Star line-up for festive event

By Kiri Gillespie

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Little Big Markets organisers Chris and Rachelle Duffy with musician Tiki Taane have announced a Christmas in the Park, with all proceeds going to Tauranga Community Foodbank.Photo / File.
Little Big Markets organisers Chris and Rachelle Duffy with musician Tiki Taane have announced a Christmas in the Park, with all proceeds going to Tauranga Community Foodbank.Photo / File.

A Christmas in the Park for Tauranga has been announced.

New Zealand music stars Tiki Taane, Hollie Smith, Anna Coddington and Anika Moa will headline the December 21 event, to be held at Blake Park.

The independent event is the first of its kind for Tauranga and entry will be a gold coin donation. All proceeds raised will go to Tauranga Community Foodbank and Christmas present drop-offs will be arranged for Women's Refuge and Homes of Hope.

The event has been organised by Rachelle and Chris Duffy, founders of the Little Big Markets held monthly at Mount Maunganui.

The Christmas in the Park was a natural progression from the markets, Ms Duffy said.

"Every year at Christmas we have a late night market and Tiki has played at all of them. After last year's performance we thought 'let's make this more a Christmas in the Park'."

Taane will also act as the event's MC.

"We wouldn't be able to do it without the help of Tiki Taane. He's absolutely been the support network to make that happen for us."

Taane was overseas and could not be reached yesterday but Ms Duffy said he got behind the event because it was local, homegrown and "non-corporate".

Ms Duffy said she hoped to give people a reason to celebrate and enjoy Christmas with the concert and to extend the celebration to those less fortunate through the fundraising and Christmas present drop-offs.

"Obviously Christmas time is a time where it's about giving and we are very community- focused.

"A part of who we are is we are able to create an event for everyone, but also there's a purpose," Ms Duffy said. "We all live in the sunny Bay of Plenty and we should be able to celebrate that and also give back."

The event will run from 2pm to 10pm. "We are calling it Christmas in the Park because we don't really have anything in the Bay of Plenty that is family- focused, youth-focused, elderly-focussed. It's one event for everybody around that time of year," Ms Duffy said.

She said she planned on the Christmas in the Park becoming an annual event for Tauranga.

"I think it's good that we are able to fly that flag."

Tauranga Community Foodbank chairman Mike Baker said he was humbled by the efforts being put in to help the organisation and the announcement of the concert was "absolutely awesome".

"I know there are many organisations out there needing funding so it's very humbling. It really makes a difference to us," Mr Baker said.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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