New Zealand is a wonderful country packed full of amazing scenery, exciting activities and wonderful people, much of which even the most energetic travellers bypass, overlook or often have never heard of.  This year 18 ‘Bangers’ braved these wonders over 12 days starting on Tuesday 6 April from Bucklands Beach, Auckland to Bluff in this very unusual event created and run by Half Moon Bay Rotary since 2015.
One of the teams was Rotarians Gaye Harford and Hilary Prior who cast themselves as the “Wicked Witches” (the East Witch and the West Witch) and are pictured here with 'The Blue Broomstick', their car, fully decked out with their personal theme and sponsor logos.
They approached this as an adventure and a unique experience the like of which could not be had otherwise and had literally the treasured experience of a lifetime and starting new friendships among their fellow travellers.
Their car had to be under $2,000, but roadworthy and would be auctioned in Invercargill outside the Newfield Tavern at the end of the rally as part of their donation to the charitable cause.  Naturally cars of this vintage may well have some challenges, but there was a support vehicle in case of breakdowns and AA Breakdown Assist and plenty of help from fellow travellers with this picture showing Gaye helping one team in one such incident although one team needed to resort to an “alternative transport”.
The camaraderie was amazing with about a half of the teams being Rotarians and the rest everyday people who believed in the cause.  The route took them about 300km a day with some ‘challenges’ along the way – imagine swimming with the eels, jet boat riding and each day ended at accommodation  at about 4.30pm for a drink, an expansive yarn and one five evenings a BBQ as well. 
Let the rest of the story be told by these pictures:
Gaye and Hilary raised an impressive $4,700 towards the cause. The Blue Broomstick has gone to a new home with her spiders’ webs, bats, ghosts and witches (not us!) still all on board and the trusty broom still firmly anchored to the roof. The buyer said he bought it for his mother-in-law!
In summing up their experience they said, "It has been a wonderful trip with lots of laughs along the way. A great team of people in eighteen “bangers” and some beautiful scenery."
Over the years this concept has raised over $300,000 with another $18,500 from this 2021 rally going to the 2021 masthead charities, Multiple Sclerosis Society of NZ and HopeWorks Foundation plus some also used for community projects of Half Moon Bay Rotary. 
For more about this amazing event go to: