Annual extravaganza Farmers Santa Parade Announced 2016 Date

Friday 28 October 2016

Annual extravaganza Farmers Santa Parade Announced 2016 Date

Yes, you are right - there are less than nine weeks until Christmas. And that means the annual Farmers Santa Parade extravaganza is just around the corner.

In 2016 the annual parade is bringing a host of new and exciting developments to again entertain and delight the city’s youngsters and their caregivers.

This year marks the 83rd anniversary of the parade. While it is the largest annual community event in Auckland, it continues to work hard to provide a range of contemporary activities while celebrating its traditions too.

The Farmers Santa Parade  2016 is on Sunday 27 November (rain date 4 December) and has a new route and a new charity and continues last year’s earlier start time of 1pm.

The route change – brought on by the City Rail Link work in Albert Street – features a hard right turn in to Customs Street East at the foot of Queen Street with the parade finishing by Britomart Place.

Spectators who would normally watch the parade from Albert Street will find ample space on Customs Street East according to Farmers Santa Parade organiser Pam Glaser.

Coming on board as event charity in 2016 is The Salvation Army supporting the organisation’s fight against poverty in New Zealand.

Pam Glaser says everyone involved is delighted The Salvation Army is this year’s charity of choice.

“The parade was started in 1934 by Farmers as a gift of fantasy and fun for the children of Auckland. Having the Sallies as an integral part of the event is entirely appropriate considering the work they do in supporting those less well off in our city,” she says.

The Salvation Army’s brass bands have a long association with the parade, enjoying the opportunity to ‘give back’ to the public of Auckland. The funds collected at the 2016 parade will be used to provide much needed support for families during the challenging Christmas period, says Major Pam Waugh, The Salvation Army’s National Secretary of Social Services.

Pageantry
Ms Glaser says spectators can look forward to a parade featuring all the amazing pageantry, fun and surprises that have made it a perennial favourite.

“Look for colourful grand floats that represent the cultural diversity of our wonderful city, lively marching bands, some amazing character balloons and of course the official arrival of Santa Claus in Auckland,” she says.

Highlights in 2016 include three Angry Birds helium inflatables from Canada, Disneys Mickey and Minnie inflatables, an Olympics float, LEGO character Clay from Nexo Knights, Austin Powers and a Cinderella float.

Santa’s after party is on again in Aotea Square starting at 2:30 pm and featuring a continuous stage show as well as rides, celebrities, face painting and a spectacular LEGO Christmas Tree. And of course Santa will be on hand too.

As is the norm, it’s easy to get to and from the parade with free parking for vehicles exiting the Auckland Transport Downtown and Victoria Street car parks between 1 pm and 6 pm on parade day.

Bus train and ferry schedules and fares are available at www.at.govt.nz or call the contact centre on 09 366 6400. For more on the parade visit www.santaparade.co.nz.

2016 Farmers Santa Parade 
Parade date: Sunday, 27 November 2016
Rain date: Sunday, 4 December 2016
Start: 1pm, Cnr Cook St and Mayoral Drive
Route: Left into Queen St, down Queen St, right in to Customs St East ending at corner of Britomart Place.
Road closures: All inner city roads are closed between 11:00 am and 4 pm on Sunday 27 November.
Pre-Parade entertainment, product sampling, charity collection and giveaways begin from 12 noon and all the action of the Farmers Santa Parade begins at 1pm.