A festival which is bringing economic benefits to a popular Whangarei summer location during winter has been named a finalist for a national award.

The Tutukaka Coast Winter Festival has been named a finalist in the Best Community Event of the Year category for this year's New Zealand Event Awards.

Kate Malcolm said she and her fellow organisers were "proud as punch" to be recognised at that level.

Read more: Tutukaka winter festival brings cash and people to coast


"Up against some big national events, and for little old Tutukaka - we're punching above our weight."

The festival is run by the Tutukaka Coast Promotions Society and Scenario Events and takes place during August.

This year was the fifth time the event had been held, and aims to bring people and economic benefits to the community.

The festival uses arts, culture, sport and recreation to showcase the Tutukaka Coast and Ms Malcolm said everyone is passionate about their chosen activities.

She said this year was the first time the festival had entered the awards.

"We've matured as we've grown. You've always got to push yourself."

The other finalists in their category are Beach Series, Hawke's Bay Christmas at the Park, KPOP Showdown, Tutukaka Coast Winter Festival and Waitangi Tuwharetoa Ki Pukawa Festival 2017.

The winner of the community category will be announced at the Awards' Gala Evening on October 11 in Auckland.