10 things to do for Christmas 2013

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Santa waves to thousands of Aucklanders who gathered in the central city for Auckland's Farmer's Santa Parade. Photo: Greg Bowker
Santa waves to thousands of Aucklanders who gathered in the central city for Auckland's Farmer's Santa Parade. Photo: Greg Bowker

There is so much festive entertainment on in the Auckland region over the next few weeks, we've done the research for you and come up with ten cool festive must-dos to complete your Christmas countdown.

1. TIP TOP CHRISTMAS AT THE ZOO
When: Sunday 1 December, 4pm-7pm
Where: Auckland Zoo, Motions Road, Western Springs

Bring all the family along to Auckland Zoo and join Mrs Claus, Rudolph, the Christmas fairy, angels, elves and guests for a very special Tip Top Christmas at the Zoo.

The guest of honour, Santa Claus, will arrive in style and have a starring role in the Singing Santa Show.

There will also be free face painting and bouncy castles for the kids to enjoy.

Plus there is a free Chocolate Milkshake Swirls Popsicle for everyone.

2. COCA-COLA CHRISTMAS IN THE PARK
When: Saturday 14 December, 7.30pm
Where: Auckland Domain

Preparations are underway for one of New Zealand's biggest outdoor Christmas concerts as some of the country's top singers, dancers, musicians, choirs and bands get ready to ignite the big stage to present the 20th annual Coca-Cola Christmas in the Park.

Coca-Cola Christmas in the Park this year features top recording star Stan Walker as the headline act at the 20th anniversary performance of the popular Christmas musical extravaganza. He'll be joined by The X Factor NZ stars and other top singers, dancers and bands.

3. MOTAT NIGHTS: CHRISTMAS LIGHTS
When: 13-24 December
Where: MOTAT, Western Springs

Celebrate the magic of Christmas from 13 - 24 December with 'MOTAT Nights, Christmas Lights' every Friday, Saturday and Sunday plus 23 December and Christmas Eve with sparkling lights, live entertainment, Christmas displays and treats.

Take along the whole family and experience the festivities for only $2 per person, with all proceeds going towards children's gifts for Variety - The Children's Charity and the Auckland City Mission.

4. WYNYARD CHRISTMAS QUARTER
When: 6-24 December
Where: Silo Park, Jellicoe Street, Wynyard Quarter

Santa's customised bach, built into Silo 7, includes a super-sized chimney for ease of present-sack access and, in true Christmas spirit, St Nick will be overseeing the collection of present donations for the Auckland City Mission.

The 2013 ARTvent Project offers local artists a chance to display their artwork in a new and exciting way while giving back to the city this Christmas. From suspended installations to multiple objects and printed works of art, 12 innovative installations will decorate the steel gantry in Silo Park and brighten the area during December in the Wynyard Christmas Quarter.

Silo Cinema returns in December. Each Friday in the lead up to Christmas, there will be a favourite Christmas movie. Alongside the cinema will be the Christmas Silo Markets, full of gifts and trinkets especially made for the holiday season.

Each Saturday in December, the Wynyard Christmas Quarter will host fun-filled family events, with a myriad of food vendors, Christmas markets, music and surprises.

5. SANTA IN THE SNOW
When: Saturday 30 November 2013 to Wednesday 25 December 2013
Where: Snowplanet, Silverdale

Step into Snowplanet's winter wonderland this festive season for a truly magical Christmas celebration for all the family. Visit Santa in Snowplanet's snow grotto for a truly memorable festive experience.

6. UNWRAPPING CHRISTMAS
When: 9-21 December
Where: Aotea Square, central Auckland

Relax on a deck chair, grab something tasty to eat, groove to live music, play table tennis in the sun, dance the night away at Bandstand Under the Stars, enjoy free outdoor theatre, buy gifts at the markets, play giant Connect Four and much more.

7. FRANKLIN ROAD LIGHTS

Franklin Rd in Freemans Bay will light up with thousands of lights for its annual Christmas extravaganza. The event that has become a tradition attracts 150,000 visitors a year from Auckland and beyond.

8. PARADES
North:

Glenfield Santa Parade
When: Sunday 17 November, 11am-noon
Parade route: High Road, Glenfield Road, Bentley Ave, Chartwell Ave, Archers Road finishing at Marlborough Park fro the Christmas Gala
Contact: Michael Pollitt 021 188 5584, mpollitt@pl.net

Orewa Santa Parade
When: Saturday 23 November, 12.30pm-2pm
Parade route: HBC Highway between Westhoe Road and Centreway Road, Orewa
Contact: Lions Club - Hellen Hyndman 021 716 713 hellen@orewabeach.co.nz

Mairangi Bay Christmas Parade
When: Saturday 30 November, noon-1pm
Parade route: Starts at Mairangi Bay Park, proceed down Ramsgate Tce to the shopping centre on Beach Road (to Round About on intersection of Beach and Montrose Tce), 2 circuits around shopping centre then proceed back down to Ramsfate Tce to Mairangi Bay Park
Contact: Dick Mogridge 021 802 705 dmogridge@pbsea_tow.com

Wellsford Christmas Parade
When: Saturday 30 November, 11.30am-12.15pm
Parade route: Station Road, Oympus Road, Matheson Road, Rodney Road, Harrison Street, and back onto Station Road, Wellsford
Contact: Tony Sowden 027 475 2975 tony.sowden@xtra.co.nz

Devonport Christmas Parade
When: Sunday 1 December, 11am-11.30am
Parade route: Starts at the Devonport Community House in Clarence St, Bartley Tce, Fleet St, Victoria Rd finishing at Windsor Reserve for the Christmas Event
Contact: Bruce Wetherall, 021 296 3211 bruce.wetherall@hotmail.com

Kumeu Rotary Christmas Parade
When: Friday 6 December, 6.45pm-8.30pm
Parade route: State Highway 16, Kumeu / Huapai
Contact: Dale Wallace 027 22 44 636 twal@xtra.co.nz

Browns Bay Christmas Parade
When: Saturday 7 December, 4.30pm-5.30pm
Parade route: Bute Rd, Clyde Rd, Anzac Rd, Glen Rd
Contact: Sally Cargill 021 137 3385 ecbcp@xtra.co.nz

Helensville Christmas Parade
When: Saturday 7 December, 1pm-2pm
Parade route: Commercial Road in Helensville
Contact: Matt Hampton 027 221 3226 thehamptons2011@gmail.com

Warkworth Christmas Parade
When: Saturday 7 December, noon-3pm
Parade route: Parade begins from Alnwick Street (turns onto Neville Street, along Queen Street, up Mill Lane then back down Neville Street for a second lap)
Contact: Nicola Jones 021 645 129 info@warkworthbusiness.org.nz

Birkenhead Rotary Christmas Parade
When: Sunday 8 December, noon-1pm
Parade route: Starting at Nell Fisher Reserve on Rawene Road, Birkenhead Ave, Highbury Bypass, Mokoia Rd then finishing on Rawene Road
Contact: Gordon Houghton 027 674 9717 g.houghton@xtra.co.nz

Greenhithe Christmas Parade
When: Sunday 8 December, 11am-11.30am
Parade route: Greenhithe Road
Contact: Shelly MacKay 021 744 868
enquiries.greenhithe@harcourts.co.nz

South:

Westfield Santa Parade
When: Friday 22 November, 6.30pm-8pm
Parade route: Start on Osterley Way, Left on Putney Way, Left on Leyton Way, Left on Amersham Way, Left on Osterley Way
Contact: Cara Cantwell on Cara@crackerjackpromotions.co.nz or 027 490 5258

Manurewa Santa Parade
When: Saturday 30 November, 10.30am-11.30am
Parade route: Start at the Station Rd carpark, right on to Northcrest Way, Right on to Great South Road, Right on to Weymouth Road, Right on to Selwyn Road, Right on to Station Rd, Left into Station Rd Carpark
Contact: Wendy Dunn on tcmmanurewabusiness@gmail.com or 09 269 5252

Papakura Santa Parade
When: Saturday 30 November, 2pm-3pm
Parade route: Start at Opaheke Rd, Right on to Great South Rd, Right on to Broadway, Right on to Rail Way Street West, Finish at Central Park
Contact: Morris Jones on morris.jones@xtra.co.nz or 027 295 8022

Howick Santa Parade
When: Saturday 30 November
Parade route: Starting on Fencible Drive, turn right onto Wellington Street, turn right onto Picton Street and finish on Cook Street.
Contact: Emma Smith, 09 271 8084 or emma@times.co.nz

Pukekohe Christmas Parade
When: Sunday 1 December, 2pm
Parade route: Starting at the Roulston Lane carpark, turn left onto Massey Avenue, turn left onto King Street, turn right onto Seddon Street, turn left on Tobin Street, turn left on Seddon Street, right onto King Street, right onto Massey Avenue and finishing at the Roulston Lane carpark.
Contact: Donna Vincent on 09 238 0750

Papatoetoe Parade
When: Wednesday 4 December, 7pm-8.30pm
Parade route: Great South Road, Kolmar Road, Wentworth Ave
Contact: papatoetoesantaparade@yahoo.co.nz

Mangere Bridge Santa Parade
When: Thursday 5 December, 6.30pm-8.30pm
Parade route: Start on Domain Rd, Left onto Coronation heading North, head south on to Coronation back on to Domain Rd
Contact: Carol-Anne Armitage on 027 4406 4112

Otahuhu Santa Parade
When: Saturday 7 December, 4pm-5.30pm
Parade route: Park Ave, Great South Road, Mason Ave
Contact: Richette Rodger on 027 499 9891 or parkhellen@gmail.com

Waiuku Christmas Parade and Market
When: Saturday 14 December, 11.30am-4pm, parade starts 2pm
Parade route: The parade will start at the Waiuku Rugby Grounds on King Street and proceed down and into Queen Street. Up Queen Street where it will turn around in Court Street back up Martyn Street, into court and connect back on Queen Street and return back to the Waiuku Rugby Grounds.
Contact: Sharlene Druyven on 021 0827 5763 or waiukutownmanager@gmail.com

Clevedon Christmas Parade
When: Saturday 14 December
Parade route: Exit Clevedon School grounds on Clevedon-Kawakawa Road, down Clevedon-Papakura Road,turn left into Hyde Road and left again into Monument Road and back down the main street and back into Clevedon School grounds.
Contact: Judith Narbey, 09 292 8793 or glnarbey@xtra.co.nz

Central:

Onehunga Christmas Parade
When: Saturday 30 November, 11.30pm-noon
Parade route: Set up at Onehunga Primary School, turn left onto Onehunga Mall Road, turn around the round-a-bout at Princess Street to head back up Onehunga Mall Road back towards Onehunga Primary School.
Contact: Call Amanda Kinzett on 021 922 744 or email amanda@onehunga.net.nz

Puketapapa Santa Parade and Christmas Party
When: Saturday 30 November, parade 10am-10.30am, Christmas party 10.30am-2.30pm
Parade route: Set up at Memorial Avenue, turn left onto Dominion Road through the Mt Albert Road intersection then left into Jaspers Avenue.
Contact: Call Lingappa Kalburgi on 021 1142 148 or email kalburgi@ihug.co.nz

Ellerslie Santa Parade
When: Sunday 1 December, 11am-12.30pm
Parade route: Set up in Cawley Street, turn left onto Main Highway, right onto Ladies Mile, left into Robert Street car park, left onto Robert Street, left into Main Highway, right back to Cawley Street.
Contact: Call Sally Eustace on 027 579 5033 or email sally@ellerslie.net.nz

