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Thursday, October 17, 2013

Dates announced for 40th American Express Queenstown Winter Festival

Mark your calendars now… the dates for the Southern Hemisphere’s biggest winter celebration are officially locked and loaded for a milestone 40th birthday party in 2014!

The multi award-winning American Express Queenstown Winter Festival will take centre stage in New Zealand’s premier lake and alpine resort from 20 to 29 June 2014, kicking off the winter season with a bang for the 40th time.

Queenstown’s magnificent snow-capped mountains, crystal clear lake and buzzing cosmopolitan town provide the perfect backdrop for the internationally acclaimed festival which attracts tens of thousands of locals and visitors each year.

Billed as ‘New Zealand’s ten coolest days’, the festival features an action-packed lineup of totally outrageous and uniquely Queenstown events, drawing people to the streets and the ski slopes for live music, fireworks, glamorous balls, crazy races, comedy, charity events and family fun.
Competitor in the Birdman competition
Competitor in the Birdman competition
Winter Festival Manager Lisa Buckingham returns to the helm for her second festival while key naming sponsor American Express is back on board for a milestone 25th year.

Ms Buckingham says she’s already well underway with plans for next year’s 40th birthday party.

“There’ll be some new events but we’re also focusing on bringing back the ‘best of the best’ from the past 39 years.”
Jamaican Bobsled team competing in the Suitcase Race up Coronet Peak
Jamaican Bobsled team competing in the Suitcase Race up Coronet Peak
Winter Festival’s success has snowballed over the years, earning it a solid national and international reputation – so much so that it’s been ranked among the world’s Top 10 ‘must-do’ festivals by major Australian website Yahoo!7 Travel.

Destination Queenstown owns the multi award-winning festival and CEO Graham Budd says anticipation is already building for next year’s birthday celebrations.

“The festival will mark a special milestone for our community – it’s grown from a few locals who thought town was a bit quiet and the arrival of winter was a great excuse for a party to becoming the Southern Hemisphere’s premier celebration of all things winter.  It’s our way of declaring Queenstown open for the winter season and celebrating it with 10 days of pure unadulterated fun.”

Queenstown in winter
Queenstown in winter
Mr Budd believes that the Winter Festival’s programme of free and ticketed events appeals to a broad domestic and international audience.

“New events are injected into the programme each year but the festival has always stayed true to its roots - celebrating winter and Queenstown’s unique culture and community.  This formula is a big drawcard for our visitors because they get a chance to enjoy the festivities, experience Kiwi culture at its best and mingle with the locals as part of their winter holiday in New Zealand’s premier visitor destination.”

To stay up to date with the latest news follow Winter Festival on Facebook or Twitter or visit www.winterfestival.co.nz.  For more Queenstown information visit www.queenstownNZ.co.nz.
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