I'm holding off for a bit until I see what (if any) alert level is likely to be in place at Easter. We could still be in the yo-yo phase depending on how many uncaring people keep flouting quarantine rules.
If there is a highway to hell and a stairway to heaven is that an indication as to the expected traffic flows?
Post by Dave Homewood on Sept 10, 2020 20:46:54 GMT 12
Marlborough events bag funds to reduce risk of 'huge gamble' looking ahead mid-Covid Maia Hart 10:57, Sep 10 2020
SCOTT HAMMOND/STUFF Graham Orphan says central government funding for Classic Fighters 2021, set to begin on April 2, significantly reduces the economic risk of holding the event.
Event organisers in Marlborough are feeling “relief” and “security” after being granted funding from central government, enabling them to plan for upcoming festivals.
The Domestic Events Fund (DEF) was established to support the sector, which had been significantly impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Seven key events in the region have secured funding, most with a date set down for 2021.
Classic Fighters Airshow organiser Graham Orphan said every airshow had “uncertainties” but never as many as planning during a pandemic.
“It has been a huge gamble, because we just don’t know what the landscape is going to look like in seven months time,” Orphan said.
“However with the funding that we’ve secured, it means that there are things we can put in place right across the board, that reduce the risk.
“It gives organisers like ourselves the confidence to not cancel."
Havelock Mussel and Seafood Festival event organiser Kim Weatherhead said securing funding meant they had a “safety net” should anything happen, such as tighter Covid-19 restrictions.
RICKY WILSON/STUFF The Havelock Mussel and Seafood Festival has started planning its 2021 event, set down for March 13.
“We have a certain amount of contractors and our entertainment that we have to book and pay deposits for and that’s likely to be money that we can’t get back if it all gets cancelled,” Weatherhead said.
“It means that in the event that we have to cancel, it will hold everything over for the following year or a time that the event is viable, so it’s incredibly important really.
“You can get into a cycle of not moving forward with ideas and plans, just because things might not happen, and I think it would be quite a shame if things stopped moving because then what have you got to look forward to?”
Feast Marlborough chair Fiona Fenwick said they were “thrilled and very grateful” for the fund.
RICKY WILSON/STUFF Bayley’s Friday Night Feast is scheduled for October 9, and with the country still in level 2 organisers are waiting in anticipation for the Government’s next announcement.
“We pretty much are the first major event for Marlborough after Covid lockdown," Fenwick said.
“So we just think it’s going to be a great time to get Marlburians out there socialising and remembering what it’s like to enjoy great food, great people and great vibes.”
With the event scheduled for October 9, organisers were waiting in anticipation for the Government’s next alert level announcement on Monday.
Whitehaven GrapeRide event director Duncan Mackenzie said securing money for the fund was a “huge relief”.
The 2020 GrapeRide was cancelled earlier this year, with a 2021 date set down for February 27.
RICKY WILSON/STUFF Mike Watson and Dave McManus compete in the 2019 GrapeRide.
“That’s a huge relief for us, because it was going to be an interesting exercise in creative accounting to make things happen without that extra support,” Mackenzie said.
“We’re just thrilled that we have been recognised as an event of regional significance. It means that we can with certainty look forward to staging the event, assuming the appropriate restriction levels are in place by next year.”
Marlborough District Council regional events advisor Sam Young said at last week’s council meeting the extension of alert level 2 had been “cause for concern” among the events sector.
“The subsequent extension to level 2 has seen a complete stall on ticket sales. It completely stopped overnight,” Young said.
The Marlborough Wine and Food Festival has secured funding through the domestic events fund.
“For now, everyone is still continuing to plan, but very much cognitive that things have stopped in that sector ... We have seen the cancellation of the Queen Charlotte Relay and, very sadly, the Marlborough A&P Show.”
Young said “on the plus side” events in Marlborough generally had good ticket sales before New Zealand moved back into level 2.
“We were expecting to be struggling, but we were not. Garden Marlborough is already up on sales compared to last year,” she said.
“We hope to move back to alert level 1. All major events are planning to proceed as normal, but are obviously putting in plan Bs and Cs.”
The Saint Clair Vineyard Half Marathon had postponed the release of their tickets, Young said.
Marlborough Wine and Food Festival, scheduled for February 13 however, had started selling “super early bird tickets”.
Events funded through the DEF:
The Yealands Classic Fighters Airshow
Feast Marlborough Event Series
Havelock Mussel and Seafood Festival
Marlborough Wine and Food Festival
Southern Jam Youth Jazz Festival
Spirited Women - All Women's Adventure Race Marlborough
I caught up with a mate at Hood on Saturday who has given me a Gold Pass to Classic Fighters - an unexpected and rather humbling gesture! Amazingly I've been able to reserve accommodation and the ferry sailings are not yet sold out...the only issue is paying for same. I'm contemplating ways to get the funds together (my wife and I aren't working right now due to health reasons) so if you happen to have a spare dollar or more I'd be extremely grateful to hear from you.
