Friday, 24 May 2013

BLUESKIN ENERGY PROJECT

by Scott Willis

Wind monitoring on Porteous Hill is helping build up a rich picture of the generation potential for the Blueskin wind cluster project. This year has started out with moderately low wind and our measurements are now helping us to better understand the risk profile of the project. As electricity generated from any wind cluster will have to be sold into the market, and a wind cluster needs important capital investment in order to be built, it is important to know what the chances of low wind are and how low wind will affect income. We now have two complete months of data from the 30-metre tower. The proposed wind cluster development is not a short-term project. In fact, wind development has much in common with forestry development, with renewal (new or repowered turbines) every 20 years or so (like replanting trees in a forestry block). This means that costs and benefits are viewed over a long period and the first in-depth analysis of wind potential at Porteous is still some months away.

Preparatory work on the resource consent application has begun. The process for a resource consent is: professional appraisal of any effects (positive or negative) of the proposed project, and meetings with nearest landowners; preparation of an application for submission to the Dunedin City Council; preliminary appraisal and (usually) public notification so that people can make submissions in support or opposing the proposed project.  After a standard period a council hearing is held with the applicant and other submitters speaking, then the resource consents committee makes its decision. That's the formal bit.

To date however, we've sought community input on a whole range of non-Resource-Management-Act issues, such as concept, investment, and governance, to ensure wide participation and to be sure there's a strong community mandate for the project. Open days, surveys and fundraising all show exceptionally strong community support. However, it is important that we hear from anyone who hasn't felt heard so far, because we need to have as much participation as possible. Please get in touch, we love to get opinion, ideas and more people involved!

The solar project has also been progressed and the Blueskin Resilient Communities Trust has just produced and emailed out a pamphlet setting out the simple solar options for people interested in installing solar electricity (solar PV) or solar hot water (solar thermal). It is exciting to see solar installations already appearing in Blueskin, and to have a range of options that just make the solar choice simple. Funding options are also detailed, and these are not limited to solar but to a range of small scale generation and eco-home options.

Visit us at: www.blueskinpower.co.nz, or at the office at 1121 Mt Cargill Rd, Waitati. Telephone enquiries can be made on 482 2048 (the wind cluster) and for any information about the solar project email solar@blueskinpower.co.nz.

BLUESKIN RESILIENT COMMUNITIES TRUST

by Scott Willis

The Blueskin Resilient Communities Trust has a number of projects on the go, from the Blueskin wind cluster, energy advice, the solar project and climate change planning. Three people are employed by the trust, and a whole host of people volunteer time and energy as well, to make even more things happen. Our community office is in the old dental clinic at Waitati School and we enjoy the small spy team who keep a sharp eye on us through the back window during playtime.

Our annual general meeting will be held on 31 May – although it's been a mere six months or so since our last AGM. The reason for such a short gap is that we are rationalising trust systems to clearly align our financial year with our reporting year to keep everything tidy and organised. This rationalisation will help ensure that we work with even greater efficiency and improve productivity.

Visit us at at the office at 1121 Mt Cargill Rd, Waitati or on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Blueskin-Resilient-Communities-Trust/180367402010248). Telephone us on 482 2048.

WARRINGTON PLAYCENTRE

by Lisa Hall

Hello again everyone!

Well after today's soggy fun outside it is definitely feeling autumnal … however, there are some very cool things about the weather getting cooler.

Firstly, leaves.  Lots of lovely leaves.  Golden, red, brown, yellow, pink sometimes too and always the BEST things to pile up, jump around in and just generally chuck about.  On our recent outing to the Truby King Reserve lots of this lovely fun-ness was going on.  You could say some went a bit nuts – chestnuts and acorns and walnuts that is!  We really do start to feel squirrel-like when collecting these wee treasures, playing conkers and hunting for apples, pears, crab-apples, Chilean guavas and the late strawberries that are around.

Secondly, the Blueskin-on-Show Day.  We had a fantastic time at the show – hope you had a go at "Playcentre your cards right' with Tim or had a crack at wiping out Darth Vader with water balloons.  Rhys did a fab job of creating Darth, and a solid effort by a hard-core water-balloon filling team saw a really successful and enjoyable day – and the fight against the Dark side continues to be strong amongst our youth.