Panmure Santa Parade and Festival
When: Saturday 7 December, parade 10.30am-11.30pm, festival noon-2pm
Parade route: Set up in Pleasant View Road car park, turn right onto Pilkington Road, left onto Queens Road, turn around the round-a-bout at Kings Road to head back up Queens Road, right onto Pilkington Road, left back to Pleasant View Road car park.
Contact: Call Chris Sutton on 027 527 6389 or email info@panmure.net.nz

West:

Glen Eden Christmas Parade
When: Saturday 16 November, 2pm-3.30pm
Where: West Coast Road to Glen Mall Place
Contact: Elizabeth Beare on 09 818 5753 or email beare@iconz.co.nz

Westgate Christmas Parade
When: Saturday 30 November, 10.30am-11.30am
Where: Westgate Drive, Fernhill Drive and Westgate Centre
Contact: Mark Hall on 09 412 7015 or email markhall@xtra.co.nz

Te Atatu Peninsula Christmas Parade
When: Saturday 7 December, 11am (Parade Party at Jack Pringle Sports Park 9am-2pm )
Where: Hereford Street, Te Atatu Road, Gunner Drive to Pringle Point
Contact: Jacqui Hansen on 09 834 5827 or email tatcomh@xtra.co.nz, or Lynda Van Hoeve on 021 057 8073

Blockhouse Bay Christmas Parade
When: Saturday 7 December, 10.30am-3pm
Where: Blockhouse Bay Rd, Main Street from roundabout to the junction of Gillfillan St and Blockhouse Bay Rd 10.45am-noon
Contact: Jean Pitout 021 048 4248 jan@blockhousebay.org.nz

New Lynn Christmas Parade
When: Saturday 14 December, 10am-3pm
Parade route: Great North Road entrance of Totara Avenue and Partial road closure of Totara Avenue up to the New Lynn Community Centre entrance of Clarke Street Side.
Contact: Steve Grinter 021 769540, sgrinter@hillsig.co.nz or Graham Ferguson 0274 870 643

9. CAROLS

North:

Carols on the Green
When: Friday 6 December, 7pm-9pm
Where: Browns Bay Village Green
Contact: Sally Cargill 021 137 3385 ecbcp@xtra.co.nz
Other information: A community carol service with carol singing, dance performances and BBQ.

Carols by Candelight Glenfield
When: Saturday 14 December, 7pm-11pm
Where: Marlborough Park, Glenfield
Contact: Michelle Whiu 027 315 1293 michelle@bngcommunitytrust.org.nz

Carols by Candelight Birkenhead
When: Sunday 22 December, 5pm-11pm
Where: Dudding Reserve - Little Shoal Bay
Contact: Michelle Whiu 027 315 1293 michelle@bngcommunitytrust.org.nz
South:

Christmas in Burswood
When: Sunday 8 December, 5.30pm-7.30pm
Where: Burswood Reserve, Pakuranga
Contact: Sian Sidwell, 09 273 9044 or office@ecw.org.nz

Carols in the Park
When: Friday 13 December, 5.30pm-9pm
Where: Central Park, Papakura
Contact: Paul Kauri, 021583401 or paul@thegate.co.nz

Christmas Carols in the Courtyard
When: Saturday 14 December
Where: Howick
Contact: Norman Sutton on norman.sutton2012@gmail.com

Christmas Carols by Candlelight
When: Sunday 22 December
Where: Stockade Hill, Howick
Contact: Max Christiansen, 027 430 3377 or maxcdesign@xtra.co.nz

Central:

Three Kings Carols by Candlelight
When: Friday 6 December, 7pm-9pm
Where: Three Kings Reserve
Contact: Call Sharon Sookur on 021 809 056 or email sharon.sookur@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz
Other information: Carol singing, stage entertainment, face painting, and snacks stalls

