Chance for 64 Kiwis to party with royals

ANNA TURNER
Last updated 05:00 21/09/2012

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Many Kiwis might feel like royalty on their birthday, but a select few will get the chance to spend their birthday with the royals.

Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall will visit New Zealand from November 11 to 16, which coincides with the prince's 64th birthday on November 14.

To mark the occasion, a select group of Kiwis whose birthday is on November 14 are being offered the opportunity to celebrate the day with the Prince of Wales at his private birthday party.

Sixty-four people will be chosen by ballot and each person will be able to take one guest.

A Statistics New Zealand spokesman said there were about 11,000 people in New Zealand whose birthday was November 14.

Governor-General Sir Jerry Mateparae, who is one of the 11,000, welcomed the initiative.

“The Diamond Jubilee visit is a chance to recognise 60 years of remarkable service to New Zealand by our Queen," he said.

"That we also have the chance to welcome the Prince of Wales and celebrate with him and the duchess on this special day is, if you'll excuse the pun, the icing on the cake.”

A Government House spokesman said the format of the evening would be kept under wraps until closer to the date.

"It will definitely be Kiwi-themed in food and music. It will be a fun celebration and a great opportunity for New Zealanders who are also celebrating their special day to join with the Prince of Wales on his birthday," he said.

He said the guests would not need to take presents.

"It would seem rather unusual to be bringing presents to your own party. As they often say, ‘It's your presence, rather than your presents, that we want'," he said.

The application form can be downloaded from the Government House website, gg.govt.nz.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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