The Invercargill City Council is looking to kick-start the New Year by launching a new event to help show how the city centre can shine with a bit of cut-and-polish!
Business owners, volunteers and residents are being encouraged to get involved in the first ever Rev Up of the inner-city, to be held on the weekend of January 27 and 28, just in time to show the world how great the city centre is before visitors arrive for the Burt Munro Challenge.
The purpose of Rev Up is to tidy up the city centre, and to make sure our buildings look spectacular from the verandahs down. Cleaning will include windows, footpaths and shopfronts, touching up paint, removing old advertising posters and freshening up some alley ways. Litter will be picked up and plantings added to some areas to bring vibrancy.
Council City Centre Co-ordinator Kari Graber said the look and feel of Invercargill’s inner city had been a recurring theme throughout a number of workshops.
“It’s time for us all to work together to give the community and visitors a beautiful place where they will want to spend their time and money. The inner-city belongs to all of us no matter what part of Invercargill you come from.
“This is something I hope all of Invercargill can get behind to support. It’s time for us to start showing more pride in our city centre,” Ms Graber said.
Letters have been sent to all businesses in the area to be revved up, asking business owners to: identify what help they need to help beautify their building; to commit to the Rev Up and maintain the standards achieved; and to consider whether they can volunteer their own time to help out.
Ms Graber said a number of businesses had already responded in support of the event including Louies Café and Tapas Bar owner Mana Davis and Shoe Clinic owner Ben Fokkens, who both planned to make improvements to their verandahs and shop fronts.
Deputy Mayor Rebecca Amundsen said she would be working with Ms Graber to ensure Rev Up was successful.
“The Rev Up is a great way for the community to reconnect with the inner city and show their support for inner city retailers. The event is us as a city putting our best foot forward, together,” Cr Amundsen said.
“We hope to build on the 2018 event by doing more and bigger projects in the years to come.
“I would like to encourage people to get involved. Even if you only have a couple of hours over the weekend, every little bit helps.
“I am really grateful to the businesses who have already indicated their support and involvement, this is a great endorsement for the Rev Up. And also those groups and churches who have already put themselves forward as volunteers – they are setting a great example,” she said.
Venture Southland Tourism and Events Manager Warrick Low said Rev Up was a great concept.
“We are blessed with some great architecture and interesting facades – so just like your trusty leather boots, time to get out and give them a polish. [Rev Up is] great timing too, just before a great array of events attracting visitors to the city.”
Burt Munro Challenge Organising Committee Chairman Wayne Affleck said: “We welcome the initiative and encourage the community to get out and participate. A bit of a spruce-up will only add to the already warm southern welcome for visiting out-of-towners and locals alike.”
During the next few months, there will be multiple open-days at the former ASB Bank building on Esk Street, which will be transformed into Rev Up Headquarters. It will be open on Saturday, 9 December from 10am to 2pm as part of the Christmas Market and Festival so that people can register and ask questions, and businesses can hand in any information as well.
Event organisers are looking for people with skills such as retired builders, painters and others who would be able to help run working groups on the day and help as advisors planning the work.
Rev Up HQ will also be open on December 14 and January 11 and 18 between 11.30am and 1.30pm.
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