Festivities full on with parade, fun day

An extra treat awaited the thousands of people who flocked to Te Puke's main street on Saturday to watch the town's annual Santa Parade.

Once the parade finished, the focus switched to the official opening of Te Puke's new Cultural Courtyard and children's playground.

This council-organised opening provided the perfect top-up for the estimated 5000 people who applauded the ingenuity that went into many of the 37 floats. Otamarakau School repeated its success at the Mount Mainstreet's Santa Parade by being judged the best non-profit float, while Looking Glass Gardens won the business section.

Di Leach from Te Puke Repertory compered the Family Fun Day, which kicked off with Western Bay Mayor Ross Paterson opening the Cultural Courtyard and Town Centre Festival in Jubilee Park.

Some notables from the Chiefs rugby franchise lent their culinary expertise to a sponsored cook-off with award-winning professional chef Peter Blakeway, while Sharon Cotter, Urban Dance and Fletcher Oxford from New Zealand's Got Talent provided the festival's music entertainment.



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