they must be charged an overnight fee. I realise our campgrounds can be very full over the peak time in summer, so some extra areas for these campers would help with the overflow. We do not need to tolerate the filth that these people create as it’s OUR home and we love our clean, uncluttered environment. Jill Cole

Some social media reactions to our Freedom Camping story Rather than being salty about the travellers coming through Wanaka, why not think of a worthwhile solution, make space for more spacious and affordable campgrounds and put in more toilets... Fining and impounding their cars will help absolutely nothing”. I’ve been all for freedom camping in the past, but the sheer numbers now and the percentage are spoiling it for everyone. I am all for free facilities to sort the problem, but deal with those who mess it up”. They need to ban freedom camping completely in the Lakes District. Clamp anyone camping who is not in a campsite at night. Support local campsites and stay there – if it is full, go somewhere else”. Thank you QLDC for once again doing nothing in Wanaka”. Maybe us residents will have to start late night window-knocking shifts”.

PHOTO: supplied

THE WANAKA SUN

Clamping the vehicles, with heavy fines to get them back, would be a great job deterrent as they’re obviously freedom camping to save paying for the beautiful campsites around. If it’s too hard or unfair to tax all tourists when they enter the country, couldn’t there be a $20 tax paid to the campervan companies to pay for a well advertised freedom camping number to call, and more public toilets”.

THURSDAY 08.02.18 - WEDNESDAY 14.02.18

PAGE 11


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NOTICES Wanaka Salvation Army Family Store. Opening Hours – Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm, Saturday 9.30am – 4pm. We look forward to seeing you here! Donations kindly received. Please drop them into the Salvation Army Family store or ph 443 5068 to book a pick up. Business Networking International. The Wanaka chapter of BNI meets weekly at 7am Tuesday morning. Great networking opportunity to grow your business. Contact Vicki Donoghue for information 027 2089462 Rags, rags, rags ... little ones, big ones, cotton ones and drop cloths, available from the Wanaka Salvation Army Family Store 443 5068.

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Clean, dry, safe storage available now. Lockbox Self Storage, 12 Gordon Road, Wanaka, Ph: 021 242 1630.

more bang 10/26/2017 11:38:28 AM

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FOR bookings CALL 03 443 5252 | 021 786 740 marketing@thewanakasun.co.nz

Live-In Domestic Helper and Child Carer for family of Chinese and NZ descent living in Wanaka district. Must be experienced. Please forward CVs to PO Box 798 Wanaka 9343 Wanted by the Salvation Army Family Store, if any one has any spare pillow cases we would love them, please just drop them into the store, thanks. The Salvation Army Family store would like used glass spice jars with lids, to donate these please just pop them into the store in Brownston Street. Volunteers required at The Salvation Army Family store if you have some free time and would like to be part of a team which makes a difference, come and see us.

free classifieds text

0220 786 778 BY 5:00PM MONDAY

Due to the popularity of our free classifieds, listings are given on a first come, first served basis. There is a limit of 20 words and free classifieds are for non commercial personal advertising. Whilst we make every possible effort to include your advert we cannot guarantee inclusion.

FOR COMMERCIAL LISTINGS

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THURSDAY 08.02.18 - WEDNESDAY 14.02.18

