Sunday, 26 May 2019

WHITIANGA WEATHER

New artists join Mercury Bay Art Escape Open Studio Tour

The Mercury Bay Art Escape is pleased to welcome twelve new members to their Open Studio Tour for 2015.  These artists, using various mediums including weaving, photography, prints, drawing, sculpture, wood and painting, add youth and diversity to an already talented group of accomplished member artists in the Mercury Bay area.

A new medium to the MBAE is Harakeke weaving from Raewyn Hildreth, a new resident to Whitianga. There is also photographer Sam Bruce, whose technique involves shooting solely on film with minimal post processing after. His images create a social commentary focusing on man’s interference in our land and exploring the rougher side to life.

Other new Whitianga members include Bernadette Ballantyne, Charlotte Giblin, Ian Calloway, all painters and Ellen Jackson who works with natural pigments, graphite, oil and ceramics.

Natasha Courtney presents a variety of fine woodwork creations produced in her Hahei home workshop. Items include armchairs, desks, stools and finely crafted boxes. Another new Hahei resident, Becs Wood features drawings produced mainly with ballpoint pen and pencil and painting abstract kiwi designs on surfboards.

Also from Hahei, Martinus Sarangapany produces prints, illustrations and paintings.

An addition to the Cooks Beach artist membership is Anna Kitchingman, who has a distinct cubism painting style, generally landscapes that feature the stunning Coromandel Peninsula and the Southern Lakes.

The new line-up is complete with Reina Cottier, a painter from Tairua and Colin Verner a sculptor who joins Lutz Gaebler at the Try Fluke Studio in Kuaotunu.

These new artists complement the existing talented members of the MBAE in 2015 with a total of 46 exhibiting in the very popular Open Studio Tour which is held over the first two weekends in March each year.

The Open Studio Tour weekends kicks off with an opening event and “Taste of the Tour” showcase exhibition at Hot Waves Café on Friday 6 March 2015.

The new look MBAE Guide, that outlines full artist details, the Trust's exhibitions and events and identifies supporters and sponsors will be available early December.

Full details are available at www.mercurybayartescape.com.

New artists join Mercury Bay Art Escape Open Studio Tour

The Mercury Bay Art Escape is pleased to welcome twelve new members to their Open Studio Tour for 2015.  These artists, using various mediums including weaving, photography, prints, drawing, sculpture, wood and painting, add youth and diversity to an already talented group of accomplished member artists in the Mercury Bay area.

A new medium to the MBAE is Harakeke weaving from Raewyn Hildreth, a new resident to Whitianga. There is also photographer Sam Bruce, whose technique involves shooting solely on film with minimal post processing after. His images create a social commentary focusing on man’s interference in our land and exploring the rougher side to life.

Other new Whitianga members include Bernadette Ballantyne, Charlotte Giblin, Ian Calloway, all painters and Ellen Jackson who works with natural pigments, graphite, oil and ceramics.

Natasha Courtney presents a variety of fine woodwork creations produced in her Hahei home workshop. Items include armchairs, desks, stools and finely crafted boxes. Another new Hahei resident, Becs Wood features drawings produced mainly with ballpoint pen and pencil and painting abstract kiwi designs on surfboards.

Also from Hahei, Martinus Sarangapany produces prints, illustrations and paintings.

An addition to the Cooks Beach artist membership is Anna Kitchingman, who has a distinct cubism painting style, generally landscapes that feature the stunning Coromandel Peninsula and the Southern Lakes.

The new line-up is complete with Reina Cottier, a painter from Tairua and Colin Verner a sculptor who joins Lutz Gaebler at the Try Fluke Studio in Kuaotunu.

These new artists complement the existing talented members of the MBAE in 2015 with a total of 46 exhibiting in the very popular Open Studio Tour which is held over the first two weekends in March each year.

The Open Studio Tour weekends kicks off with an opening event and “Taste of the Tour” showcase exhibition at Hot Waves Café on Friday 6 March 2015.

