With a smile that can light up a room, Ōmokoroa resident Ivy Mackie today reaches the major milestone of 100 years.

Her secret to a long life: No stress - and a glass of wine every evening.

Born in Te Aroha in 1919, Ivy grew up with her childhood sweetheart who she later married at age 18.

As a newly married couple, her husband was deployed to assist with surveillance off the coast of Fiji in World War II.

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After returning from war, the pair packed up and moved to Ōtorohanga. Three children later, her husband became the local milkman, while Ivy stayed home as a full-time mother.

Ivy Mackie received kind cards from the Queen and the Governor General celebrating her big day. Photo / George Novak
Ivy Mackie received kind cards from the Queen and the Governor General celebrating her big day. Photo / George Novak

Not long after, the three children were put to work at the family's local motorbike business, Otorohanga Cycles, that opened in the 1950s.

However, Ivy wanted nothing to do with the dirt and mess that came with it.

Instead, she was well-known for having the "best set of high heels in Ōtorohanga", with her family fondly remembering how she would walk a mile to town in her stilettos every week to order the groceries.

Ivy's daughter Lesley says beyond the glamour, Ivy was always a keen golfer and gardener.

"She played in lots of tournaments and she always did well."

Ivy and her husband moved to Ōmokoroa in the late sixties, at a time when there were "only about two houses around".

Ivy has outlived her husband by more than 20 years but is kept company by her small puppy, Charlie.

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Ivy Mackie's puppy Charlie is known to visit everyone in the resthome. Photo / George Novak
Ivy Mackie's puppy Charlie is known to visit everyone in the resthome. Photo / George Novak

However, whether it is chasing cats or hiding at the bottom of the bed, Lesley says her mother always manages to lose the dog.

With family flying in from places as far away as Texas and Australia, a big party of more than 60 people are coming together to celebrate Ivy's century of life on Saturday.

1919 in New Zealand

New Zealand officially commemorated the 1918 end of The Great War with peace celebrations 1919. However, soldiers still played a significant role in society and contributed to the 1919 revision of New Zealand drinking laws. In March that year, £12,440 worth of damage was done at Sling Camp, near Bulford Camp, in a disturbance led by drunken New Zealand soldiers. In December 1919 New Zealand avoided a complete prohibition on alcohol by only 3263 votes.
Source – Te Ara, The Encyclopedia of New Zealand

What else happened in 1919?

• Benito Mussolini establishes the Italian National Fascist Party.
• The Treaty of Versailles negotiations began in January, involving 55 countries which formed the League of Nations, the predecessor to the United Nations.
• Lady Astor, an American by birth, is sworn in as the first female member of the British Parliament.
• Rotary dial telephones were invented. Every call made had to go through an operator but this invention allowed people to dial the number themselves.
• The Grand Canyon National Park was established.
• The first pop-up toaster was invented by Charles Strite.
Source – thepeoplehistory.com