Sadly, we have had to say farewell to some of our Playcentre family recently.  Tim, Miwa and Ayano flew away to more tropical climates but have promised guest appearances when they pop back for visits, so it is more of a 'see you again'.  Our lovely Alexis has graduated and is heading off to school now that he is a worldly five-year-old – we miss you, Lexi, your dress-ups and your friendship.  

We have been very excited to welcome Matthew who is really enjoying his new space and friends; and a welcome to Kamahi, Nikau's very new sister.  'Happy birthday' also goes out to the beautiful Leilani – best of birthday wishes to you!

Sport Otago are coming to Warrington Playcentre to share Active Movement activities with us and other local playcentres.  It should be great to grab some new ideas for the winter months ahead.

Matariki is quickly approaching and we look forward to making our lanterns for the march to Warrington School.  Come and join us on 10 June.

If you are around and feel like some company, fun, friends and lots of lovely learning come and join us on Wednesday and Friday mornings, 9:15am to 12:15pm.  We'd love to see you.

Ph 027 227 7329

 

OROKONUI ECOSANCTUARY

by Sue Hensley

Over the last few months a lot of predator monitoring and trapping has been going on. No mammals were detected within the sanctuary other than mice but they were at very low levels and in just two main locations. One hundred and thirty six kill traps were set and nothing caught. Probably the recent upgrade of five of the worst culverts has contributed to this great result. It is interesting to compare this with the external traps set just outside the fence over the same period, which caught 30 mice, 11 rats, 5 stoats, 5 rabbits, 9 hedgehogs, and 10 weasels.

Trapping outside the fence relieves the pressure of predators on the fence and lets Orokonui know which pests and what sort of numbers are out there. A pest control workshop for communities is planned for the end of the year.

Paku the female takahe that arrived from Kapiti Island in mid-May seems to be settling down. She was brought in as a companion for Orokonui's lone male Quammen. Takahe can be very aggressive towards another coming into their territory but the early signs from these two are positive and they are showing some interest in and communicating with each other as well as eating together from the same hopper. As this goes to print they will hopefully be free-ranging in the upper grasslands.

A fundraising concert with Delgirl will be held on 1 June. Matariki at the end of June promises lots of interesting events featuring a concert by Richard Nunns and Paddy Free and cooking with Fleur. These and other Matariki activities can be found on www.orokonui.org.nz or on our Facebook page. The Visitor Centre is open daily 9:30–4:30pm, the Café 10:00--4:00pm.

PURAKAUNUI SCHOOL

by Bridget Davidson

We finished last term with a wonderful day in Port Chalmers. We had a tour of the port and a great talk from Ian Church, local historian. We were lucky to have Peter Cole to show us around the museum and the town, including the Art Park, Rhododendron Dell and cemetery.  It was a blustery day, so thanks to the library for letting us have lunch inside. Thanks to everyone who made this day really successful.

We had our usual end-of-term assembly which showcased the students' writing and study of Port Chalmers. We are now back after a well-earned holiday, and this term we are studying weather. It is a good time of the year to be looking at this with great variation in what each day brings. We are including a trip to the Otago Museum shortly and will look at many aspects of climate in this topic.

The popular football and winter sports season is upon us but we are still managing to get out and do a range of fitness activities, including our Friday walks. Planning and fundraising are also under way for our end-of-year whole school camp to Mount Cook, following on our outdoor education theme from last year's very successful camp at Long Beach.  Grateful thanks also to the Bendigo Valley Sports and Charity Foundation for providing funding for the school swimming programme.  

One of our strategic goals is for the school to become carbon-neutral and we are a step closer to this with the installation of double-glazing in the library.  We have plans in place for solar heating and other carbon-reducing initiatives, all of which the children have been involved in studying and formulating.

Our pre-school group, Little Cockles, is up and running and we welcome all pre-schoolers to join us –  telephone the school on 482 1026 for more details.

A LIBRARY FOR THE FUTURE

By Stuart Strachan

Now that our fine new library redevelopment is finally open, it is timely to reflect on what the library means for our community.

Blueskin Bay has had a library in some form or other since 1867. Along with the store, two schools and St Barnabas church, it is one of our most enduring institutions, surviving the demise of two hotels, at least four churches, two railway stations, the police station, the post office, the Evansdale store, and the Orokonui hospital. Its 150th anniversary will come in 2017.

