Going to Sparks? Here is what you need to know

Sparks is on this weekend, with controversial hosts Mike Hosking and Kate Hawkesby. PHOTO: GEOFF SLOAN

The annual Sparks fireworks and concert event is on this Saturday.

While the choice of MC has raised the eyebrows of some Cantabrians, the city council says the annual Sparks fireworks display and concert will still have a host of local talent.

Polarising radio and television personality Mike Hosking and fellow broadcaster and wife Kate Hawkesby will host the event, leading to some Cantabriants saying on social media they will boycott the event.

But the show must go on, as they say, and here is what you need to know if you are heading to the event.

Kate Hawkesby and Mike Hosking will MC the event. PHOTO: NZHERALD

The free outdoor concert is being held in North Hagley Park this Saturday, with the pre-show entertainment starting at 5.30pm.

The main concert will get under way at 7.30pm.

The fireworks display is scheduled to begin at 9.30pm and will coincide with the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra and an all-comers choir’s performance of the 1812 Overture.

Food trucks will be on site and The Night Noodle Markets will be open from 1pm in North Hagley Park for those who want to set themselves up in the park early.

All food vendors will be using a range of compostable food packaging as Sparks.

St John is this year’s charity partner and collectors will be in the park on the night.

The rain date for the concert is Sunday 18 February.

Road closures

Major road works in the central city will be happening the weekend of Sparks.

Please plan ahead and allow yourself extra time to get to and from Sparks.

Use the Christchurch Journey Planner  to plan your route.

The best way to get to North Hagley Park will be via Madras Street or via Barbadoes Street then onto Kilmore Street.

Parking information

There will be no public car parking available in Hagley Park.

The Botanic Gardens Armagh Street car park will be closed to incoming traffic from 3pm.

A drop-off zone will be located on Park Terrace between Chester Street and Peterborough Street.

You can get an hour’s free parking at the following Council car parks:

  • Lichfield Street (between Colombo Street and Durham Street)
  • New Regent Street (Cnr Manchester & Gloucester St)
  • Worcester Street (105 Worcester St)
  • Rolleston Avenue (52 Rolleston Ave).

Wilson Parking are offering a flat rate of $3 over 12 hours from 4pm Saturday at the following car parks:

  • 118 Victoria Street
  • 66-68 Kilmore Street
  • 76 Armagh Street
  • 109 Cambridge Terrace
  • 605 Colombo Street
  • 74 Worcester Boulevard (Clarendon Tower site)
  • 502 Selwyn Street

Cycle stands will be located near the roundabout at the Armagh St bridge and at the northern end of the event area.

Public transport

Buses will be running as normal but please expect some delay. Details on current routes and timetables are available on Metroinfo’s website.(external link)

Mobility access

Mobility parking is available on Chester St West – entry off Cranmer Square – from 1pm.  Accessible seating is located in front of the stage, look for signage.