Pansy Foster won't officially turn 90 until Tuesday, but the milestone was celebrated a little early on Saturday, with family and friends, at Taipa Reia Resort.

The gathering included the newest addition to the clan, 4-day-old Hemi Te Raukura Rokx-Thompson, her 13th great-grandchild, who was there with his parents from Auckland.

Formalities were kept to a minimum on the day, but son Gary Foster congratulated his mother and wished her many more birthdays.

"I guess we'll all be back next year," he said, adding that she and her children had done a "pretty good job of keeping the line alive," and adding to it.


Pansy (nee Webber), who lives in Kaitaia, has long been a stalwart of the Women's Section at the local RSA, and has a not entirely undeserved reputation as something of a pool shark, a skill she might have picked up when she and her late husband Ian ran the Houhora Hotel.

She was born at the Mangonui hospital (which was later moved lock stock and barrel to Kaitaia), and grew up at Peria.