Auckland Tourism releases huge list of upcoming events

By: Media Release

A diverse range of sporting, arts and cultural events will be on offer in Auckland over the next 12 months, including two much-anticipated sporting events that will bring thousands of visitors to the region.

Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED), which invests in major events on behalf of Auckland Council, today announced the 27 major events that form the basis of the 2016/17 Major Events Portfolio.

The events supported by ATEED range from the debut New Zealand Flower & Garden Show; Auckland’s cultural favourites Diwali, Pasifika and the Auckland Lantern Festival; and the second edition of the Tāmaki Herenga Waka Festival; to sporting blockbusters like the ITM Auckland SuperSprint V8 Supercars at Pukekohe and the NRL Auckland Nines.

Auckland will also welcome tens of thousands of international visitors when it hosts the World Masters Games 2017 and three matches in the 2017 British & Irish Lions Series, including two tests.

"Our local and home-grown events will be a wonderful complement to the biggest multi-sport event in the world and an old-school international rugby tour," says Mayor Len Brown.

"Auckland’s Major Events Portfolio is an investment, made on behalf of Auckland Council, in order to bring new money into the Auckland economy by attracting domestic and international visitors, and to enhance Auckland’s reputation as an interesting, dynamic and vibrant place to live, work, study and visit, where residents and visitors have the chance to attend world-class events.

"We can expect to welcome about 25,000 athletes to Auckland for the World Masters Games, as well as their supporters and other spectators, while the 2005 Lions tour brought nearly 20,000 visitors to Auckland. That’s tens of thousands of people staying in our hotels, eating and drinking in our restaurants, and buying products in our shops, supporting local businesses and jobs."

Since Auckland’s Major Events Strategy was approved by Auckland Council in 2011, ATEED-sponsored major events have contributed $204 million to the regional economy and 1,265,000 visitor nights.

ATEED chief executive Brett O’Riley, says ATEED continues to fine-tune its approach to investing in major events in order to deliver the best results for Auckland.

"We are halfway through the scope of the 10-year Major Events Strategy, which is delivering great results for Auckland. Since it was implemented, Auckland has gained a reputation as a world-class events city, including the latest announcement of Auckland being shortlisted for the 2016 Ultimate Sports City Award, capability in the local events industry has grown considerably, and Aucklanders have a good awareness of the benefits major events can deliver.

"It’s important we challenge ourselves and ask how major events can play a greater role than they currently do in achieving lasting outcomes for Auckland and Aucklanders. ATEED has a responsibility to ensure that the ratepayer money we invest in major events, on behalf of Auckland Council, generates the maximum possible benefit for Aucklanders and that the strategy is fit for purpose not just now but into the future," says Brett O’Riley.

"This may mean investing in an events portfolio which not only delivers the immediate economic benefits we have seen to date, but one that has greater emphasis on long-term benefits for Auckland’s people, its profile and its businesses."

ATEED, with advice from a range of local and international event industry and civic stakeholders, has been refreshing Auckland’s Major Events Strategy and will confirm the updated strategy later in the year.

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