Paula Hulburt

The Nepalese Sherpa team: Nabin Shrestha, Padam Prashad Adhikari, Saphal Acharya, Rupesh Acharya, Ambika Basnet Shrestha and Rojee Khadgi. Not pictured are Sumil Shrestha and Yam Kumari Tamng. Photo: Supplied.

Ain’t no mountain high enough

A challenge of mountainous proportions is putting a team through their paces.

The Marlborough Mount Everest challenge got underway earlier this month.

And one Nepalese team are reaching new heights, taking the leader board by storm.

A group of Nepalese friends taking part under team name The Nepalese Sherpa have already clocked up 24390 metres between the eight of them.

The Marlborough Mount Everest Challenge is a run and walk event where the goal is for participants to travel the elevation of Mount Everest (8800 m) in the time that it took Sir Edmund Hillary in 1953 (7 weeks).

Padam Prashad Adhikari says some of their crew even hope to climb the equivalent of Mount Everest twice.

“We wanted to do it to represent our country and some of us are doing it for our own health.

“We’ve got to know more people in Picton and Blenheim who we meet while walking and who comment on the photos we put on Facebook – it helps encourage us on,” he says.

Organised by staff at the Port Marlborough Pavilion in Picton, the challenge is proving popular with 131 competitors currently taking part.

Port Marlborough Pavilion Project Coordinator Regan Russell says the event is going well.

“We have 131 competitors that have so far logged bang on 600 climbs. We have had some big numbers already with Iwan one of the individuals climbing to an altitude of 6396 meters in the ten days since we have started.”

“We aim to encourage local people to not only utilise the amazing local walking tracks that Marlborough has to offer, but to get fit while doing so,” Regan says.

The tracks chosen will allow participants to accomplish the goal by running or walking the Tirohanga track 36 times or the Mt Vernon Track 25 times during the seven-week period.

“We usually go out before or after work and try to do two walks back to back and we are certainly getting faster,” says Padam.

Stuart Smith MP and wife Julie were joined by Labour candidate Matt Flight and wife Dallas. Photo: Supplied.

Red tsunami fails to unseat Smith

National MP Stuart Smith has won the seat for the Kaikōura electorate.

Making it three election wins in a row, the incumbent beat closest rival and first time Labour Party candidate Matt Flight by 16,105 votes to 13,823 votes.

Celebrating with wife Julie and supporters at the ASB Theatre’s Whitehaven Room in Blenheim, Smith says he was delighted with the outcome.

Stuart comes from a Canterbury family that were fifth generation sheep and deer farmers.

He has held several local and national roles including being President of the New Zealand Grape Growers Council and Chair of New Zealand Winegrowers. He was subsequently inducted as a Fellow of the New Zealand Winegrowers Board for services to the industry.

In 2014 Stuart entered Parliament winning with a majority of around 11,000 votes and successfully held his seat in the 2017 election by a similar number.

“It is a privilege and an honour to be re-elected as the member of parliament for Kaikōura,” he says.

He was congratulated in person by closest rival Matt Flight who went to the after party to shake Smith’s hand in person.

Matt says he was “humbled and grateful” by the votes he had received

“Whilst we didn’t make it across the line here, I am so proud of our nationwide result that sees Jacinda and Labour returned for another three years.”

Sharlese and her family are spending time together at home. Photo: Supplied.

Rally hope for Sharlese

The family of a terminally ill young mum are forging ahead with plans for a fundraising rally – though it may be held in her memory instead.

Sharlese Turnbull-Tait, 36, from Picton, is battling bowel cancer which has spread throughout her body.

Her heartbroken family, who had to postpone the car show and rally during Covid Alert Level 4, fear the December event may be too late for Sharlese to enjoy.

But they are determined to hold the Rally for Hope to St Arnaud she has been looking forward to.

Her sister, Kelsie, says while Sharlese won’t be able to be there in person, she is hoping to watch a live stream of the day.

“Unfortunately Sharlese will be too ill to make it as she recently found out her lungs are collapsing due to tumours and she cannot have anymore, treatment but we are still going to do this either in her memory or for her to watch live.”

Sharlese has undergone several surgeries in Christchurch since her diagnosis two years ago, including a partial bowel removal.

Back home in Picton, Sharlese is now focusing on spending as much time as possible with her family, including Ellazae, 3, and Luka, 10.

Kelsie says the original plan was to raise money with the rally for the family to make memories.

Spreading awareness about the disease to other people is a priority too.

