Only one Ruapehu councillor is not standing for re-election this year, leaving 19 people to fight for the council's 11 seats.
Incumbent mayor Don Cameron said that was more than usual.
"We're quite thrilled at the numbers," he said.
"We think it's a reflection of the fact things are happening. We've got economic development and social development going on, and people want to be part of that."
Cameron is standing for his third term as mayor, and again challenged for the job by Taumarunui Ward councillor Jacques Windell.
Waimarino-Waiouru Ward councillor Cynthia Dowsett is the only one not standing again and she is stepping aside, rather than stepping down. She's been nominated for the Waimarino-Waiouru Community Board instead.
She's sure to sit on that, because there are just four nominations for the four places and those people will be elected unopposed. The others are Raewyn Biddle, Luigi Hotter and Allan David Whale.
But it's the Waimarino-Waiouru Ward seats on council that are most hotly contested. There are four of them, and eight people want in. They are incumbents Ben Goddard, Vivienne Hoeta and Rabbit Nottage and are challenged by Kahurangi Carter, Gary Griffin-Chappel, Janelle Hinch, Elizabeth Pakai and Elijah Pue.
The Taumarunui Ward has all five of its council incumbents standing again. Robyn Gram and Elaine Wheeler have also been nominated, which makes seven people trying for the five places.
The National Park Ward's one seat has three contenders. Incumbent Murray Wilson wants to stay on, and is challenged by Simon O'Neill and Peter Zimmer. All three are also standing for the National Park Community Board.
That board has four seats, and Mark Bolten and Clark McCarthy make up the other two of five nominated for it.
The Ohura Ward is the opposite. It has one seat and only one nominated, which means Lyn Neeson stays on as councillor unopposed.