Zero waste goal
This year's It! Bay of Islands Food and Wine Festival, to be held on Paihia's Village Green on October 6, will be the first aiming to produce zero waste.
The event, which is now in its ninth year, typically draws about 2000 people for an afternoon of live music, competitions and food, all washed down with Northland-made craft beer, wine and cider.
The catch is, it also produces a small mountain of waste in the form of disposable plates, cutlery and cups.
This year, however, will be different, with Business Paihia's festival committee aiming for a zero-waste event by reusing as much as possible, recycling a few items such as wine bottles, and composting everything else.
Committee member Anika Whapshott said they assumed it would be as simple as making sure the plates, cups and other items used during the festival were made of compostable materials.
As they dug deeper, however, they found there was little point using compostable disposables when there was nowhere in the Mid North to compost the sheer volume of material — thousands of beer and wine glasses plus plates and utensils — the festival would create.
Eventually the committee realised the only way to come close to zero waste would be to rent festival glasses, which will be provided by Kiwi company Globelet.
Festival-goers will pay $1 for their first "glass" and will be encouraged to use it throughout the festival. The fee will cover the cost of renting, washing and transporting glasses.
This year's festival will also have a new bar pouring system, pig buckets for food scraps, separate bins for compostable items and different types of plastic, and a waste cage for cardboard.
"The road to getting rid of single-use plastics isn't an easy one," Whapshott said.
"People might feel they're getting it rammed in their face but the festival committee is committed to trying to reduce, re-use and recycle where possible, so we're dragging festival-goers along with us whether they like it or not," she said.
Fly My Pretties to headline festival
This year's It! Bay of Islands Food and Wine Festival will be headlined by Fly My Pretties, a 12-strong "supergroup" with an ever-changing line-up led by Barnaby Weir of Black Seeds fame.
Other current members are Bailey Wiley, Connor Moore, Ria Hall, Age Pryor, Iraia Whakamoe, James Coyle, Jarney Murphy, Laughton Kora, Mike Fabulous, Nigel Patterson and Ryan Prebble.
Support acts will include award-winning Kerikeri singer-songwriter Troy Kingi and top covers bands JPG and Automatic 80s.
Festival-goers with a competitive streak — or those who just want a free lunch — can compete in kina-sucking, oyster-shucking and pie-eating contests, while a children's zone will offer bouncy castles, face painting and a magician.
About 25 Northland restaurants, cafes, food producers, wineries and brewers will be represented at the October 6 event.
Go to paihianz.co.nz or eventfinda.co.nz for tickets. Gates open at 11am; the music finishes at 6pm. If you're coming from Kerikeri you can catch a bus from Subway at 10.30am, returning from Paihia's Maritime Building at 6.15pm. See the eventfinda page for details.
Just in case you missed Saturday's Advocate, we're giving away a double ticket to the It! Bay of Islands Food and Wine Festival.
All you need to do is email firstname.lastname@example.org with your full name, address and a contact phone number. You also need to name one member of the 12-strong line-up of the main act, Fly My Pretties. Entries close on October 2; if you don't have email you can drop off your entry at the Advocate's offices in Whangārei (88 Robert St, behind Pak'nSave) or Kerikeri (3 Fairway Drive, above the Scullery). The winner will be notified by phone.
A week for openings
It's a huge week for openings in the Mid North.
First of all, at 10am today, NorthTec's Kerikeri campus will be relaunched as a partnership between the Whangārei-based education provider and local hapū Ngāti Rehia.
The campus, at the corner of Kerikeri and Hone Heke roads, was closed in late 2017. NorthTec is expected to announce its new courses for 2019 today.
On Friday, the Northland District Health Board will officially open stage one of its $9.9 million rebuild of Bay of Islands Hospital in Kawakawa.
The rebuild includes a new accident and medical department, radiology and after-hours GP service, and a 20-bed medical ward. Part of the dated Bay of Islands Hospital complex has been demolished to make way for the new two-storey building while the rest has been refurbished.
Then, at 12.15pm, also this Friday, Health Minister David Clark will open Hospice Mid Northland's $900,000 processing centre and retail outlet at 464 Kerikeri Rd, next door to what used to be Pete's Pioneer Museum.