“We would love to raise enough money to hopefully create some amazing memories with her family and support the children and family as she falls more ill as she can no longer receive treatment.”

The mum of two saw her own doctor after developing severe stomach cramps in 2018.

But despite several visits over the next few years and a pelvic scan, Sharlese was told it was probably endometriosis – an inflammatory condition of the uterus.

Speaking to the Marlborough Weekly earlier this year, Sharlese says she had sought medical help several times.

“I went to my doctor so many times.”

“When I saw that doctor again after I’d been diagnosed with stage 4 bowel cancer, he apologised and offered to pray for me.

“He said it never thought it could be bowel cancer as I was too young.

“I want everyone to know the signs and symptoms as age just doesn’t matter,” she says.

The car, bike show and rally will be held on 5 December. Between 9am and 12 noon, vehicles will be on show at Waterlea Racecourse by the McLauchlan Street entrance.

The display is open to the public and the rally starts at 11am, with participants encouraged to pack a picnic.

People then have the option of joining fellow rally goers later when the convoy returns to Blenheim.

Kelsi asks that people heading to the show please bring some cash for raffles and to donate to the cause.

To register your vehicle for the car and bike show, private message the Rally for Hope Facebook page or contact 021 2581213.

Possible bowel cancer symptoms and signs

  • Bleeding from the bottom (rectal bleeding)
  • Change of bowel motions/habits that come and go over several weeks.
  • Anaemia.
  • Severe persistent or periodic abdominal pain.
  • A lump or mass in the abdomen.
  • Tiredness and loss of weight for no obvious reason.
Guest judges, from left, Saulo Camillo Nunes, Jesse Mulligan, Fiona Fenwick and Summa MacDonald. Photo: Anthony Phelps.

Perfect pie pair

The pies have been tasted, the wines sipped, and a winner found.

After weeks of searching, the winner of the 2020 Ultimate Burleigh Pie Pairing has been announced.

Jamaican lamb pie and Spätlese Riesling 2017 took out the top spot, beating a record 47 entries from around the region.

Judge and challenge co-founder says the level of interest shows just how much the annual competitions means to people.

“We knew that The Burleigh is the go – to for most folks to satisfy their pie cravings, but this level of involvement has blown us away yet again.

“What started as a few friends getting together over a pie and deciding it was about time the perfect tipple was picked to pair alongside has grown to something really special.”

All $2350 raised through entry fees will be donated to the Marlborough Foodbank.

The winning entry will receive bragging rights, a boxed French brie and their name on the prestigious Burleigh Pairing Trophy.

The four judges – television personality Jesse Mulligan , Marlborough Media co-owner Summa MacDonald, along with Saulo Camillo Nunes, owner of Gramado’s Restaurant, and Fiona Fenwick, – carried out a blind taste test, with official adjudication to ensure fairness all round.

Summa, from Marlborough Media, who sponsored the event, says it was a tough job, but she was happy to help.

“So many delicious pies and wines didn’t make it easy for the judges, but we are a committed crew and somehow pushed through.

“I was genuinely very impressed with the high quality of the entries but not surprised as, living in Marlborough myself, I know that we consistently punch above our weight when it comes to food and wine.”

The winners:

Chicken, Leek & Mushroom – Misty Cove: Landmark Chardonnay 2019

Jerk Chicken – Churton: Natural State Field Blend 2020                        

Vegetarian – Brancott Estate: Fumé Blanc 2011

Mince and Cheddar – Lake Chalice: Lake Chalice Vineyard Selection Merlot 2015

Steak and Blue Cheese – Saint Clair: Saint Clair Rapaura Merlot 2019

Steak, Mushroom and Truffle – Rockferry: The Corners Nebbiolo 2016

Steak and Mushroom – Wither Hills: ‘The Honourable’ Pinot Noir 2016

Steak and Bacon – Novum: Pinot Noir 2019       

Pork Belly – Greywacke: Chardonnay 2013

Jamaican Lamb – Astrolabe: Astrolabe Spätlese Riesling 2017

Wildcard Beverage award:  Devon’s Lemon, Honey & Ginger cordial

The final category in the competition was the public entry, where a new Burleigh Pie flavour could be designed from local ingredients.

The winner was Myal King, 8, with a Tuscan Beef pie with rich parmesan pastry.

The CACTUS crew work hard delivering a programme that helps young people build on their skills. Photo: Anthony Phelps.

Sponsorship boost for youth

An initiative geared to helping build life skills and confidence in young people has been given a $90,000 boost.

