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Four Thousand Setting Up Campsite At Mystery Creek

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Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Four Thousand Setting Up Campsite At Mystery Creek

A tent city is springing up at the Mystery Creek Events Centre in Hamilton today, with over 4,000 Scouts and leaders moving in for the 19th NZ Scout Jamboree.

The Scouts will camp at Mystery Creek through until January 7.

Camp Chief Ross McKenzie says organising the transport arrangements for Scouts from all over New Zealand has been a big logistical exercise.

"They've come from one end of the country to the other. We've got something like 30 buses coming from Auckland alone today."

One particularly "well-travelled" group will be the Port Hills Troop from Christchurch. By the time they get back home again they will have travelled by train, ferry, bus and plane.

Other groups have come from as far afield as Cambodia, Australia , the Cook Islands, New Caledonia, Samoa and the United States.

Advance parties arriving on site yesterday had to brave driving rain as they set up the tents that will be home for the next ten days. However the weather is now expected to improve in time for the arrival of the majority of scouts today.

An opening ceremony will be held this evening, with the main activity programme kicking off tomorrow.

McKenzie says the Waikato is an excellent location for the jamboree, which requires organisers to provide activities to entertain 3,500 Scouts each day over a nine day period.

"All of the infrastructure at the Mystery Creek Events Centre makes it easy for us to set up here. There are also plenty of locations around the region we have been able to utilise to run activities. The Scouts will get to have a really good look around. For many of them, especially those from the South Island and overseas, it will be the first time they have been to Hamilton."

Each day groups will travel to a number of off-site "bases" for activities.

The biggest of these is at Findlay Park, which will offer a range of water sports and land-based activities for 450 Scouts and leaders each day. Other locations include an abseiling and caving activity at Te Akau and walking over Maungatautari Mountain. Great Race competition events will be run each day at Cambridge and Te Awamutu.

A number of activities will also be run on site at Mystery Creek, including the notorious Challenge Valley - a very muddy activity after which most Scouts will need to throw away their clothes.

Members of the public are welcome to attend the Jamboree Open Day on January 2.

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