SUNDAZE IN THE BAY
If you're lucky enough to be languishing your summer away in sunny Hawke's Bay, then head on over to the original Sacred Hill Cellar Door for Sundaze, a fortnightly afternoon of wine, food and live music. Tomorrow is the first in the series, where visitors will be treated to tasty morsels prepared by the chefs from The Puketapu country pub accompanied by Sacred Hill wine pairings, or beer, cider or soft drink, if you're that way inclined.
This week's musical stylings will be courtesy of local singer/songwriter Eilish Rose. Future Sundays feature Tim Hansen, Ian Munro and Men in Black.
Tomorrow, January 21, February 4, February 18, noon-5pm, Sacred Hill, 1033 Dartmoor Rd, Puketapu. Free entry.
For those mourning their return to the big smoke, fret not, there are plenty of great ways to enjoy the city this summer. Sky City is bringing a little bit of the country into the heart of the CBD with a series of Sunday markets courtesy of the Coatesville Artisan Markets. If it weren't for the enormous looming skyscraper, it'd be just like being in the country but better, because you don't have to use a portaloo or wear gumboots.
Tomorrow, 10am-2pm, cnr Victoria St and Federal St, Auckland CBD.
WINE AND FOOD FEST
For many of us December through February — okay, March — is our own ongoing wine and food fest. Still, what better way to break up your own private binge than with an actual wine and food festival. Tairua is where it's at for eating and drinking today with the 24th annual Tairua School Wine and Food Festival. That's right, it raises money for the school so you can indulge in local wine and tasty treats and know it's all for a good cause. It'safamily affair too with bouncy castles, street entertainers, games and a water slide. Today, 9am-4pm, Tairua School, 110 Main Rd, Tairua. Gold coin donation.
CAMBRIDGE FARMERS' MARKET
The Cambridge Farmers' Market is on every Saturday, but why not be wild and go on a whim today. Take a leisurely drive to the quaint country town forastroll, a coffee, a loaf of artisan bread, some local cheese and a picnic on the banks of the Waikato River. Sounds like an idyllic way to start the weekend. Today and every Saturday, 8am-12pm, Victoria Square, Cambridge.
Locals and holidaymakers alike will be kept busy over the next week in Paihia with the Paihia Summer Festival. There are daily events including a kids' fishing competition tomorrow, kids' duathlon, mural painting, movies under the stars, sandcastle competitions, boat building, craft activities and much more. See the Paihia Summer Festival Facebook page for a full schedule of events.
Tomorrow and daily until January 14, various times, Paihia Wharf, Marsden Rd, Paihia.
FAT FREDDY'S DROP
No Kiwi summer is complete without a lazy afternoon or evening listening to the chilled out beats of Fat Freddy's Drop. Tonight, you can hear them live in Kerikeri at the stunning Kainui Road Vineyards. Sit back, relax, drink your viognier and enjoy some of the best music, wine and scenery Aotearoa has to offer. If you can't find your way to Kerikeri tonight, FFD are doing a vineyard tour so you may be able to catch them at Villa Maria in Auckland or Black Barn Vineyard in Havelock North later this summer. Today, 6pm, Kainui
Road Vineyard, Kerikeri. Tickets $83.50 from www.ticketmaster.co.nz
Not all horse racing events involve fascinators and champagne. For more relaxed equine entertainment, head along to the Summer Festival Ruakaka Races today. Take the whole whanau — there will be live music and kids' entertainment along with the horses. Today, 10am-5pm, Ruakaka Racecourse. General admission $10
If you or your children are creeped out by clowns, you're going to want to avoid that mainstay of carnival games, "laughing clowns" (yes, apparently those terrifying, gaping mouths are supposed to be laughing) when you head along to one of Mahon's Amusements' three summer carnivals. They're in Rotorua, Mt Maunganui and Taupo, so if you're around those parts, don't let your phobia stop you from enjoying the other delights that the carnival provides: dodgems, ferris wheels, candy floss, maybe even a summer romance. Today and tomorrow at various locations. See mahonsamusements.co.nz for addresses, times and ticketing prices for each carnival.
There's something vaguely nonsensical about charging money to view the works of a street artist whose anticapitalist statements were originally freely available to view on the facades of public property. Still, this collection of privately owned pieces is the largest in the world and the works are now so iconic, it may just be worth it. The exhibit is curated by Banksy's former manager and has travelled to Tel Aviv, Amsterdam, Istanbul and Melbourne before coming to Aotea Centre for the summer. Today and daily, 10am-5pm, until February 6, Aotea Centre. Adults $35, children under 10 free.
As Taika Waititi's reign as New Zealander of the Year draws to a close, his excellent contribution to last year's cultural landscape, Thor Ragnarok, can be seen at Mt Drury Park in Mt Maunganui. It's laugh-out-loud funny and suitable for (almost) the whole family. Today, 7pm, Mt Drury Park, Mt Maunganui.
Adults $5, children $2, under-5s free. 0800 BUY TIX
Rotorua's lakefront market has now been operating for 30 years and is always a good spot for a wee rummage. From concrete ornaments to local wood carving, boho bags to soy candles, massages to palm readings, you never know what you might stumble across, though chances are your money will be better spent there than at one of Rotorua's many souvenir shops. Tomorrow, 9am-2pm, Lakefront Village Green, Memorial Dr, Rotorua.
BUGS AT THE ZOO
Entomophobics may have a hard time visiting Auckland Zoo these school holidays now that the Bug Lab exhibition from Te Papa and Weta Workshop is there. With massive 3D bug models within four chambers, it's an interactive experience that is intended to give visitors the opportunity to learn from the genius of bugs.
Today, tomorrow and daily until June 30, 9.30am-5.30pm, Auckland Zoo, Motions Road. Adults $18.50, children $13, seniors and students $16.50, plus entry to Auckland Zoo. Adults $35.50, children $17.50, seniors and students $28.50 including entry to Auckland Zoo.
If your New Year's resolution involves being more adventurous or, more specifically, flying in a warbird, then you'll want to be at the Mercury Bay Aero Club today for their open day. It's your chance to take a mild or wild flight in a warbird plus there's a classic car display, a speedway event, live music and food available. Tickets are free and available from The Departure Lounge Cafe, The Emporium or I-Site Whitianga.
Today, 10am-4pm, Whitianga Aerodrome.