Sara Halliwell, 11, and Asha Trill, 11, with their handmade lanterns at Saturday’s Lantern Making Workshop. The workshops are held in preparation for the annual Lantern Celebration. Photo: Jessie Johnston.

Lanterns ready for annual celebration


Local children got creative on Saturday morning, creating their own special lantern to take with them to this year’s Lantern Celebration.

Every year, around 2000 people come together to enjoy the Lantern Celebration, which transforms Nelson’s iconic Botanical Reserve, into a lantern-filled wonderland.

The theme for 2017 is ‘Trail of Dreams’, and while that applies to the lanterns, organisers also encourage people to dress up as their favourite dream character, or just wear their pyjamas.

As people make their way up the Centre of New Zealand, Te Manawa World Choir will be performing, with a number of installations set up for people to look at.

There will be an official lantern lighting ceremony at Sir Stanley Whitehead Park, before InsideOut Circus and Physical Theatre perform their brand new UV and silk show as people make their way back down the track.

“If the weather is nice it’s such a lovely evening up there with the views of the city, the sun going down and a wonderful atmosphere with music and entertainment- it’s a really unique Nelson event,” says chair of the Community Services Committee, councillor Gaile Noonan.

Another lantern making workshop will be held the day of the Lantern Celebration, Saturday, December 16.

The workshop runs from 10am until 12pm, at Community Art Works on Achilles Ave, and is $2 per person.

The Lantern Celebration is free and will run from 7pm until 10pm that evening.