For the 11th year, the Rodders Beach Festival is expected to have Orewa buzzing on Auckland Anniversary weekend, January 24-26.
Last year’s event raised a record $60,000 for the Westpac Rescue Helicopter and drew an estimated crowd of 50,000 to Orewa over three days.
Volunteer members of the Hibiscus Rodders Club organise the event. Co-organiser Sharon Morris says it is the three-pronged approach that has been the key to its success.
“We have stuck to the core reasons we started the event – to promote hot rodding and the Hibiscus Coast, and raise as much as possible for a great cause,” Sharon says.
Crowd favourites, including the Miss Vintage and Retro Tiny Tots competitions, the chance to bid at auction for a car, or win a trip to the United States – as well as several opportunities to take a close-up look at an impressive display of hot rods – all remain.
A new Vintage Bake Off competition has been introduced, along with The Bike Show sponsored by Harley Davidson, which will be at the Puhoi Pub on Saturday 25, 6.30-8.30pm.
Sharon says there will definitely be more motorbikes to see along with the hot rods this year. One of the parades of vehicles, on Saturday night, will be led by bikes.
This year’s drive-in movie will be held at North Harbour Country Club in Dairy Flat, rather than Orewa Reserve.
Sharon says the task of organising what has grown to be the biggest event on the Hibiscus Coast takes a full year and brings massive challenges.
“A small handful of people work very hard, because it’s our major event, but it is becoming a mammoth task. We are not professional event organisers, we are all volunteers who do this because we love hot rods and support the rescue helicopter charitable trust,” Sharon says.
This time around there have been a number of hurdles to overcome, including funding and how rubbish is handled. Auckland Council aims for zero waste.
Nevertheless, Sharon says the number of car owners pre-registering to take part is up already and everyone is gearing up for a fantastic event.
“Last year, we raised enough to pay for all the rescues that take place in a year in Rodney,” Sharon says. “Isn’t that amazing? That’s what makes all the hard work worthwhile, as well as seeing the community turn out in force to have fun and support us.”
Hibiscus Matters is a proud sponsor of the Rodders Beach Festival.