Cromwell ready to light up winter this weekend
Wrap up warm and prepare to light up winter's dark skies with the return of a popular annual festival to the Cromwell Mall this weekend.
This year the town's Light Up Winter will kick off earlier, with the main event, a mass lantern release finishing off festivities.
The plan is for more than 1,000 paper lanterns to be lit and released at 7.30pm across the road from the mall at the Big Fruit Reserve.
Lanterns can be booked before the big night, and they are flame retardant, completely biodegradable and free from any wire that could harm wildlife, organisers say.
But it is not just the lanterns that will be offering some sparkle - the Light Up Your Hat competition is back, encouraging festival goers to get crafty and create a cool hat that lights up.
There are other activities and entertainment planned for young and old, including live music, fire dancers, creative workshops for kids, glow-in-the-dark face painting, and market and food stalls, plenty of which will be raising funds for local schools and community groups.
First started in 2017, the event, organised by the Cromwell Promotions Group with funding support from local businesses, including this year's main sponsor Aotea Daikin, and the council, aims to bring the community together to banish the winter blues.
Light Up Winter will run from 4pm until 8pm this Saturday, August 5, and a gold coin entry donation is asked for. Lanterns can be booked online here for $10.
Main image (Brodie Reed): Cromwellians can get creative this weekend with the Light Up Your Hat competition at the town's annual midwinter festival.