Kids' day is hot stuff

By John Cousins

The sweltering heat was the only complaint at yesterday's Children's Day celebrations, which drew 5000 people to Tauranga's Historic Village.

A new arrival to Mount Maunganui from England, mother of three Claire Butler, was impressed with how everything was free and all she had to pay for were ice blocks for Jacob, 3, Tom, 5, and Claire, 9.

And while it was great to get the family out in the sun, Mrs Butler said it would have been perfect if the heat had been turned down a few degrees.

"I will definitely be coming again next year."

Husband Graeme, a Kiwi, said they decided to settle in Tauranga for its lifestyle. "It's a good healthy place for kids."

Jacob and Tom, who entered into the spirit of the day by coming in fancy dress, said they liked the bouncy castle.

The event was organised by Tauranga City Council's communications team, which credited a big volunteer effort with helping make the day a success, including the police, fire service, a karate club, Fulton Hogan and the Matua Maori Women's League.

Communications adviser Meagan Holmes said people were arriving half an hour early at 11am and the village was still crowded when festivities finished at 2pm.

The day was about parents and caregivers spending time with their kids, with several grandparents enjoying a day out with their loved ones.

There was face painting, play dough, pony rides, a treasure hunt, drumming and clay-making on offer.

Students from the Mauao Performing Arts Centre featured on the stage, along with a puppet show, story telling and Ecila the singing mermaid.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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