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A small window of spring-like weather over the weekend allowed a couple of annual winter events in Wanaka to take place in relatively warm conditions.

Invercargill hosted over 140 young dancers at the weekend for the New Zealand Highland and National Dancing Championships.

The career of Dunedin musician Martin Phillipps began in the late 1970s in a teenage band called The Same.

There may have been a drone interference and a dozen arrests, but the Queenstown winter festival once again went off with a bang.

The Oamaru Rowing Club is looking to plug a financial leak following the departure of a key tenant.

Dunedin

  • An unknown flying object captured zipping through the sky on the Dunedin's Royal Albatross Colony's webcam is perplexing people on social media.

    A video posted shows clips from the webcam at Taiaroa Head this morning.

  • The All Blacks have put on the finishing touch ahead of the third test against France tomorrow...

    For captain Sam Whitelock, it's a chance to right the wrongs of last week...

  • A team of more than twenty contractors and engineers are halfway through a challenging maintenance project, to get the iconic TSS Earnslaw back into shape.

    The one hundred and five year old vessel has been winched out of Lake Wakatipu as it continues its evolution.

  • A large chunk of the Dunedin City Council's multi million dollar cycleway project is on schedule for completion early next year.

    It is expected to improve safety for cyclists, drivers and pedestrians.

  • No less than seven Highlanders have made the match-day squad for the All Blacks as they prepare to take on the French in Dunedin this weekend.

    And while forwards Shannon Frizzell and Jackson Hemopo are the newest of the southern men to make the cut, they're by no means alone...

  • Dunedinites decided to put others first today, bringing together a collection of food for the less fortunate in the Octagon.

    It is the tenth anniversary of the Octacan appeal, and Presbytarian Support says community backing continues to be crucial to its success.

Invercargill

  • Southland children showed off their culinary skills as part of a nation-wide cooking competition.

    The Garden to Table programme invites year five and six pupils to team up for the Root to Tip competition, to show they can grow, harvest and prepare a waste-free meal.

  • The purchase of a giant screen could give Invercargil a point of difference in attracting large-scale events to the city.
    Plans to purchase a $700,000 screen have been presented to potential investors at Stadium Southland.

  • Over a hundred Southland women gathered in Invercargill on Wednesday night to celebrate a hundred and twenty five years of women’s suffrage in New Zealand.

    The Suffrage Southland Womens Forum celebrated a long history of southern women fighting for their rights.

  • The organisation behind Invercargill's inner-city redevelopment will pay homage to the city’s history by retaining some of the facades of its heritage buildings.

    HWCP unveiled plans for the two hundred million dollar project on Monday, which shows the redevelopment isn't entirely out with the old.

  • The Invercargill City Council is already gearing up for next month's Matariki celebrations and has invited Southland children to help with the preparations.

    For the second year the city will celebrate its Matariki Festival to bring in the Māori New Year and the rise of the Matariki star cluster.

  • Invercargill’s inner city redevelopment is the city’s “last chance” to flourish economically, according to the organisation behind the project.

    HWCP director Scott O’Donnell said spending and structure were key elements in preventing a downward spiral for Invercargill’s economy.

Business

  • The median house price in Otago has reached a new high of $296,000.

    That's a $16,000 jump compared to this time last year.

    Prices are mostly up in rural areas but down in Dunedin, and overall sales volumes have fallen 7% in the last 12 months.

    Otago is one of six regions in the country to hit a new record high median sale price.

    Smaller increases are also being reported in Southland and the Queenstown Lakes area.

    There has been a large jump in sales volumes in Gore and commentators say demand from first home buyers remains solid.

  • Organisers of the iD Dunedin Fashion Week are looking at ways to cut costs after reporting an almost $55,000 loss.

    The society in charge of the annual fashion week just publicly confirmed the deficit.

    In the 2015 financial year it enjoyed a net profit of more than $120,000.

    But that's turned into a net loss of just under $55,000 following this year's event.

    Income dropped and expenditure increased for the society, disappointing members.

    They're blaming lower than expected ticket sales and are now looking at trimming costs and boosting sponsorship.

  • Otago is the second fastest growing region in the country in relation to tourism, according to the latest statistics.

    It's second only to the Nelson region, which has had 11.7% growth in tourism expenditure.

    The figure for Otago is 9.6%.

    That equates to $3.2b for the year to August.

    Wanaka led the country for individual towns and cities, experiencing a $16.3% increase.

    Dunedin's also had a winter tourism boom, thanks in part to a new promotion enticing Australians and New Zealanders to the city.

  • Port Otago has generated $7.3m for parent organisation the Otago Regional Council in the last financial year.

    The company's just publicly announced its latest annual performance, reporting a group profit of just over $34m.

    There has been an increase in export container volumes and higher valuations on investment properties.

    But the log industry has declined slightly, as have import container volumes and cruise ship numbers.

    Port Otago's well into its planned $45m infrastructure upgrade, spanning several years.

  • The latest stage of the Cromwell town centre redevelopment is beginning to take shape.

    Work on the Big Fruit Reserve started in July and is on schedule to be completed by November.

    And locals are hoping it'll entice passers-by to stop for more than just a photo opportunity.

  • A two-month Enterprise Dunedin campaign to entice people to the city is costing stakeholders almost $100,000.

    The city council's footing half the bill, with partner organisations covering the rest.

    Those involved say it's money well spent but the project is attracting scrutiny.

Local Sport

  • New Zealand Cricket and the New Zealand Cricket Players Association have agreed that women's cricketers will be paid more.

    A new three-year Memorandum of Understanding will see 15 of the country's best women cricketers offered annual retainers ranging in value from $20,000 to $34,000.

    Previously, only the top 10 players received contracts worth more than $10,000.

    The New Zealand Cricket Association says paying our best women's players more fits in well with the organisation's commitment towards inclusivity and diversity.

  • Despite a season-ending loss to the Lions at the weekend, the Highlanders are celebrating success, having 7 players selected in the latest All Blacks squad.

    All Blacks head coach Steve Hansen named his side for the upcoming rugby championship, with the now expected contingent of Highlanders making the cut.

    He says he and his fellow selectors are very happy with the squad and combinations they had come up with.

  • The Kia Toa Tigers have been crowned this year's Otago rugby league champions after defeating the East Coast Eagles.

    The side won 32 to 18 at Forsyth Barr Stadium taking home the coveted William Johnston Cup.

    And while there were a few stand-out players, the Tigers captain says it was very much a team effort.

  • All Blacks coach Steve Hansen will retain his position through to the next Rugby World Cup in 2019.

    His previous contract was set to expire next year following the British and Irish Lions three test tour.

    The 57 year old has been involved in the side's two back-to-back World Cup successes in the past eight years.

    And he's lost just three of 57 All Blacks tests as head coach.

  • After almost 20 years, Kaikorai is once again at the top of premier rugby.

    The side defeated Dunedin 29 points to 22 in Saturday's final at Forsyth Barr Stadium.

    And despite a slow start to the season, the winning captain couldn't be happier with how it's finished.

  • More than 100 children are participating in a football school holiday programme at the Edgar Centre.

    The importance of growing the sport at a grass-roots level is one of the main drivers behind the four day event.

    And although the football season's winding down, there's no let-up in local interest.