Queenstown’s sizzling New Year’s Eve (slideshow)

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Queenstown lived up to its party-town reputation as thousands of revellers welcomed in the New Year.

Throngs of people turned out to count down the end of 2010 by the waterfront before an impressive fireworks display signalled the arrival of 2011.

While many booze-fuelled punters packed out local bars, others enjoyed free live music played on two downtown stages.

Wakatipu High band The Fletcherz opened the Earnslaw Park stage show, followed by glam local girl group The Sequin Sisters and covers band Mojo. The Marine Parade stage played more club-scene music with sounds from artists like DJ Asbro and Hand Solo.

A strong police presence appeared to keep drunken antics at bay as there were little signs of disorder on the streets, although one police officer said they were dealing with a “few unconscious people”. 

Christchurch-based visitor Lucy Whiteside was pleased to party in a quake-free area.

“There are no earthquakes here – it’s a nice relief from home. Queenstown is rock-solid.”