NZ IceFest opens in Christchurch today, Friday 14 September from 5pm and runs for a month. For more information visit

Mayor Bob Parker states that Christchurch’s status as a Gateway to Antarctica is invaluable. The new biennial festival shows the city’s commitment to events while the city rebuilds.

“Christchurch has been a Gateway city to the ice for over 100 years from the Heroic exploration era of Scott and Shackleton, to the international scientists who continue to use Christchurch as their point of departure to the ice.”

“What better way to celebrate the enormously rich New Zealand-Antarctic heritage than through NZ IceFest which brings Antarctica to Christchurch in a very creative way. The large scale of this festival is extremely heartening and will provide a welcome opportunity to have some fun at the opening and over the next month.”

Hagley Park ‘Ice Station’ will be lit up from 5pm and the fun will continue when the Mayor formally opens the festival before a show of fireworks in Antarctic inspired colours at 7pm. Those with a flipper fetish will be overjoyed to learn that anyone who dresses as a penguin skates on the ice shelf-themed outdoor rink for free.

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