Events manager Dave Haskell may very well have conquered the "Taranaki walk-up."
The Mayfair's music guru has been recognised for his work by being awarded the outstanding hospitality achievement award at Sunday night's Taranaki Halamoana Awards.
The judges agreed Mr Haskell's work with the Mayfair and bringing bands to New Plymouth had won him the honour.
Mr Haskell said yesterday he thought the live music scene in New Plymouth had been reinvigorated.
"I think it's because of the variety of bands, there's a lot of bars doing live music now," he said.
Mr Haskell has brought around 100 live acts to the Mayfair in the last two years.
"It's good for the bands, it's good for the bars and businesses and it's good for the locals."
But he said the New Plymouth scene was a hard market to crack, especially because people tended to leave buying tickets until the last minute.
"I call it the Taranaki walk-up."
He said some gigs had sold as few as 60 tickets the day before the show, but then 300 people would show up on the night.
"It causes a few heart palpitations for me and the promoters but we usually get there in the end."
Far from hoping to win at the awards, Mr Haskell was only made aware he had been nominated last week.
"It was a bit of a surprise, but it's nice to be recognised for the work you do."
Mr Haskell previously worked in radio and said the skills and contacts he had picked up there were useful in his new job.
"It's reinforced my ties with the New Zealand music industry and now I'm connecting with them in a slightly different capacity."
He said he hoped to bring more international acts to New Plymouth in the next year.
The Halamoana Awards drew a crowd of 375 people as Taranaki's hospitality staff stepped around the other side of the bar and away from the kitchen on Sunday night to celebrate the industry's top people.
The awards were held at the Pukekura Raceway
in a race-theme event. People dressed up in horse-related costumes, a "race book" with the nominees as horses and the awards presented by a race announcer.
Nominations for the hospitality awards are taken from within the industry and then put to a vote.
Halamoana committee chairman Jade Morgan said it had been an excellent night.
"It was a brilliant night and everyone really got into it."
Mr Morgan said there was a mix of old hands and newcomers in the awards.
"It's good to see new blood coming through, but there was a few who have been around for a while."
He was talking about winners Delistar and BurgerFuel, which took out the awards for the seventh time in the outstanding caterer and outstanding take-out categories respectively.
Halamoana Grant 2013: Nickolas Han - PIHMS.
Outstanding Hospitality Achievement: Dave Haskell - The Mayfair.
Outstanding Owner Operator: Kerry Vosseler - Chaos Cafe.
Outstanding Barista: Tayla Rapira - Sandwich Extreme.
Outstanding Host/Hostess: Ajinkya Jagdale (AJ) - The Hour Glass.
Outstanding Bartender: Ajinkya Jagdale (AJ) - The Hour Glass.
Outstanding Chef: Sohnke Danger - Okurukuru.
Outstanding Trainee Chef: Nickolas Han - PIHMS.
Outstanding Supplier: Bidvest.
Outstanding Bar: The Hour Glass.
Outstanding Take-Out: BurgerFuel.
Outstanding Sales Representative: Mike Schofield - Bidvest.
Outstanding Beverage Sales Representative: Scott Baker - DB Breweries.
Outstanding Cafe: Chaos Cafe.
Outstanding Restaurant: Table @ Nice Hotel.
Outstanding Caterer: Delistar.
Outstanding Waiter/Waitress: Rae Davey - Okurukuru.
Outstanding International Establishment: India Today.
Outstanding South Taranaki Personality: Linda Morrison - Tairoa Lodge.
Outstanding South Taranaki Establishment: Marracbo Cafe.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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