The lifting of restrictions on event numbers and loosening of social distancing means Splore fans can heave a sigh of relief. Organisers confirm the festival will take place at its home of Tapapakanga Regional Park (70km SE of Auckland’s CBD) next February 26-28. People can now register to gain priority for the much sought after early-bird tickets that will go on pre-sale Friday, 12 June with general release tickets available from Monday, 15 June.

New Zealand moving to Level 1 is delightful news to Splore Festival Director John Minty.

“We are thrilled with the way our team of 5 million in Aotearoa has handled this global health crisis.Being Covid-19 free is the determining factor for our festival to go ahead and it has happened much faster than we anticipated”.

Splore is a microcosm within the larger event industry. High production values for the three-dayfestival plays a significant role in supporting the event industry economy.

“There are so many small businesses that make up the fabric of Splore and I am really happy to engage our loyal crew and also support all our suppliers, sponsors, performers, artists, food and craft vendors” says Minty.

Splore will take a ‘stay local’ approach for 2021. The global health crisis is still engulfing countries like USA and UK where Splore sources some of its music acts. The uncertainty makes it impossible to book international acts.

Minty says the Splore community will support the festival with a local focus because not only do we have a wealth of music and performance talent to draw on but the entire experience of Splore creates the magic. “Splore is irresistible for our core fans who return year after year for the unique experience”.

Splore, he says, is more than a festival, it is a community of like-minded people that come together to get their fix of freedom, fun and dancing that sets them up for the rest of the year.

“Some people have experienced Splore at such a deep level, that they get married at Splore.We’ve hadupwards of 15 weddings at Splore in the last decade that we have a dedicated celebrant and a wedding planner”.

The festival is on the cutting edge of popular concerns; wellness, the environment and social justice. “We inspire a mindful community to celebrate inclusiveness, diversity, creativity, friendships and whanau and to connect to the wairua of Tapapakanga” says Minty.

The festival is about so much more than the fantastic music across multiple zones. Progressive social and political ideas are debated in the Listening Lounge on a Saturday morning with a panel discussion hosted by journalist Russell Brown.

The wellness zone with yoga and healing modalities is over-subscribed and grows bigger every year. The festival is proud of its ecological reputation that is messaged in creative ways; from the call-out to Splorers to use upcycled costumes, to introducing new sustainable initiatives every year from carpooling, to reusable serve ware and enrolling the audience to help divert rubbish from landfill. There are no broken tents left behind at Splore and the festival has carbon zero in its sights.

It’s family friendly, with a Rumpus Room programmed with kids entertainment. The kids love Splore and reside in dedicated family camping areas for the weekend. The site is dotted with interactive art installations, light sculptures and live performances that pop up in the least expected places. The audience becomes part of the entertainment too, with 90% of the audience participating in the themed dress up on Saturday night. Splore is renowned as New Zealand’s greatest dress up party.

Entertainment updates will be announced over the following months.