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Aquatica activities take to the water

Aquatica activities take to the water

- Classic craft, Te Kaha and The Spirit of New Zealand -

A fleet of classic craft and launches, tugboats and magnificent tall ships will crowd Auckland’s harbour as part of Aquatica - Auckland’s Harbour Festival.

Aquatica, a three day event, is returning to the City of Sails over Auckland Anniversary Weekend 25 – 28 January 2008, ensuring Auckland’s maritime heritage comes alive with spectacles on land and sea.

Huge attractions on the water include tall ships Soren Larsen and The Spirit of New Zealand, and the Navy Frigate HMNZS Te Kaha, one of the RNZN’s key strategic vessels. The ships will be berthed alongside Princes Wharf and available for public boarding throughout the event. The Ports of Auckland Tugs and the Auckland Anniversary Regatta will churn up the water and create a show not to be missed.

Dave Stewart, Director of Aquatica says "many Aucklanders don’t normally get the chance to go aboard amazing vessels such as The Spirit of New Zealand and Te Kaha. Having the craft at Aquatica presents a unique opportunity for all Aucklanders to truly experience what it means to be part of the City of Sails!”

Monday 28 January will see the maritime action of Aquatica shift from the Viaduct to the Waitemata Harbour, with hundreds of craft including the tall ships, tugboats, classic yachts, racing keelers, sloops, sailing dinghies, sailboards and HMNZS Te Kaha taking part in the Anniversary Day Regatta.

A Parade of Sail begins from the Viaduct Harbour at 9.00am as the fleet of craft make their way to the official start off Orakei Wharf, which will be heralded by the firing of HMNZS Te Kaha by the Governor General at 11.00am.

A further highlight of the day will be the tugboat race off North Head, with over 30 workboats roaring across the water in a noisy show of power. Tugs will showcase their agility, horsepower and maneuverability amid fountains of water closer to crowds, just off Princes and Hobson Wharves.

The Spirit of Adventure Trust is the official charity of Aquatica, with donations being collected at the point of boarding and through the proceeds raised through selling Tip-Top ice-creams.

- ENDS -

Notes to Editors:

* Aquatica, previously known as The Auckland Harbour Festival, takes place from Friday 25 January through to Monday 28 January 2008

* The opening ceremony will take place on the evening of Friday 25 January 2008

* The event takes place in and around Auckland’s Viaduct Harbour, with activities on and off the water

* The Spirit of New Zealand has been sailing New Zealand waters for twenty one years. The vessel operates all year round as a youth charity, offering equal opportunity to young New Zealanders to develop qualities of leadership, independence and community spirit through the medium of the sea. The Spirit of New Zealand will sail in to Aquatica on Friday 25 January, with those aboard having just completed a 10 day sailing adventure, and will berth alongside Princes Wharf for public boardings over the weekend

* The Soren Larson is one of Auckland’s magnificently restored and adapted tallships. Built in Northern Denmark in 1948, she was constructed entirely of oak and used as a trading ship, carrying cargo, timber and grain throughout the Baltic, British and European ports. After voyaging to New Zealand in the late 1980’s, The Soren Larson found a home in the Waitemata Harbour, where she now resides, taking time to cruise the Pacific waters. The Soren Larson will be alongside Princes Wharf for the duration of Aquatica

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