Marlborough Lines will sponsor the CACTUS (Combined Adolescent Challenge Training Unit Support) programme in Blenheim and Picton.

Over the next three years, staff have pledged to fund $30,000 a year.

Marlborough Lines chief executive Tim Cosgrove says the programme is a good fit with the company’s ideals.

“It has a good spread across the region and is really youth-focused… the programme is already in place, it’s well-run and has clearly demonstrated results.

“It’s the sort of thing we’re proud to support and commit to.”

More than 650 young people have taken part in the eight-week course since 2008.

Three mornings a week, participants take part in intensive training between 6am and 7am, building up to the Longest Day, when all their skills are put together in a series of exercises.

Marlborough Youth Trust trustee and police officer Dean Buckley says the proof of CACTUS’ success is its longevity.

“If it wasn’t as successful, it wouldn’t be going still.”

He says the course helps youth in all aspects, improving their resilience and teamwork among other things.

“It’s quite powerful on the CV as well. Often young people don’t have much to put on their CV, but this is great.

“Employers see this young person has a bit of go, a bit of commitment.”

Youth mentor Reuben Molnar says CACTUS is an “awesome” programme.

“From day one, to the finish of the programme, huge improvements in self-confidence, fitness levels, and building a connection, building a tribe, and able to connect into other things we do, events and other activities.”

Marlborough Youth Trust chair Russell Smith says the course really has a long-lasting effect.

“This sponsorship will give certainty to a programme that we know has results. It means our staff time can be put into things we want to be doing like youth development rather than chasing their tails to find finance to make things work,” he says.

Year 1 girls’ winners, from left, Xadie Goodall, Caelyn Sterling and Sweetness Materoa-Mondou. Photo: Andy Facer.

Pupils’ pop of colour

Children at Redwoodtown School shone as they celebrated the start of the holidays in colourful style.

The school’s annual colour run was blessed with blue skies and sunshine as students showed off their sporting skills.

Principal Aaron Vercoe says the event was a great success, made even more special as spectators were allowed on school grounds again.

“It was a great day and our students, whanau and staff always look forward to it.

“Even more exciting this year with so many events being cancelled due to Covid.”

Aaron and Isaac Piper from Cloudy Bay Clams are helping raise money for charity with a giant paella. Photo: Paula Hulburt.

All in good taste for charity

Charity begins at home for local businesses keen to help cook up a storm for charity.

Cloudy Bay Clams will be creating a massive paella to sell at Bayley’s Friday Night Feast.

All proceeds from food sold from their stall on the night will be donated to Kids Can and the Life Education Trust.

When owners and operators Isaac and Kerry Piper put word out about what they were doing, a bevy of businesses quickly jumped on board to help.

The response has been humbling, Isaac says.

“This is about good people coming together as a collective under the Cloudy Bay Clams umbrella and giving back to the local community.

“There’s a lot going on in the world right now and we want to focus on the community, do something good.”

The giant paella will use about 40kg of clams and be created by Christchurch restaurant owner and chef Javier Garcia, who is donating his time and skills for free.

Owner of the Curator’s House, he has also lent the huge dish on which the traditional Spanish dish will be cooked.

Cloudy Bay Wines are kindly sponsoring Jack’s Raw Bar, says business development manager Aaron Piper who will be at the event to help shuck clams.

Bayley’s Friday Night gets underway this Friday in Blenheim town centre from 3.30pm until 8.30pm.

The popular family-friendly event will feature a range of local businesses and chefs as well as live music.

“Anybody Cloudy Bay Clans reached to and asked if they wanted to be involved said ‘Totally. What can we do to help?’”

“The response has been humbling,” Aaron says.

“What’s really exciting is that everyone wants to be involved.

‘It’s a great community here and the support has been amazing.

Cloudy Bay Clams and Jack’s Raw Bar will be set up in the forum on the night.

One hundred percent of all money made on the night will go to charity.

Businesses who have contributed with time, expertise and ingredients are:

  • Curators House
  • Boom Town Beer
  • Origin South
  • Boom Town Chef
  • Karaka Cuisine
  • Marlborough Tour Company
  • Imagine Signs
  • Saffron Marlborough
  • Mills Bay Mussels
  • Chateau Marlborough
  • Imagine Signs
  • Cloudy Bay Wines
  • Ora King Salmon
Angus and Ratapu Moore with their children. Photo: Supplied.

Shearing gang’s support for grieving dad

When the son of one of their own was killed in a recent road accident, a local shearing gang was left heartbroken.

Angus and Te Moore have been in the shearing industry for 16 years and have run a contracting business based in Seddon for the last five.

