Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search

 

Howard's End: Hogwild In Westland

Renowned for wild "foods" like bulls balls, worm slammers, Westcargo snails, steamed huhu grubs, stags breath and whitebait, Hokitika looks set to break all attendance records this weekend as it holds its 12th annual Wildfood's Festival. John Howard writes.

The Wildfoods Festival, held in Hokitika since 1989, looks set to attract around 25,000 people to the West Coast town this weekend, increasing its population five times over.

What seems to have made the Wildfood's Festival so popular for 12 years, is that it's a time where the older generation in Westland welcomes the younger generation into their midst and says we were also young once - "go for it." And after all, the motto of the Westland District Council is - "Westland, for the wild at heart."

Bouyed by the continued success of the Wildfoods Festival, the Council recently decided to add one more event to the Hokitika calendar when it provided $60,000 to help stage the inaugural 'Thunder in Westland' formula 1,2 and 3 motorcycle street races on Sunday June 3 of Queens Birthday long weekend. Like the Wildfoods Festival, there was no objections from the community.

As Westland Mayor, John Drylie keeps emphasising, "Put a pig in the window and dare to be different." The NZ wild pig is the Festival's mascot.

The Wildfoods organisers are confident that this year's event will exceed previous records because more than16,000 tickets, the number who attended last year, have already been pre-sold for this festival.

The events kicked-off earlier this week with the live poets society holding a function in Trappers restaurant and, on Thursday night, there was a huge crowd for "The Voices from the Bush" which featured original New Zealand bush verse, yarns and humour all washed down with ample quantities of bush tucker and the Coast's famous Monteith's beer.

Tonight "The Roar" will feature top band ZED who recently won the album and best group of the year awards. They are supported by Eye TV, SNAFU and Aprillis in what looks like being an extreme event which will set the soul on fire.

On Saturday night former Beach Boys, Jeff Foskett and Billy Hinsche, along with four other bands, will perform at the Wildfoods venue in Cass Square. On Sunday the Hokitika Racing Club will hold a horse race meeting featuring both harness racing and gallops.

Each year Festival organisers build a "city" of huge marquee's and gazebo's to cater for the crowds and accomodation is already booked out from a 150 kilometer radius of Hokitika. Even so, many party animals still like to sleep 'au naturale' under the stars and in the past the beach has often been covered end to end with slumbering bodies who have mostly been well behaved. Huge numbers of portable loo's are dispersed around the town by the Council.

It seems to be uncanny, but the weather has always been good for the Wildfoods Festival weekend and today, there is not a cloud in the sky with a similar forecast for the next few days.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Binoy Kampmark: The Maybe Mob And The Rushdie Attack
He has survived death threats and attempts on his life since February 1989. But Salman Rushdie’s luck just about ran out at the Chautauqua Institution, southwest of Buffalo in New York State. On August 12, at a venue historically celebrated for bringing education to all, the writer was stabbed incessantly by a fanatic who felt little sense of guilt or remorse. Hadi Matar only had eyes for Rushdie’s neck and abdomen. As a result of the attack, the author is likely to lose sight of one eye and possibly the use of an arm... More>>



Binoy Kampmark: A Looting Matter: Cambodia’s Stolen Antiquities

Cambodia has often featured in the Western imagination as a place of plunder and pilfering. Temples and artefacts of exquisite beauty have exercised the interest of adventurers and buccaneers who looted with almost kleptocratic tendency. In 1924, the French novelist and future statesman André Malraux, proved himself one of Europe’s greatest adventurers in making off with a ton of sacred stones from Angkor Wat... More>>

Dunne Speaks: Labour Leadership Speculation Premature And Facile
Speculation that the Prime Minister’s leadership of the Labour Party may be at risk because of this week’s adverse poll results is as exaggerated as it is premature and facile. While her popularity has plummeted from the artificially stellar heights of a couple of years ago and is probably set to fall further to what would be a more realistic assessment... More>>



Ian Powell: Colossal ‘Porkies’ And Band-aids Don’t Make A Health Workforce Plan

On 1 August Minister of Health Andrew Little announced what he described as the start of a plan for the beleaguered workforce in Aotearoa New Zealand’s health system: Government’s 5 year late health workforce announcement. In October 2017, when Labour became government with its two coalition parties, it inherited a health workforce crisis from the previous National-led government... More>>


Binoy Kampmark: The Fuss About Monkeypox
The World Health Organization has been one of the easier bodies to abuse. For parochial types, populist moaners and critics of international institutions, the WHO bore the brunt of criticisms from Donald Trump to Jair Bolsonaro. Being a key institution in identifying public health risks, it took time assessing the threat posed by SARS-CoV-2 and its disease, COVID-19... More>>

Dunne Speaks: Time For MPs To Think For Themselves
One of the more frequently quoted statements of the Irish statesman and philosopher, Edmund Burke, was his observation that “Your representative owes you, not his industry only, but his judgement, and he betrays instead of serving you if he sacrifices it to your opinion.”... More>>