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Services Wanaka Pharmacy is your local pharmacy. We’re the big pharmacy at the top of Helwick Street - open from 8am until 8pm every single day. Ph 443 8000. If you have rented out your Wanaka house/ holiday home and you have some unopened or fresh food or toiletries, please remember your local foodbank at Community Networks, 73 Brownston St. Thank you! WHEELS TO DUNSTAN –free shuttle service to Dunstan Hospital or Alexandra specialist appointments, also linking with the St Johns Health Shuttle to Dunedin Hospital. For bookings please call Community Networks on 03 443 7799 before 3pm the day before. Major sponsor Upper Clutha Transport. JP SERVICES are available at Community Networks every Tuesday from 1pm and Friday from 10.30am. Please book your appointment by ringing Community Networks 03 443 7799. FREE LEGAL ADVICE available at Community Networks delivered by the Dunedin Community Law Centre on Wednesday 14 February. Please call Community Networks on 443 7799 to book your appointment. CAN YOU NO LONGER DRIVE? The Total Mobility Scheme provides subsidised taxi services to people who have an impairment that prevents them from being able to drive. Contact Community Networks for more information on 443 7799. INLAND REVENUE are at Community Networks, Wednesday 21 February, 9am – 12.30pm. If you need help with your Tax return, Family Tax credits or the changes to Child support give Community Networks a call on 03 443 7799 to make an appointment for this free service. Fellow walker wanted (volunteer) for physically active person with dementia. Can you spare a couple of hours once a week to take a lady with dementia for a walk and maybe a coffee? For more information please contact project coordinator Barbara Jungen, email: championforolderpeople@gmail.com or call Community Networks 443 7799.

employment Specialist Ski Retail Sales Position We are seeking a permanent member of staff to add to our busy and professional team.  Must be New Zealand resident Must have current experience in the ski Retail industry Must show exceptional sales skills  Must be passionate about skiing. An interest in backcountry touring and climbing is a distinct advantage. Must be able to work effectively in a busy and time sensitive environment. Must be able to work well with others both colleagues and an international customer base. Benefits ❖ Competitive rates of pay ❖ Lively and diverse work place ❖ Access to the best skiing climbing and mountains in the country. To apply please send an email detailing why you would be the best person to take this opportunity on.

SUN TEAM WANAKA’S INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPER

ISSUE 856 Free delivery to Wanaka, Cromwell and surrounds, PO boxes in Makarora, Cromwell, Haast, Wanaka, Albert Town and Hawea. Also distributed to businesses in the Wanaka business district Average circulation: 15,000 weekly. Phone: 03 443 5252 • Fax: 03 443 5250 Editor: Glenda Turnbull • editor@thewanakasun.co.nz Journalists: Danielle Butler • newsdesk@thewanakasun.co.nz Rob White • journalist@thewanakasun.co.nz

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Social Media: Nikki Heath • hello@thewanakasun.co.nz Advertising: 021 786 740 adrep@thewanakasun.co.nz Admin:

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Deadlines: Display Advertising 4pm Friday prior to publication. adrep@thewanakasun.co.nz 021 786 740 Classified Advertising 5pm Monday prior Text: 0220 786 778 admin@thewanakasun.co.nz Subscriptions: $175 within NZ (including GST) per year. Overseas rates on request. Remittances to PO Box 697, Wanaka, NZ.

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public notice NETBALL UPPER CLUTHA

Info sessions happening now

Certificate in Small Business & Project Management

36 week course, Monday evenings, Level 4 Gives those considering starting in business and existing businesses practical and necessary skills to tackle business issues, including planning, operation, management, law, marketing, research, strategy, staff management, teamwork, sales, accounting and finance.

Diploma in Small Business & Project Management

36 week course, Tuesday evenings, Level 5 To help you move your existing business to the next level. Analyse where your business is currently and take on three growth projects. Includes project planning and delivery, financial management, risk and analysis, sales, marketing, operation, innovation, change, presentation and review to improve efficiency and overall performance.

Certificate in Money Management

20 week course, Level 3, starts July Learn more about money - money habits and attitudes, budgeting, debt management, simplifying the jargon, shares, investments, valuations, wills, power of attorney, property investment, etc. For further information please contact: Mylrea Bell Tel 443 1738, cell 027 443 9942 email: myl@xtra.co.nz www.twoa.ac.nz

2018 ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING Tuesday 20th February 2018 – 7pm Wanaka Recreation Centre Boardroom Committee members are required for the 2018 season. Nomination forms available on our website: www.sporty.co.nz/uppercluthanetball Any queries please contact our Secretary: netballupperclutha@gmail.com We are looking for competition sponsorship. For more information please contact: Jane Bates - janebatesnz@gmail.com or 021 316676.