Ponsonby Carols by Candlelight
When: Sunday 8 December, 5pm-8pm
Where: Western Park
Contact: Call Sharon Sookur on 021 809 056 or email sharon.sookur@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz
Other information: Carol singing, live entertainment, face painting, food stalls, Santa's grotto and roaming entertainer

Onehunga Christmas Lights
When: Friday 6 December, 7pm-9pm
Where: Jellicoe Park
Contact: Call Sharon Sookur on 021 809 056 or email sharon.sookur@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz
Other information: Santa's grotto, stalls and entertainment including face painting. The evening ends with lighting the Christmas tree

Carols by Candlelight at Potters Park
When: Sunday 15 December, 7pm-9pm
Where: Potters Park
Contact: Call Sharon Sookur on 021 809 056 or email sharon.sookur@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz
Other information: Carol singing, Santa's grotto, stalls and entertainment including face painting

Community Carols on the Green at St Heliers
When: Sunday 15 December, 6pm-8pm
Where: Vellenoweth Green
Contact: Call Sharon Sookur on 021 809 056 or email sharon.sookur@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz
Other information: Carol singing, live entertainment, food stalls and a visit from Santa.

Waiheke Carols by the Sea
When: Saturday 21 December (rain date: Sunday 22 December)
Where: Little Oneroa Beach Reserve
Contact: Call Helen Sanders on 021 832 815 or email helen.sanders@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz
Other information: Carol singing and stage entertainment

West:

Carols by Spiderlight
When: Sunday 8 December, 6pm-8pm
Where: Avondale Town Centre
Contact: Call Sharon Sookur on 021 809 056 or email sharon.sookur@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz
Other information: Sausage sizzle, entertainment and a visit from Santa, food stalls open from 6.30pm, carol singing from 7.30pm, tree lighting at sunset

10. CHRISTMAS FESTIVALS

North

Glenfield Santa Gala
When: Sunday 17 November
Where: Marlborough Park, Glenfield
Contact: Michelle Whiu 027 315 1293 michelle@bngcommunitytrust.org.nz
Xmas on the Domain
When: Saturday 30 November, 7.30pm-9.30pm
Where: Albany Domain, Albany
Contact: Sonia Thursby 0294 836 487 sonia@yesdisability.org.nz
Other information: Christmas carols/entertainment, including sausage sizzle and kids play on toys

Devonport Christmas Festival
When: Sunday 1 December, 11am-3pm
Where: Windsor Reserve, Devonport
Contact: Maria Teape 027 924 3494 dportcomm@xtra.co.nz
Other information: Dance in the park, craft market, community groups fundraising

Great New Zealand Santa Run
When: Wednesday 4 December, 6.30pm-7.30pm
Where: Albany Lakes, Albany
Contact: Shaun Collins 021 508 980 shaun@lacticturkey.co.nz
Other information: 2.5km fun run or walk for dressed up Santas. Main purpose of the event is to raise funds for the KidsCan charity

Browns Bay Christmas Carnival
When: Saturday 7 December, 4pm-8pm
Where: Browns Bay Beach Front
Contact: Sally Cargill 021 137 3385 ecbcp@xtra.co.nz

Takapuna Beach 12 Days of Christmas
When: 12-23 December
Where: Hurstmere Rd Takapuna, Hurstmere Green
Contact: Anna Wishart 021 0376720 anna.wishart@takapunabeach.co.nz
Other information: Markets, movie, entertainment

A Very Meadowood Christmas
When: Saturday 14 December, 3pm-5pm
Where: Meadowood Community House, 55 Meadowood Drive, Unsworth Heights, Upper Harbour
Other information: A free local family event for the residents of Meadowood and its surrounding areas. The event will include children's entertainment, face painting, sausage sizzle, carol singing and a Christmas movie on the big screen. A great opportunity for the family photo with Santa. Attendees are encouraged to bring a non-perishable food donation for the Auckland City Mission.

