Numbers down at the Gathering

Evening Post, 1 January 2002

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A much smaller than usual crowd of up to 6000 danced and tranced the New Year in at the Gathering dance party near Upper Takaka.

"It was a good night on site," Gathering marketing manager Danny O'Donnell. "No stress. No troubles. Everyone pretty happy. There were no reports of trouble."

A 22-year-old Palmerston North man was taken to hospital with burns to his left hand, and a 29-year-old Christchurch woman was evacuated with a broken ankle.

Organisers put last night's crowd at between 5000 and 6000. Although this is about half the number who attended last year, Mr O'Donnell said more were expected to see top international acts who would play on the remaining two nights of the festival.

The Gathering site is divided into several zones, each with its own type of music and atmosphere, including a trance zone, house music zone, and a drum- and-bass zone.

Most people gathered in the trance zone for New Year, where multi-media act Pitch Black provided electronic music with a throbbing beat.

Their act was followed by fireworks and fire dancers, enthralling the happy crowd that included many families with young children.

Costumes and glow sticks were popular and almost every dancer had some sort of fluorescent, glowing light.

Gatherers dressed as demons, pixies and space men mingled with other revellers as they saw in the New Year.

Numbers at Golden Bay's Vision Party more than doubled this year, with more than 2000 people at the event yesterday and daytrippers swelling the crowd to see the old year out.

The party is a fundraising event for the Visionz Trust, a charitable trust that aims to promote awareness of organics and permaculture and support sustainable projects.

The Billy King Creek site at Pakawau was a tent city, with bonfires to sustain the revellers through the night.

Brendon Robinson, who farms the land where the event is held, said he opened up several additional paddocks to cater for the bigger numbers. - NZPA


Caption: IN THE MOOD - Brigette Older of Nelson dances in the Hardcore Zone at the Gathering last night. Picture: NELSON MAIL Supplied by New Zealand Press Association

Evening Post, 1 January 2002

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