All communities, if they are to thrive, need both continuity and change. Change we have had aplenty, but for the Blueskin Bay community to continue in good heart, some solid timber from the past needs to be preserved and cherished, as well as new institutions developed. A well-founded library is an exceptionally good indicator of community well-being, and is all the more important in a digital age that can just as easily isolate as unite.

Dunedin's libraries are amongst its best-loved amenities, outstripping museums and even the botanic gardens in popularity.

Though always highly valued, Blueskin Bay's was easily the smallest and had begun to fall behind modern expectations. Uncomfortably, even grossly, cramped, it was no longer possible for the 1992 library, despite the best efforts of staff, to be much more than a place to select and borrow books, and then quickly leave.

These days, libraries are expected to be so much more – social spaces, information exchanges, centres of learning, and places where print and technology can interact creatively. The new library, almost three times the size of the old and with an enlarged stock of over 8,000 items, will allow just that. It will become what it should be, a place to browse and linger, gather new information, experiment with technology, and allow new activities – in short, a place for all: parents with infants, school children, retirees, beneficiaries, as well as those in paid employment.

About 140 attended the grand opening on Saturday, 4 May and, from the excitement, most share this view, looking forward to a much better library experience. If any should doubt this, they need only look to the enlivening effect the new Waikouaiti and Port Chalmers libraries had on their communities, or on a bigger scale the new Information Services Centre at the University of Otago.

To have left the Blueskin Bay Library as it was, adequate though it seemed to some, would in the long-term have condemned it to slow decline, even irrelevance. Redeveloped as part of a larger community space it is now far better placed to meet community expectations for many years to come. If the delighted response of the young children on Saturday, immediately settling down on cushions with books, is any gauge, the library is now well on the way to fulfilling its role as a principal, vibrant hub of a growing community. We are most fortunate to have it.


Obituary: ‘The Bishop of Blueskin’

By Amanda Morrison

It is with sadness we note the passing of one of Waitati's village elders, the Reverend Arthur John Templeton, aged 97.

Arthur lived in Blueskin Bay for 37 years. He was a loved husband and father, a scholar , a woodcarver and a church minister.

Born at Addington Nursing Home in Christchurch, he was the eldest child of four. He attended St. Albans School and Christchurch Boys High School. In 1932, at age 16, he began working in the family bakehouse Templeton Pastrycooks. By age 19 he was accredited as a local preacher for the Edgeware Rd Methodist Church. In 1939 he attended Canterbury University studying Philosophy and Education. By this stage he was keeping company with Robina McLeod (his future wife) who had been working in the bakery for three years.

Arthur then attended Glenleith Theological College in Dunedin and continued his studies at Otago University. He graduated as a minister in 1942 and was a student preacher in Kaitangita. Working as a trucker in the coal mines during the holidays, he became engaged to Robina (who was still in Christchurch). They were married at St Albans Church of Christ in January 1943. He had short ministries at Ashburton, Greymouth and Christchurch.

Their daughter Tricia was born in 1946 whilst in Greymouth. When she was three they moved to Wanganui where Arthur was the minister at Wanganui Church of Christ for nearly seven years. During this time he was presented to the Queen and royal party on NZ tour as President of the Ministers' Association. In the same year, 1953, he was involved in the Tangiwhai rail disaster, helping identify some of the 151 bodies and counselling the families.

At 38 Arthur joined the eighth intake of the Hawkes Bay regiment for compulsory military training. He was stationed at Waiouru as chaplain. In 1955 he became chaplain of the Wellington West Coast Taranaki regiment. He eventually became honorary Lieutenant Colonel on the Dominion Chaplains' Council.

Arthur obtained his BA in 1949 and an MA in 1953. In 1956, aged 40, he was appointed Theology lecturer at Glenleith Bible College (until 1968) and minister at North East Valley Church Dunedin, his longest ministry where he served for 35 years.

During the 1970s Arthur gained a certificate in social work. For six years he was a medical social worker for the Otago Hospital Board, working mainly in cardiology, cardiac surgery and rheumatology.

