Grants and sponsorship needed for RWC events

Funds from grants and sponsorships will be needed to top up the $85,000 pledged by the Lottery Grants Board for three Rugby World Cup events in Queenstown.

Destination Queenstown recently received confirmation from the board $35,000 would be allocated for a jazz concert, $30,000 for a food, wine and art themed event and $20,000 for an event showcasing the Wakatipu's living heritage.

Marketing manager Graham Budd said DQ originally applied for $250,000 in October-November last year, but the board could only set aside $85,000. The board asked if the revised sum was sufficient and, if it was, invited DQ to apply again, Mr Budd said.

"We're hoping to leverage additional funding and go to community trusts and sponsorships. We have revised the events we're looking to put on."

Mr Budd said he would brief the Queenstown Lakes district's newly-appointed Rugby World Cup co-ordinator, Jono Sutherland, on the events part of his role and they would then develop a plan to gather an extra $10,000 to $30,000.

The board granted $35,000 for "Queenstown Festival JazzFest", which was actually allocated to a linked but separate international jazz event on Earnslaw Park.

The concert, fundable in its own right, would be scheduled for October 23 and act as a warm-up for the final game of the world cup tournament.

The timing and type of event allowed resources such as stage and equipment to be shared with the Queenstown ASB Jazzfest, which was already scheduled for October 20 to 24.

A total of $30,000 went to the "Matches Made in Heaven: Food, Wine and Art" umbrella event loosely based on food festivals around the country, such as Wellington on a Plate.

Food, wine and art was the "working theme" for a series of events with community and commercial support, which could be held in the Wakatipu over a month.

The board granted $20,000 for a historical entertainment event called History Alive, coincidentally the name of the corporate and incentive company in Arrowtown which featured the Arrow Miners' Band and the Buckingham Belles dancing girls on its books.

When asked how many world cup fans were expected to make a detour to Queenstown, Mr Budd said it was very difficult to know. More work needed to be done with the Ministry of Economic Development.

Independently bought ticket sale numbers were made available in December, but not package buyer numbers.

The post-earthquake change in South Island venues would also affect estimates, he said.

The three events were "the opportunity for both the community, Rugby World Cup visitors and other visitors to showcase in one space our history, environment and artistic capabilities and celebrate," Mr Budd said.


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