Families warm to free country concert

By Sonya Bateson

Visiting the Country in the Park concert was a way for the Moonia family to get out of the house and enjoy a free day in the sun.

The sounds of country music could be heard from a distance as members of the Geyserland Country Club performed at the Band Rotunda at the Government Gardens yesterday.

Families gathered under the shady trees with picnic rugs and beach chairs to listen to the performers and enjoy a lovely Sunday afternoon.

Jason Moonia was at the performance with his family. He said they had come to the Band Rotunda to get out of the house and enjoy the weather.

"It was something to do, we like country music. I read the preview in the paper and we decided to come down."

Mr Moonia said they had brought food and drink with them so they could enjoy a picnic while listening to the music.

"We just wanted to enjoy the day. There's work tomorrow so we're going to relax. It's got wholesome music and you can't beat being away from home and coming outside instead of sitting in and watching Shortland St on a nice day, it's a free concert so why not."

Club secretary Julie Hill said that although numbers were down on last year, the day had been a success.

"It was really good, we were so lucky with the weather - it was stinking hot.

"The numbers were down on last year, we had about 800 last year, this year we got about 450 to 500 people coming and going as they please.

"It's definitely been a success given the weather forecast, it's been a really good day."

Ms Hill said the event was a good opportunity for the club's performers to sing outside the club and outside their comfort zones.

While most of the singers were members of the Geyserland Country Club, there were also other singers from Tauranga and Tokoroa. Ms Hill said the performers this year had been excellent.

- Rotorua Daily Post

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