Te Mata Park will be a hub of activity in the coming months with an exciting programme of events put together by its community committee.
Committee chairwoman Katherine Halliday said the events were all part of actively engaging with the local community to attract new and frequent visitors to the park.
Money raised would go towards the Te Mata Park Visitor and Education Centre, which is dueto start being constructed in 2015.
"We hope there is something for everyone and that the events will appeal to regular park users as well as encourage first-timers to come and enjoy and explore our wonderful Te Mata Park," Ms Halliday said.
"It's about getting new visitors in and encouraging frequent visitors to engage with the park in different ways."
Six events are planned, beginning on February 8 with a hikoi and ceremony to bless the ground where the centre will be built.
"This event has been organised by Te Taiwhenua o Heretaunga. This will be a particularly special occasion and offers everyone the opportunity to honour 'The Giant Among Us' and to be part of a unique celebration of Te Mata Park, a place of immense spiritual and whakapapa importance to Ngati Kahungunu," said Ms Halliday.
The blessing and hikoi are followed by events on the next five Sundays which include yoga, Pilates, tai chi lessons and a concert in the redwoods featuring blues band Riverhead Slide.
The events culminate on March 16 with the official opening of the new Top 5 Walking Tracks, a great treasure hunt and GPS challenge event.
"Our aim is to help support the trust's fundraising efforts for the Visitor and Education Centre as well as offer a range of activities that give participants of all ages the opportunity to experience and engage with the park in a variety of ways," Ms Halliday said.
She said the committee have been working hard to get the events organised.
"We have a lovely volunteer committee full of enthusiastic people who love the park.
"We really wanted to be able to offer an interesting range of events to those young and old, those who are adventurous and those who just want a nice relaxing walk."
Trust chairman Bruno Chambers said he hoped the entire community would come together to be part of the events.
"Our vision of establishing the Te Mata Park Visitor and Education Centre is now within reach and this year we will be pushing full steam ahead to secure the final $1.2 million needed to fully fund the centre," Mr Chambers said.
"With $3.1 million already raised we are well on the way and our goal is to start construction in May 2015."
EventsSaturday, February 8, 6.30am
Main Gates, Te Mata Peak Rd
Hikoi and Blessing Ceremony - all welcome
Te Mata Park is a place of immense spiritual and whakapapa importance to Heretaunga Maori. Ngati Kahungunu will gather at the gates of the park in the early morning to bless the ground where the new Visitor and Education Centre is to be built. The blessing will be followed by a hikoi up to the peak for prayers, songs and stories about the Maori history of Te Mata Park. This will be a significant event for the park and a unique opportunity for us all to gather and celebrate its special place in our hearts and history. Please register your interest in attending.
Sunday, February 16, 8.30am
The Peak Restaurant Lawn
Yoga on the Lawn at The Peak - $10 per person
Enjoy a one-hour yoga class with the best view in the Bay. Everyone welcome - it will suit beginners and experienced practitioners. Bring a mat or towel, your $10 (cash please), and join us on the lawn area beside The Peak restaurant. Limited numbers so pre-registration recommended then just turn up and be prepared to fold up.
Sunday, February 23, 9.30am
Redwoods Grove, Te Mata Park
Tai chi in the Redwoods - all welcome
Experience the serenity of the redwoods and enjoy a free informal tai chi session led by Mark Sweet. Based on co-ordination and relaxation, the gentle movements of tai chi help reduce stress, improve balance and bring about a state of mental calm and clarity. No prior experience necessary. The Redwoods are a 15-minute walk from the Main Gates Car Park or from the Tauroa Road Entrance.
Sunday, March 2, 8.30am
The Peak Restaurant Lawn
Pilates on the Lawn at The Peak - $10 per person
As with our yoga class, this one-hour Pilates class will help you get in "peak" condition on the lawn at The Peak restaurant. Beginners and experienced Pilates practitioners welcome - just bring a mat or towel and $10 (cash please). Limited numbers, so pre-registration recommended.
Sunday, March 9, 3pm-5pm
Enter via Tauroa Rd Gates
Redwoods Session - $10 per person or $25 family of 4
Enjoy the beauty of the Te Mata Park redwoods and great music from New Zealand's top original blues band, Riverhead Slide, supported by Wyn Drabble. Bring your friends, a picnic and a rug to sit on for a special concert in an amazing setting. Enter the park from the end of Tauroa Road and access to the redwoods is a gentle 20-minute walk.
A shuttle bus will be available for those less physically able. Gates sales only - please bring cash (no Eftpos available).
Sunday, March 16, 9am
Main Gates, Te Mata Peak Rd
Treasure Hunt - $5 per person
GPS Challenge - $10 per person or team
Official opening of Top 5 Walking Tracks
Join us for the official opening the Top 5 Walking Tracks, which offer a fantastic menu of five well-marked paths up, down, around and across The Giant and include3km of new tracks.
The Te Mata Park Treasure Hunt will take young participants on a journey of discovery around some of the new tracks, with hidden treasure to be found along the way. Pre-registration recommended.
The GPS Challenge will have the more adventurous and tech-savvy hunters in search of locations in unexpected places. Pre-registration recommended.
With lots of spot prizes, a sausage sizzle, coffee and cool drinks and the Great Wardini on hand, this will be a fun day out for all the family.
Full event information and registration is available on on the park's website (www.tematapark.co.nz)