Fashion steps onto dogwalk

The Nelson Arts Festival went to the dogs when canine entrants dominated Pet Art Wear held at Founders Heritage Park.

Pet Art Wear or PAW was one of the highlights of the Bluebridge Family Finale which attracted an estimated 3000 people.

The day's entertainment also included performances by the Nelson World Ukulele Orchestra and Wellington's Newtown Rock Steady.

The top prize at PAW went to the Crompton-Loader family of Nelson who, including dogs Scrappy and Emily, went dressed as Hairy Maclary and his friends. The family, who appeared in The Leader last week, won a trip to Wellington on the Bluebridge ferry and a voucher from Halifax Veterinary Centre.

Sarah Loader said the kids loved taking part in PAW and the win came as a complete surprise.
"We're just rapt about it," she said.

Nelson City Council festival director Sophie Kelly said the longer than usual festival was a big success, with at least one sell-out show every night there were events programmed.

"Having the festival spread out more with shows clustered towards the end of the week worked really well, with people commenting they like having a couple of quiet nights to rest up," she said.

A major highlight was the Piki Mai sound and light installation on the Church Steps and Cathedral tower, that was drawing several hundred people every night as word spread about it.

The Oi You! Urban Art Exhibition closed with an auction on Monday night. All of the 34 works by the finalists of the art competition sold with a top price of $600.