Rakino Easter Treats 2024

Rakino Easter Round-up

Firstly, thank you to the hardy Rakino-ites that humoured me by turning up at the unreasonable hour of 10am for the first of the #ecofest2024 events organised for Easter. The icy south-west wind was howling into West Bay as our group hugged the cliff and hacked and poisoned rhamnus, but the views were spectacular.
Elsewhere, the moth plant removalists were hard at work ripping out the devil’s weed and plucking pods. Bert has an enviable and cunningly wrought device which is just the ticket for this tedious job. It’s a sort of hooky prongy thing on a long pole, and he should probably patent it.

Julianne killing rhamnus

The second event was a 4pm low-tide beach clean-up at the northern end of West Bay, and it was really cool to see how many kids were there. My expectations for buy-in of my fanciful ideas are usually quite low, so massive thanks to everyone who turned up. Unfortunately the beach rubbish at West Bay is mainly small pieces of plastic which are entwined in the leaf and feather middens of the high-tide mark. Common items were foil lolly wrappers, small indeterminate pieces of plastic bags, and jandals. It wouldn’t be a beach clean without finding clothing pegs and soft silicone baits, but my favourite find was a foil wrapper claiming to contain a ‘fart bomb’, and Steve Livesay dragged a sodden duvet inner and cover up the saddle track which impressed me mightily. The beach was also smothered in Lion’s Mane jellies, some of whom were clutching onto bits of plastic. I asked them nicely before removing it…

Lion’s Mane Jellies en masse

Buckets of beach rubbish

I didn’t attend the Sunday RRA meeting as planned because I was setting up for Market Day, but I hear that much gratitude was given to Lez in the form of many rounds of applause, there is progress on the Hall, and the progress on the Fire Shed is self-evident, so many thanks to Chris, the Stephen’s (Thomas and Wong), Henry, and John Beasley, plus everyone else who has worked on the shed. It’s looking great. Let’s hope it doesn’t need to be utilised in a hurry.

Harriet played a blinder in generously offering up her garden for a Market Day fundraiser for the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Trust. The kids’ activities for humans of all ages went down a treat, and I reckon we should expand on those for future events. A huge thank you to everyone that helped out, provided materials, time, and participated in this event.

Pinch pots and painting

A colourful garden party!

Thanks to:
* Lez for jigsaw cut outs, and John for the test pots and treats,
*Lucy for teaching pinchpots,
*Reilly, Natalie, Carolyn, Dylan, Jo, Jim Wheeler, Lisa, and Harriet for their creations.
*Eleanor for her paintings and life drawings.
*Bert on sausage sizzle with William weeping over onions in the kitchen.
*Simon for the poster, Gary for helping set up, and me for the interminable spruiking..
*Lyndsey & Caroline for their vintage goodies.
*All the Rakino-ites who supported.

We raised $1350 for Westpac… which will be paid this week.

Bert on sausage sizzle duties.

It was also the last weekend ever of the Woody Bay Pizzeria as Alf hangs up his pizza paddle. We dropped in at Monday lunchtime and trade was roaring in the calm of the bay after a few days of a brutal westerly. Woody Bay was full of boats, and pizza eaters.

I hope everyone else had a relaxing Easter, but I had to go home for a rest. . .

Woody Bay on Easter Monday

Rakino Easter Market

Join us across three venues for the Easter Market, Sunday March 31st, 1pm – 3pm.
Our hosts are Lyndsey at 51 Ocean View Rd. with a selection of vintage treasures, Harriet at 6 Ocean View with a group show of artwork, crafts, a pottery making activity for kids, and Wim and Jo on the corner of South Pacific and Woody Bay Rd. for kids clothes and hair accessories.
There will be a sausage sizzle at 6 Ocean View, with all proceeds going to the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Trust.
Please bring gold coins for the sausage sizzle, $3 to an excellent cause.

Easter Art Ramble

Art Ramble Map

As our art space is red-stickered this Easter we are hosting an ‘art ramble’. There are four venues as listed on the map, and you are all welcome to ramble around to each of them between 2pm & 4pm on Easter Sunday, or if those hours don’t suit txt or call the host to arrange a more convivial time, possibly when the sun is shining. The Easter forecast is challenging, but don’t let a howling gale stop you. Slap on a rain-slicker and a pair of red-bands, grab yourself a refreshing rambling beverage, and set forth! The exercise in gale force winds will be bracing, and you’ll cross paths with your fellow windswept islanders while seeing what the island artistes have been working on. Start at either end of the map; it’s a very small island and the distances are short.

Here are a few tempting samples of art to view…

Desirable bronze lancewood leaves by Jim Wheeler.
Delicious discs by Holly Shepheard
A natural history plethora of wearable beetles & moths by Lisa West
Carolyn MacKenzies ever popular Rakino flora & fauna paintings
Beautiful pearls by Harriet Sommerville.

