Festivals and special events:
The summer Festival season kicks off with Devonstock Music Festival, on 9 December at Windsor Reserve on the Devonport waterfront. A showcase for an amazing array of talented young musicians, organised by local teenagers from Devonport Youth Forum to showcase the music of young artists like SKILAA, Munkhouse, Daffodils, Gretel, Masonic Silk, and Ben Glandfield. A free, all-ages local music and summer sun experience with food and craft stalls. Smoke-free and alcohol-free.
<< pic of Devonstock>>
There’s no need to welcome in 2019 on your own. On the Shore, herald in New Year’s Eve at Highlife NYE at The Wharf at Northcote Point; alternatively take a cruise on the harbour; pick a picnic vantage point from which to watch the inevitable fireworks.; or join the crowds at pubs and bars anywhere around town.
Once we’re into 2019, don’t miss the Takapuna Beach Summer Days Festival takes place at Takapuna Beach on 19 January from 11am-7pm. Something for everyone, with family entertainment including stage shows, circus and theatre workshops, face painting, a giant slide, and a beach dig. From 3pm till 7pm, jam with local artists. Bring a picnic or try any of the local restaurants around Taka or food trucks on site.
<<Takapuna Beach Summer Days Festival pic>>
The Takapuna Food & Wine Festival takes place at Smales Farm in Taharoto Rd, Takapuna on Saturday 16 February. This one-day festival (11.30am-8pm) captured the crowd last year, and this year offers another collaboration of some of the best international and local acts, New Zealand wineries and craft breweries, popular eateries and food vendors, creative artists, spectacular performers and more. The publicity promises “an occasion that delivers an offering, vibe and atmosphere like no other!” Music comes from acts that include Sneaky Sound System, Tiki Taane, Automatic 80s, Nathan Haines, Swamp Thing, The Buskers, DJ Reminise, Karn Hall, Grant Marshall, Bobby Brazuka, Murry Sweetpants and more. All of which can be enjoyed as you sample wine, beer or bubbly from top local and national wineries and craft breweries, and food that ranges from pizzas and poke, to barbecues, fries, tacos and gelato.
<<Takapuna Food & Wine Festival pic>>
Auckland Council offers the opportunity to make the most of summer and the opportunity to explore Auckland’s beautiful parks with family and friends thanks to the 2019 series of free Music and Movies in Parks. There are just two Music in Parks events north of the harbour bridge: Kids Music in Parks at Birkenhead War Memorial Park on Saturday 3 March, and Summer Beats at the Beach on Saturday 9 March at Manly Park in Whangaparaoa. You’ve more chance of seeing a movie in one of North Shore’s parks, which start later in the summer, from Peter Rabbit at Narrow Neck on 16 March, to Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, at Rosedale Park in Albany and others at Milford and Mairangi Bay. Details of all event across Auckland are at www.musicinparks.co.nz or www.moviesinparks.co.nz.
<<Music/Movies in Park pic>>
Community Christmas Carols, The PumpHouse Amphitheatre, Saturday 15 December, 5-6.30pm
Bring your voices to a fun family evening of traditional carols and choral singing which was hugely popular last year. The PumpHouse Community Choir and North Shore Chorale perform everyone’s favourite Christmas songs and carols which the audience can sing along to. Don’t worry if you don’t know the words – you’ll be given a songbook to sing from. Tickets $5.
<<PumpHouse community Carols Pic>>
Shoreside Theatre presents genuine Shakespeare in Auckland Shakespeare in the Park from 20 January to 17 February. This twenty-third consecutive summer Shakespeare season promises to deliver the usual much-anticipated mix of entertainment and drama. With alternating performances in the PumpHouse Amphitheatre you have the choice of a great history play (Henry V) or his best comedy (Twelfth Night) – or you can attend both with special discounts when you book both at the same time.
<<Auckland Shakespeare in the Park pic>>
Sports & fitness
Pascoes New Zealand Tennis Championships take place at Albany Tennis Park in Oteha Valley Road in Albany, from 11-16 December. New Zealand's best tennis players hit the court, competing for national titles and a wildcard into the ASB Classic international tournament.
<<NZ tennis champs pic>>
Sit back and relax to the thwack of ball on willow at the North Shore Cricket Club’s 2019 Junior World Cricket Series takes place from 21-23 January. This is an exciting opportunity for budding young cricket stars to play under the flag of a national team in three days of intense competition. There are no selection criteria, except first in, best dressed. Cricketers of all abilities can take part - so anyone can play and get a chance to star. Players get selected into teams to represent the major cricketing countries of the world, and games are played on grounds around the Devonport/Belmont area. More info at http://www.northshorecricket.co.nz/juniorworldseries.php.
<<Junior World Series Cricket pic>>
If you want to get the body in shape for summer, don’t forget Les Mills’ free Outdoor Body Balance classes every Sunday morning at the Takapuna Northern beach reserve at 10am. They take a break from 23 December until 13 January, but otherwise, just turn up and take part.
Also on Takapuna Beach is the all-ages Takapuna Beach Series - beach run, coastal run, stand-up paddle and ocean swim series on Tuesdays from 5pm. Register for the season, or enter on a week by week basis. In Devonport, check out the Wednesday night Jets runs. Or if you’re an early riser, head to Albany Lakes Civic Park for the once-a-month Albany Lakes Summer Series; adults start at 8am, kids start at 9.30am .
School Holiday programmes:
Aside from its comprehensive pre-Christmas theatre programming, The PumpHouse Theatre offers several school holiday options: A Shakespeare Sampler, from 9-11 January; Happily Ever After? From 14-18 January and Around the World In (Less Than) 80 Tales, from 21-25 January. Details of all programmes are on the PumpHouse website: www.pumphouse.co.nz.
From 14 - 25 January 2019, from 10am - 3pm Lake House Arts has a comprehensive professional development and Kids’ Art holiday programmes. Read details later in this magazine, or at www.lakehousearts.org.nz.
Mairangi Arts Centre runs a kids’ School Holiday Programme from 10am-3pm daily from the 14th-25th January. The summer art programme offers a range of art classes that are fun for kids yet at the same time enable them to pick up valuable art skills. To view details and book online, visit www.mairangiarts.co.nz.
<<Mairangi arts pic>>
Whether your thing is arts, sport, theatre, or simply getting out into the outdoors on the many walkways and cycleways, the Shore has plenty to offer. Enjoy summer and make the most of it.