Gold Guitars hailed as success once again

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The results of a Venture Southland mini-survey along with general feedback will be examined at the New Zealand Gold Guitar Awards annual debriefing today.
The Venture Southland minisurvey asked where visitors to the event stayed and what events they attended. Other questions asked participants to rate their answers on a scale of 1 to 5, including how the awards compared with previous years’ events and how visitors rated customer service, food, and event and programme information.
Awards committee publicity officer Shona Hewlett said the feedback received from those at the awards was extremely positive.
The town was really busy during the awards time, which included other associated events such as the Freeze Ya Bits Off Busking competition.
The busking started with the schools competition on Thursday and good numbers of spectators took advantage of the good weather and the music on offer.
There were also good attendances at the shows, particularly on Sunday afternoon and Sunday night.
Staging the 40 Plus and 60 Plus finals on the Sunday starting at 10am was a successful change, Ms Hewlett said.
The earlier start of the junior/ intermediate show also made a difference. The night ended at an acceptable time and those attending were happy, she said.
Radio and television personality Mike Puru was a hit during the weekend, she said.
The debriefing would involve the organising committee examining each event, deciding what worked and what might need improving, Ms Hewlett said.
It was hoped the Venture Southland survey findings would also be available to be examined, she said.
‘‘Overall, we’re very happy with the event.’’
The high quality of the bands, sound and judges made for a first-class event, she said.
The large contingent of motorhomes in the town for the event also brought an air of success.
Molly Paige (16), of Cambridge, who was a contestant, said in an email to the organising committee that nothing beat the atmosphere of the awards.
‘‘They may be the biggest awards this country has and yet the environment is so friendly and relaxed,’’ Molly said.
‘‘The town istransformed and filled with true country music lovers from all over New Zealand and this year even Australia.’’
The juniors this year were all amazing and would make anyone envious of their stage presence, she said.
‘‘It’s competition at its best.’’
Then the intermediates took the stage, all showing different styles of country and all class acts, she said.
‘‘Gore really is great and I would encourage all of you to go even if only once. It’s well worth the experience and witnessing just how good country music is in New Zealand.’’