This year's Beach Hop is the latest major event postponed because of Covid-19.

The annual celebration of classic cars and rock and roll music in Whangamata usually attracts more than 100,000 people.

This year's event had been due to run from March 25-29. In a statement released at 3pm today, organiser Noddy Watts said they had decided to push it back to November after discussions with health officials.

The annual Beach Hop normally attracts more than 100,000 people to Whangamata. Photo / NZME
The annual Beach Hop normally attracts more than 100,000 people to Whangamata. Photo / NZME

"We hope that the virus pandemic will be more controlled over the next eight months so we can celebrate our 20th year of this wonderful event.


"We have taken our time to evaluate the options and considered what is best for our community ... Each and every major event has a different dynamic and people must try to understand what goes on behind the scenes when making critical decisions in very stressful circumstances. You simply can not compare one event to another.

"First and foremost we treasure the town we live in and want to protect the people that live here and not put them at risk. We've been looking to central Government for leadership to guide us in making this decision.

"The announcement on Saturday that all travellers from overseas to New Zealand must have a compulsory 14 day self-isolation period reinforced this decision, as our festival entertainment line-up includes more than 20 people arriving from overseas to perform ... This has wiped out our entertainment programme and, as Repco Beach Hop is a rock'n'roll festival, this is a major component of what we are here to celebrate.

"We appreciate the damaging effect on the economy both national and local and feel for the businesses that rely on the festival to survive. No doubt they've invested heavily in the event and we hope they will recover from this unforeseen hit.

"We are in exactly the same situation as we've invested hundreds of thousands of dollars, and long hours, into Repco Beach Hop 20. If we can't recover this, then the future of the event is in serious jeopardy.

"We have seen on social media that people are still coming to Whangamata regardless of the cancellation/postponement and we wish you safe travels. We cannot stop you from coming, but PLEASE stay away from Whangamata if you have symptoms of Covid-19, or recently arrived in New Zealand from overseas.

"On behalf of the Repco Beach Hop 20 Committee I wish you all the very best and hope you look after your health, your family, friends and community through this crisis."