Forecasts still fickle but Friday fingers crossed

by | 29 Jan 2010 | Regatta 2010 | 0 comments

Event date Saturday 30 January 2010
High tide 07:47 (1.30 m) then 20:03 (1.21 m)
MetVUW forecast chart

Forty-Two Hours Out: Part of MetVUW forecast chart for regatta evening, issued at midnight. The band covering Mahurangi and much of Northland forecasts a mere two millimetres of rain in six hours; the yellow spots out to sea 17 mm. chart MetVUW

This afternoon, with some trepidation, the various marquees will go up.

The vastly variable conditions that makes long-range weather forecasting interesting, offer no real respite for Northland’s deepening drought—East Cape seems to be the more likely beneficiary of the system that has had Mahurangi Regatta organisers preparing for a possible cancellation of the shoreside events.

The consolation for the regatta, of course, is the prospect of a sea breeze and at least some hope for a prize-giving and dance under the stars. But by the final set, it could be either the full moon dance, or dancing in the rain.

So, as the final push with preparations proceeds, it is time to offer a guide for first time regatta-goers, and the odd recalcitrant.

  • No fires—anywhere
  • No dogs—on either beach
  • Small boat trailer launching at Sullivan Bay: 9–11‍ ‍am only
  • Small boat trailer retrieval at Sullivan Bay: 3.30–4‍ ‍pm only
  • Nothing for sale at Sullivan Bay
  • Free shuttle bus at Scotts Landing
  • Liquor at, not to, the prize-giving and dance.

No fires Preoccupation with the possiblity of rain preventing the dance rain belies the extremely high fire risk. The total fire ban in effect includes charcoal-fueled barbecues. However, Hank’d be happy—propane, and other gas, is okay. A prohibited fire season is in place, however fires cannot be lit on beaches at any time.

Dogs prohibited at all times at Sullivan Bay and at the Scott Homestead grounds and beach—the prize-giving and dance venue. Dogs may be exercised at Mita Bay and at the Scotts landing itself, but not on the beach there.

No food on sale at Sullivans The regatta picnic at Sullivan Bay is of the good old-fashioned, leave-your-wallet-at-home variety. No food is on sale there. Contract Cuisine Café, halfway along Mahurangi West Road, is catering for picnickers, and did a roaring trade last year. The café team then turned out, free of charge, to help produce the gourmet burgers at prize-giving and dance—the Mahurangi has good friends!

Liquor at the dance The prize-giving and dance is a liquor-licensed area—patrons may not bring their own. Proceeds from the bar and burgers is the only income available to pay for the dance. Everyone involved, including the fine musicians of the Prohibition Big Band, gives their time free. Patronage of the well-stocked bar is essential for the event’s sustainability.

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