New Year‘s Eve events axed amid Covid uncertainty

Locals watch last year's firework display along the waterfront. File Image. SunLive.

Tauranga’s New Year’s Eve celebrations have been canned amid to concerns over Covid-19.

The Bay of Plenty is currently at the beginning of an outbreak of the Delta variant of the virus, with 39 cases so far in the region, including nine announced today.

Therefore, Tauranga City Council has made the difficult decision to cancel New Year’s Eve community celebrations and fireworks displays this year. Council’s general manager of community services Gareth Wallis says council had reluctantly decided not to host this year’s events as there was too much uncertainty around whether it could deliver the community wide events safely.

“Unfortunately, with the recent cases of the Delta variant in our community, and uncertainty around how we can safely deliver community events of this size, there is too much risk in continuing to plan these events,” says Gareth.

He says the events had grown in popularity over the past five years, but they would be back.

The 2020 free community events were well attended across five sites across the city – Papamoa, Mount Maunganui, Tauranga CBD, Greerton and Matua. “Given our current environment, this was a decision, we and a number of other councils have had to face.”

Council are waiting to learn more about the Government’s Covid-19 protection framework – the traffic light system - and the impact it will have on events over the summer period.
“We love to bring these events and fireworks to our community, and work alongside an incredible group of partners and suppliers to deliver them,” says Gareth.

“We look forward to delivering these celebrations for our community in 2022."

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