Chalium Poppy

I didn't think I'd find such a  world-class, classical musician living here in Mount Maunganui. Born in England, Chalium S P Poppy is an exceptional choral conductor and bass-baritone who has  chosen New Zealand as his home. Musicians... Read More

Wagon to the past

The drive to Paengaroa took all of 10 minutes. It can take me longer to get to Greerton Village or Bethlehem Town Centre. I was actually planning to go to Maketu with our photographer Bruce Barnard, but decided to call in to the antique shop at Paengaroa... Read More

Tarantulas, guns and bobcats

“I'm off to Russia, going mountain climbing,” said Jo Morgan when I caught up with her last year. I mulled on this afterwards. She seemed to be away for a good chunk of the time Gareth was campaigning for the General Election. Coincidence?... Read More

Guinness Down Under

It has taken the writing of a book about a famous brew to bring together two local members of the Guinness family. Tauranga resident Glennis Smith is a sixth-generation descendant of Ireland's Arthur Guinness who, legend has it, created the famous... Read More

Southern fare to share

The premises at 70 Maunganui Road  has seen many a diner come and go since its construction over 40 years ago, but it's safe to say it hasn't housed anything  quite like The Fat Cow.Run by Jorge Arizaga, a Mexican native who moved... Read More

Athenree Homestead

Despite living most of my life  in the Bay of Plenty, I had yet to visit the Athenree Homestead. I knew little about it before deciding to go to their annual Vintage Christmas Fair in November, and so was quite amazed to discover not only a restored... Read More

Red Hat Dames

The word ‘motoring' came to mind when  I drove out to Te Puna to meet the Red Hat Dames. I had plucked my red hat from my growing hat collection and set off to meet them over lunch. Crossing the Wairoa Bridge I found myself motoring... Read More

Peace Garden at the Mount

I found a peace garden at the Mount.  I noticed a sign over a gateway leading to it one day when walking past St Peter's Anglican Church in Victoria Street,  so I went exploring. Jenny Carmichael, who was helping with the gardening near... Read More

Chugging towards a million

One Sunday afternoon after Christmas  I decided to revisit my ten-year-old self  and went for a train ride at Palmerville Station. Located at Memorial Park,  Tauranga's Miniature Railway has been in operation for 38 years.I arrived... Read More

Pania of Papamoa

Recently I went to a “Goodness Me I'm Plastic Free” workshop in Papamoa. I'd been following Pania Edward's family journey since mid-way through 2017.  Her son Andrei's teacher at Tahatai Coast School, Shona Poppe,... Read More

Make a splash in your Barrier Reef pool

In summer, there's nothing better than splashing around in your own pool.  It is your home's outdoor feature piece, a friend-maker and a guaranteed family-fun day. If you're in the market for a new pool, Pools Plus Moreare ready... Read More

Tauranga's hidden gem

Quietly tucked away in Otumoetai  is one of Tauranga's oldest historic homes, Maungawhare. Built 140 years ago in 1878, the private kauri homestead was once the hub of entertainment and elegant  garden parties.I was introduced to the... Read More

Tour de Paengaroa

Ruve Baker and Alyson Tomalin were getting ready for one of their Wednesday adventures. They've often driven down the Tauranga Eastern Link, and were now planning to ride the cycleway running alongside it.“We can see it from the expressway,”... Read More

Fixing your feet

Do you suffer from foot pain that just won't go away? Do you have bunions and think surgery is the only option? The team at Corrective Foot Solutions  might have the answer.The clinic is a podiatry practice specialising in an effective and... Read More

Eat a rainbow

Entertaining and educational,  Tracy Hardy's ‘Eat a Rainbow' app is also simple and brilliant. “How did you come up with the idea?” I ask her.  “Well you know how you get told to eat all the colours of the... Read More

How not to die

Late December I kept receiving text messages from a friend saying: “Hey, how about you write about Veganuary?”  Finding a free moment I messaged back: “What's that?” She replied: “It's like Movember, but... Read More

What's up Mr G?

Graham Hoete, aka Mr G, was busy before and after Christmas painting a mural on the back wall of the Mount Maunganui cinema. Again. Specialising in photorealism with spray paint, he'd previously painted his father there. Now he was painting highly... Read More

Jacaranda capital of NZ

Tauranga's jacarandas are simply stunning, with a canopy of Persian blue flowers on the trees and carpeting the ground beneath.Giving Tauranga a ‘Jacaranda January', this season they started flowering before Christmas.Tauranga city... Read More

Hairini bridge residents

Rattling across the  Hairini Bridge, a common sight for drivers is the camera-bedecked folk peering over the western side of the bridge at the wooden trestles below. They're checking out the progress of the young chicks that hatch there each... Read More

Work yourself happy

If you are an employer and you want to leave a legacy that will impact future generations, then local businesswoman Wendy Macphail urges you to create a workplace that fosters employees' well-being and happiness.  It will also hit your bottom... Read More