Ōtaki Yard is holding a special winter night market supported by an illuminated steam train from Paraparaumu on Saturday, August 1.
The Light the Night event is expected to draw hundreds of people to the region with the unique combination of the vintage train journey and winter night market.
The event will see up to 1500 passengers travel on return journeys from Paraparaumu to Ōtaki on a fully illuminated heritage steam train operated by Steam Incorporated. They will be able to experience the first-ever night market at Ōtaki Yard – from 4pm to 9pm.
“We are thrilled to be behind this fantastic event which will definitely bring in the crowds from all over the region to support the amazing artisans and businesses around the Kāpiti Coast,” says Ōtaki Yard commercial manager Matthew Innes. “The support we have received from locals and out of towners has been fantastic so far and we believe this will create a mid-winter boost for the region.”
The founder of Light the Night, Sarah Ferguson, says that as a local she wants to create a magical experience for people, as well as showcase local artisans and businesses.
“This is a great opportunity for people to have a night out with friends and family and support local,” she says. “We believe this may be the first time a steam train has been illuminated and run on the ‘main trunk line’ in New Zealand.
Steam Incorporated has not run a service on the national network for more than a year. The train will be double ended with a steam locomotive leading and heritage diesel locomotive in the rear. It will have up to nine vintage carriages holding between 45 and 60 passengers a carriage, with a total capacity across all three shuttle services of up to 1500 passengers.
There will be three train journeys throughout the evening. The first train leaves Paraparaumu at 4pm for Ōtaki where guests will have an hour and a half enjoying the hospitality of the Ōtaki business community. The final departure from Ōtaki to Paraparaumu will be 9pm.
The market element of the Ōtaki Yard development at the former Caltex site on the main highway opened for the first time on Saturday, June 13. The market can house up to 100 stalls as well as food trucks and other food offerings every Saturday, and is proving an attraction for families, food lovers and those seeking gift ideas.