SPACES ARE LIMITED – CLASSES START SOON ENROL NOW employment

employment

ARCHITECTURAL DRAFTSPERSON WANTED This role at Minimal Design requires: • A working knowledge of residential and commercial construction. The successful candidate will possess: • Willingness to draw technical details & process technical calculations • Excellent attention to detail • Expert CAD/BIM skills • Google suite platform experience essential This role will require the successful candidate to be capable to work unsupervised to produce and coordinate complete working drawing packages and specifications. Typically, the duties include: • Manage client expectations and meet individual clients specific needs • Establish technical & consultant documentation • Drafting of architectural tender & construction issue documents Please send your CV, portfolio & cover letter to: lukas@minimaldesign.nz

New Zealand Travel Specialist We are leaders in our field (selling NZ holidays!) and as such we are on the lookout for the very best sales people to join our awesome team in our lakefront office based right here in Wanaka. By best we mean not only are you motivated by targets, customers and friendly competition but you are also packed full of personality, as funny/ friendly as possible, super positive, slightly crazy and a hard worker! If that sounds a little bit like you then you’re already half way there! Here’s the other half (ok, it’s slightly more than half): • You can SELL and are hot off another sales role! • You’re a natural born leader. • You’re passionate about New Zealand. • You have a kiwi roll-up-your-sleeves, can-do, get it done, muck in, and have fun - kind of attitude. • You have a high level of common sense, which isn’t that common. • You possess super awesome communication and presentation skills. • You’re not scared of some weekend and public holiday work. • You’re open-minded & flexible (not in a yoga way though). • You have an ability to multitask yet still have attention to detail – not easy • You are a permanent resident in NZ. • You love getting a good base salary but are also really motivated by an exciting tiered monthly commission structure. So, does this sound a bit like you? If so send your C.V. and a covering letter to dionne@nzft.co.nz telling us why you are more awesome than all those others folk that apply.

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THURSDAY 08.02.18 - WEDNESDAY 14.02.18

PAGE 13


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Paddon to play in golf Open TURNBULL G GLENDA editor@thewanakasun.co.nz

PHOTO: McKlein Image

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Kiwi motorsport star Hayden Paddon is the first celebrity announced to play in the ISPS Handa New Zealand Open in Queenstown. Hayden will return home after the Swedish round of the FIA World Rally Championship, where he competes for the Hyundai Shell Mobis World Rally Team, to compete in the Open’s 99th year. A number of celebrities will form part of the amateur field, with Hayden to contest the tournament for the first time. The 30-year-old, who is the first New Zealand driver to compete in the full World Rally Championship calendar, is a keen golfer who plays off a 12.9 handicap. He is looking forward to swapping the controls of his rally car for his golf clubs and supporting Hyundai New Zealand, who have come on-board as a major sponsor for the first time. Hayden said he always loves getting out on a golf course to relax and unwind

Review: High-octane night at Adrenaline circus show WHITE R ROB journalist@thewanakasun.co.nz New Zealand’s largest touring circus is back in Otago this month, fresh from a six year world tour. Weber Bros, which has been touring since the 90’s, returns to the country with a new show, Adrenaline, and it’s easy to see where the name comes from. Most of the usual circus acts are there and guests will be treated to everything from jumping and juggling to dancing and dangling, but it is the grand finales of each act that will make you wow and wince in equal measure. At first, the show appears to be very much standard circus fare. You walk into the Big Top, find your seat and wonder when you’ll see the first person do something you could, and would, never do. It doesn’t take long, as one acrobat flies ten metres into the air and through a hoop, before sliding down a curtain. The first act of the show includes the usual clown antics, acrobatics and trapeze artistry to get the audience warmed up. There’s also an impressive and well-choreographed laser show and more dancing as everything

