The Russell community turned out in droves to celebrate the delivery of a brand-new ambulance.
St John Russell station manager Peter Waskowsky said about 50 people attended the gathering at the ambulance station on July 21, where the keys were handed over and the vehicle was blessed.
The vehicle is one 14 Volkswagen First Response Units that were handed over to St John at a launch event in Auckland earlier this month.
They are designed specifically to support New Zealand's rural and remote communities.
Other towns to get them were Pongaroa, Porangahau, Maungaturoto, Dargaville, Hahei, Mokau, Opunake, Murupara, Waihau Bay, Hicks Bay, Te Kaha, Opotiki and Picton.
The new vehicles are based on the Volkswagen Transporter T6 ambulance, which is used as a frontline ambulance throughout Europe. Modifications have been made to suit New Zealand's unique environment.
As part of St John's approach to delivering ambulance services, the new vehicles, crewed by volunteers, will be able to quickly locate and assess patients, and transport locally or meet a helicopter or transporting ambulance.
Waskowsky said it was a good day for Russell.
"For starters we've never had a brand-new vehicle in the past, so this is good, and this new vehicle is much more comfortable for patients and volunteers," he said.
"They're a bit smaller and nimbler but perfect for where we work, often down steep and narrow driveways; they're easier to get around in rural areas."
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Celebrate the 200th anniversary of the arrival of the Fairburn family to New Zealand with stories about their lives and history from some of their descendants.
"The Catechist Carpenter William Thomas Fairburn – 1819 Onwards in New Zealand" event is on at the Museum of Waitangi on August 11 at 2pm.
The Fairburns were one of the European families to arrive in 1819.
William was a carpenter and a lay preacher – or catechist – for the Church Missionary Society in the early days of European settlement in New Zealand.
Guest speakers include Don Mandeno, a Fairburn descendant, Heritage New Zealand Property Manager Liz Bigwood and Fairburn and Colenso descendant Gillian Bell.
There will be time for questions and answers following the three speakers. Entry is free for Friends of Waitangi and day pass holders.
Visit www.waitangi.org.nz for details.
Te Pu o te Wheke Gallery in Kaikohe is happy to be hosting the exhibition "Wawata" an exhibition of works inspired by Te Rā, the last remaining Maori woven sail, from August 3 to 24.
There will also be a talk and fundraiser kai on August 9 from 6pm with speakers Mandy Sunlight and Ruth Port.
The sail was thought to have been taken back to London by Captain James Cook in the late 1700s.
With little recorded knowledge of the origins of Te Rā in place, three Pā Te Aroha weavers - Mandy Sunlight, Raouati Ewens and Ruth Port - travelled to London to view and document details about the sail.
They hoped to work out how Te Rā was made then bring the knowledge back to Aotearoa and use it to recreate a traditional sail.
Three talented Kiwis are heading home from their Melbourne base to tour with this year's Chamber Music New Zealand Regional series.
Presented by Aroha Music Society, The Morton Trio are set to play at the Turner Centre's New World Theatre Bar on August 9 from 7.30pm.
The trio - Arna Morton on violin, Alex Morton on French horn and Liam Wooding on piano - will perform the luscious horn trio of Brahms alongside works that bring out the singing qualities of the horn and violin.
The horn is not often featured in the Aroha programmes – this one prepared by Mike Burch - so don't miss the opportunity to hear this famous piece.
The three friends pursued their musical studies at the Australian National Academy of Music and the University of Melbourne, where they performed in orchestral and small ensemble contexts.
The CMNZ Regional Series is supported by The Deane Endowment Trust Artist Development Fund.
Tickets are $30 for adults, friends $25 and 18 and under free.
Synergy Restaurant has opened its doors to top-notch food in the Turner Centre's New World Theatre Bar on Friday and Saturday nights.
Turner Centre general manager Melanie Chandler-Winters said the new restaurant was the perfect opportunity to mix community with commercial.
It's also hoped the restaurant can offer internships and work opportunities to students of their hospitality partner Queenstown Resort College, located in Waipapa and Paihia, and to work closely with local wineries, she said.
"From our patrons and visitors, we understood that people would like to have a quality meal before going to a show. Based on that, we decided to look for a partnership in hospitality to deliver high quality food to all visitors of the centre and our community."
The modern, clean menu showcases the best local produce, and includes wines from Marsden Estate and Kainui, along with craft beers, pork belly, seafood chowder, tasty desserts and a cheeseboard.
Running the restaurant will be Julia and Ryan Portsmouth, who have worked in hospitality in the USA, New Zealand, Brazil and Australia, as well as being closely involved with arts.
Visit www.synergyrestaurant.co.nz to book a table or see the menu.
Waipapa Rotary and the Kerikeri Mountain Bike Club have joined forces to bring some of the world's best adventure films to the Far North.
The popular Kerikeri Adventure Film Festival is back at Kerikeri Primary School on August 2, with numerous action-packed short movies to inspire residents to get out and have a few adventures.
The films are sourced from Wanaka's NZ Mountain Film Festival which aims to showcase films from high-octane sports such as paraponting, skiing, climbing, base jumping, kayaking and mountain biking.
It also features important environmental and outdoor culture films to educate and entertain.
The festival kicks off at 7pm and runs until 9pm.
To see the full programme and buy tickets visit www.keriadventurefilm.com.
Check out the latest art exhibition Seeing Red at the Art in Kerikeri Gallery located at the Ferment Wine shop, 2 Cobham Rd.
The exhibition, which runs throughout August, opens on August 1 from 5-7pm and features 20 local artists each offering a new work.
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