Festival great blast from past

By Anne-Marie McDonald

1 comment
Jim Hurdle, 95, prepares to take a ride on the RM31 Tokomaru railcar, which came over from Pahiatua for the Whanganui Vintage Weekend. Mr Hurdle first rode in a railcar in 1948. Photo / Stuart Munro
Jim Hurdle, 95, prepares to take a ride on the RM31 Tokomaru railcar, which came over from Pahiatua for the Whanganui Vintage Weekend. Mr Hurdle first rode in a railcar in 1948. Photo / Stuart Munro

Whanganui has been "pumping" during the annual Whanganui Vintage Weekend.

And festival organiser Sally Jane Smith said she was particularly pleased to see the number of people from out of town who came.

"The whole town has been pumping - the weather has been fantastic - and everybody has had a great time," Ms Smith said.

The two major events were the Caboodle, a street party on Victoria Ave, on Saturday, and the Riverside Festival yesterday. There were also vintage car rallies, markets, "Demise by Chocolate", outdoor banquet, rides on a vintage railcar and an outdoor movie screening.

Molly Carmichael, 6, takes a rest from the Vintage Weekend festivities with her granddad, Roger Marriott. Photo / Stuart Munro
Molly Carmichael, 6, takes a rest from the Vintage Weekend festivities with her granddad, Roger Marriott. Photo / Stuart Munro

"The people who organised the flea market estimated they had 1000 people through the market. And there were probably 3000 people at the Riverside Festival."

Ms Smith said the vintage car displays in Victoria Ave had been very popular, as were the bands playing on three different stages at the Caboodle.

She said about 300 people attended.

"That was quite interesting, because there was a big wedding party at Element, and they had several hundred people right outside their reception."

Ms Smith said yesterday the railcar had brought over several dozen people from Palmerston North.

"We don't have final numbers of out-of-towners yet, but during the events I spoke to people who had come from Tauranga, Wellington, Hawke's Bay - and also quite a lot of people from New Plymouth."

That led to local accommodation being fully booked.

"I spoke to someone who hadn't booked accommodation before they came to Whanganui on the Saturday and they really struggled to find somewhere to stay."

Ms Smith said she felt vintage weekend was gaining traction outside Whanganui.

"I think people are clocking that it's a real event, and they're prepared for it to happen."

- Wanganui Chronicle

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