News - Northcote

By: Northcote  05-Apr-2012
Keywords: Shopping Centre, Asian Foods, Chinese New Year

Northcote Town Centre “Auckland’s Centre of Culture”  has been busy with activity in recent months.

The purpose-built chess tables under the elm tree in Pearn Place now have permanent checker-boards tiled into the tops and have become a popular attraction.  A concrete table tennis table has been installed in Pearn Place, adding to the community amenity in this area, and the centre’s cultural theme.

Ninety volunteers got involved in the Northcote Town Centre Tidy Up on Sunday, 21 August.  This was one of the pre-World Cup Town Centre Tidy Ups and was co-ordinated by Northcote Mainstreet and the Kaipatiki Project.  

Northcote’s second Moon Festival was celebrated in style in early September, with several thousand people attending the festival.

The next major festival will be the annual Chinese & Korean New Year Festival which is set to take place on Friday, 27 January and Saturday, 28 January 2012.

This Chinese & Korean New Year Festival has become a much anticipated event in Northcote over the past twelve years, providing a taste of Asian culture and a wide range of Asian entertainment and activities.  

Next year’s event is particularly special as it celebrates the “Year of the Dragon”, the feature year on the Chinese and Korean Lunar calendar.

It will bring some special features to the Northcote event such as Dragon dances and a feature photography exhibition.  It is also significant as Northcote celebrated the “Year of the Dragon” with its first Chinese & Korean New Year Festival back in 2000.

We have the support of Auckland Council, Creative Communities NZ and Air NZ for this festival, and aim to make it a special celebration of colour, culture and cuisine in the Northcote Town Centre, “Auckland’s Centre of Culture”.

Ninety volunteers were part of the Northcote Town Centre Tidy Up on Sunday, 21 August.  The Northcote event was one of the pre-World Cup Town Centre Tidy Ups which took place in centres all over Auckland.  It was co-ordinated by Northcote Mainstreet and the Kaipatiki Project, the environment centre of the North Shore.  The volunteers got involved in a range of gardening, rubbish and painting projects at Northcote, with the result that all of Northcote’s jobs were ticked off as done, and 100 bags of garden waste and a large skip bin of inorganic waste removed from the centre.Volunteers came from a variety of community groups -•    Chinese Association of North Shore
•    Northcote Shore Chinese Society
•    ELEV8 YOUF Group from the Onepoto Awhina
•    Rotary Club of Northcote
•    Northcote Citizens Advice Bureau
•    Northcote Resident & Ratepayers Assn

The day proved to be a great community occasion with people of various nationalities and ages getting together to work on tidying up the centre.   The groups involved have already indicated a desire to be involved in ‘tidy up projects’ in future, with talk that this may become an annual event.

Aji Ichiban has brought specialty Chinese sweets to Northcote, with the business and its products proving a real treat for shoppers to the centre.

Owner Justin Zhang waited two years to get a shop in the Northcote Town Centre, and when Digital Mobile closed, he was quick to take up the lease and transform the shop into a sweet-lover’s haven.

Crystal Yan has purchased the well-known Northcote business The Cake Tree in Pearn Place. The Cake Tree has been in the Northcote Town Centre for 21 years, treating customers to their specialty cakes. David and Shirley Chen had been the popular owners of this business and well-liked identities in the centre.

After ten years of trading in the Mt Albert Shopping Centre, Xin Ding loves doing business in the Northcote Town Centre.

His business, Star Tech Computers, is a welcome addition to Northcote, providing computer sales and repairs. 

Ding works with both Mac and PC’s – providing parts and accessories, as well as great service.

Ding loves the community atmosphere that exists in the centre, and the camaraderie between the business-people in Pearn Place.

On the 24th of December 2010, Northcote lost one of its favourite sons – Bob Mitchell.  He was someone that contributed so much to the Northcote Town Centre and the community in general, and his generous nature and jovial presence will be missed.

Bob’s relationship with the Northcote Town Centre started in 1982 when he bought “Martin’s” shop in Northcote.  With business skills acquired through being the Marketing Manager for Tanner Couch, Bob set about changing the store into “Mitchell’s Paper Plus”.

He brought a Lotto agency into the store as soon as it was introduced, and a NZ Post Shop.  After original being part of the Paper Plus, Bob started the Paper Power Group was the Northcote shop becoming known as “Mitchell’s Paper Power”.

In his twenty years owning the business, Bob Mitchell was a colourful character in the Northcote Town Centre.  He was a Justice of the Peace, instrumental in establishing the Northcote Citizen’s Centre and was the letting officer for 27 years. Bob was chairman of the Northcote Business Association, and involved in many events in the centre as an organiser or vibrant MC.

Here’s a few things that I know to be true
About this South Canterbury man, from TimaruHe lived life in his own unique fashion
He lived life with plenty of passionHe was a humble man, not one to gloat
He was a man who truly loved NorthcoteHe loved a yarn, for a minute, or an hour
He loved people popping in to Mitchell’s Paper PowerHe loved bowls, racehorses, and the country of Fiji
He loved it when you said “Yes - I would like a cup of tea”He was a man I loved getting to know
As we watched the Northcote centre change and growGetting on stage with a mic for Bob was not hard
He was, in many ways, Northcote’s bardHe was full of good humour, kind words and grace
He made Northcote, and all our lives, a brighter place 

The Birkenhead / Northcote Community Board has also given funding towards the development of “Cultural Gateways” in the Northcote Town Centre.

The “Cultural Gateways”, to be developed at the entrances to the town centre, will be representative of the multi-cultural nature of the Northcote community, in their design and use of materials. 

The gateways will create a strong entrance to the centre, and help brand the ‘multi-cultural’ nature of the Northcote Town Centre, and surrounding community.

The Northcote Town Centre has the goal of becoming the “Cultural Centre of Auckland”.  One of the recent projects which works towards this is two Chinese Checkers Tables whch have been manufactured and installed under the elm tree in Pearn Place.

We will now have the tiling done for the Chinese Checkers Boards, as well as a standard chess board which allows people to play Chess or Draughts.  The tables will provide a facility for people of all ethnicities to play Chess or Checkers in the shaded setting under the horizontal elm tree, especially elderly Chinese who already come into the centre to play checkers.

Keywords: Asian Foods, Chinese New Year, Shopping Centre

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Past Events - Northcote

There was a strong focus on youth performance with promising North Shore band – “The Hangar” kicking off the show, and four hip-hop groups from all over Auckland keeping crowds entertained with high energy performances. A big thank you to the Silk Road Chinese Folk Music Band and the Macang Dance Company for their performances last night, and to the speakers – Lindsay Waugh, Melissa Lee and Martin Lawes.