The long awaited Leisure Line get–together at Koputaroa School finally arrived. Thirty eight vans (Kiwi Built with Pride, as the advertisement says) came along, plenty of Leisure Line vans like ours, together with their factory mates Southern Star, Platinum and one Zephyr, a new addition to the range. The six person organising committee (us two, Roy, Dianne, Don and Sandra) arrived bright and early on Friday morning, ready to welcome the arrivals.
Ready and waiting for the vans to arrive
We had also hired the adjacent Koputaroa Hall for the weekend, which has quite an interesting history. The original hall was built in 1922 further along Koputaroa Road, but was burnt down in 1937, and rebuilt using donated materials and donated labour. It was moved to it’s present site in 1997 onto land donated by the Mitchell family. These days the hall has a busy life, and is in regular use from school and community groups, and hired out for functions, weddings, and groups such as ours.
The vans started arriving into the school grounds and after settling in, the happy campers made their way into the hall to register for the weekend. That kept me busy for most of the day, welcoming the visitors, ticking their names off the list, presenting them with their name badges and a copy of the programme for the weekend.
Registration this way
I climbed up to the top of the children’s play area for an elevated view over the school grounds. There was a sea of white vans as far as the eye could see.
Just look at all those caravans
Everyone met in the hall at 5.00pm for Happy Hour. Sandra opened the proceeding with the official welcome, and Robin spoke about the necessary house-keeping rules.
Sandra and Robin opening the weekend
Colin and Merilyn Bates, owners of the Leisure Line factory joined us for the weekend and kindly provided some beer and wine (I indulged in a glass of bubbly) for Happy Hour. Thanks so much, this was most appreciated by us all.
Colin as barman
Hamburgers were provided for the evening meal, and our merry band of helpers were busy cooking up a storm. Don’t they look lovely in their pinnies! Meanwhile, a group of ladies were busy in the kitchen preparing the “fixings” to go with the hamburgers. Buns were split and buttered, tomatoes were sliced, lettuce was washed, and cheese slices were arranged just so. Mustn't forget the beetroot and pineapple slices, the tomato sauce and mustard, and we were set to go. Everything was laid out on the large tables and the guests made their hamburger to suit themselves. Later in the evening we had a game in the hall involving three special dice and a few coins each, with the eventual winner taking all. It was a load of laughs.
Ross, Robin and Roy, on hamburger duty.
It was another fine and sunny day on Saturday, with a fair bit of inter-vanning going on. We may all have the same brand, but they come in different models and layouts, and it was a chance to get new ideas and inspiration. Colin and Merilyn had brought down a brand new van for people to check out, and Andrew from local agent Anza had three vans on display.
Brand new van to check out
The Leisure Line Question and Answer Session was well attended in the hall. Colin spoke about tyre pressures, water tanks, towing problems and the all important annual maintenance service, amongst other things. All very helpful advice, and he made himself available throughout the weekend to discuss individual problems with the caravan owners. Later in the day I looked out the window to see a group of interested blokes checking draw-bar weights. That took a while as they looked, pondered and discussed things.
That looks interesting
Don was the man in charge of the rotisserie as he carefully kept an eye on the large roll of hogget which was slowly turning. This was to be part of our evening meal and smelt delicious.
Don is helping to cook dinner
Our evening meal on Saturday night was catered, with the committee providing the hot hogget roll and a glazed ham, and the caterer supplying everything else. Everyone dressed in their glad rags and we enjoyed the seemingly endless platters of nibbles which were passed around, prior to the main course. Followed by dessert, so it certainly was a scrumptious meal.
Val and Bill, Jenny and Robin
Our evening entertainment was provided by Geoff and Teresa of Double Blend, singing all those songs that we remember from our younger days. The type of songs that we could sing along with, knowing all the words.
Having fun on the dance floor
The rain came down on Saturday night and hung about for a while on Sunday morning. But that didn’t stop the team from firing up the BBQs again for the Leisure Line sponsored breakfast. The boys cooked sausages, bacon and hash browns on the BBQs, while we ladies in the kitchen took care of a million fried eggs, or so it seemed, a huge pot each of spaghetti and baked beans and copious quantities of toast.
Sunday morning breakfast
Then the weekend was over, thanks were given and people slowly packed up and went on their way. The hall was cleared, the kitchen was cleaned, and we needed help dismantling our free standing gazebo which was in use over the BBQs. This folds up just like an umbrella and is certainly not a job to deal with single handed, with one person needed on each leg to walk together into the centre.
Dismantling the gazebo
A total of thirty eight vans attended, some close by from the local towns of Levin, Foxton, and Pamerston North, the furthest away coming from far flung Whangarei, with the rest from all places in-between. It was great to meet up with friends from out of town, and everyone was so friendly and mixed well. It was a great weekend, and it was announced that next year’s Leisure Line Owners get-together will be going ahead at Napier, so that is great news.