NZ MEGA 2012 - Newsletter 3 - May 2012

NZ MEGA 2012 - Newsletter 3 - May 2012

Exciting times! Less than 5 months to NZ MEGA 2012! This is the first of what will be quite a few more newsletters that will lead up to New Zealand’s first Mega-event being held in just a few months Dunedin.

We recently hit the 700 mark with Registrations of Interest, and at time of writing these sit at 710. The recent OZ MEGA 2012 in Albury-Wodonga had around 830 attendees, so keep getting the word out and plan to attend – we’ve got a chance to make New Zealand’s first MEGA the largest MEGA in the Southern Hemisphere to date!

We have quite a bit to share this month, including updates on Registrations and the Draft Programme. We’re also proud to start introducing our sponsors, and share some of the attractions the organisers have arranged discounts for NZ MEGA 2012 attendees.

Introducing Integrated Mapping Ltd – Gold Sponsor

NZ MEGA 2012 is pleased to introduce Integrated Mapping Ltd, makers of MapToaster topographic mapping software, as a Gold sponsor.

“MapToaster helps people plan their expedition and get to the right spot. Our customers range from individuals who use maps for their recreational activities, commercial outdoor activities, to multinational consulting companies, Crown Research Institutes, central, regional and local government, universities, schools and libraries, emergency services such as St Johns, helicopter rescue, and Search and Rescue, NZ Police and many more.

MapToaster Topo New Zealand provides topographical mapping, with options for your computer and GPS, including: all the rich detail of the LINZ topo maps, with 1:50,000 to 1:2 million scale maps on your PC and 1:50,000 on your GPS; integrated aerial and satellite imagery with transparent topomap overlays, included as standard on your PC; easy-to-use software; proven and widely-used technology; incredibly friendly and helpful technical support.”

Paid Registrations

Paid registrations are now open for those that are able to pay via electronic payment or cheque in New Zealand dollars. There has been a soft rollout of the Registration Form, and if you’ve been following the official NZ MEGA 2012 forum, you will already be aware of its release. Note that we cannot yet accept international payments, but we should be able to support international payments through PayPal in 2-3 weeks time. If you are intending on paying via PayPal, please do not complete the Registration form until we confirm that we have PayPal arrangements in place – we will be sure to email everyone as soon as it is ready!

Go to the NZ MEGA 2012 Registration form.

To remind you, registrations are NZD75 per individual/couple/family group. Also, if you have completed the Registration of Interest form, you still need to complete the Registration form. Once we have received the payment into the Society's bank account, we will email you to confirm your registration.

We would encourage you to register and pay as soon as you are able – there are significant up front Mega costs that we need to pay in advance.

And Welcoming TelstraClear – Silver Sponsor

Our next sponsor that we’d like to introduce is TelstraClear!

“At TelstraClear, connecting people is at the heart of what we do. As the second largest full service communications provider in New Zealand, with around 1300 employees, and customers and operations spanning the country, TelstraClear is truly a part of community life. TelstraClear is very pleased to provide TelstraClear vouchers to sponsor New Zealand’s first-ever MEGA Geocaching Event.

TelstraClear would like to wish all participants the very best of luck at this very exciting event being held over Labour weekend this year. If you win a TelstraClear voucher we look forward to having you as a new customer or if you are an existing customer, simply send your voucher in to us with your account.”

Draft Programme

The cornerstone of a Mega-event are the times set aside for activities, socialising and anything else that geocachers get up to when there are so many in one place. For those that haven’t seen the Programme thread in the forums, we would like to take this opportunity to communicate what we’re intending – given that there are many potential activities to be slotted in place.

The NZ MEGA 2012 Programme is being designed with two main ideas in mind:

  1. Friday and Monday are more casual days, whilst Saturday and Sunday will be the full-blown Mega days.
  2. There will be peaks and troughs in activity in the programme – peaks to encourage cachers to be in the same place, and troughs to ensure that you have enough free time during the Mega to do the caching that you want to.

