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Plenty of Christmas spirit

The weekend was stacked with Christmas events around the region, but high winds and rain forced a late parade cancellation.

The parades in Martinborough and Featherston on Saturday attracted big crowds buzzing with festive anticipation.

Featherston Christmas Parade organiser Claire Bleakley was thrilled with the event’s success.

“Featherston outdid itself this year,” she said.

“The generosity of all the local businesses and people made for the perfect day.”

Bleakley said she was especially blown away by how well-decorated the floats were and the number of people who turned up to get involved or watch.

“I think most of Featherston showed up and seemed to have a wonderful time.”

Member of the Martinborough Community Board Angela Brown said there was a last-minute registration of floats, which was “fantastic”.

“It was a microcosm of everything that’s Martinborough,” Brown said.

“It was free, so there were no financial restrictions and a range of people took part, from playcentre kids to seniors on their mobility scooters.”

The weather took a turn for the worse on Sunday, and those organising Carterton’s Christmas Parade had to pivot after strong winds and rainfall hit.

At about 2pm, coordinator Rod O’Leary said they made a judgment call that the gales were too dangerous and called the parade off.

“We didn’t want to risk having kids out there, it was just too wild.”

However, Carterton refused to let the day be ruined as hundreds of people flocked to A Very Carterton Christmas held inside the Carterton Events Centre, instead of Carrington Park.

Organiser Lou Newman said plan B was always there, just in case.

“We didn’t want to risk people sitting on wet grass or the wind warning getting too much,” Newman said.

“People always want to know what will happen with the weather, and there are funding aspects to consider, so we always had the security of having a backup plan.”

Bella Cleary
Bella Cleary
Bella Cleary is a reporter at the Wairarapa Times-Age, originally hailing from Wellington. She is interested in social issues and writes about the local arts and culture scene.

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