The new look MBAE Guide, that outlines full artist details, the Trust's exhibitions and events and identifies supporters and sponsors will be available early December.

Full details are available at www.mercurybayartescape.com.

New artists join Mercury Bay Art Escape Open Studio Tour

The Mercury Bay Art Escape is pleased to welcome twelve new members to their Open Studio Tour for 2015.  These artists, using various mediums including weaving, photography, prints, drawing, sculpture, wood and painting, add youth and diversity to an already talented group of accomplished member artists in the Mercury Bay area.

A new medium to the MBAE is Harakeke weaving from Raewyn Hildreth, a new resident to Whitianga. There is also photographer Sam Bruce, whose technique involves shooting solely on film with minimal post processing after. His images create a social commentary focusing on man’s interference in our land and exploring the rougher side to life.

Other new Whitianga members include Bernadette Ballantyne, Charlotte Giblin, Ian Calloway, all painters and Ellen Jackson who works with natural pigments, graphite, oil and ceramics.

Natasha Courtney presents a variety of fine woodwork creations produced in her Hahei home workshop. Items include armchairs, desks, stools and finely crafted boxes. Another new Hahei resident, Becs Wood features drawings produced mainly with ballpoint pen and pencil and painting abstract kiwi designs on surfboards.

Also from Hahei, Martinus Sarangapany produces prints, illustrations and paintings.

An addition to the Cooks Beach artist membership is Anna Kitchingman, who has a distinct cubism painting style, generally landscapes that feature the stunning Coromandel Peninsula and the Southern Lakes.

The new line-up is complete with Reina Cottier, a painter from Tairua and Colin Verner a sculptor who joins Lutz Gaebler at the Try Fluke Studio in Kuaotunu.

These new artists complement the existing talented members of the MBAE in 2015 with a total of 46 exhibiting in the very popular Open Studio Tour which is held over the first two weekends in March each year.

The Open Studio Tour weekends kicks off with an opening event and “Taste of the Tour” showcase exhibition at Hot Waves Café on Friday 6 March 2015.

The new look MBAE Guide, that outlines full artist details, the Trust's exhibitions and events and identifies supporters and sponsors will be available early December.

Full details are available at www.mercurybayartescape.com.

New artists join Mercury Bay Art Escape Open Studio Tour

The Mercury Bay Art Escape is pleased to welcome twelve new members to their Open Studio Tour for 2015.  These artists, using various mediums including weaving, photography, prints, drawing, sculpture, wood and painting, add youth and diversity to an already talented group of accomplished member artists in the Mercury Bay area.

A new medium to the MBAE is Harakeke weaving from Raewyn Hildreth, a new resident to Whitianga. There is also photographer Sam Bruce, whose technique involves shooting solely on film with minimal post processing after. His images create a social commentary focusing on man’s interference in our land and exploring the rougher side to life.

Other new Whitianga members include Bernadette Ballantyne, Charlotte Giblin, Ian Calloway, all painters and Ellen Jackson who works with natural pigments, graphite, oil and ceramics.

Natasha Courtney presents a variety of fine woodwork creations produced in her Hahei home workshop. Items include armchairs, desks, stools and finely crafted boxes. Another new Hahei resident, Becs Wood features drawings produced mainly with ballpoint pen and pencil and painting abstract kiwi designs on surfboards.

Also from Hahei, Martinus Sarangapany produces prints, illustrations and paintings.

An addition to the Cooks Beach artist membership is Anna Kitchingman, who has a distinct cubism painting style, generally landscapes that feature the stunning Coromandel Peninsula and the Southern Lakes.

The new line-up is complete with Reina Cottier, a painter from Tairua and Colin Verner a sculptor who joins Lutz Gaebler at the Try Fluke Studio in Kuaotunu.

These new artists complement the existing talented members of the MBAE in 2015 with a total of 46 exhibiting in the very popular Open Studio Tour which is held over the first two weekends in March each year.

The Open Studio Tour weekends kicks off with an opening event and “Taste of the Tour” showcase exhibition at Hot Waves Café on Friday 6 March 2015.