Friday 19th October 2012

Arrival, registration and getting set up! Registrations will be open at 3pm and remain open until 10pm. Onsite accommodation will be available for setup from 3pm. There will be some initial meet-and-greet and geocaching activities, and the first catered meal will be available this evening.

Saturday 20th October 2012 and Sunday 21st October 2012

The full days of the Mega. Vendors will be open and offering their luring wares and sneaky hides for sale. More meet and greet activities for those that arrive today. Games and caching activities. Optional geocaching and non-geocaching tours. Self-guided geocaching. An area to just hang out and be social. And of course trackable swapping!

Near dinner time on Saturday we are planning a Powhiri (traditional Maori welcome) followed by the Official Opening and dinner. We may sneak in a campfire in afterwards. Sunday night we’re planning a brief prize-giving after dinner, before we let you loose nightcaching, hogging the campfire, or just hanging out.

Monday 22 October 2012

This is the last day of NZ MEGA 2012 – we all have to pack up and depart the site. Some of the activities planned include; breakfast, vendors specials and teardown, some caching activities, packing and cleaning up, and heading out caching. Might be a good day to think about seeing how many cache types you can find in a day!

There are some other key events that we haven’t confirmed yet when they will occur – but this will include a Mega flash mob. This will be on either the Saturday or Sunday. Another key event we’re working on fitting into the programme, is that of a geocaching ‘barcamp’ which is a bit like an adhoc conference, where attendees suggest topics they’d like to meet about, and we see how many others are interested in attending.

As we confirm the activities with local organisers, we expect to start providing a timetable within the next month or so.

Vendors Expressions of Interest

The Organising Committee would like to put out a public invitation for vendors that are interested in having a presence at NZ MEGA 2012. We have allocated a dedicated indoor area for the vendor activities which will be close to the main Marquee and general gathering areas. Although final size details are to be confirmed it is likely that vendors will be supplied with power and a table, comprising a booth in the indoor vendor hall, which will provide both shelter and security during the times the vendor hall is not open. We have also been listening to vendor requests, and the NZ MEGA 2012 organisers won’t require you to be open all the time – we will let you escape to see the sights and go caching!

If you are a vendor, please register your interest and ask any questions by emailing mega@gps.org.nz. Please provide your business name, website, contact name, email address, and phone number. Also let us know if you are interested in sponsoring NZ MEGA 2012 – sponsorship is separate from a vendor presence.

Attractions!

The NZ MEGA 2012 organisers are working hard to arrange discount entry to a number of Dunedin and Otago attractions. This newsletter we are happy to announce our first attractions - full details such as discount codes will be made available nearer the Mega-event.

Tairei Gorge Train - 20% discount entry for NZ MEGA 2012 attendees from the 19th-31st of October, 2012.

The Taieri Gorge train is a sightseeing train trip travelling through spectacular scenery and departing from the historic Dunedin Railway Station in downtown Dunedin. Departing daily it takes you on a journey through the rugged and spectacular Taieri River Gorge, across wrought iron viaducts and through tunnels carved by hand more than 100 years ago. With full commentary, photographic stops and on board refreshments the train offers year round, all-weather entertainment.

Orokonui Ecosanctuary - 15% discount for NZ MEGA 2012 attendees from the 15th-28th of October, 2012.

“Orokonui is a 307-hectare native forest near Dunedin. It is the only Cloud Forest in New Zealand where indigenous plants and animals can live in the wild without threat from most introduced pests. It is home to some of New Zealand's most fascinating and rare forest wildlife. Explore the Ecosanctuary's protected habitat where you will experience a natural encounter with South Island forest wildlife in a regenerating forest ecosystem. Options include daily guided tours, self-guided walking, and after dark tours.”

Until the next newsletter, happy planning for NZ MEGA 2012, and happy caching!

Happy trails,


The NZ MEGA 2012 Organising Committee and
The NZ Recreational GPS Society Inc
http://mega.gps.org.nz/ - mega@gps.org.nz

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