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Let me entertain you: Westwood Events fire dancer Emily Hodges will light up the Real Journeys Winter Gala on the TSS Earnslaw and at Walter Peak High Country Farm tomorrow as part of the Whakatipu's 'Welcome to Winter' event

By GUY WILLIAMS

Electronic funk will welcome winter to Queenstown this weekend when a New Zealand music icon takes centre stage at Earnslaw Park.

Headline act Laughton Kora performs from 7.15pm tomorrow as part of Destination Queenstown’s scaled-back version of WinterFest, Welcome to Winter.

There’ll also be a packed line-up of talent hitting the stage from this afternoon, including on-the-rise girl band No Man’s Land, country singer Jackie Bristow and indie electronic
duo DUAL.

Weaved into tonight’s live entertainment is a fireworks display over Queenstown Bay from
7pm, and a performance by Queenstown Salsa.

Today’s schedule was meant to include the Cardrona Legends of Steel Rail Showdown, but the lack of snow on the mountains until this week’s dumping forced its cancellation.

Other events include mid-winter Christmas markets in Queenstown Mall, running today from 3pm to 9pm and tomorrow 10am to 8pm.

Coronet Peak’s opened just in time, where there’s night skiing and live music tomorrow from 5.30pm, and a Suitcase Race and snowman comp on Sunday.

There’s also a bunch of ticketed events happening around town, including tomorrow’s ‘Once Upon a Time in New Orleans’-themed gala dinner, taking punters to Walter Peak on the TSS Earnslaw, the NZ Mountain Film Festival at the Queenstown Memorial Centre tonight and tomorrow night from 7pm, the ‘Miss Lucy’s White Party’ at Jucy Snooze’s rooftop bar on tomorrow night, and the ‘Superhero & Ice Princess Party’ all day tomorrow at the Queenstown Ice Arena.

A free park-and-ride shuttle’s operating today and tomorrow from the corner of Hawthorne Drive and Red Oaks Dr in Frankton.

It’ll run from 3pm to 9pm today and 11am to 3pm tomorrow.
● For more info or to nab tickets, visit QueenstownNZ.co.nz/welcometowinter