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Local businesses expected to benefit from Winter Festival

Local businesses expected to benefit from Winter Festival

Palmerston North’s Winter Festival is expected to bring big crowds into the city at the end of the month with benefits for local businesses.

The three-day festival hosted by Palmerston North City Council will see locals and Lions fans come together to celebrate winter and the importance of rugby to the city.

“While we’ve held similar events in the past, this year’s Winter Festival is unique because it coincides with the Lions Rugby Tour,” says Palmerston North Mayor Grant Smith.

“We’re expecting a big crowd and anticipate our local businesses will benefit as a result. We’ve really ramped up the scale and quality of our events over the last 12 months, and the Winter Festival is another great example of what we’re doing to increase vibrancy in the central city.”

Amanda Linsley, Acting Chief Executive of Manawatu Chamber of Commerce agrees.

“It’s great to see the Winter Festival added to the city’s major events calendar, as events like these have a proven direct economic benefit. The Lions Rugby Tour taking place at the same time will maximise the opportunities for our businesses and showcase the Manawatū at its best.”

The event kicks off on Wednesday 28 June with a rugby match between historic rivals the New Zealand Army and Royal New Zealand Air Force. This will be followed by a two-day street fest in George Street on Thursday 29 and Friday 30 June.

Other highlights include a concert by the Lions Male Voice Choir, a world record rugby scrum attempt, and the Black Boots Legend photographic exhibition featuring 150 images from the All Blacks 1972-73 European tour, as captured by photographer Barry Durant.

The drawcard for many Lions fans will be the New Zealand Rugby Museum, which has 22 busloads of people booked to go through during the week of the Lions matches in Wellington.

Palmerston North is also hosting the World in Union international conference for rugby academics, practitioners and educators that week.

ENDS

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