Media Releases

6 Aug 19: New Zealand get ready to paint the whole country pink

There is going to be an invasion of breast cancer paddlers coming to New Zealand for the International Breast Cancer Paddlers Commission (IBCPC) festival to be held in the Waikato in 2022.

IBCPC worldwide President Meri Gibson, of Christchurch, is behind the bid to bring the festival to New Zealand. “This will be very big, bigger than big, the expectation is that there could be up to 5000 breast cancer paddlers invading New Zealand to come and compete in this event", says Gibson. 

The regatta will take place at Mighty River Domain, Lake Karapiro, with other events and side trips centred around Hamilton, Cambridge and the wider Waikato region.  

“This a massive undertaking, I had to step aside from any involvement in the decision and site assessment process regarding the event venue as I was the sole bidder for New Zealand. I did this on my own with enormous help from Nicola Greenwell of Hamilton and Waikato Tourism, go the Mighty Waikato", says Gibson.

Gibson says she’s absolutely thrilled and very overwhelmed that the festival will come to New Zealand, saying “Being up against countries from across the globe on various continents made this even more special to win the bid".

Jason Dawson, CEO Hamilton & Waikato Tourism and his team are super excited to have this event coming to ‘The Mighty Waikato’. Jason commented that attracting a major event like the IBCPC Festival to our region during our shoulder season is a key objective of the Regional Major Events Strategy. “We are proud to bring an inspirational event like the IBCPC festival to Waikato and continue to showcase our region as the home of international sporting events” he added.

Waipa District Councillor and CEO of Mighty River Domain at Lake Karapiro, Liz Stolwyk is really thrilled to see the event coming to the Waipa District.  Stolwyck said that “receiving the news that we would be hosting our first International Dragon Boat event was incredible news for us.  This event is something ‘very, very special’ and I know the community will be thrilled to support such an extraordinary event”.

Mystery Creek Events Centre will be one of the main venues for various events associated with the regatta and CEO Peter Nation comments on hosting an event like this. “We are honoured to be able to host parts of this fantastic event at our world class, versatile facility and look forward to being a part of this very special festival in 2022”, says Nation.

Travel and accommodation partners Orbit World Travel are busy securing accommodation across the region. Orbit's Groups and Events special projects manager Andrea Russell commented, “Orbit is honoured to be working with the IBCPC Festival 2022 team in providing a seamless travel experience on the ground whilst showcasing not only the beautiful Waikato region to the participants but also the rest of New Zealand.”

The event will be pink, pink and then still more pink. Gibson says that, "this event will be incredible for not just the region but the whole of the country. These paddlers know how to spend money and they will be visiting for much longer than the six days of the festival". This festival coming to New Zealand will be an incredible boost to the economy of the region with visitors from the 25 + countries, across six continents that are represented by IBCPC. "For many this will be the trip of a lifetime, a bucket list must visit country".

For further comment or information please contact:

Meri Gibson 027 2273979