Labour Weekend Market Day

We haven’t had a market on Rakino for a few years, so a few enthusiastic people have decided to have a crack at reinstating it on the Rakino events calendar.
It’s going to happen this year on October 23rd, 1pm till 3-ish, down at the Hall, after the RRA meeting. There will be a $10 a market table koha to be donated to the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Trust.

If you have bits and bobs to sell, come on down, and if you have some cash burning a hole in your pocket, definitely come on down. Come on down regardless.
There will be a sausage sizzle, so bring some gold coins for that, and Jennie Cruse will be busking, so bring some gold coins for her.
There will be t-shirts, tote-bags, cool pottery mugs, preserves, pearls, and much more. The art rooms will be open also, for painting ceramics, and jewels. Cash transfers are available.
If you need more info, email me, lisa@lisawest.co.nz

We look forward to seeing your lovely faces on Sunday. 🙂

Tiny Museum reviewed

My documentation of the event could have been better, but I was a tad flustered as I was still running around at 5pm trying to assign numbers to the art work for sale. Thankfully Holly was keeping calm like a professional.

Dylan and Simon were happy to pose for paparazzi shots, but sadly I missed the opportunity to take any photos of the throng. I was too busy debating about how to play sea shanties successfully through the speaker to pay proper attention.
I can confirm the ladies of the Backhouse-Smith household were the height of glamour, and I’m dismayed at my failure to document their fabulosity. 🙁

Posing for blurry paparazzi shots whilst obscuring Katie Blundell’s fabulous artwork.
A Michelangelo moment

There was a brief flurry of consternation as Billie the Dog opportunistically made off with McCann family heirloom ‘shark-stick’, but the treasure was quickly retrieved, and the saliva removed. As Josh remarked drily “well technically, it is a stick”. I’ve made similar faux pas in galleries myself, so don’t wish to cast aspersions at Billie. Scuba Steve was also a very popular exhibit, as were Dylan’s beach fossicked skulls. A certain wall-mounted viciously fanged skull kept the punters guessing, and many were surprised to discover it was a feral cat.

‘Shark stick’ in lower center left of image.

The Tiny Museum in situ
Skulls, sponges, and viewing devices.

Many thanks to everyone who came to the opening event, visited the Tiny Museum, brought along delicious snacks, and generously lent their treasures, display units, trees, and artwork over the Easter period. The weather was a little unkind, but the turn out was pretty good regardless. I was particularly happy to see how many Rakino kids turned up with their beautiful artwork to stick to the undersea background!

Art from Rakino Kids!

The purpose of the Tiny Museum portion of the Easter art show was to draw attention to marine and terrestrial environment of Rakino, to celebrate our 20 years predator-free status, but also to make us think about where we might go from here. The displays of gecko & skink posters will remain for now, as will the posters of the photographs taken of the Woody Bay & Otata snorkel trips. There are QR codes next to some items, and if you scan them with a code reader you can find out more about them. There is also plenty of artwork still available. Money was raised for the Westpac Helicopter thanks to Harriet’s generosity, and there is still potentially more money to be raised thanks to a further donation of an art work by Anne McCabe, courtesy of Mark & Julianne.

Work from Julianne Taylor, Christine Rose, Albie McCabe, and Carolyn MacKenzie.

A series of unframed prints from Julianne Taylor.
Harriet and Adrian

Carolyn MacKenzie’s lovely paintings.

Thanks All, and see you next time.

The Tiny Museum @ ORCA

Easter Art Show on Rakino Island

This Easter we have a theme for the Art Show on account of the fact it’s 20 years since Rakino became pest free. In addition to the usual great art available to purchase we are setting up photo displays about marine and terrestrial conservation on Rakino. There will be glorious gecko, and sublime seascapes.

We have an area we are styling as the ‘Tiny Museum’, an open cabinet of curiosities containing beach combed treasures and objet. We have a large wall dedicated to displaying sea critters created by ‘kino kids, so I’m looking forward to receiving lots of marine flora and fauna to attach to our undersea background.

Below are a few tasters of some of the work on show; more images to come. 🙂

Detail from screenprint ‘Too good to be true’ by Katie Blundell

Bellbird by Carolyn MacKenzie

inter-tidal brooches by Lisa West

Crab claw pendants in wood by Tania Patterson

How Freakin’ Good Was THAT Rakino???

I’m arrogantly confident I’m speaking for all who turned out when I say that JT & Agnostics with Holly Shepheard was another ripper of an island event.

The pre-gig outdoor lounge with likely lads.

JT is bass player John Thomson, and the Agnostics are a confection of Maciek Hrybowicz on guitar, Bill Forrest on saxophone, and Freddie Limbert on drums, all accomplished musicians from Waikato.

Holly Shepheard guested on vocals, and we were also treated to a set featuring Massey Ormsby as guest vocalist, with the addition of Rakino’s Tom Donaldson on saxophone.

The first set seduced the audience in gently with a set of blues originals by John, followed up by a second set in which Holly exercised her impressive pipes to the approval of the enraptured crowd.