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in a different form of competition. “The New Zealand Open is set amongst the most beautiful courses and scenery in the world. It’s an honour to be a part of it and to play these courses,” he said. Hayden started playing golf as a young boy. “My grandad was a greenkeeper at a golf course in Geraldine when I was young, and he always took me out golfing with him. That’s where the love for the sport started and through my high school years, I would be playing two or three times a week. “My schedule doesn’t allow me to play more than half a dozen times a year now. I always try and get in some games when in New Zealand, particularly at my new home club in Wanaka, but there’s no time for golf in Europe at present.” He will have his cousin, Matt Bowater, as his caddie. “Matt is a scratch player, so I’m sure he will give some good advice.” Organisers will announce more celebrities over the next two weeks. Picture: Hayden Paddon at Corsica last year.

seems quite civilised. It is, however, clearly building up to something. All of a sudden, a large cannon appears and rather having to watch from afar, you have a bird’s eye view of a man being fired directly at the door you all just walked through to get in. The second act follows a similar pattern, with the popular clown back out to entertain the crowd. There is more from the acrobats and some impressive juggling work, but it is the Wall of Death we have all been waiting for. Motorbikes flock into a spherical metal cage, a space of just two metres in each direction, to exercise precision driving and a seemingly complete disregard for the potential consequences. But as ever with a circus, particularly one with such an ambitious name, there action isn’t finished. You’ll need to go along to see the show’s big finale, but suffice to say it’s something most people wouldn’t even attempt on a computer game, let alone in real life. And as with all of the show’s big acts, it feels like it’s happening right next to you. Weber Bros Circus - Adrenaline runs until February 11 in Queenstown.

sports results Wanaka Bridge results - (Wed) N/S 1st equal Alan & Denise Bunn/Noeline Munro, Helen Henshall 60.77%. 3rd Kate Gibbons, Clare Scurr 55.38%. E/W 1st Sharon Wilson, Denise Bruns 59.42%. 2nd Sue Thomson, Joan Pyle 56.35%. 3rd Alan & Wendy Cruden 55.58%. (Fri H/Cap) N/S 1st Tommie Munns, Jan Baird 56.98%. 2nd Carolyn Field, Jane Hamilton 56.36%. 3rd Maggie Stratford, Sherril Harries 54.57%. E/W 1st Sally Goodall, Lyn Hill 65%. 2nd Helen Millar, Jill Millar 55.69%. 3rd Claire Romeril, Ruth Coghill 54.29%. (Mon) N/S 1st equal Madeleine Reveley, Sheryl Strudwick/ Vivienne Christie, Freda Ryder 55.83%. 3rd Dawn Wilson, Kate Summers 55.71%. E/W 1st Ken Saxby, Maggie Stratford 71.07%. 2nd Laraine Shepherd, Terry Wilson 64.76%. 3rd Joy Baxter, Claire Romeril 57.62%.

THURSDAY 08.02.18 - WEDNESDAY 14.02.18

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Volunteers sought for swimrun

PHOTO: Rhys Akers

BUTLER D DANIELLE newsdesk@thewanakasun.co.nz Organisers of Wanaka’s Breca Swimrun are on the hunt for volunteers for this year’s event. The 54km course, which alternates between lake swims and trail running, will take place on Sunday March 18. Denise Young, who is coordinating volunteers, said that it was an awesome and interesting event to get involved with. “Swimrun is huge in Europe, originating in Sweden’s archipelagoes. Helpers get to move around the course as it progresses in cars, boats, etc rather than standing in one spot for hours and hours,” Denise said.

“Volunteers also get free entry to any Breca swimrun worldwide or discount based on input effort.” Wanaka volunteer Sarah Allen, who got involved in the event in 2017 said, “It was an awesome day out. It was great being part of the team for such a professionally organised and well run event,” Sarah said. The inaugural event was won by Wanaka’s Braden Currie last year and 66 teams of two are so far registered to compete next month. Volunteers of all ages and capabilities are welcome and anyone wishing to get involved can find out more at brecaswimrun.com. Pictured: Last year’s teams race the 54km course.

