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Telecom Tree Returns to Wellington

Telecom Tree returns with a design-your-own light show

Wellingtonians will again have a special place to make their Christmas wishes with the return of the 27-metre Telecom Tree to Wellington, this year in a new location at Waitangi Park on the waterfront. They’ll also be able to design their own light show and watch it appear on the Tree.

Opening night is scheduled for the evening of Tuesday 30 November and visitors will be able to enjoy the incredible light shows from dusk each evening until Boxing Day.

Designed by The Lord of the Rings and King Kong Art Director, Joe Bleakley, the spectacular Telecom Tree is made up of over 375,000 lights, which provide 16 million possible colour combinations. Up to 200 people at a time can view the show from a space beneath the Tree.

Telecom is encouraging visitors to the Tree to bring gifts for children who will go without this Christmas. The gifts will be distributed around the country by Women’s Refuge – the official charity of the Telecom Tree - for the children to open on Christmas Day.

Telecom CEO Paul Reynolds says the Telecom Tree has been brought back to the Capital by popular demand.

“Wellington is renowned for embracing local events and last year we were thrilled that more than 80,000 people chose to visit the Telecom Tree. So this year we are delighted to be bringing back this unique Christmas experience to the Capital.

“Wellington City Council has been a huge support in helping us bring back the Tree this year,” says Mr Reynolds.

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Wellington Mayor Celia Wade-Brown says: “The Telecom Tree brings a bit of magic to the waterfront and allows families to share Christmas through their gifts to Women’s Refuge.

“It was hugely popular last year and I think it will be the highlight of many family days out this year too in its new home in Waitangi Park. Telecom is also setting a great example in offsetting the emissions created by powering the Tree.”

Dedicated Santaline phone boxes at the base of the Telecom Tree allow children to ring the North Pole direct, with their voices magically activating the lights running from their phone box to the star at the top of the Tree.

This year, anyone can design their own light show and have it displayed on the Tree. Those keen to try their hand can log on to telecomtree.co.nz from launch night, follow the simple steps to create their design, and then choose what time they want it to play out on the Telecom Tree. All that’s left to do is to grab their family and friends and head to the Tree to watch their design light up the night.

For those who can’t make it to Wellington the nationwide toll free Santaline will be taking Christmas wish-lists from November 27 until Christmas day.

Last year more than 950,000 calls were made from right across New Zealand. Hopeful children will again be able to call Santa to tell him they’ve been good and what they’re wishing for on 0800 222 222. Or they can submit their request online at telecomtree.co.nz.

Visit telecomtree.co.nz for more information.

Where: Waitangi Park, Wellington’s waterfront When: From 30 November to 26 December with lightshows from dusk every day, and extra special events on 30 November and Christmas Eve.

Further facts about the Telecom Tree:

•The Telecom Tree’s height is equivalent to a seven storey building
•From 375,000 lights, 37,000 LED bulbs can be programmed to create at least 16 million colour combinations
•The Telecom Tree lights are linked with 156 wires and 20,000 cable ties
•The Tree takes seven days to build and requires an 80 metre crane and a team of 15 people
•It was designed by Joe Bleakley, the Art Director from King Kong and The Lord of the Rings

Facts about Santaline:

•Santaline has been connecting Kiwi kids with Santa for 17 years
•Every year, hundreds of thousands of Kiwi kids make calls to Santa to
ensure he receives their wish list. Last year 953,661 calls were made

Telecom to offset emissions:
Although lighting the Telecom Tree for the month of December uses approximately the same amount of power as a residential household, Telecom will offset the greenhouse gas emissions associated with the generation, transmission and distribution of all energy used to power the Tree. This will be made possible with the support of Powershop, who will not only provide power for the Tree but will also purchase carbon credits from Airshed Energy.

ENDS

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