Their 12-person shearing gang is like a family, so when one of its members lost a son in a road accident it hit them all hard, says Te.

To show their support, the gang and farmer rallied round and donated all the proceeds from a day’s shearing to their colleague.

Now he’s repaid that kind gesture by shouting them all tickets to the Farmstrong Comedy Night Show at Awatere, Seddon.

Nationwide rural wellbeing programme Farmstrong is putting on two comedy shows for Marlborough’s farming community.

It has been a trying time for the team and getting the tickets was a great surprise.

Having something to look forward to helps, says Te.

“We’re really looking forward to going out for a night together and just having a laugh and a few beers. We didn’t even know he’d bought us tickets, so it was a nice surprise.”

The Seddon farming community has been through a lot in recent times with earthquakes, drought and Covid-lockdown, so the shows are well-timed, she says

“This is a great chance to come together and celebrate our resilience as a community.”

The shows feature an all-star line-up of comedians Nick Rado, Melanie Bracewell, Tevita Manukia and Tarun Mohanbhai.

Farmstrong project lead Gerard Vaughan says the ups and downs of farming can take a toll on people and the organisation is there to help,

“We help farmers cope with the ups and downs of farming by sharing things they can do to look after themselves and their teams.

“Encouraging farmers to get off the farm, have a laugh and socialise at events like this is one of the best ways we can do that.

“Our message to farmers is grab your mates and neighbours and treat them to a cracking night of comedy for a great cause.”

Te says that having worked in the farming industry for so long, she knows how important it is to be open about pressures that come with the job.

Their team are right behind Farmstrong.

“It’s definitely raised awareness amongst the farmers and shearers we work with about the importance of looking after yourself.

“We’ve noticed people are a lot more open to discussing the pressures they’re facing or listening to others who might be under the pump.”

“The friendships and connections you build are a big part of dealing with those challenges.”

“That’s why Farmstrong putting on these shows is a great idea. It strengthens those relationships.”

 

Show details

9 October, Woodbourne, Woodbourne Tavern, doors open 6.00 pm, show starts 7.00 pm

10 October Seddon, Awatere Memorial Hall, doors open 6.00 pm, show starts 7.00 pm.

Tickets are available online at trybooking.co.nz. Type Farmstrong in the search to find the event. Tickets are $20.

Roger Randall on his clinker with grandson Toby Randall. Photo: Supplied.

Vintage boats mark new season

A small flotilla of classic boats took to the water to mark the start of a new season.

Members of the Picton Clinker & Classic Boat Club celebrated the start of warmer weather, taking their lovingly restored vessels up the Pelorus River from Havelock.

Known as the Ice Breaker, the annual trip marks the start of a series of monthly trips out and about in the Marlborough Sounds.

Club commodore Roger Randall, who joined the club three years ago, says the boats are named after the way they are built.

“It’s a method where the hull planks are overlapped.”

Based in Picton and meeting on the first Monday each month, the club has members from all walks of life, but the majority are retired.

But younger people enjoy it too, Roger says.

“It’s messing about on old boats. From the moment my grandson Toby first came out he was hooked – he thinks of it as his boat.”

Clinker, which can date back decades, can be borrowed from the club or new members can hitch a lift with others to give it a go.

The club ensures safe and interesting adventures on their runs.

“We’ve got members from all across the community and it really is good fun,” Roger says.

To find out more about the club, contact Roger on: 572 7172.

Rhys Hall from Indevin. Photo: Supplied.

Grape expectations

Rhys Hall from Indevin will be pitting his wits against five other finalists next month competing for the coveted NZ Young Viticulturist of the Year title.

The talented finalist I hoping to take out the top spot at the milestone event, which will also mark the competition’s 15th anniversary.

Since 2006 the initiative has helped support passionate, young viticulturists grow, reach their goals and move into leadership roles within the wine industry.

Leadership & Communities Manager at NZ Winegrowers Nicky Grandorge is welcoming a chance for the industry to celebrate after a tumultuous few months.

This year’s National Final is being held in conjunction with the celebration so the fifteenth winner -The Corteva NZ Young Viticulturist of the Year 2020 – will be announced at the dinner.

“In this challenging year, it is fantastic that we have made it through our six regional finals and are able to hold the National Final.

“This, along with reaching the fifteen-year milestone, is certainly something to celebrate and a wonderful opportunity to bring our passionate, big thinking winners together, many of whom are now senior leaders in our industry.” Nicky says.

The celebrations take place on 8 October in Martinborough.