26 Jun 2010

Mardi Gras festival in Ohakune

10:53 pm on 26 June 2010

Whakapapa skifield celebrated the start of the ski season with the Mountain Mardi Gras festival in Ohakune on Saturday night.

About 8000 people were expected to attend the annual street party.

Mt Ruapehu marketing manager Mike Smith said the Mardi Gras was sold out for the first time since it began in the mid-1990s.

Although it is early in the season, Mr Smith says recent heavy snowfalls combined with the use of a snow machine have made for great conditions at Whakapapa and Happy Valley.