Ruakākā Volunteer Fire Brigade has a new four-person waterway competition team. The team competed for the first time last weekend at the North Island Championships in Carterton.
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Coach Darrell Trigg says he was extremely pleased with their efforts in taking out fifth overall for the day.
"This was a fantastic effort for a new team and the fact that the current format of events is newly introduced."
The waterway competition events have been changed to make them easier to enter and reflect modern firefighting techniques and equipment.
Trigg says the events are fast paced, with some taking less than 30 seconds to complete.
"They consist of a series of targets that have to be struck, using pumps, hoses and other equipment, in a set sequence of events."
Colourful art on show
Two friends are showing their colourful multi-media artworks at an exhibition celebrating their creative artistic flow.
Flow in Colour is on at the Mangawhai Gallery, 45 Moir Rd, with an invitation-only opening on March 12 then running daily from 10am-12.30pm and 1pm-3.30pm until March 23.
Artists Elke Radewald and Monika Schmidt both grew up in Germany, with Radewald moving to Waipū 21 years ago and Schmidt moving to New Zealand in 2007.
Radewald likes to explore using flax and fibre, in unusual forms and dyed in intense colours.
Schmidt creates mixed media abstract intuitive art. The pair hope their exhibition will take people into a different world and encourage anyone to make the time for creative art.
Radewald has exhibited her work in various group and individual exhibitions in Northland and other New Zealand galleries and weavers' exhibitions, and has sold work as far afield as Germany, the US, Canada and Australia.
Her love of fibre art began in early childhood and grew as her grandmother taught her sewing and knitting. In Germany she knitted designer knitwear, but she left wool behind when she settled in the warmer Northland climate.
Well-known local weaver and artist Penny Goodall taught her the first steps of weaving and her passion for the medium ignited. Radewald is now a member of Te Pa Te Aroha weavers from Hokianga Harbour, which she says provides her with ample inspiration, and she is also a student of the Hetet School of Māori Art which has taken her further into weaving with muka (flax fibre).
Radewald is working on her first korowai which she hopes to finish in time for her citizenship ceremony. Her job as a psychologist is sometimes testing, and she uses her flax weavings in her clinic.
"It puts people's minds at ease and shows the connection we have to our land," she said.
"My mission is to encourage people to work with natural fibres, to let any fears go for not being good enough, to be brave with colours and for people to connect and heal through weaving."
Schmidt also had a passion for art as a youngster, studying both painting and pottery at school and later pursuing them as hobbies alongside her 25-year nursing career. Since moving to New Zealand, she has had more time to pursue her artistic interests, drawing inspiration from natural scenery and from workshops with local artists (Elena Nikolaeva, Richard Robinson, Margriet Bruin) and online artists (Flora Bowley, Olga Furman).
"These artists taught me intuitive painting by letting go of one's expectations of the end result," she says.
Other artists showed her various techniques and painting styles and helped her find her unique artistic voice.
Waipū car and bike show
The cars and bikes are coming back to Waipū this weekend. The show has gone from strength to strength, last year raising $19,000 which was distributed to local groups – $10,000 to Bream Bay St John, $2000 to Bream Bay Swimming Club and $7000 to Bream Bay College groups.
It is an alcohol, dog and patch-free event and this year all proceeds will go to Waipū Volunteer Fire Brigade. Admission is $10 per person, under-12s free, $30 for a family pass.
Public admission is from 10am-2pm. There is no charge for exhibitors or drivers, so dust off your collectable car and show it off at the Waipū Caledonian Park this Sunday. The park is open to exhibitors from 7.30 and everyone should be parked up by 9.30am. Prizegiving is around 1.30pm. For more information call Ron on 021 922 445.
Hockey senior rally day
Calling all adult hockey players – Bream Bay Hockey Club is holding its senior rally day on February 16 at the Whangārei Hockey Centre 10am-noon. This is open to all players, new and old, from Year 9 to 99 years. Come along and see which team suits you best, social or serious or somewhere in between. Team registration on the day. Junior players' rally day to be advised.
Karate classes are kicking off again. The first class is on next Wednesday at the Ruakākā Recreation Centre, beginners from 4pm-4.30pm (age 5-plus). Classes are also on at the Waipū Coronation Hall on Wednesdays. For more information, call Pam Crawley on 432 0760 or 021 256 3838.
Jazz in the afternoon
The Basin Big City Band are bringing their sound to Bream Bay with a concert at 566 Cove Rd, Waipu on February 15. Bring a picnic and your own drinks, sit back and enjoy some jazz in the sun from 3pm-5.30pm. Admission $10, phone 027 826 2510 for more information.
Parkinson's group birthday celebration
Waipū's Parkinson's Support Group turns five years old this month and will celebrate with a morning tea. Everyone affected by Parkinson's or who has been involved in the group is welcome to attend, and any new members are always welcome.
Come along and enjoy a short recap of the group's speakers and social events over the past five years – February 21, 10am-noon at the Waipū Presbyterian Church hall, 50 The Centre, Waipū.
A Bream Bay business is bringing the taste of the 1980s back with its wine coolers. One Tree Point Brewery's flavoured shandies, in flavours like Coconut Krack, Kiwifruit, Lemon Twist and Salted Caramel have been available on Fresh Choice Ruakākā's shelves for the past few years.
Now the owner-operated brewery is branching out into wine coolers, a mix of wine and fruit juice. The two flavours, Tropicana (pineapple) and Canary (apple/pear) are now available at FreshChoice Ruakākā.
• Email Julie Paton at firstname.lastname@example.org if you've got Bream Bay news to share with Advocate readers.