Te Awamutu singer-songwriter Haley Cole is buzzing after winning the New Zealand Country Music Entertainer of the Year award in the intermediate section this month.

The awards were held at Baycourt Community & Arts Centre in Tauranga.

The 16-year-old Te Awamutu College student says there was stiff competition in all four sections.

"I felt humbled to take out the overall intermediate prize," she says.


Haley says her love of country music started when she went to her first country music club in Te Awamutu at seven.

Since then she has entered various competitions around the country and released a self-titled demo album with Mill Corner Recording Studios.

After her recent win, Haley was invited to be a guest artist in the New Zealand showcase at the renowned Norfolk Island Country Music Festival in May next year.

Last year she was one of four New Zealanders chosen to compete at the festival's Trans-Tasman Entertainer of the Year.

This time around she is looking forward to returning to the stage as an artist.

Haley is also performing at this weekend's Branded Country Music Te Awamutu Spring Hoe-Down in the Te Awamutu Sport and Recreation Club.

The three-day event starts with an open mic night on Friday and guest artists from 4pm to 10pm.

Saturday is a 10am-10pm all-day affair and from 9.30am-1pm on Sunday there is a gospel concert, with open mic and guest slots as well.