The first day of the Audi quattro Winter Games NZ 2013 today also marks the start of a full programme of off-mountain events and entertainment in Queenstown and Wanaka. The Downtown Sessions festival features three cyclocross races, a seven-day Adventure Film Festival, live music from the Phoenix Foundation and Tahuna Breaks plus the chance to meet medal winners at all-weather marquees in both towns.
The two Lotto Villages are brand new central hubs where athletes and spectators can eat, drink, relax, catch some live music, watch the action on big screen TVs, win instant prizes and play Lotto games. All medal ceremonies take place downtown at the Villages giving fans the chance to meet their winter sports heroes.
Wellington band, the Phoenix Foundation plays Queenstown Memorial Centre on Saturday 17 August. They’ll be ripping into old favourites and new tracks from their latest album, Fandango. Auckland’s Tahuna Breaks return triumphant from London’s Homelanz festival to bring the Games to a stomping close at the Jucy Meltdown Concert, Lake Wanaka Centre on Sunday 25 August, the last day of competition. Tickets for both gigs are available from Ticketek or direct from the Lotto Villages.
The Winter Games NZ Adventure Film Festival presented by Auckland Airport brings together more than twenty adrenalin-pumping movies from around the world. The varied programme covers an array of adventure sports including big mountain skiing and riding, kayaking, surfing, mountain biking, climbing and even curling! There are two drive-in movies at Remarkables Park in addition to showings at Queenstown’s Reading Cinema and Memorial Centre plus Cinema Paradiso, Wanaka.
Three cyclocross races also take place as part of the Downtown Sessions. The first two (22 and 24 August) are in Wanaka, with the second including the New Zealand National Championships. The third race (25 August) takes place at Wynyard Freestyle Mountain Bike Park in Fernhill, Queenstown. Each race includes categories for kids and all-comers as well as elite riders.
Audi quattro Winter Games NZ festivals manager, Malcolm Blakey said this year’s Downtown Sessions festival was the biggest and most exciting yet.
“We’ve grown our downtown programme every time since 2009. With help from Lotto and Central Lakes Trust we’ve been able to create two fantastic hubs where anyone can enjoy a drink, watch the action on TV and get information about any aspect of the Games. You’ll also be able to buy tickets there for the Phoenix Foundation, Tahuna Breaks and the Adventure Film Festival,” he said.
“With two of New Zealand’s biggest bands playing and an awesome programme of international adventure movies we’re keeping things pumping for everyone downtown as well as on the mountain.”
The Lotto Villages are located at Earnslaw Park on Queenstown’s lakefront and Ardmore Street, Wanaka next to the Wanaka Hotel. The Villages open in Queenstown at 1pm today (Thursday) and in Wanaka at 10am tomorrow (Friday). They will be open until 8pm (Queenstown) and 7pm (Wanaka) for the duration of the Games.
Winter Games NZ 2013 takes place over 11-days from 15-25 August at the international resorts of Coronet Peak, Cardrona Alpine Resort and Snow Farm, along with the Maniototo Curling International Rink. Set against the spectacular backdrop of New Zealand’s Southern Alps, the Games also include a full Downtown Sessions festival programme featuring films, live music and entertainment in Queenstown and Lake Wanaka.