PHOTO: Rhys Akers

Paragliding world champs wraps up BUTLER D DANIELLE newsdesk@thewanakasun.co.nz Scotsman Anthony Shepherd took the top title at the 2018 New Zealand Paragliding Open held in Wanaka last week. Anthony, with glider Ozone Zeno, achieved a total score of 1954, 26 ahead of second-placed pilot Zhenjun Zhao of China and glider Gin Boomerang 11, who finished with 1928. The Open, which ran from Sunday January 28 until Sunday February 4, was hindered by bad weather which cancelled day three of the competition. Organiser Mark Hardman said that although the weather had been a mixed bag with a lot of rain, the rest of the competition had been fantastic. “We had 100 pilots from 15 different nationalities,

PHOTO: supplied

The annual House Day at Mt Aspiring College had to be cancelled this year due to bad weather, but the school’s Tug o’ War still went ahead on Friday February 2. All year groups compete in the annual event, with a series of heats leading up to the respective grand finals. This year ended in a tie between Houses Iron and Pisa.

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so about a third from overseas, including Australia, China, a handful of Brits, some French pilots, Czech pilots and a handful of others,” Mark said. “We had 63 Kiwis, with most of the local names participating and 11 female pilots. It’s a crosscountry competition and we had people making their way around the mountains of Wanaka navigating their GPS, kind of like orienteering of the skies.” Mark said that pilots put in bids to host the competition and Wanaka was often one of the most popular spots because of its conditions, mountains and relatively uncontrolled airspace. The results form part of the qualifying process for the FAI Paragliding World Championships, held in Macedonia next August. Pictured: Rebecca Rae on launch at Treble Cone.

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Sun Sport

thewanakasun.co.nz

Motocross rider recovers to win gold WHITE R ROB journalist@thewanakasun.co.nz A Wanaka motocross rider has claimed a gold medal in the sport just a year after almost losing her leg. Jody Tuffs, 40, took first place in the Women’s Motocross at the 2018 Masters Games in Dunedin over the weekend, her second gold medal after winning the same event in 2016. But it could have all been very different after a freak accident last year. On January 15, 2017, a year on from winning her first gold medal and just 18 months into her motocross career, Jody was competing in a Southern Dirt Bike Riders Club race. As she approached a part of the track where racers slow down over different terrain to have their numbers taken, she went to land a jump. She quickly realised something was very wrong. “My suspension went up and my tib and fib went down. I wasn’t holding on with both my knees. I thought I heard the break and the crunch. I thought, ‘my leg doesn’t work ‘and it felt really odd.” Jody had suffered massive trauma to her leg, including a broken tibia and fibula and more than a hundred breaks in her ankle. She kept riding for a few metres, but soon pulled over. “It was all a bit weird and strange. When I went to move myself off the track, I felt the bottom part of my leg stay in my boot and my leg move.” After waiting over an hour for an ambulance, a long stay in hospital

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followed and it was a whole month before the swelling had subsided enough to operate. She had a metal rod inserted into her leg and at one point, it seemed as though her leg was rejecting the implant. She remained in bed for four months as she recovered, but while many would have been put off the sport for good, she was dreaming of getting back on her bike. “The main thing is doing what you love and not being put off. Aim for the stars, you are never too old. Ten years ago I would have lost my leg for sure. Some people think I am mad, but it was a freak accident.” Just 12 months after the accident, she was out on the track and competing in the Masters Games again, adding to her medal collection. Despite some nerves, she was delighted to be back. “I was pretty nervous to begin with. I hadn’t been on my bike for a year. It obviously felt really good, overcoming your fears. “I felt stoked given where I have come from. Last year I was in the hospital and now I am winning gold. It’s awesome.” Jody’s next race is this weekend as she travels to Christchurch for the TT Series, and she plans to do several more races throughout the year.

THURSDAY 08.02.18 - WEDNESDAY 14.02.18

PHOTO: supplied

THE WANAKA SUN

Profile for Wanaka Sun

8 - 14 Feb 2018 | Edition 856  

The home of Wanaka news, sports, events, and opinions

8 - 14 Feb 2018 | Edition 856  

The home of Wanaka news, sports, events, and opinions

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