Holly exercising her impressive pipes.
Guilty, as always…

Rakino knows how to turn on a hooley, so it wasn’t long till the carefully placed chairs were thrust back against the walls and the the hedonism started in earnest, led in large part by Mr. Garth M. Broadhead who knows how to cut a mean rug. He spun and dipped his dancing partners with aplomb, and kept the admiring audience in thrall.

Mr Garth M. Broadhead rug-cutting.

The rest of us ponied and chicken-scratched, and Billie the Dog participated in some horizontal dance moves later in the evening. Even the committed outdoor loungers and boozers were enticed inside for a bacchanalian blues boogie.

Bacchanalian Blues Boogie.

My abiding memory of the third set was of the band with Massey at the helm doing a beaut version of ‘Wild West End’, making Dire Straits sound soulful and cool… again. 🙂

Tom on sax! Massey to the right on vocals!

Our much-loved Hall juts precariously and spectacularly above the tide, and as the last set was ending I glanced out the open window and to my discomfort spotted the sea churning in, the inundating waves of the very high tides of recent days. I noticed the sea was at wharf height and the waves had created visible puddles as we hefted the couches back indoors post-gig.
The after parties continued for those with fortitude or limited sense of self preservation, and I had to crawl Hulk-wards at 3.30am because I’m a lightweight.
Blues and sybaritism were the winners on the day.

Sybaritism winning.

My view on the hall

As you’ll know, the position of the hall is something of a problem, as king tides can cause inundation and damage. Recent goings on in the RRA have prompted me to have a think about what should happen to the hall, I poked around council reports, costings, and the possible solutions. It looks like boiling down to:

Two Options
There seem to be only two solutions on the table, demolish the hall and do a new build, as proposed by the RRA committee or the Lift and Shift option, as recommended in the two local board reports.

Proposed move and lift
Lift & Shift the Hall

Demolish and build new

My preferred option is for a lift and shift, for the following reasons:

A new build will not be fit for purpose
Discussion with community members, along with the results of a survey about what people want and value from facilities showed that a gallery, art space, and, library, and music venue are core requirements rather than peripheral.

Although square meterage wasn’t discussed in the meeting, it was mentioned that library, artists studio space, and gallery would no longer exist.

A hall with capacity for 40 or so people negates its use as a music venue, so effectively, the new build proposal fails to meet almost all of the community’s requirements.

History and Character
While I’m not a diehard old building preserver, the existing structure does have a quirky presence and a long history in the gulf, having been originally constructed as WWII army barracks on Motuihe Island.

With a budget of $300,000, a new building is unlikely to be an aesthetic and architectural marvel.

It would be less wasteful and, I think, more in line with the values of the island to re-use rather than trash and rebuild. The local board report suggests the hall is basically sound, and good for another 30 – 50 years.

Easter at ORCA

Easter was our second showcase of the year at Our Rakino Community Arts gallery, and it kicked off with a community get-together organised by the participating artists on Good Friday. A big thank you to all the artists, and to everyone that turned up over the weekend to support their efforts! It was arranged at very short notice, so I was really impressed at how it came together.
We hope to be able to present another showcase for Labour Weekend, with more artists participating, and a dedicated space for Rakino kids to show their artworks too. I’m contemplating a Rakino logo/flag contest. Bellbirds with laser eyes coming to an inbox near me…

It was quite a throng!
Regular arts enthusiasts Elisabeth and David putting their best smiles forward.
Lauren and Mr. Felix Fox.
An admirer of Holly’s work.
Sheryl Garden’s lovely drawings were very popular….
….as were Carolyn MacKenzie’s vibrant paintings!
Julianne Taylor’s detailed etchings were coveted. 🙂
Mia Straka’s beautiful contemporary jewellery.
Jim Wheeler’s bronzes and prints were snapped up…
Harriet’s pearls were in demand!

Easter showcase at ORCA gallery

After consultation with the permanent artists of Rakino, we’ve decided to christen Our Rakino Community Art gallery ORCA, because who doesn’t love a snappy acronym?

This Easter will be ORCA‘s inaugural Easter Showcase with a snappy new name, so we invite the Rakino community to join us for a get-together upstairs at ORCA to partake of a visual feast, as well as comestibles and cold beverages. BYO also welcomed! Proceedings kick off at 5.30pm.

Biggest scribble, image courtesy of Mia Straka

We will have a selection of work on offer from full-time and part-time artists, all affiliated to Rakino Island. The final list of participants is still to be confirmed, but includes Carolyn, Clinton, Dylan, Harriet, Jim, Julianne, Lisa, Mia, & Sheryl.

Nikau, image courtesy of Carolyn MacKenzie

The gallery will be open daily over the Easter break, 10.30am till 5.00pm, for all your art requirements, and if any assistance is required out of hours, you can call or txt Lisa on 027 340 7007.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Bronze ray creatures, image courtesy of Lisa West