Queenstown Winter Festival’s fabulous finish

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Queenstown Winter Festivals sometimes taper off over the last three days – but this year’s finishes with a bang.

From events like Eichardt’s Tavern Revisited, Showcase revisited and dodgeball tomorrow, to Saturday’s Thriller in the Chiller charity boxing night and Sunday’s concluding community carnival, there’s something for everyone.

Not to mention two intense games of ice hockey, a violin recital and a fundraising duck race.

Befitting the historical theme of this year’s 40th festival, tomorrow’s highlights have a retro theme.

Eichardt’s Tavern Revisited sees the popular waterfront watering hole revived at the Queenstown Memorial Centre.

The festival was originally conceived over leaners at the bar which closed after the big flood of 1999. Also enjoying a revival tomorrow is Queenstown’s former original music and comedy night, Showcase, which ran from 1992-2006.

Music identity Margaret O’Hanlon once again hosts the show, this time on the Earnslaw Park main stage from 4.30pm, featuring stars of yesteryear like Gemma McGrath and Tom Maxwell.

Thousands are expected round the Queenstown Bay waterfront for Sunday’s Community Carnival which will again have a cosmopolitan food and entertainment flavour.

Among the performers will be local-based Chinese busker Amy Yang.

Tang plays a traditional Chinese lute, a pipa, which has been played for almost 2000 years in China.

Fake fingernails are used to play the instrument, which is much heavier than a guitar, she says.

Tomorrow
7am-late:
Eichardt’s Tavern Revisited, Queenstown Memorial Centre
Noon-3pm: Dodgeball, Earnslaw Park
4pm: First night skiing, Coronet Peak
4.30pm: Showcase, Earnslaw Park
7pm: Southern Stampede v Botany Swarm ice hockey, Queenstown Ice Arena
9pm: SkyCity Live with Calico, SkyCity Queenstown Casino
9pm: Ministry of Sound DJs, Loco Cantina

Saturday
10.30am:
Kids Magic Show, O’Connells Shopping Centre
Noon: Mountain Mayhem, Coronet Peak
4.30pm: Holly Arrowsmith, Panther Claw, The Killer Seas, plus DJs, Earnslaw Park main stage
5.30pm & 8.30pm: Skyline Magic in the Sky, Skyline Restaurant
7pm: Thriller in the Chiller charity boxing
7pm: Southern Stampede v Botany Swarm ice hockey, Queenstown Ice Arena 

Sunday
Noon and 12.20pm:
Kids Icecream Dig, Remarkables Park Town Centre
12.30pm: Gibbston Valley Wine Matching Lunch, Hilton Queenstown
3pm: Pure NRG Horne Creek duck race for Queenstown Bay clean-up project, top of The Mall
4pm: Michael Hill International Violin Recital with Nikki Chooi, Queenstown Memorial Centre
4pm: Community Carnival, Queenstown CBD lakefront
Eight teams are contesting the Monty’s Festival Challenge in which teams of up to 10 compete for prizes in 10 events culminating in a mystery challenge on Sunday. Prizegiving is at Monty’s, Sunday 2pm.