In 1975, Arthur travelled overseas with the Leprosy Mission to Indonesia and to an International Leprosy Mission conference in London. This was the year he purchased his home in Waitati, at 2 Orokonui Rd.

Arthur's late wife Robina, or 'Ina' as she was known, was an artist and a tutor producing some 5000 paintings, mainly miniatures of New Zealand scenes. Friends helped them build Artina Gallery in an old bowling green teahouse on their property. 'Art 'was Ina's nickname for Arthur so it was a clever combination of both their names. He was also a creative man, pursuing carving and woodwork as a hobby, putting his skills to good use framing his wife's and her students' paintings.

Arthur took samples of her work whenever he went to meetings around the country, promoting and supporting her artistic endeavours. They were a great team and had 55 happy years of marriage.

In 1980 Arthur retired as a social worker but continued as voluntary minister for NEV until 1991. He also became 'stated supply' as Blueskin Union Parish minister (Waitati and Warrington) in 1985 until he was 85, retiring in 2000. Along with his ministries he was a member of various ministers associations; Medical Aid Abroad, McMillian Trust, CORSO, Leprosy Mission both local and national, Churches Education Commission local and national, National Council of Churches and Joint Regional Council on University Chaplaincy Committee (Otago /Southland Tertiary Chaplaincy Trust ).

For his work and his ministry, Arthur received the Queens Service Medal in 1996, at age 80. He was immensely proud of this honour. It represented the years and countless hours of work, thought, discussion and involvement he had with so many groups over the years.

A lover of words, Arthur read and studied all his life. He loved books and enjoyed poetry. A regular at bookstores and the library, he studied astronomy, reading about the universe and stars in general. He always had several books on the go at once. His inquiring mind led to a recent fascination with nano-technology. Always willing to learn, he was a student of life.

A community minded, liberal, generous and patient man, Arthur saw the good in everybody and had a warm heart. He knew the value of friendship is acceptance, regardless of age and gender. A true gentleman in every sense of the word, he will be much missed.

 

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Notice: WARRINGTON HALL

by Lyn Hastie
Warrington Hall is located beside the mail boxes in Stephenson Street.  The hall has been recently upgraded; it has a lovely new floor surface, a modern kitchen and is well presented both inside and out.  We have purchased new matching crockery and cutlery, there is a fridge/freezer, stove, microwave, pie warmer and large Zip water heater.  The hall is easily heated, a great place to hold a get-together and is wheelchair friendly.  If you have a birthday coming up (child or adult), wedding, family gathering or would like to do exercise or crafts then the hall is available to you for hire. For a look around or to make a booking please phone one of the following committee members -- Rowena Park 482 2667, Ruth Porteous 482 2849 or Lyn Hastie 482 2896.

WAIKOUAITI COAST COMMUNITY BOARD

by Gerard Collings, Chair

Blueskin Bay Library.  The official opening of the Blueskin Bay Library extension was held on 4 May.  It was great to see so many locals and supporters at the opening.  It was a time of tribute to those who got behind the project: those in the funding committee, city councillors, funding organisations, and those who contributed their time and money, too many to list here.

I would like to express thanks both personally and on behalf of the Waikouaiti Coast Community Board to Alasdair Morrison for his tireless efforts in driving this project through to a successful end.  Alasdair has shown a dogged commitment over the last six years to this project.  He is the first to acknowledge and praise the efforts of those that have assisted along the way.  The Blueskin community now have a facility to be proud of, a facility that will serve it well into the future.  Alasdair, thank you.

Carey's Creek bridge remedial work.  Work has commenced on the necessary remedial and strengthening work on the Carey's Creek bridge, Coast Road. The work is likely to continue through to late July or August. 

Dunedin City Council Annual Plan.  The board has yet to receive a response to its submission on the draft Annual Plan. I expect to be in a position to update you on the DCC's response in the next newsletter.

Waikouaiti Amateur Musical and Theatrical Society.  I have just had the pleasure of being thoroughly entertained at the opening night of this year's show by the Waikouaiti Amateur Musical and Theatrical Society at the East Otago Events Centre.  It is particularly pleasing to see the participation of so many members of our community from Waitati through to Palmerston. The show is a credit to the organisers, production team, and cast.  

