This Top Bloke’s no joke

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One of Winter Fest’s most popular events has a serious side this year.

Queenstown Top Bloke entrant Richard Powell (right) is raising money for a Down Syndrome todd­ler battling leukaemia – whom he’s never met.

Tessa Cowie, 21 months, is in Christchurch receiving treatment for the next six months while her family remain in the Southland town of Otautau.

Powell, who works at Lakes Environmental, was roped into Top Bloke by his workmates.

“I heard that during the competition I had to spend some time on stage doing an individual performance around the same time I received an email requesting donations to support Tessa Cowie.

“So I came up with the idea of using my time on stage to raise some cash for Tessa and her family.”

After approval from Tessa’s parents, Powell approached local businesses and has a raft of prizes to auction off during the Top Bloke final on July 5. “The response has been amazing,” he says.

Sounds like he’s a genuine top bloke.