Picton Arts and Street Theatre Festival

Sponsors of Picton's latest arts festival are eager to see it become a permanent fixture on the town's social calendar.

The first free Picton Performing Arts and Street Theatre Festival will based in and around Nelson Square from 10am to 6pm on December 22. The festival will be followed by a performance from New Zealand's Got Talent finalists Zane and Degge at the theatre at 7.30pm.

Sounds Air director Andrew Crawford said the festival was a chance for the company to support a growing arts scene in Picton.

"Not everyone's trying to bring the arts to Picton. It needs events like this to go ahead and give people something new."

It was hoped the festival would become an annual fixture and be followed by the annual Picton Maritime Festival on January 19.

Sounds Air has donated $500 plus discounted flights for entertainers to the festival and sponsors the Picton Little Theatre.

The festival will feature free children's puppet workshop and circus-skills workshops, such as walking on stilts and juggling, and a variety of live performances from more than 10 artists.

Koromiko Free Range Eggs owner Donna Marsh said the company was looking forward to stocking up competitors in an egg-and-spoon race around Nelson Square, with some participants on stilts.

There would be 10 different races, with $10 and free eggs as prizes, and it was hoped the event would become an annual fixture.

She praised Picton Little Theatre manager Bruce Anderson for kick-starting the festival preparations and said it was important for Picton businesses get behind events in the town.

"It's quite a small community, so we've all got to get in - even the people from Blenheim."

Tickets to Zane and Degge's juggling performance cost $30 and can be bought at the door or by phoning Bruce Anderson, 027 924 6606.

The Marlborough Express