The new look MBAE Guide, that outlines full artist details, the Trust's exhibitions and events and identifies supporters and sponsors will be available early December.

Full details are available at www.mercurybayartescape.com.

Scientific developments played major role in arrest in child indecent assault case

Waikato Police say scientific developments played a major part in yesterday’s arrest of a man in relation to an indecent attack on a little girl in the Coromandel early last year.

Detective Gavin Hall of the Eastern Waikato Child Protection Team said the attack took place on 5 January 2013 against a five-year-old girl at Cooks Beach.

"The girl had run ahead of her family as they were returning from the beach through the Riverview Reserve. A naked man was described as running out in front of the girl and grabbing her before an indecent assault took place.

"Despite the efforts of attending Police and a number of members of the public in the area at the time, the then unknown offender made off in a silver Japanese sedan and the fact that he remained at large was a matter of concern for us as investigators and to people in the Coromandel."

Mr Hall said though taking some time to reach the point of arrest, detailed investigative work and findings from scientific analysis resulted in the arrest of a 35-year-old Hamilton man who will appear in the Hamilton District Court on Wednesday on a charge of an indecent act on a girl under 12 years.

"We don't want to go into the detail of the scientific developments because we don't want to make other offenders forensically aware.

"But what we can say is that we spoke to the family of the victim today and they are relieved that this man has been caught and the matter being brought before the courts will allow it to be finally put to rest."

Mr Hall said Police are pleased this man will now be held to account and that they are able to assure holiday makers heading to the Coromandel that such traumatic events will not be tolerated.

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The many firsts of Mercury Bay

Late on the evening of 3 November 1769 the explorer James Cook sailed on HM Bark Endeavour into Mercury Bay and stayed for 12 days. During Captain Cook and his crew’s stay a number of firsts happened in the history of New Zealand.

So, does that mean this great part of the world we live in has an identity no one other place can claim? And if so, what is it?

The local people had good reason to be suspicious of Cook’s arrival in the Bay. According to Joe Davis, elder of Ngati Hei (the most prominent tribe in the area), for them it must have been like “a spaceship landing from Mars.” It was also at a time they were under attack from Maori tribes from the west, Tauranga and Northland. The area was well worth fighting over - the mountains were covered in tawa, rimu and kauri, the offshore islands had colonies of grey-faced petrels and swarms of eels and mussels, crayfish and oysters were in abundance. In the ocean there were many species of fish with stock quantities we can today only dream of.

Cook’s and his crew were on a scientific expedition of the Royal Society in London to observe the transit of Venus in Tahiti in June 1769 and to continue from there to explore the coasts of the “Southern Continent” or, failing that, the coasts of New Zealand. Among the crew were Charles Green, an astronomer and Joseph Banks, a botanist. Also on board when the Endeavour sailed into Mercury Bay was Tupaia, a Tahitian chief who acted as interpreter between Cook and his crew and the people of New Zealand. 

Cook made landfall in New Zealand at Poverty Bay, from where he made his way up to Mercury Bay and further around New Zealand. Up to his arrival in Mercury Bay, Cook’s time in New Zealand was marked with many misunderstandings with the local Maori people and many of them were shot and killed.

Cook decided to stay in Mercury Bay as the transit of Mercury (a much more common occurrence than the transit of Venus) was imminent and would enable Green to plot the exact position of New Zealand on the world map.

In order to deter the local people from attacking the Endeavour while awaiting the transit of Mercury, Cook and his crew started trading goods they had on board for the locals’ weapons. This process was the start of a few days where, in today’s terms, Pakeha developed a better understanding of Maori and their way of life.

In this process of relationship building, Toiawa, a Ngati Hei chief, was invited on board the Endeavour. Banks, who kept a detailed journal of most of the expedition, said the chief had to be persuaded to venture down into the ship’s cabin where he was given presents. He told the crew his people were “very much afraid” of them and was promised friendship in return for “provision at their own price.”

