More than 3500 people packed Kainui Vineyard north of Kerikeri on Friday for the Bay of Islands Music Festival in scenes unimaginable around much of the world where Covid social distancing rules and crowd limits still hold sway.
A varied line-up drew a wide range of ages with lots of children enjoying the family-friendly atmosphere and perfect weather, with rain earlier in the day drying up just as the gates opened.
This year's festival, the fourth organised by Waipapa's Jackie Sanders, was headlined by pop sensation Benee, Kiwi music legend Dave Dobbyn — that's Sir Dave since the New Year's Honours — and indie-pop band The Beths.
The only let-down was a career-first cancellation by Tami Neilson forced by ill health but Whangārei's Ben Ratima stepped ably into the gap at short notice.
While thousands of festival-goers of all ages sang along to Dobbyn's Kiwi classics it was Benee the youngsters wanted to see.
The 20-year-old star gave them a set brimming with big basslines, infectiously catchy tunes and a dazzling light show, then pushed Beneemania to new heights by rescuing four young girls getting squashed in the front row by inviting them on stage to dance with her for the festival's final song.