Home' Advocate Communications : Fiordland Advocate 4 December 2009 Contents LOCAL NEWS
Page 18 | 4 December, 2009
A Manapouri woman’s fascination
with local youngsters’ knowledge
and passion for the Fiordland bush
and the wildlife it homes has led
to the development of a new board
Catherine Brimecombe said that
while on a school outing with new
entrants she was heartened by
the huge depth of understanding
they displayed about – learning
instilled by the good work of
local early childhood educators.
It prompted her to think of ways
whe could further encourage such
“It was the knowledge and the
enthusiasm the kids had,” she
Being unemployed over the winter,
she put her time to good use and
developed a board game called
Button Up in Fiordland.
A simple concept, players gain
“bush buddy” buttons for landing
on squares that are positive for
the ecosystem and lose buttons as
a result of “bush baddies” – things
like stoak attacks or rat plagues.
A unique features is that the
game is printed on an unbleached
canvas mat rather than a board,
making it easy to fold away and
ideal for travel. Mrs Brimecombe
said the painted pebble markers
and recycled buttons used in the
game could easily be replaced
or substituted. Friends travelling
light recently took only the mat
and dice and played it in various
locations from cafes to the beach
where they collected things like
seashells to use instead of the
The game got its first public
appearance at the Te Anau Market
on Sunday and Mrs Brimecombe
said she was thrilled with the
reaction to it. She sold about a
dozen sets and took orders for
four more, giving her high hopes
for future sales.
“I’ve only made 400 so they’re
going to go fast,” she said.
Button Up in Fiordland is priced at
$30. Initially it will only be sold at
the market and through a link on
Mrs Brimecombe’s website www.
Catherine has cottoned on to a good thing
Catherine Brimecombe and daughter
Iona play the Button Up in Fiordland
game that was developed by Mrs
Brimecombe and went on sale for the
first time at the Te Anau market last
Garston School’s first foray into
highland games proved a big
success on Friday.
The “wee highland games” were
a new addition to the school’s
annual pet day and the community
turned out in force to take part.
Principal Kathryn O’Loughlin said
it was also a chance to celebrate
recent additions to the school
playground and to formally open
the new friendship garden “Te
Mara Whakahoanga” which was
created by the school’s 38 pupils.
“The children have not only learnt
practical skills, under the guidance
of adults, but more importantly
have discovered that they can
actually create something unique
and beautiful for us all to enjoy,”
Ms O’Loughlin said.
“By empowering our children to
make such a positive contribution
we aim to foster them in a growing
sense of community responsibility
and pride which will hopefully
lead them to become active,
contributing members of society in
Jamie Abernethy, spoke on behalf
of the pupils, saying that as they
began constructing the garden
they soon learned that some parts
would be easier than others.
“This made us realise that this
was not a project that we could
just put our skills into but we
would also need to put our hearts
into it, so we could construct a
place where everyone would feel
cheerful and peaceful.”
New skills were learned along
the way – everything from how to
make concrete to using wire, rods
and waratahs to support things
and long-term considerations
like how big trees would grow
and how that would affect the
garden in future.
Following the formalities, pupils
performed a highland fling.
The 100 or so people present
were then split into teams and
led off by pipers to contest the
highland games, finishing with a
shared spit-roasted dinner.
While the weather wasn’t ideal,
there were sufficient breaks
in the rain to enable all of
the outdoor activities to go
Highland games a highlight of pet day
Four American motorcycling
enthusiasts,who made a special
trip to Southland to be part of the
Burt Munro Challenge, took time
during their 10-day tour to visit
Fiordland this week.
Kevin and Carla Verkest, of Detroit,
and Greg and Rene Scheuer, of
South Carolina, said the Burt
Munro Challenge was a “must do”
for die-hard bikers.
“Everyone in America knows who
Burt Munro is – every motorcycling
enthusiast anyway,” Mr Verkest
The two couples got in touch with
organisers and had been given the
royal treatment since their arrival.
Committee member Stephen
Winteringham, along with other
members of the Deep South
Motorcycle Club, accompanied
them on their trip to Te Anau and
Milford Sound on Tuesday. He said
he had also taken them to view
Neville Hayes’s collection of Munro
memorabilia and meet members
of Burt’s family. They also got
to visit bronzework artist Roddy
McMillan, who cast the trophies
for the challenge weekend, who
presented them with a bronze
piston and a con rod.
“Thank goodness we didn’t have
to race for it,” Mr Verkest laughed.
In Te Anau they were hosted for
lunch by the Fiordland New Life
The couples said they were highly
impressed with the hospitality they
had been shown and were keen
to further relationships through a
formal link with the United States
“Smokeout” motorcycle rally.
Only in New Zealand for a short
time, they saw as much of the
south as they could on borrowed
motorbikes and said the only thing
they weren’t “one hundred percent
in love with” about New Zealand
was having to drive on the left.
Burt fans visit
United States motorcycle enthusiasts
(from left) Carla and Kevin Verkest
and Rene and Greg Scheuer stop off
in Te Anau following their attendance
at the Burt Munro Challenge.
Garston School pupils perform a highland fling learned especially for their “wee highland games” last Friday.
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