More than 600 Waipā residents have attended two of six community barbecues hosted by Waipā District Council in the last week.
The two events, at Selwyn Park in Te Awamutu and Lake Te Koo Utu in Cambridge, proved a huge hit with locals turning out in droves to enjoy a free sausage and ice cream, and to have their say on the future of Waipā.
A further four barbecues will be hosted in other locations in the coming weeks.
Waipā District Council mayor Jim Mylchreest said the events had been a great success for Council.
"We have been blown away with the community involvement at these events. Lots of people have been coming down, not just to enjoy the event but also to share their thoughts on the future of our district.
"We've received hundreds of pieces of feedback and heard lots of fantastic ideas on ways we can improve both towns. This sort of feedback is crucial for Council as it helps steer us in the direction we should be taking Waipā in."
Mylchreest said the events were the first step in a three-part consultation process to be carried out over the next 18 months.
"In this step we're seeking feedback on our vision and community outcomes prior to commencing consultation for the 2021-2031 Long Term Plan (LTP).
"Our current vision is 'Waipā Home of Champions — building the future together' and we are wanting to know whether this still resonates with residents and what they think our priorities should be moving forward."
The next step will focus on specific projects to be included in the upcoming LTP — a document that outlines the services, key projects and initiatives Council will deliver and fund over the next decade. It is revised every three years.
Other barbecue locations include the Rata-tu Hill Reserve in Kihikihi on Thursday, March 12, the Rangimarie Reserve in Pirongia on Saturday, March 14, the Leamington Domain in Cambridge on Sunday, March 15 and the Ohaupo Community, Sport & Recreation Centre on Sunday, March 22.
Head to whatsnextwaipa.nz for more information about the events or to complete an online survey about Waipā.