Fireworks and bonfires will light up the sky this weekend at
Guy Fawkes celebrations in Weston and Waimate, but the SPCA
is cautioning residents to take precautions with their pets.
With the annual Weston School Fireworks display poised to
celebrate its 10th year tonight, organisers said they had
their fingers crossed for a fine evening after high winds
forced the event to be rescheduled two years ago. MetService
is forecasting a southwest change with rain for Oamaru
Event organiser Kirsten Welsh said this year would be "bigger
and better" than ever, with $7700 worth of fireworks primed
to go off.
Mrs Welsh said the event, which would feature a magician, the
Waitaki Girls School Dance Club and an ice-cream-eating
contest, hoped to raise about $20,000 for Weston School.
"It's a huge night for our community and it's a
well-supported family event, the children look forward to
this every year."
• The Bushtown Waimate heritage group is holding a bonfire
tomorrow. Bushtown Waimate secretary Ann Dennison said
although it was not possible to have fireworks at the
Bushtown Heritage Site this year, because of the number of
trees, there would still be a bonfire and guy.
Mrs Dennison said the event, which would raise money for the
Bushtown working history site, would include plenty of
entertainment, with fire-eaters, music and refreshments and
"This year, just to get the thing going for a family evening,
we have the entertainment coming up, guy competitions, games
for the kids and cake stalls on the Bushtown heritage site."
She said it was hoped that next year "cold spark" fireworks
could be used.
North Otago SPCA president Aveley Gameson said although
everyone wanted to have fun at the weekend, it was important
that pet owners took precautions to keep animals safe.
"Make sure they are secure in their homes. A couple of years
ago we had a very sad case with a maltese dog, who as soon as
the door was open, because they were so frightened, ran out
and straight across the road and was run over. So it's
securing your pets, even if it is just putting them in their
favourite bedroom and shutting the door.
"They don't understand and they will just take flight, and
this is where the tragedies happen with animals, because they
are so frightened."
Pet owners should also talk to neighbours to find out what
time they might be having their own back-yard fireworks
displays, she said.