DCC documents.  Copies of DCC documents out for consultation are available from the council's office and through its website http://www.dunedin.govt.nz/council-online/currently-consulting-on

WCCB meetings.  The Waikouaiti Coast Community Board's next meeting is at 5.30pm on 29 May at the Warrington Surf Club.  The following meeting will be at 5.30pm on 3 July in the Karitane Hall.

Members of the public are welcome to speak at the board's public forum, however those wishing to do so need to advise Wendy Collard, our Governance Support Officer (phone 474 3374), before 12 noon on the day prior to the meeting.  Remember, you can view the board's meeting agendas, reports and minutes at either the Waikouaiti or Blueskin libraries or through the DCC's website at http://www.dunedin.govt.nz/your-council/council-minutes

Members of the board are only too happy to hear (by phone or email) from members of the community about any issues within our area.

 

Board Contacts

Home

Work

Mobile

email

The Board

 

 

 

wccb.public@dcc.govt.nz

Gerard Collings (Chairperson),

4657604

4707494

0274848800

gerard.collings@xtra.co.nz

Alasdair Morrison (Deputy),

4822505

4822505

0274354384

info@calmarine.co.nz

Andy Barratt,

021890048

 

021890048

asbarratt@farmside.co.nz

Andrew Noone

4657157

 

0274301727

anoone@dcc.govt.nz

Geraldine Tait,

4822517

 

0212175492

gstait@clear.net.nz

Les Pullar,

4658138

 

0274358020

lesgwen.pullar@xtra.co.nz

Mark Brown,

4822833

 

 

 


WAITATI VOLUNTEER FIRE BRIGADE

by Deanne Burrell
Safe heating.  Winter is now upon us and brings the need to stoke up our fires at night to keep warm.  Please remember that ashes can take up to five days to cool.  Ashes need to be placed in a metal container, well clear of your home.  If you are using a heater to heat your home, remember the heater-metre rule – keep yourself and your children, furniture, clothes and curtains at least one metre away from heaters and fire-places.
Safer winter driving.  With winter also come wet and icy roadsDrive slower than you normally would – it takes only a split second to lose control in wet or icy conditions.  Avoid sudden braking or turning movements that could cause you to skid.  Accelerate smoothly, brake gently, and use your highest gear when travelling uphill and your lowest downhill.  For vehicles without anti-skid braking systems, pump the brake pedal in short rapid bursts rather than pressing long and hard to avoid skidding or sliding.  Drive at a safe travelling distance because it takes longer to stop on slippery roads.  In winter, especially in poor weather, double the two-second rule and leave a safe distance between you and the car you're following.  When travelling in fog, rain or snow, drive with your lights on and dipped for increased safety.

Some people believe they are safer in a 4WD. However, in winter conditions these vehicles are no better than any others. You still need to drive to the conditions.
WAITATI FIRE BRIGADE SMOKE ALARM PROMO
SMOKE ALARMS SAVE LIVES.  ARE YOURS WORKING?
It would seem from the response to our promo last month that most of Blueskin Bay houses have smoke alarms fitted and working.  This is fantastic; we have 100% coverage in our area with smoke alarms in houses.  If by any chance you fall outside of that 100% we extend the offer to install smoke alarms or look at your existing ones for a check.
Please contact Paul Clements on 482 2640 or the Waitati Fire Station 482 2668 (Monday evenings) if you require further information or would like to take up our offer.

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Blueskin Garden Club

After a few years' absence, club members were back with tents, displays and competitions at Blueskin on Show Day on Saturday 13 April.

The day was perfect and we were very pleased with the numbers of entries received.

Firstly, the Spud in a Container Competition – in early December there were spuds available for purchase and growing from Blueskin Nurseries. Fifty-seven were purchased and taken home to be grown and nurtured. Forty were brought along for weighing-in. Results were many and varied. The joint heaviest spud winners were Emily Clements and Murray Hastie, with Susan Hellyer third. The heaviest crop: first, Murray Hastie; second, Eunice Hoogsteden; third, Mike Fitzgerald.

A big thank you to the staff at Blueskin Nurseries for stocking the spuds and especially to Mark Brown. We hope to repeat this again for next year's show so look out for info later in the year.

Scarecrow making was very popular and it was great to use up all sorts of pre-loved clothes, shoes, wigs etc. The results will look pretty impressive in local gardens.