The 675sq m insulated panel shed will be used to sort donated items for the organisation's op shops, to sell large items such as furniture, and to store medical equipment. Hospice Mid Northland hopes the sorting centre will allow it to raise an extra $100,000 a year in op shop sales.
Finally, at 1.30pm on Friday, Northland-based Labour list MP Willow-Jean Prime will open her first electorate office upstairs at 77 Gillies St in Kawakawa.
Piano competition starts today
Don't forget the 2018 Kerikeri International Piano Competition starts at the Turner Centre in Kerikeri today, promising five days of world-class piano performance.
The action starts with a recital this evening by judges Awadagin Pratt (US) and Phillip Shovk (Australia); from tomorrow until Saturday, 15 top young pianists from around the world will battle for a place in Sunday's final and a share of the $32,500 prize pool.
The contestants are aged 16-27 and come from China, South Korea, Australia, US, Israel, Japan and New Zealand.
The event includes four free public talks tomorrow and Friday in which the public can meet the judges and learn about technical aspects of the contest.
Go to www.kipc.org.nz for the full schedule and more information; you can also check out he Facebook page @Kerikeri International Piano Competition. Tickets are available from the Turner Centre on Cobham Rd, online at www.turnercentre.co.nz, or by calling 0800 200 411 or (09) 407 0260. Tickets are free for under-18s.
Garden to Table volunteers
The Garden to Table programme, which teaches kids to grow and cook their own food, is looking for volunteers to work with children in school gardens and kitchens.
Volunteers must enjoy working with children and be willing to share their experience, knowledge and enthusiasm. They don't need to be experts because the programme's garden and kitchen specialists are on hand to help.
If this sounds like you, contact Gill West on email@example.com or 021 257 5628.
Sessions are held at Kerikeri Primary School (Tuesdays 9am-11am), Riverview School (Tuesdays 9am-11am, 11.30am-1pm), Ohaeawai School (Fridays 8.30am-10.15am, 10.45am-noon) and Kaikohe West School (Thursdays 9am-11am, 10.45am-noon).
Maritime Park AGM
The Bay of Islands Maritime Park Inc will hold its AGM from 6pm-8.30pm this evening, September 26, at Paihia War Memorial Hall on Williams Rd.
The formalities will be followed by a talk called Cultural Dispatches from the North about the Booth whānau collection recently donated to the Museum of Waitangi.
Objects in the collection date from pre-1450 to the early European era and were found around the Bay of Islands by the Booth brothers in the 1960s and 1970s. The talk will also cover traditional fishing practices and local sources of obsidian and red ochre.
Market day winners
More than 50 teams of future entrepreneurs took part in Springbank School's September 16 market day, a real-life test of the kids' sales skills and innovation. The winners were …
Junior school, most innovative product: The Christmas Company (Sophie Hunia, India Clarke); runner-up: Fly Racks (Zeke Hollister, Charlie Rowe). Best stall presentation: Doggie Dreams (Daniel Sutcliffe, Clay Blakeman, Hugh Wojtulewicz); runner-up: Scentsational (Room 2).
Middle school, most innovative product:
Horsin' Around (Seth Evans); runners-up: Scrub (Sophia Marolias, Charlotte Houghton) and Wooden Wonders (Jaluka Clarke, Leon Haslar). Best stall presentation: Piece of Cake (Ellie Heath); runner-up: Luna Bags (Lana Pistorius, Lucy Sizer).
Overall marketing award: Seedbox (Issy Welling).
Community centre open daily
The Bay of Islands Community Centre is now open daily (except Sunday) from 1.30pm-3.30pm. Table tennis on Tuesdays and Saturdays; relaxation and a cuppa any time.
Other regular attractions include a youth club and photography workshops; keep an eye on the Bay of Islands Community Centre Facebook page for upcoming events.
Call Val Mack on 0275 402 520 if you can spare an hour or two to help run the centre, which is on the first floor behind Moby Dick's Café (access via the stairs at the Marsden Rd entrance to Paihia Lanes).
Mexican-themed bar Diablo, on Kerikeri's Homestead Rd, is celebrating the Mexican artist Frida Kahlo this Friday. Frida Fiesta will feature art, music and prizes, including for best Frida costume. Don't forget the monobrow.
■ Do you have news or an upcoming event you'd like to see in this column? Send it to us, including your full contact details, to firstname.lastname@example.org