It's been a few months since our last blog post, winter has been pretty quiet around town, but spring is here now! The weather is improving and the visitors are already returning.
We had a little 2 week break in August which gave us a chance to get some spring cleaning done around the mini golf course, so it's all freshly water-blasted and the obstacles have been repaired/repainted ready for the busy season, it looks great!
We are really excited about the upcoming tourist season as it will be our first full summer season with the roads open full time since we opened in October 2016. Fingers crossed mother nature behaves herself for a while now!
So, since our last blog post we have completed our first Escape Room game "The Brewer's Laboratory". We opened it in June and it's been a hit with everyone that has played it so far. They are all hanging out for us to open our second room. Well, it won't be long folks, it's pretty much built, just give us a week or two to do some trial runs and you'll be able to book in! This new room is called "The Gangsters Hideout" and you can book online via our website, just follow the link on the Escape Room page.
At the beginning of August we hosted a 'Road to Beervana' event on site here at The Emporium. It was the first time we have had a pop-up bar on site and it went really well. It was great to see a good turn out from our Kaikoura locals, especially as it was an outdoor event on a Monday night in the middle of winter! We also had brewers visiting from Renaissance and Altitude Brewing on their way up to Beervana, they took part in an escape room and mini golf challenge which we also ran at the event. The brewers won the mini golf and the team from Kaikoura New World got the best time in the escape room, well done all!
Our next Pop-up bar is on Saturday 17th November, that's show weekend for any of you Cantabrians who are planning a long weekend up to Kaikoura- so be sure to pop in and have a beer at our place.
The next big event on the calendar for Kaikoura is the Kaikoura Hop (13th-16th September) It is a great annual event that really kick starts the summer season and brings heaps of visitors (and awesome cars) to town. This year we are hosting the prize-giving for the poker run event on the Friday. We'll have a bar on site selling our bottled beer which we have re-labelled especially for the Kaikoura Hop weekend. The labels feature classic cars from participants of the Kaikoura Hop car show, so look out for these limited edition bottles around town from 13th September onwards.
You can also order them from us via email after the event: firstname.lastname@example.org (while stocks last)
On Thursday 10th May it was Finney's birthday, and look what arrived! Sadly for Finney they were not full of presents from family overseas, but they were still an exciting delivery nonetheless. These 2 containers are going to house our Escape Room games!
It was a bit of a mission getting them inside our warehouse but we got there in the end thanks to some very patient and highly skilled hiab operators, a friendly local forklift owner and a well timed visit from the Chorus technician who had to temporarily disconnect our low hanging phone line before it got taken out-thanks guys!
"But what is an escape room game?" I hear you ask, They are basically a themed room where you are given a back story and a mission to complete before the time runs out. They are increasingly popular all over the world and there are quite a few in New Zealand already, these will be the first in Kaikoura. They are great team building games as well as being a brilliant indoor activity for those wet weather days, something there is a shortage of here in town.
We have already started work on one of them so if all goes to plan that one will be up and running by the end of this month. It's all top secret stuff so we can't tell you much more, the photos below are the last you will see of the inside of these containers-you'll have to come and play them if you want to see more.
Saturday 3rd March saw the return of Kegkoura Craft Beer Festival for it's 2nd year, and it was awesome!
In the week building up to the festival we started to get a little bit worried that we would have a repeat of last years bad luck as ex-cyclone Gita came through and caused the roads north and south of Kaikoura to close yet again! Many ticket holders started asking about the possibility of refunds, but we had faith in our fantastic road workers and sure enough they managed to get the slips cleared and both roads open on the Friday morning (phew). High fives to them!
We were also super lucky with the weather, Friday's heavy rain cleared and we were treated to a beautiful sunny day. It actually got pretty hot and as the crowds arrived we had to do a quick dash to scrounge a couple of extra gazebos for some more shade before people started melting!
We had a great turn out, approximately 280 ticket holders, so we almost sold out. Everyone was in great spirits, it was a really fantastic crowd of people. The mini golf course and outdoor games were well used all day and the music from Stomping Nick and our local band was amazing. It was a great atmosphere and the feedback from everyone on the day was really positive.
A huge thank you to our fantastic volunteers for helping make the day run so smoothly, Finney and I actually felt quite redundant most of the day as you had everything under control, it was great!
Thanks also to all the brewers for supporting us yet again this year, especially Concept brewing, Kaikoura Brewing company and newcomers Wilderness brewing for the extra effort they put in to making their bars look great and for the range of new and exciting beers they brought. We'll refrain from naming and shaming those brewers that just rocked up casually without even bringing a table, despite the fact that they still managed to out sell a lot of us!
The food was fantastic again with yummy platters from Kaikoura Cheese, Pork sliders, corn cobs and lentil burgers from the amazing Slam Club, and burgers from the fundraising BBQ for the Mayfair theatre-thanks to all who supported them.
We'd appreciate suggestions on what you would like to see at next years Kegkoura so feel free to get in touch, we already know that more shade and more seating are a given!
Next years Kegkoura will be Saturday 2nd March 2019, see you there!
The Emporium opened in October 2016 and is a place for Lau & Finney to share fun stuff they like! Expect blogs about beer, mini golf & escape rooms