Orewa Christmas at the Beach
When: Sunday 15 December, 6pm-9.30pm (rain date: Wednesday 18 December, 6pm-9.30pm)
Where: Orewa Beach Reserve
Contact: Orewa Surf Life Saving Club - Vickie Matich 021 2020 414 bandvmatich@xtra.co.nz
Other information: Free community Christmas concert sponsored by New World - fundraiser for Orewa Surf Life Saving Club. Variety of live entertainment from 6pm to 9.30pm. Fireworks display at 9.30pm.

The End of the Golden Weather
When: Wednesday 25 December
Where: Takapuna Beach
Contact: Roger Hall 022 635 6778 roger.h@xtra.co.nz
Other information: The annual Christmas Day production by Roger Hall of a scene from 'The End of the Golden Weather'. The scene of the play is set on Takapuna Beach on Christmas Day.

South

Stockade Hill Christmas Tree Lighting
When: Friday 15 November, 7.30pm-9pm
Where: Stockade Hill, Ridge Road, Howick
Contact: Ali Bain ali.bain@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz
Other information: Music, singing and other entertainment, capped off with the lighting of the Stockade Hill Christmas tree

Manurewa Christmas in the Park
When: Saturday 14 December
Where: Mountfort Park, Manurewa
Contact: Stephen Miller 027 453 2253 or stephen.miller@mnl.org.nz
Other information: Event includes a fireworks display
Central

Waiheke Christmas Festival
When: Saturday 14 December, 2pm-5pm
Where: Ocean View Road (between the Que Road intersection and Tui Street)
Contact: Call Helen Sanders on 021 832 815 or email helen.sanders@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz
Other information: Santa's Grotto, live entertainment, face painting, balloon twisting, children's activities and a bouncy castle.

West:

New Lynn Christmas Tree Lighting
When: Friday 15 November, 6pm
Where: Totara Avenue, New Lynn

New Lynn Community Christmas Market
When: Saturday 16 November, 10am-2pm
Where: Totara Avenue, New Lynn

Henderson Christmas Festival
When: Saturday 23 November, noon-4pm
Where: Great North Road & Catherine Plaza, Henderson
Contact: Call Tracy Haggo on 09 301 0101 extn (42) 8810 or email tracy.haggo@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz
Other information: Free face painting, sausage sizze, candy floss popcorn and ice creams. Ronald McDonald arrives at noon and Santa arrives at 12.30 pm

Ranui Christmas in the Park
When: Saturday 7 December, 6pm-11pm
Where: Ranui Domain, Robertson Road, Ranui
Contact: Mema Maeli, 021 028 65516, memamaeli@yahoo.co.nz
Other information: A new Christmas event for Ranui to help the local community come together to celebrate the Festive Season with live entertainment, culture groups, choir singing carols, this is to help bring the spirit of Christmas back into Ranui.

Christmas Cracker Community Carnival
When: Saturday 7 December, 5pm-9pm
Where: Blockhouse Bay Community Church, 76 Dundale Ave, Blockhouse Bay
Contact: 09 626 6284 or office@bbcc.org.nz
Other information: Kids' activities and live entertainment.

Glen Eden Christmas Carnival
When: Saturday 7 December, 11am-4pm (rain date: Sunday 8 December)
Where: Parrs Park, Glen Eden
Contact: Call Eleanor Cooley on 09 354 2112 or email eleanor.cooley@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz
Other information: We are celebrating a good ole kiwi Christmas with west Aucklands largest Christmas event. Watch the Santa Parade with Santa arriving at noon before he heads to his Grotto where you can grab a photo with our beach Santa. There is free face painting, balloon twisting, kids amusuments rides, sports games, live stage show and roving entertainment. Do a spot of shopping at our Christmas market or grab some lunch from one of our tasty vendors and enjoy the full stage show with interactive games. Be in to win prizes including a five-day hire of a JUCY Combo van and family pack for your next family holiday.

Did we miss something? Add your favourite Christmas event below.

- THE AUCKLANDER

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