Friendly call for helping hands

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The area around a cluster of macrocarpa trees at Friendly Bay is to be given a tidy up by a local group starting next week.
Carved by Picton-based carver Pita Lagan, the trees depict both sea and bird life.
Former Waitaki mayor Alan McLay, the driving force behind the sculptured trees, said the landscaping work would be undertaken by a crew from North Otago Tonga Engagement (Note), an Oamaru group which aims to enhance relationships with Waitaki’s Tongan community through working together on projects.
“The group of sculptured trees are getting some landscaping done and then they will be officially completed,” Mr McLay said.
“It took a lot of peoples’ effort to get the trees to this state and we’ve had lots of wonderful contributions to make it all happen. “Note will put the icing on the cake.”Waitaki Presbyterian Parish minister the Rev Jill McDonald, who co-founded Note, said the group aimed to carry on the work other local service organisations had done over the years.
“Working together on a job gets people to know and respect each other,” Ms McDonald said.
“Usually it has been Rotary or Lions doing this sort of thing. “It’s an opportunity for some of the newer Oamaru citizens to do community work. Doesn’t Friendly Bay just keep getting better and better?”Helping on the day will be former North Otago and Tonga rugby representative Hotili Asi, a prop who played for the Old Golds between 2000 and 2005. Mr Asi encouraged anyone interested to come along and help from 8.30am on Saturday, April 9 and again on April 16.
Mr McLay said, when finished, the area would feature robust plants suited to being near the sea and a limestone border.

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