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Sometimes a storm brings a little sunshine

Or so was the case when the original Big Bike Film Night was postponed from February due to the impact of storms that hit the Coromandel. The Thames Mountain Bike Club (TMBC) had planned to bring the short film series back to Thames for the fourth time but road closures and damage forced a reschedule to mid-June.

However, that allowed for the premier showing of The Rolling Stars film, created by local Te Puru School students. Filmed at the Ride Coromandel Bike Park it features the handy camera skills of students who learned filmmaking and entwined it with digital storytelling on bikes, illustrating their love of riding and how important being on a bike is for them. Some of the students are now training for the Aims games in September, representing the growing sport for our region.

A bunch of them attended the evening to celebrate their part as stars and filmmakers and showcase the premiere event. The film can be viewed on the Ride Coromandel youtube channel.

TMBC members worked hard to create a fun evening, with a sellout crowd, raffles, freebies, food and commentary on the cycling-related projects around town. The Club is involved in looking after two local bike parks - Moanataiari and Hotoritori, as well as the Karaka Track behind Thames. We also announced a new trapping initiative launching this spring starting with the Karaka Track and eventually back down the Waiotahi.

On another note, we announced that TCDC is working with Kauaeranga Valley residents and cycling community members on a proposal to build a pedestrian and cycle-friendly pathway up the valley. The aim is to help commuters and school kids get to town safely, locals get to the popular swing bridge swimming hole, and visitors get up to the DOC visitor centre and beyond, without risking their lives on the road. A number of public meetings are scheduled for this month and a survey is now open for comment. (

We sold raffle tickets for a wide range of wonderful prizes donated to the club by local businesses. Thanks so much to Jolly Bikes, Stihl Shop, The Villager Cafe, Repco, B&T Automotive, Thames Organic Store, Reads Hardware, ReStore, Cafe Melbourne, Coco Cafe, Silky Saw NZ, DOC, TCDC, and the Hauraki Resilience Communities Trust. The club would like to give Wayne from Wayne’s Automotive a special shout-out for not only sponsoring the food, but also making a massive $500 donation to the fundraiser. Thank you, Wayne Sayer.

In addition, local families got behind the event with baking and another masterpiece of a mountain bike cake was created for the night. (photo below)

At half time, young Luke Harison - one of the stars of the Te Puru documentary - drew the lucky raffles out of the hat before we settled in for the rest of Brett Cotter's film programme.

TMBC owes special thanks to all the support this event received. TMBC VP and event organiser Ric Balfour said, "We raised nearly $2000 dollars towards our track maintenance programme, including $200 Brett contributed from ticket sales, but more importantly, we raised awareness about the value of our local tracks and trails."

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