They came from as far afield as Kaitaia and New Plymouth to sing, dance and be part of all things country at Rotorua's Government Gardens.

Hosted by the Geyserland Country Music Club, the ninth annual Country in the Park went ahead yesterday and attracted hundreds of people who line-danced, toe-tapped and clapped the day away as country singers performed at the Band Rotunda.

Geyserland committee member Dallas Grant said it was fantastic to have such a fantastic day after last year's concert was rained off.

 Jade O'Brien, 11, from Matamata is one of the guest artists at this year's Country in the Park.
Jade O'Brien, 11, from Matamata is one of the guest artists at this year's Country in the Park.

"It was a gorgeous day in a great venue," Grant said. "People came, picnicked, left and returned – it doesn't get much better."

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Guest artists and local singers kept the revolving crowd entertained from 11am to 4pm.

Kaitaia's Dion Hobson was one of three guest artists to take the stage. Hobson, who was performing, was well impressed with the set up at Government Gardens saying it was a way better venue than where his local event was held.

Anahera Herewini Waiariki, 13, had the audience tapping their toes at the Country in the Park concert.
Anahera Herewini Waiariki, 13, had the audience tapping their toes at the Country in the Park concert.

"We only have a park with swings," Hobson laughed. "And we sing from the back of a truck."

Local lady Karen Clay has been to all nine Country in the Parks, said the open air was one of the biggest attractions.

"What's better than sitting outside listening to music," she said. "There's a lot of talent out there too."

Guest artists also included Hinewai Kahu Beauchamp from Taupo and 11-year-old Jade O'Brien from Matamata. Jade has been singing and playing ukulele at clubs since she was 3 and also plays drums and guitar.