The Southland Party returns

September 17th, 2012 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

Parliament will be filled with southern drawls and plenty of maroon on Friday when the Party is brought back to life.

The yearly get-together for Southlanders transplanted to Wellington has been absent from the calendar for the past nine years, but a crew of expats, including MP Eric Roy and Newstalk ZB political editor Barry Soper, have brought it back.

The party will feature the best of Southland cuisine, from oysters to beef to that essential southern drop Speight’s.

In its heyday, the evening attracted about 400 Southlanders to the banquet hall at Parliament to reminisce about everything southern.

These parties were legendary. When I worked at Parliament, I helped organise the  music for a couple of them. One of our colleagues was the daughter of the Mayor of Gore or Balclutha (we called her the first daughter of Gore :-) ), so we would go along with her.

The best of the parties wasn’t in the banquet hall, but in the ground floor dockway of the Beehive. It was ideal location for a party as hay bales were put around, it was on tarmac so easy to clean up, and could spill outdoors.

The parties were funded by the ticket sales and I think Speights contributed some beer. Off memory they would raise money for some good Southland cause.

“But it was such a popular event that the most frequent question I get asked is ‘why we aren’t doing them any more?’

“So here we are giving it another go.” The Gore-born journalist brought together a team of hardcore southern folk to get the party up and running again, and the evening at Parliament is gaining steam once again.

A great revival plan. I just need to find a lass from Southland to date, so I can attend on her coattails :-)

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15 Responses to “The Southland Party returns”

  1. hmmokrightitis (1,596 comments) says:

    Went out with a member of the Speight family for a while. Gorgeous girl, turned breathing into a spectator sport. WTF was I thinking letting that one go :)

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  2. Pete George (23,830 comments) says:

    hmmokrightitis – I did to, very briefly. But…

    The party will feature the best of Southland cuisine, from oysters to beef to that essential southern drop Speight’s.

    Speights is not a Southland drop. I can see the brewery chimney belching black smoke now, in Dunedin.

    Perhaps Speights is generous in sponsoring this event as a marketing opportunity, but it would be far more representative of Southland if the Invercargill Brewery was promoted.

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  3. hmmokrightitis (1,596 comments) says:

    Might have been the same one Pete ;) And dead right, Speights is scarfy territory. The In’vgill Brewery does a splendid range of beers.

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  4. backster (2,196 comments) says:

    swedes and brussel sprouts for the main course then

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  5. Pete George (23,830 comments) says:

    And if bottled or canned Speights is used in the Southland promotion is would have been brewed in Christchurch or Auckland.

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  6. Pete George (23,830 comments) says:

    hmmokrightitis – it’s a popular scarfy brew now, but in the seventies it was shunned by the young and known as ‘old man’s beer’. I was ahead of my time, but then if you took Speights to parties no one would pinch it.

    Invercargil Brewery is known for it’s ciders too.

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  7. Alan Johnstone (1,087 comments) says:

    “Speights is not a Southland drop. I can see the brewery chimney belching black smoke now, in Dunedin. ”

    Isn’t anything south of the Bombays all the same ?

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  8. Pete George (23,830 comments) says:

    “Isn’t anything south of the Bombays all the same?”

    Yeah, right.

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  9. hmmokrightitis (1,596 comments) says:

    In my time as a ‘lover of speights” ;) they used to do a small private run of a beer similar to their Directors. Lovely it was, only available to insiders.

    Still brings a smile to my face when somone offers to ‘open me a Speights’ :)

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  10. KH (695 comments) says:

    Get up to date. The essential drop this century is ‘Emersons’. Again of course, a Dunedin product. Try the Pilsner.

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  11. KH (695 comments) says:

    “South of the Bombays’ !! . Again a concept from the Ark. Aucklanders these days believe that New Zealand doesn’t exist south of Epsom.

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  12. annie (539 comments) says:

    OK. I’m a starter. Not sure how I missed this, will head off and try to get a ticket today.

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  13. Viking2 (11,680 comments) says:

    Speights is not a Southland drop. I can see the brewery chimney belching black smoke now, in Dunedin.

    ah so that will be coal. Hope you nedinites have paid your ETS but even so i will report you to Wuzzell.He will be along to fuck up the party woith his whinny voice.
    Hope you Scots get up his tilt.

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  14. IHStewart (388 comments) says:

    Southland lass ?

    Sorted

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/southland-times/farming/6837185/Finalist-sharpens-up-on-finer-points-of-farming

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  15. Steve (North Shore) (4,537 comments) says:

    You helped orgaise music for them DPF?
    A one string banjo ain’t that hard to play, neither is huffing on a stone wiskey jar

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