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Chch City Council finalises events funding

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Chch City Council finalises events funding

Supporting success, acknowledging sport's role in attracting visitors, and concentrating support are themes in this year $B!G (Js round of major festivals and events funding by the Christchurch City Council.

This week the council finalised its funding in this area for the coming year and will invest about $1.6m directly in support of 13 externally managed proposals and six which are run from within the council.

Festivals and events contribute strongly to the city's cultural, economic and social life. Surveys show spending on them has a strong multiplier effect economically, they attract visitors, contribute to the good impression people living in other parts of New Zealand have of the city and many are consistently mentioned in surveys of citizens when asked what they like about living in Christchurch.

Mayor Garry Moore says, "One thing which makes us feel really good about this city are the number of free events which we can attend as ratepayers. The mix of events produces entertainment for just about every sector of our community and I'm delighted that the council has continued its commitment to these community events."

The successful external events are the World Buskers Festival ($220,000, up $20,000), the NZ International Jazz Festival ($85,000, up $15,000), the Festival of Flowers ($100,000, down $20,000), Savour New Zealand ($45,000, up $15,000), The Body Festival of Physical Theatre and Dance ($20,000), Canterbury Fashion Week ($85,000), Christchurch Arts Festival ($152,000, up $39,000), SCAPE 2006 Biennial of Art in Public Space ($54,000, up $14,000), Christmas in the Park ($51,000), Le Race ($20,000, a new grant), Lyttelton Mid-Winter Festival of Lights ($10,000, up $4000), French Festival ($30,000, up $24,000), Coast to Coast 25th Anniversary ($20,000, a new grant), the Christchurch Primary Schools $B!G (J Cultural Festival ($10,000) and the Banks Peninsula Community Event Fund ($6000).

The two sports events - one the original kiwi multi-sport endurance race and the other a cycling festival between the central city and Akaroa - are new to the programme, while the Akaroa French Festival has had its support increased by 400 per cent, or $24,000. The arts and buskers festivals also benefit from substantial increases, up $39,000 and $20,000 respectively. The cello and writers festivals are in their off years and so did not seek funding.

The council events to be funded are SummerTimes ($446,665), KidsFest ($70,000), Fireworks ($42,000) the Antactic Festival ($60,000) and New Zealand Cup and Show Week ($71,300).

Christchurch City Council is in the middle of a review of its events strategy. Events development manager Jo Naish says this year's funding round reflects key themes emerging from talks with interested groups and organisations, including a need to consolidate effort on successful events and to provide support for visitor-focused sports events and those on the peninsula.

Ends

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