This visit was followed by another, where two other locals boarded the Endeavour and candidly told the crew about the concerns of their people, particularly because of the plundering they had to endure from other Maori tribes, mostly from the north. They soon, however, realised the crew members weren’t hostile and they became friendly and inquisitive.

The days following Cook ordered some maintenance on the ship to be done, wood to be cut, water to brought on board and wild celery, an anti-scorbutic, to be collected. These activities were intermingled with frequent contact with the local people where, among other things, food was exchanged. Banks and a Dr Solander, another crew member and representing the Royal Society’s scientific interests in the expedition, regularly visited a group of local people living out in the open at the Purangi while collecting fern root and shellfish to take home to their more permanent settlements elsewhere.  

9 November was an eventful day. Not only did Green with the help of Cook go ashore and successfully observe the passing of Mercury, but unfortunately, in Cook’s absence, a local warrior not keeping his end of the bargain in a trade was shot dead by an Endeavour officer. Cook was angry with his officer and evidence of the amicable relationship that was in the process of developing between “Pakeha and Maori” can be found in Cooks personal view of the warrior’s loss of life, “… I thought the punishment a little too severe for the crime, and we had now been long enough acquainted with these People to know how to chastise trifling faults like this without taking away their lives.”

A boat with Endeavour crew was sent to tell the people at the Purangi what had happened, simply to receive the message that the warrior was deserving of his punishment. That same evening Banks and Dr Solander shared a meal with the Purangi people, eating shellfish, crayfish, fish and birds that had been cooked, in Banks’s words, “… in holes in the ground filled with provision and hot stones and covered over with leaves and Earth.”  

On 10 November Cook and some of his crew explored the Whitianga River by boat, accompanied by some locals. They stopped at Whitianga Pa (at Whitianga rock), by that time already destroyed for more than 15 years, and were invited to a delicious meal of hot pipi by the people of a small village nearby.

On 12 November Cook, Banks, Dr Solander and many of the Endeavour crew took boats to the north side of the Bay (to Wharekaho) to visit Ngati Hei’s stronghold. They first were invited to a small pa with only five or six houses, but reluctantly refused as they intended to visit the much larger Wharetaewa Pa. At Wharetaewa Cook and his crew were welcomed, for the first time in New Zealand, with karanga (ritual calls of welcome). They gave the local people gifts and were with a great deal of friendship shown around the pa.

13 to 14 November were used to collect celery and boatloads of oysters from the beds of the Purangi River. Later on 14 November Cook raised an English flag (the exact flag that was raised is uncertain) at the Purangi and claimed possession (either of the whole of New Zealand or just part of the country) in the name of the British King. Cook didn’t leave the flag and his action was without value as he didn’t, according to his instructions, obtain the local people’s consent to possess their land. “The raising of the flag wouldn’t have meant anything to the people of Ngati Hei at that time,” said Joe. “They wouldn’t have known why Cook did it.”

Early in the morning of 15 November Ngati Hei chief, Toiawa and other local Maori visited Cook on board the Endeavour, among them Horeta Te Taniwha, who later became a well-known Maori leader and who was only a young boy at the time. He recalled how Toiawa drew with a piece of charcoal an outline of the North Island on the deck of the Endeavour, how Cook gave Toiawa a handful of seed potatoes (the first time European potatoes were given to anyone in New Zealand) and how Cook gave him (Te Taniwha) a nail and how the nail became his “god.”

Later on 15 November the Endeavour sailed away from Mercury Bay.

According to Joe and Richard Gates, a Mercury Bay historian and member of the Mercury Bay Museum Trust Board, Cook’s visit to Mercury Bay was undoubtedly the first time Europeans developed some understanding of the way local Maori people lived, for the first time New Zealand was correctly positioned on a map of the world, for the first time Europeans were invited and welcomed to a pa with a karanga, for the first time European potatoes were offered to a Maori person and for the first time a British flag was raised on New Zealand soil.

