The act of lounging on a patch of grass armed with good company and a stocked chilly bin is a rite of passage in summer— and all the better when there's free entertainment blurting in the distance. Auckland Council's much-loved open-air series returns for 2017 with a bumper programme of over 40 events. From January 13 to March 31, sibling events Music and Movies in Parks will see 24 outdoor gigs and 22 movies play out under the stars of Tamaki Makaurau.
For its 24th year, over 60 musical acts will assemble on stages across the city's regional parks and reserves. Highlights on the schedule include electronica festival George in the Park at Coyle Park on March 18. The event will feature genre-bending act Sola Rosa and rising pop star Kings. Point England Reserve will play host to the Mai Sumer Jam on January 28 with performances from Sons of Zion, Che-Fu and Bailey Wiley, while Grey Lynn Park will be home to big ticket bogan event Rock in the Park on February 11. Further acts performing throughout the series include: Maala, Jamie McDell, Sal Valentine & The Babyshakes, Ardijah, New Zealand Opera, among plenty of others.
While free movie nights are abundant across the city, the annual Movies in Parks series brings cinema to the leafy suburbs. As per usual the event arrives with a curated selection of big ticket new releases and old favourites. On the bill for 2017 is the newly rebooted Ghostbusters, The Jungle Book, Hunt for the Wilderpeople, Born to Dance, Grease, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Mary Poppins, Labryinth and heaps more.