Back to your regularly scheduled airshow news. Well, maybe not news per se, yesterday I asked the AHC team via Facebook if Dangerous Skies would be open on the Thursday as I've not yet been. They advised all but the FW190 and Spitfire should be there, plus the John Smith collection display. Very much looking forward to seeing those aircraft in person.
Have they said if Dangerous Skies will be open during the show? It normally isn't, but where is the John Smith collection being displayed? If temporarily where the FW190/Spitfire normally are then I can't see why it wouldn't be open?
Regular visitors to Omaka will know that the airfield has progressively become home to one of the greatest collections of WW-II combat aircraft in the Southern Hemisphere. Some of these reside inside the Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre's WW-II exhibition where a special once-only display will be on view as the 'Dangerous Skies' hall, which will open this year for the first time ever during an Easter airshow. In the museum it is hoped to have been able to complete for display, the time-capsule P-40N Kittyhawk and Tiger Moth from the John Smith collection and the refurbished Mosquito also from John's famous 'Aladdin's cave' collection. These will join the Hurricane and Stuka, suspended from the roof and the dramatic Lockheed Hudson jungle crash diorama.
To this very day, the kid who used to bully me at school still takes my lunch money. On the plus side, he makes great Subway sandwiches.
Just reading the Airshow Travel newsletter, which features a good article on CF21. One exciting small piece is 2 flying P40s with the newly resorted P40 by Pioneer expected to be at the show. I miss living in Blenheim as I would just park at the end of the airfield in the days leading up as aircraft arrive and practice.
Post by Dave Homewood on Feb 12, 2021 15:29:48 GMT 12
No bubble, no trouble, says Classic Fighters Airshow organiser Helen Nickisson 09:00, Feb 10 2021
The chances of a Trans-Tasman bubble in time for Easter are slim to none, but a Marlborough air show is still hopeful one Australian can make it on the day.
The Royal Australian Air Force blew people away with their F18 Hornets at last year’s Yealands Classic Fighters Airshow – an event that normally attracts thousands from across the ditch – and organisers say the air force is “still very keen and committed to present at least one aeroplane”.
“It's looking good, but what they bring will depend on last-minute logistics,” Graham Orphan said.
A RAAF Hornet F18 at the 2019 Yealands Classic Fighters Airshow. The show is held every other year.
He said a lot of Australians were still “itching” to get to the 20th anniversary of the Omaka airfield show, from April 2 to April 4.
Many had booked flights and accommodation, Orphan said.
“We don't have a refund policy because we can't afford to,” he said. “We've been telling them to book their accommodation and flights, as these can both be cancelled, and plan to book their gold pass for the air show closer to the time.”
Graham Orphan with the Spitfire Mk.XIV, one of the WWII aircraft which will be seen at the Yealands Classic Fighters Airshow.
“‘Don't send the money now.’ That's been our response. Which makes it a bit nerve-racking for us in terms of having cash in the bank to run everything beforehand, but we're just trying to be as smart about it as we can.”
Despite many uncertainties, the creative team had forged ahead with preparations and had “more creative content this year than ever, by quite a large jump,” Orphan said.
And they were not reliant on overseas planes to put on a good show, he said.
“We have spent the last 20 years building up our resident collection of aeroplanes, and there are now about three dozen heritage aeroplanes flying from this airfield, and another 60-something projects under way.
Air Chathams DC3 takes off at the 2019 show.
“Each time we run the show, we're a little closer to autonomy,” he said.
He would like to see as many classic planes as possible from around the country at the show, but they needed to make sure the show could go on regardless.
“We want to make sure that if, for instance, Auckland locked down and the Harvard formation team couldn't appear, that people coming up from Christchurch or Wellington or Nelson would still have a fantastic show and not really notice anything missing.”
Orphan said if there was another regional lockdown and they continued with the show, they would potentially lose quite a lot of business, and might have to cancel some things, but would try to avoid reducing the entertainment factor.
They might, for instance, reduce the size of the grandstand, or the number of portaloos.
While ticket sales were a wait-and-see, the food stalls were already fully booked for the show.
The extreme Yak 52 team in action at the 2019 show. The creative team promises plenty of drama and excitement for this year’s Classic Fighters Airshow.
But he would like to see more companies in Marlborough presenting their wares, and making their brand known at the show.
“We don't want companies to miss out on an opportunity to reach a broader market because they haven't thought about it,” he said.
Orphan thought the show would be as big if not bigger than previously, even without the thousands that normally came from Australia and beyond.
“We're good at pulling rabbits out of hats and because of that the rest of the country gets behind us and wants to see the show succeed ... So much has come from so little, driven purely and solely by enthusiasm and passion and a lot of very positive thinking people.”