Spring River Festival a hit

21:02, Nov 03 2013
River Festival
WATER RACING: Competitors line up ahead of a stand-up paddle board race around New Brighton Pier as part of the Spring River Festival.
Paddle boarders
SPRING RIVER FESTIVAL: Competitors paddle board around New Brighton Pier.
Spring Kites
SPRING RIVER FESTIVAL: kites fly over New Brighton beach as part of the event.

Thousands of people attended Christchurch's second annual Spring River Festival yesterday.

Last year about 1500 people went to the event to celebrate the importance of the Avon River in the life of the city.

Avon-Otakaro Network (AvON) co-chair Evan Smith said he was ''very pleased'' even more turned out this year.

Up to 3000 people attended this year's event, which aimed to highlight the potential of the Avon River red zone to be turned into a river park and reserve.

Smith hoped the attendance numbers reflected support for the group's vision.

''We really want to see the potential of these assets realised.''

Newly elected Christchurch mayor Lianne Dalziel officially opened the festival at Kerr's Reach, one of her first ceremonial duties since taking office.

The festival followed the passage downstream of a specially carved festival waka from the city early in the morning and finished at New Brighton in the afternoon.

A grand regatta, family concert and kite fest were also highlights of the festival.

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River Festival
WATER RACING: Competitors line up ahead of a stand-up paddle board race around New Brighton Pier as part of the Spring River Festival.

The Press