Mark your calendar for Sunday 18 March, 3pm (gates open at 2pm), to enjoy the beauty of the Te Mata Park Redwoods and great music from the best in Hawke’s Bay.

Bring your friends, a picnic, and a rug to sit on and join us for a very special concert in an amazing setting. Hawthorne Coffee, Beach Road Wines, Rooster’s Brew House and Rotary will be on hand with refreshments. [Note: Please bring cash for entry and refreshments; no EFTPOS facilities.]

Here’s the line-up for an afternoon of jazz and classical music …

  • Gregory Squire, one of New Zealand’s busiest and most sought-after musicians. Born in Waipukurau and educated at the Royal College of Music in London, Gregory leads a varied life as soloist, concertmaster and conductor. For this concert in the Redwoods, Gregory will be conducting orch-es-trate!! … an ensemble of Hawke’s Bay’s most talented young orchestral musicians.
  • Jon Fletcher, one of the Bay’s most active musicians, started singing and winning awards in Napier Country Music circles in the 1980s, later forming his own bands where he built a huge following with his ability to cover many genres of music with his great voice.
  • Margot Pierard left Hawke’s Bay to study jazz singing in Christchurch in 1996 and has been performing in jazz, funk and soul bands ever since, notably as a member of Tropical Downbeat Orchestra.
  • William Winitana has one of the finest baritone voices New Zealand has ever produced, and these days combines his singing and performance career with an active teaching role here in Hawke’s Bay. A highly-regarded classical and jazz pianist, Paul Carnegie-Jones has extensive experience in solo performance, ensemble playing and accompaniment.

Enter the Park from the Tauroa Road gates and access to the Redwoods is a gentle 20 minute walk. A shuttle bus will be available for those less physically able. In the event of bad weather, the Redwoods Session will be held in the Havelock North Community Centre.

Even if you cannot attend, I hope you’ll support the Te Mata Peak Board in its campaign to establish an Education and Visitor Centre within the Park to ensure that the cultural, ecological and historical values of this wonderful community asset are maintained and developed. The creation of the Te Mata Park Centre will provide us all with an amazing resource and help protect the Park.

Private donors and the Hastings Council have committed partial funds for the Centre; the Regional Council has provided some planning funding; and Napier Council has to date declined. Apparently they believe only Hastings district residents enjoy the Park. In fact, with over 200,000 visitors a year (including a big chunk of Mayor Arnott’s cruise ship passengers), Te Mata Peak is probably the most iconic destination in the Bay.

To find out more about upcoming events, the Te Mata Park Centre project, and learn how you can help and get involved, visit www.tematapark.co.nz or www.facebook.com/tematapark

Tom Belford

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