In February 2017, for five magical days, Napier will once again be transported back to the 1920s and 1930s with the famous Art Deco Festival. Celebrating their unique heritage as well as the fashion, music, arts, cars, planes, trains and unbelievable charm that made the Art Deco era so special.
During the weekend, the whole town takes a ride back to the 1920s and 1930s to make you live a series of amazing events that encourages you to discover and celebrate their heritage in a fresh light.
A fabulous program awaits you but it can be difficult to choose amongst so many events and activities planned throughout the weekend. So, at ezi, we decided to help you choose…see below a choice of 10 must-do events to attend.
This is one of the festival’s most popular event! And it is way worth it. Dress down for this fun event where depression style procession will take you through the city
They were grim days – but you will eat well at this fantastic dinner event. Start at the Marine Parade Soup Kitchen, then pack up all your cares and woes and trudge to Memorial Square. You will get your main course and pud and Tin Town – plain 30s food, but it’s good for you!
Don’t forget to book your tickets early so you don’t miss out! It is held on both the Friday and the Saturday evenings from 7pm.
Death By Chocolate
To stay in the food theme, why don’t you attend one of the 2 Death By Chocolate sessions on the Saturday. Have you ever indulged in so much chocolate that you thought you would collapse? Join the other chocoholics for “Death by Chocolate”, a dark Deco afternoon tea which will make you experience scrumptious crafted chocolate treats. But don’t worry, it wouldn’t be an afternoon tea without tea!
Held in the so suitable Dunstall’s Memorial Chapel, you won’t need to worry about the result of so much chocolate as you will be in very good hands, every table will have their own undertaker to take care of you every need…
Cafe Crawl de Luxe
If the progressive dinner is not for you of if you attended the Friday evening session, then how about a progressive dinner on the Saturday? The event takes you to three superb restaurants in the seaside suburb of Ahuriri – a beautiful backdrop to a unique dinner experience.
This year, this cornerstone event has been given a makeover by taking you to enjoy the culinary masterpieces of Ahuriri’s restaurants. You will meet your group at the first venue for bubbles and entrée, the second venue is where you will be served the main and lastly the third venue a dessert. This event is not BYO but don’t worry, a full bar service is available for you at the restaurants. Deco Dress is essential.
To finish the weekend in style, gather your friends, Deco finery, gazebo or picnic rug and set up by the seaside for a relaxed Sunday afternoon in the sunshine. Bring your finest tea setting and have it all on display at your picnic by 1.30pm when the judges will choose the best tea setting. Award prizes will go to the best settings.
If the weather is wet – yes it does occasionally rain in sunny Hawke’s Bay – the picnic will be held on the foot path in Emerson Street beneath the shop canopies.
Black Tie Ball in the Opera House Plaza
Now this is an event you absolutely want to attend. Held on Thursday 16 February at 7.30pm at the stylish and iconic Hawke’s Bay Opera House Plaza, and with a purpose built dance floor, a beautiful meal by Dish Catering, outstanding Sileni Estate wines and great music by the Hawke’s Bay Jazz Club Big Band, this promises to be a magical evening. Strictly black tie – dress to impress!
Transport wise, there will be a bus transfer option from Napier when confirming your tickets. Tickets are selling real quickly – book now so you don’t miss out!
Deco Spontane and Deco Conga Line
This one is new to the 2017 Tremains Art Deco Festival.
During the 1930s people were ravaged by the great depression so dancing became their escape and their outlet for expression. The dance styles became wild, carefree and uplifting.
Deco Spontane is your chance to express yourself and perform Charleston with hundreds of other Art Deco enthusiast. Join in the lesson taught on the night, then join local celebrities and the Born to Move dancers for an exciting 5 minute crescendo.
In the very first year of the Art Deco Weekend a massive conga line was formed which went through the streets of Napier. They are bringing it back in 2017! Right after the Art Deco Spontane, the Art Deco Dancers will lead a conga line, starting at the Sound Shell. Pick up strangers, make new friends, have fun while helping Napier bringing back a piece of history.
Costumes, Coiffure and bathing belles competitions
Whether you want to participate or just admire these wonderful women, this is a must-do! Hels at the Sound Shell on the Saturday at 2pm, Costumes and Coiffure is a Deco costume parade, followed by Bathing Belles, a Deco bathing suit costume parade. Both are free to enter, so polish your shoes and preen your feathers to join this fun event! Dress to impress to win a prize.
Soap Box Derby
Oh… a Soap Box derby! How fun is that? How can it not be one of the festival’s most populat events? The annual Soap Box Derby competition, where childrens and parents race their home-made carts to the thrills of thousands who come to watch and cheer them on. Priceless! Great prizes for the participants and a lot of fun!
It is not too late to start building your cart! Races starts on Sunday 19th February at 10.30am.
Ahuriri Dinner Express
Feel like in a 1930s movie for a few hours with the Ahuriri Dinner Express. Enjoy great food on this train wagon revamped for the occasion. Boarding at Napier Train Station, this progressive dinner will make you enjoy an entrée by Dish Catering and a fabulous complimentary drink from Sileni Estates while on the run to Hastings and back to West Quay in Ahuriri. You will then disembark in Ahuriri for your main course and dessert. After dinner, it’s back aboard the railcar to travel to Napier Station.
The Prohibition Party is back in 2017 and is sure to stir all your senses. A little party had never killed anyone…unless the Federal Police arrive to enforce the prohibition law.
Shhh…be discrete! – the location of the party and door password will be advised at the time of booking!
Relive the Florida dark underground nightlife during the prohibition period as you experience bootleg liquor, non-stop music, live entertainment, casino tables with Deco Dollars provided and American themed snacks – topped off with the adrenaline rush of not knowing when the night might be raided.
So, what are you waiting for? Napier is waiting for you and your best Art Deco attires.