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Our fly in commenced in Whangarei where approx. 9 planes and 33 pax met at the Northern Districts Aero Club, Onerahi, Whangarei. We were due to meet at 12pm at the Aero Club but inclement weather meant some planes took a little longer to arrive. We were very well looked after by Club President, Don Miller (R.C.of Whangarei South), and his team who served tea, coffee and banana cake. This was the first time many of us had seen other members for six months, so it was great time to meet to catch up.
With everyone safely on the ground. Roger Leadbeater, our organiser, had arranged for a bus to take us on a short mystery tour of Whangarei which included a short-walk along the A.H. Reed Memorial Bush Walk. Unfortunately, it started to rain which made the track a bit muddy, but still an interesting walk. We were met by the bus at the other end and taken to Town Basin for a bite of lunch. After frequenting one of the local cafes and then the local ice-cream shop, it was back on the bus to the airfield in readiness for a flight to Kerikeri. The weather was still against us with clouds and rain showers, but we flew up the coast in convoy and then inland to Kerikeri, arriving in a torrential downpour.
We were met by the Kerikeri Rotary Club members and taken to our motel where we could relax and prepare for the dinner at The Landings Restaurant. This was a most enjoyable dinner and another chance to catch up with everyone.
Woke-on Saturday morning to a lovely day. Members of the Fellowship of Yachting Rotanans had arranged approx. 8 boats to take us sailling for the day on boats ranging from small yachts to a large catamaran. We had a great day, experiencing dolphins playing off the bow of the boat and a lovely lunch on Roberton Island in the Bay of Islands. Many took on the walk to the top of the island to be greeted with a fabulous view around the Bay.
After a relaxing couple of hours, it was back on the boats and sail back to Kerikeri where on arrival we went into the Kerikeri Cruising Club for happy hour and dinner. Again a lovely meal, followed by the customary sergeants session, the proceeds of which were donated to the Russell Marine Radio
Sunday morning brought terrible weather, after raining all night. We were bused to the Kerikeri Aero Club where our AGM was held and then a bus and private cars took us to Paihai for lunch and a relaxing afternoon. We had hoped the weather would clear as we were going to fly to Cape Reinga, but it wasn’t to be, so we spent the afternoon Paihia and several took the ferry to Russell and had a wander round the historic sites.
Some of the Flying Rotarians departed for home in the afternoon but those who were staying over until Monday morning were invited to have dinner with the Kerikeri Aero Club, The invitation was taken up by approx. 17 Rotarians and a lovely evening was had with local aviators.
Monday morning saw an improvement in the weather and members made their way home at their leisure.
Another fly in had come to a close and we all look forward to meeting again in Wanganui in October.