If you are inspired to be as fit as contestants in TV’s Australian Ninja Warrior, you will be keen to try out a new playground in Matakana, scheduled to open this week (February 3).
An adventure playground that has been in Paihia for the last 15 years, along with numerous additional features (including a Ninja Warrior course) is in the process of being set up at Matakana Country Park.
Country Park owners Brendan and Kim Coghlan had long admired Action World Paihia and the thrill it gave their children. They made a point of visiting at least once a year.
Brendan was determined that Matakana should have an equally impressive attraction and contacted Action World owners, Carol and Freddy Osler-Weppenaar, to see if they could help him set up a similar playground at the Country Park.
As it turned out, Carol and Freddy were about to retire and offered to sell their playground.
Brendan says Rainbows End was also interested in acquiring it, but he was lucky enough to get in first.
The relocated playground is known as Action Ninja World Matakana and covers an area of 3500 square metres in a paddock behind Bramble Café. It includes a trapeze, Tarzan swings, a bungee run, a high wire, maze, jousting bridge, climbing wall and an inflatable water slide that Brendan believes is the largest in the southern hemisphere.
Brendan has added several other elements, including a zorb soccer pitch and a Ninja Warrior course – where falling contestants land on airbags rather than in a pool of water.
“That came about after watching Australian Ninja Warrior on TV and thinking ‘wow, that’s cool’,” Brendan says.
He adds that the ninja craze is the fastest growing sport in Australia.
Visitors will be able to bring a picnic to the playground and barbecues will be available. There will also be an ice cream and coffee cart.
Day passes to the park will cost $20 for those aged 13 and under, $25 for students and $30 for adults.
The park is expected to be open until the July school holidays, then close for three months and reopen in October.