Thursday, 22 August 2019


An exceptional Saturday

Mercury Bay residents and visitors were treated on Saturday last week to probably the best Whitianga Santa Parade ever. After a week of unpredictable and wet weather, thousands of people lined Albert Street and The Esplanade to admire more than 40 floats and classic cars in fantastic sunshine.

The floats all looked spectacular, the amount of effort going into them nothing short of unbelievable. The parade had it all - sailing boats, go karts, motorcycles, dancers, “steampunkers,” junior rugby players, “lionesses” and even an aeroplane.

It was the job of Thames-Coromandel District Council mayor, Sandra Goudie, to choose the top three floats.

Congratulations to the Whitianga Combined Churches who entered the best float. In second place were the Whitianga Sea Scouts Keas and in third place were the youth sailors of the Mercury Bay Boating Club.

Thank you to all the emergency services that participated in the Santa Parade - St John Whitianga, the Whitianga Volunteer Fire Brigade, the Whitianga Coastguard, the Mercury Bay Community Patrol and the Whitianga Police. Thank you to well-known locals Gordon and Diana Barnaby for once again assuming the roles of Santa and Mrs Claus. And thank you to the Mercury Bay Business Association for once again sponsoring the parade.

The new-look Whitianga town centre was formally opened after the Santa Parade on Saturday. At the opening both Mrs Goudie and Coromandel MP, Scott Simpson, commented on how good the Whitianga town centre looks and thanked civil contractors Dempsey Wood for an outstanding job. They have also commended the business owners in the Whitianga CBD for their patience and understanding during the upgrade.

After the ceremonial ribbon was cut, the proceedings concluded with Harcourts Whitianga auctioning off a dolls house (which formed part of their float in the Santa Parade), the proceeds of which will be donated to the Whitianga Playcentre.

Both the Whitianga Santa Parade and the opening of the Whitianga town centre were exceptional community events. Saturday last week was once again proof that whenever the Mercury Bay community put their weight behind something, great things can happen.



Should Waikato DHB fund the provision of some public healthcare services in a new multi-service medical facility in Whitianga?

The Mercury Bay Informer is a highly popular community newspaper, based in Whitianga. The paper is distributed throughout the Coromandel Peninsula, coast to coast from Thames to north of Colville.