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Disability access a focus for the Endless Summer Festival


Whangarei’s Endless Summer Festival offers 109 great events listed in the Endless Summer Festival booklet, out now and available from Forum North, Toll Stadium, the Hub and the Isite.  

Happening across the Whangarei District from January – Easter, and with some of the events being held on multiple days, this equates to 439 days of events in Whangarei over summer!,” said Venues and Events  Whangarei Marketing and Events Manager Rachel O’Gorman.

“Not only do we have more events, but this year a real effort has been made for as many events as possible to be accessible to everyone. Last year I attended a Whangarei District Council Disability Advisory Group meeting to find out how we can better assist the sector when it comes to events and providing information about them.

“The group said providing accessibility information when an event was being publicised meant people could see what facilities would be available, rather than taking a chance, turning up and being disappointed. Knowing about accessibility in advance would be likely to encourage a greater range of people to select events they would really enjoy,” Mrs O’Gorman said.

“This year as part of the event registration process, event organisers were required to answer a few accessibility questions around whether their events have a designated viewing area, disabled car parks, wheelchair access, disabled toilets and sign language interpreters.

“There is a key at the front of the booklet and every event has the symbols to show whether or not the event has the accessible facilities. The information is also highlighted in each event on Facebook, Eventfinda and on our website.

“One of the events in the Endless Summer Festival has a sign language interpreter and we will work with the Deaf community and event organisers to see this increase over time. We have already booked one for the Christmas Festival 2015.”

Mrs O’Gorman said 35 of the Endless Summer events are free of charge, and many others are free for children or entry by koha or donation.

Events include the The Bridge to Basin series, Water Slide mania at the town basin, Art beat, Blues v Chiefs, Beach to Basin, Kids Triathlon, the White Plate dinner, Snorkling and Kayaking days, The Fritter Festival, Opera in the Garden, lots of art exhibitions.

Easter events includ the Waipu Easter Carnival, The Whangarei Head Arts Trail, Steampunk Sunday, Uku North Exhibition and Festival of Fibre.

People who attend the most events in the festival can earn prizes, just follow the checklist at the back of the booklet. The five people who attend the most events will win a double pass to the Whangarei Fritter Festival on 28 March.

To follow events go to the Endless Summer Festival Facebook page, Eventfinda, Whangarei.com What’s On, Venues and Events Whangarei website What’s On, listen to More FM, What’s On in the Leader or pick up a booklet from Forum North, Toll Stadium, the Hub or the Isite.