Tandem skydive plans

A public meeting will be held in Paihia next week to discuss a company's plan to make tandem skydive landings on two Paihia beaches. Skydive Bay of Islands wants to use Waitangi Beach (opposite Puketona Rd roundabout) and Paihia Beach (opposite Anchorage Motel) for landings, saying it needs to be more visible to visitors to the Bay of Islands - something it finds difficult from its base at Kerikeri airport. Landings would occur several times a week to several times a day, depending on demand. The meeting will be hosted by Bay of Islands-Whangaroa Community Board from 5.30pm on Wednesday, August 16. The company already has approval for the plan from the Northland Regional Council and the Civil Aviation Authority.

Football tournament
The second Northland ethnic football tournament will be held in Whangarei on October 14. Twelve teams competed in the first tournament at the Tikipunga Sports' Park last year and a similar number is expected this year. Whangarei Migrant Centre is organising this year's event and has urged those wishing to participate to register on whangareimc@gmail.com by August 31.

Youth centre opens
A new youth centre is opening in Kaikohe next week. Spirits are high in Kaikohe for the opening of the new centre - Te Uma o Kona - on Monday. The name Te Uma o Kona was chosen by the youth, in acknowledgement of Te Kona, mother of the Ngāpuhi leader Hone Heke and her maternal nature to provide safety, counsel and comfort. It is envisaged these same characteristics will permeate through the new youth centre.
The opening ceremony centre for the centre is on Monday from 10.30am at 135 Broadway, Kaikohe.

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Wanted man arrested
A wanted man with links to Black Power and the Headhunters was arrested in Whangarei yesterday morning following an early morning search. The Northland Organised Crime Unit, with the help of the Armed Offenders Squad arrested a 33-year-old man who was wanted by Northland and Waikato Police. Police closed off the area around Kamo Rd and Western Hills Dr to control the scene. The man jumped out of a window and was arrested on Western Hills Dr. The police thanked the public who were detoured during the cordon for their patience and understanding.

Marae goes smokefree
Morehu Marae has taken a stand to further ensure the survival of its descendants by becoming the first marae in Pawarenga to go auahi kore - smokefree.
The committee celebrated its adoption of its auahi kore marae policy last week in celebration of the health of its people and to send a clear message to smokers to stop before they start. The move followed a successful Wero stop smoking programme, implemented by Te Hiku Hauora in the community last year. Seven of the 10 participants stopped smoking for good. Now an auahi kore movement within the community is steadily gaining traction, with the support of Hauora Hokianga and other Te Taitokerau smoking cessation services. Marae secretary Rongo Bentson said the policy was a natural progression from the marae leading the charge with para kore and waipiro kore kaupapa in the past to better support the health of its people and environment.

Science fair
Some of Northland's best and brightest young minds will be on show at the Central Northland Science & Technology Fair (CNSTF) in Whangarei from August 28 to 31. Celebrating 38 years of science and innovation, this year's CNTSF will play host to cutting-edge science projects by intermediate and high school students. The event's organisers invite all Northlanders to experience first-hand the high-calibre work being produced by the central Northland area's youth. Projects will be judged in various categories with top awards offered to those most topical, innovative and relevant. The CNSTF attracts exciting competition from students who are passionate about and excel in science and technology and the standard of work on display is always impressive. For more information about the Central Northland Science & Technology Fair visit www.centralnorthlandsciencefair.co.nz