Our plant stall was also popular with bargains galore. The ODT marquee was a very busy spot. We had a total of 246 entries which included flowers, eggs, baking, vegetables and baskets, pickles and jams, fruit and, of course, the specialty section which attracted 36 entries – five biggest roots, 18 longest beans, eight fattest rhubarb stalks and five character carrots. A big thank you to everyone who took the time to bring along their goods. We hope to continue taking part in the show in years to come. Thank you to the hard working A&P Committee members for organising such a great community day.

April saw 20 of us at the Carey's Bay Hotel dressed in jeans and bling. The "diamonds" were all on display as well as lots of colour and sparkles. Over a meal and drinks we held our AGM, a game to name 60 plants and voted for the best dressed member.

The committee met recently and has lots of ideas for the coming season. June's meeting will be held on Thursday 13, 7pm at the Blueskin Cafe. Sally Brown will be the speaker and will talk about her landscaping jobs and gardening philosophy. Please reply to Daphne's email or phone her on 482 2428 so we can give the cafe an idea of numbers.

Our club was 20 years old on April 1 this year. To celebrate, we intend to have a good old get together for past and present members. On Saturday October 12 we will host a lunch at the Warrington Hall (which is where the first meeting was held). We hope lots of you will come along and catch up with old friends and reminisce about past meetings, outings, workshops etc. We will be sending out invites to those we can track down but if you would like to attend please let us know asap. So far we have a list of about 100 former members as well as about 22 deceased. Notices will be put in the ODT and Blueskin news regularly until closer to the event's date. If you have photos of past garden club events we would love to have them to copy so we can put up a display. Please contact Daphne 482 2428 or Lyn 482 2896 for further information.

Anyone interested in joining us is welcome to come along to our next meeting in June at the café.

Monday, 20 May 2013

WAITATI OPEN ORCHARDS: A Growing Branch of the Waitati Edible Gardeners' Group

by Hilary Rowley

Winter is here at last and our garden, for one, is packed up and put to bed for a couple of months. The only fruits still in action are the tomatoes in the glasshouse, and the myrtus ugnii -- actually, the birds may have got those as I haven't slid down to that part of the garden for a couple of weeks. I expect the ones at the skateboard area will be fruiting so get down there for a nibble, and pull some weeds while you are there.

It's planting season for fruit trees. Try and select varieties that suit this area but there is no harm, except a loss of money, in trying to push the boundaries to see if anything more challenged by your environment will grow. Gullies, basins and the flat are frostier, so plant hardy fruits there. Apples, pears, quinces and plums can handle frost better. Wind is bad for fruit trees, so shelter from the prevailing wind is a good idea. We suffer from the north and north-easterly winds in summer, and there isn't much we can do about it on a north-facing slope. The southerly would be the meanest wind locally, so do try to get a wall, a shelter belt, a hedge or a hill between your fruit and it.
 
Ask the advice of plant nursery people; ask the advice of your local gardeners' club; ask the advice of people who have lived in the area for a long time. Local botanical knowledge is so easily lost as it is stored in people's heads but really useful knowledge, like the varieties which do particularly well here and the location of amazingly prolific trees for cuttings, can be gleaned over a cup of tea and a biscuit. I have a few garden diaries my father kept of his planting times and successful vegetable varieties to be grown at Chatto Creek; not much use here, but there will be such knowledge stored in the diaries or heads of Blueskin Bay locals. I can see a university research project coming on for someone.
 
Happy knowledge hunting and tree planting.

Saturday, 18 May 2013

WAITATI SCHOOL: Do we need a school library?

by Heidi Hayward

Term Two has kicked off happily at Waitati School and we continue to make healthy progress with our roll. We're very close to enrolling our 51st child, which will move us back to a 'U2 status' (51-100 children) and allow us staffing of three teachers. While the Ministry of Education will not guarantee this for longer than 2013, the ministry will allow our Board of Trustees some financial support with staffing for the remainder of the year and we very much look forward to this.

Meanwhile, we are busy rearranging the school now that the Blueskin Library has relocated to Harvey Street. We were sad to see them go; it's been lovely to host Louise and her team while the library was redeveloped.  However, we are very much looking forward to using the vacated building, which is really a top-rate facility.

