The Blog

Thousands get into the groove at park

More than 5000 people grooved to cool beats at Nelson’s Fairfield Park as the 15th annual Jazz in the Park kicked off this year’s summer jazz festival. Nelson Jazz Club president Tony Bowater said yesterday’s free event was an outstanding way to begin the festival. Canterbury violinist Fiona Pears and former Dunedin saxophonist Craig Walters, now living in Sydney, were the stars of the lineup, although Mr Bowater said all eight bands got good crowd support.
Fairfield Park crowd
Former Nelson keyboardist and singer Trudi Wilson also performed yesterday in what may have been her homecoming concert after living mainly in Christchurch. “She’s worked with a few international acts, including Billy T James, in her early years. She’s got a hankering to come back home,” Mr Bowater said.
The turnout was similar to previous years, pleasing on a day when so many events were held throughout the region, and when threatening weather loomed early in the day. “The wind wasn’t the most pleasant, however the sun shone on us and it got pretty hot there for a while,” he said.
The festival continues at Richmond’s Washbourn Gardens this afternoon, Motueka’s Decks Reserve tomorrow and Takaka’s Village Green on Thursday.