So, what is the identity of this great place we live in? Is Mercury Bay the true birthplace of New Zealand as a nation? Or is it the place where the idea of New Zealand as a nation was conceived? Or is it the place where a future-shaping meeting of minds happened? Or is it simply the place where New Zealand was put on the map? Or is it, perhaps, New Zealand’s place of firsts?

Whatever it is, Mercury Bay has a place in the history of New Zealand. A history all of us who live here, Maori and Pakeha alike, can be rightfully proud of.

Police urges people to take care this Labour Weekend - zero tolerance for speeds 5km over speed limit

With skiers making the most of late snow on the mountains combining with holiday home owners making the most of warmer weather, Waikato Police are warning the region's roads will be a lot busier this Labour Weekend.

District Road Policing Manager, Inspector Freda Grace said varying weather patterns meant the public could be spoilt for choice over the long weekend which will make things challenging on the roads.

"We can expect large numbers of motorists to be heading down Auckland's Southern Motorway and then branching off on to SH2 to head to their beach homes in the  Coromandel, heading straight ahead on SH1 or branching off on to SH39 to head to the ski slopes.

"In each case they will be turning on to smaller roading networks that demand a higher level of respect and driver attentiveness to successfully share the road."

Mr Grace urged drivers to ensure they and their vehicles are fit for the road and that didn't just mean fuelling the car up and grabbing a pie on the road.

"We need to ensure our vehicles have warrants of fitness and we need to ensure we're fit for the road to.

“If you're tired from a long week on Friday, don't head out, get some sleep and head out Saturday instead.

"Likewise, we would ask that people don't over indulge on alcohol Sunday night and drive home - impaired on Monday putting themselves, their passengers and other motorists at risk."

Waikato Police will be out in force with a highly visible presence on popular holiday routes over Labour Weekend, which will see the return of the successful zero-tolerance to speeds 5km or over posted speed limits.

"But really, road safety isn't just about enforcement, it's about the community doing their bit in sharing the road.

“This means not speeding, not drinking and driving, pulling over to use the phone or text and planning your route allowing plenty of rest and time to get to your destination and back home safely.

"If we're all doing that then the Police's role becomes one of chaperoning, not enforcement because everyone will be doing their bit in ensuring Labour Weekend in the Waikato is fatal and injury free."

Whitianga Summer Concert heading towards a great success

With show day just three months away, Greenstone Entertainment’s Whitianga Summer Concert, featuring HEART, FOREIGNER and THREE DOG NIGHT on 25 January Auckland Anniversary long weekend, is already proving to be a great success.

At present the concert, to be held at the Whitianga Waterways Arena, has already sold over 5,000 tickets, with 75% of the “locals $89 tickets” also bought. In addition, the transport options on offer from Thames, Whangamata, Matarangi, Hot Water Beach, Hahei and Coromandel to the concert, pre-purchased for $30 (return) and only through Ticketek, have been in high-demand. With limited bus transfers available from all areas, concert-goers are urged to purchase in advance as they will not be on offer on the day.

Amanda Calvert, CEO of Greenstone Entertainment said, “We’re absolutely thrilled with Whitianga’s response to the Summer Concert Tour. To kick off our five year commitment with Whitianga Waterways with a rocking crowd, is a fantastic feeling.

“With children 14 and under being free - we’re hoping the Summer Concert Tour will be an annual family affair for the Coromandel!”

“This Summer Concert Tour is arguably the best line-up to-date and we can’t wait to show these iconic rockers, Heart, Foreigner and Three Dog Night, what New Zealand has to offer.”

While there will be a wide range of local food outlets on offer, concert-goers are encouraged to bring in their own picnic with non-alcoholic beverages. The bars at the concert will sell a wide range of Gibbston Valley wines including Gibbston Valley Gold River Pinot Noir 2014, Gibbston Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2014, Gold River Pinot Gris 2014 and Gibbston Valley Gold River Chardonnay 2013 along with Steinlager Pure, Speights and Steinlager Lite and cider. A wide range of non-alcoholic beverages and free water will also be on offer at the concert.

The concert is free for children 14 years and under. See the official concert banner here.

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