More than 1000 people in carnival procession

Final touches . . . Dunedin Midwinter Carnival event manager Keir Russell (left) and art team members Florence Sorrel (centre) and Nada Crofskey-Rayner put tissue paper onto a lantern before the carnival on Saturday. PHOTO: JESSICA WILSON

Volunteers, staff and local community groups have all had a hand in this year’s Midwinter Carnival.

From performers to members of the public, more than 1000 people will take part in the procession in the Octagon tonight (Saturday).

Carnival event manager Keir Russell said a wide variety of people were involved in the carnival, from 19- to 60-year-olds and each bought something different to the event.

“It’s a real cross-section of people.

“We try and pull in all parts of Dunedin to get things done.”

Many schools and community groups had also put their hands up to help, as well as a professional seamstress and make-up artist.

Some volunteers had been part of the carnival for years and others were new, he said.

This year’s theme of Nocturnal Nature has meant lanterns from previous years were able to be brought “back to life” and reused.

In particular, owls and wekas made in 2006 have been given a freshen-up to ensure they are parade-ready.

Mr Russell said reusing lanterns was an important part of the carnival’s “recycling ethos” and one of the reasons the theme was chosen.

Many of the new lanterns would be more mobile, a slightly different approach from previous years.

“Our amazing artists have made more dynamic lanterns.”

This year’s carnival will be the last on the original route. A new, longer route will extend along part of Moray Pl and Princes St next year.

“[It will be the] last hurrah in this format and then it is evolving again.”