The countdown is on! Only a few more sleeps until Mangawhai welcomes the magic of Christmas with the areas annual street parade starring a vast range of tinsel-clad floats, quirky characters and of course, the big jolly man in the famous red suit.
The December 13 event will be Mangawhai Activity Zone’s (MAZ) third Christmas parade, the 30-plus float procession kicking off from Sellars Reserve at 10am and following what is now the traditional route, along Wood Street shopping centre before heading down Molesworth towards MAZ.
Floats will be judged by Kaipara mayor Dr Jason Smith who will have a helping hand this year from new Northland MP, Willow-Jean Prime, and Santa will be doing what he does best, bringing a smile to every child.
Coordinator for the popular street carnival, and personal friend of Santa, head elf John Phillis says his boss is looking forward to meeting all the wonderful local kids.
“This is the third time Santa has made a special trip to Mangawhai, and he’ll be available to have his photo taken so the children can remember his visit,” he says. “He also has a free gift for every kid who comes and says hello and thanks him for travelling from his home so far away in the North Pole.”
Sponsored by Bayleys Mangawhai and supported by Mangawhai Business Association, the Santa parade has grown in popularity and Phillis says they are expecting over 400 children to visit Santa this year.
Following the parade, the festive magic continues at MAZ with Mangawhai’s second ‘Christmas Concert and Carols’, scheduled for later in the evening from 4pm to 7pm. The multi-talented lineup includes Mangawhai Beach School kapa haka, ‘Santa’s little helpers’ with Maura and Peter Flower, Mangawhai Choral Singers, Dirty Happies Reggae Band, Totally Uked, Hakaru Jam and internationally recognised jazz player Nanny Assis performing with New Zealand’s own jazz star singer and Mangawhai local, Maggie Gould. Co-owner of Mangawhai Karaoke, John Bell, will be MC of the event.
“The concert will feature some of the best local musical talent, with a range of performances and Christmas melodies, and will end with an hour of sensational jazz,” he says. “In between each act there will also be a chance for the audience to have a sing-a-long to your favourite carols.”
MAZ would like to thank local business Limited Scaffolding’s Matt Wilson and Warkworth company Shrink Clads director Sam McDonagh for kindly assembling and shrink wrapping the sound stage free of charge.
Some of the Christmas magic from last year’s event which will once again flow through Mangawhai’s streets come December 13. PHOTO/FILE