We are in the very enviable position to be located in such close proximity to a public library -- I can't think of another school in Dunedin that has such easy access. This has really got us thinking about the purpose and efficiency of our school library. Schools have traditionally had a library as the main source of non-fiction information, and so that children have ready access to fiction for pleasure. Of course, we have now entered a new age of information and non-fiction books have largely been surpassed by the internet. In schools especially it requires a decent budget to keep an up-to-date collection of non-fiction books and the internet is usually the first port of call.

Furthermore, a good library requires good resourcing in terms of both staff and budget, and schools always struggle to maintain libraries for this reason. In most cases, the school library is maintained because it provides the only access for many children to a library but after three years working with the fabulous Blueskin Library I see that this is not the case for us. Our children have the opportunity to use a real library, with all the benefits that come from proper funding and staffing, from age five.

We have, therefore, approached the Dunedin Public Library with an offer to gift a significant proportion of our collection to the Blueskin Library and use the Blueskin Library as our school library. The collection we have far exceeds the size of the school. Most of the books gather dust. By gifting to the Blueskin Library, all of the children in Blueskin Bay would have access to the books.

Also, children at Waitati School will get the experience of using a real library. School libraries are frustrating because we have no proper search mechanism. We see there is much better learning for children to get to know and understand how a real library works. We plan to maintain a multi-purpose break-out space in place of our school library, part of which will be dedicated to reading -- an activity that children at Waitati School relish.

We hope you'll consider joining us for our Matariki Celebrations on 13 June. We'll again hold a lantern parade followed by an optional hangi (available for purchase by pre-order) and some story telling. Everyone is welcome -- the more the merrier! The evening kicks off at 5pm and will finish about 7pm. 

Raffle winner!

by Liz Abbott

Thanks to everyone who visited the Liz Abbott caravan at the Blueskin Show -- it was a great day and a fantastic community turnout.

Congratulations to Worik for winning the ear-shaped macrocarpa platter board. The raffle raised $132 for the Southern Hearing Trust which supports the Southern Cochlear Implant Programme.

If you are interested in buying our work locally you can phone 027-781 1799 to arrange a time to view our prints, paintings, deckchairs, platter boards and platter boards.

You'll also find us at the Warrington Market which starts up again on Sunday 1 September on the fabulous new courts in the grounds of Warrington School. This unique market is short and sweet, running from 11am to 1pm on the first Sunday of the month.  Stalls are still free, phone 027-781 1799.

OROKONUI ECOSANCTUARY: Matariki events

by Tania Turei

This year the Orokonui Ecosanctuary has some diverse events for Matariki that we hope you'll enjoy.

Richard Nunns and Paddy Free of electronic duo Pitch Black perform their album Karekare which demonstrates a subtle collaboration of taonga puoro with the genius of Paddy Free's electronic manipulations. Richard and Paddy have kindly donated their time and talent to Orokonui which is an amazing gift. This is a fantastic opportunity to hear two of New Zealand's best performers in intimate surroundings. We will ensure a great quality of sound this year.

Due to the popularity of last year's Star Tour with Kane Holmes (Waitaha) we will be running two of these evening tours again. This is a wonderful event at a great price.

This year's children's Plant a Star workshop run by Tahu McKenzie will focus on collecting and planting native seeds. We will look after the little seedlings and in a year's time the children will be able to plant them in a special spot in our sanctuary. This will be followed by Matariki.

Fleur Sullivan has kindly agreed to come back for another wild foods cooking demonstration. This one will take place in the evening and includes a glass of wine and food tasting. Be quick -- there are only 30 spots.

We also have The Explorers Club Antarctica with a talk on Shackleton by renowned author Neville Peat. Inspired by the incredible stories of Captain Scott and Sir Ernest Shackleton, songwriter Sam Prebble has recruited a band of seasoned folk musicians from the Auckland underground and produced a series of stirring vignettes drawn from the diaries and letters of these stalwart adventurers.  Tales of shipwreck, frostbite, and stiff-upper-lip survival in the snow are presented in a combination of spoken-word storytelling and original folk songs.  Performances range from ethereal to foot-stomping; arrangements run the gamut from delicate vocal harmonies to dramatic percussive explosions.