Cities get ready to ring in the new year – weather permitting

By and is republished with permission

Most council-run New Year’s Eve celebrations are going ahead tonight, despite bad weather forecast for many areas.

In Wellington, the city council is still planning on holding its waterfront event tonight, despite high winds today which have seen several flights cancelled or unable to land.

Covers band Zephyr will be on stage at Whairepo Lagoon to start the festivities at 8pm. There will be a kids’ countdown and short burst of fireworks at 9:30pm and the night and year will end with a larger fireworks display at midnight.

SkyCity in Auckland will welcome in 2024 with its annual midnight fireworks from the tower.

There will be a 10-second countdown which will be projected onto the base of the tower, followed by a laser light and animation show, reflecting the 19 iwi of the region.

The display will last for five minutes and 30 seconds and feature 500 kilograms of pyrotechnics.

However, in Tauranga, thecity council said on Saturday it had made the decision to cancel five New Year’s Eve community celebrations.

Fireworks displays planned there for 9:30 and midnight are still on schedule.

A Queenstown bar manager said that town will be pumping this New Year’s Eve, despite the blustery weather.

White hospitality group operations manager David Dwyer said the wind is due to die down this afternoon, and they are expecting big numbers through their handful of venues this evening.

He said the madness kicks off around 10pm with punters vying for a spot at Public Bar on the waterfront to watch the midnight fireworks, which is always a spectacle.

Dwyer said his team will be closing the doors soon after that, to give staff a well-deserved rest to kick off the new year.

The police are also promising to have a strong presence across the country tonight.

In a statement police said that “while they encourage people to enjoy themselves at celebrations, partygoers should be sensible and look after their mates to ensure everyone gets home safely”.

If anyone feels unsafe or is worried about dangerous, illegal or suspicious behaviour, they should phone 111.

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