News & Announcements

Tactical Risk Assessment of People Workshop

T.R.A.P. (Tactical Risk Assessment of People) workshop

18 - 21 March 2019

Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland

Click here for more information



Presidents Report 2017/18

Keith Parker presented his Presidents Report at the EVANZ AGM on 26 November. Here is a copy of his report.


I am pleased to present my first annual report as the President of EVANZ to members for the November 2017 to November 2018 year. 

Firstly I would like to thank my colleagues on the Executive for another successful year. Without their support and strengths it would be very difficult to deliver across all the work streams and for that I thank them. 

At last year’s AGM Adam Lynch,  Megan Peacock- Coyle, Mark Gosling and Helaina Keeley were elected to the Executive to join standing members Joelene Elliot and myself.

Gwen Keel resigned as the Associates member representative on the board due to her change of work situation, and Ash Quensell was invited to take Gwen`s place as he was part of the Associates working group with Gwen from the start. I was elected by the Executive to lead the Association as their President which has been my pleasure and an honour representing our industry and members.

The Executive met on 5 occasions during the year. In addition to that the Executive Sub Committees also met regularly during the year. These committees include the Education and Training Sub Committee, Conference Sub Committee and Awards Sub Committee. 

I would like to thank all our elected members and sub-committee members for their very valuable contribution during this period.  I very much appreciate the voluntary time they put into their roles.

Miles Davidson left the association in July of this year and a recruitment process was undertaken in April/May with the outcome of Lynn Robinson being appointed the new GM of EVANZ. We thank Miles for assisting in this process and supporting Lynn into her new role.

The Executive and I are sure that the members will thank Miles for 15 years of service and his service will be acknowledged at the Awards dinner tomorrow evening.

  • We have continued to build on our relationships with MTNZ, ETNZ and PANNZ, and hope that this morning’s PANNZ meeting strengthens that relationship.
  • Membership and Associated members numbers have increased which has been pleasing to see.
  • A Survey was completed by our members in regards to the current website and the executive has a much better understanding as to what our members would like to see in that site, A working group will be established to look at the results and work with a provider to review the current and implement changes to our site.
  • Education within the EVANZ family still plays a huge part of what we offer with several scholarships and seminars being held across the country.
  • The Spark Arena Catering Scholarship, Eden Parks operational and catering scholarships along with the prestigious Auckland Live scholarship are but a few that have been undertaken. Adam will talk more about the new and exciting things that we have lined up for our members in his presentation tomorrow in the education session.
  • A very successful mid-year was held in Taupo and we thank Scott and Gillian and their teams for hosting us for a very successful conference.
  • The Association’s finances are in good shape and Lynn will give a more detailed account of our finances a bit later in this meeting.

Nominations have been called for the Executive for 2018/2020.  We are required to fill two positions. Myself and Joelene Elliott were up for re-election but with only two nominations those being both Joelene and myself, no vote will be required this year and the two nominated members will re-join the executive for the next two years. The executive will hold a meeting to elect the President for 2018/2020 after this meeting.

On behalf of the Executive I would like to thank you the members for your continuing support and we look forward to more success in the future. 

To all our sponsors - without you we would struggle. Your contributions are highly valued and I look forward to building those relationships over the next two years to ensure that both the members and the sponsors are being accorded the accolades that they deserve.

I would like to again thank the Executive Committee members for their input, advice and voluntary time which I know that they at times struggle with full time roles and balancing family along with all that.   

The Executive is excited to lead the association into the next year with lots happening, new relationships being built and lots of new initiatives in the education sector.

I have been extremely honoured to have been the President of this amazing Executive. I know that they have worked extremely hard over the last 12 months and I value each and every one of them. To Lynn our new GM I thank you for all that you have already done and look forward to working with you over the next two years.  


President, EVANZ


Trustpower Announced as Baypark Naming Partner

Iconic Tauranga organisations, Trustpower and Bay Venues have today announced that leading New Zealand energy and telecommunications company Trustpower will be the new naming sponsor of Baypark.

From December 2018 Baypark, the largest community, sporting and events venue in the Bay of Plenty, will be officially known as Trustpower Baypark.  Baypark provides a wide range of activities such as community sports, concerts and cultural events, exhibitions and shows as well as international level sporting fixtures.  It has also been home to speedway in the Bay of Plenty for many years.

The multi-faceted venue includes the Trustpower Arena and Trustpower Stadium, both of which are used extensively throughout the year.  The colourful new Trustpower branding of the venue will be installed over the next few weeks. 

Trustpower CEO Vince Hawksworth said “Being part of the community is an essential part of Trustpower’s DNA and we have supported local organisations like the Trustpower TECT rescue helicopter for many years. We’re excited about our new partnership with Baypark and the opportunity to be involved in an even wider range of community events and activities here on our home turf.”

Bay Venues CEO Gary Dawson believes that Trustpower’s involvement could not have come at a better time, with the facility’s usage and enquiry rates at unprecedented levels.

“We are very excited to be able to form a naming rights partnership with Trustpower – a successful Tauranga company that has the same underlying community objectives as ourselves – that is to enrich the lives of those living in Tauranga. “

“Local use and enjoyment of Baypark has grown year on year and Trustpower’s involvement with Baypark will ensure future growth and accessibility for all sectors of our community through their participation, or attendance at the many events and activities currently available at the venue”. 

For further information please contact Vince Hawksworth CEO Trustpower 021 223 4609 or Gary Dawson CEO of Bay Venues Ltd on 021 435 579.


New Look Kiwi Access card to replace 18+ card from January 2019

Kiwi Acess Card Hospitality New ZealandHospitality New Zealand has been administering the 18+ card since 2000.  The 18+ card is a respected and reliable Evidence of Age document, widely used across New Zealand.

Following Hospitality New Zealand’s recent re-brand, they thought it would be time to review the 18+ card. After consulting with other agencies (including Department of Internal Affairs, Ministry of Social Development, Office for Disability Issues and NZ Post), the decision has been made to replace the 18+ card with a new Kiwi Access card. The Kiwi Access card has a fresh look and enhanced security features, meaning it can reach a wider section of society who will benefit from having access to this new resource.

Hospitality New Zealand received feedback that there is a wide range of people that need to access goods and services in New Zealand, but are unable to obtain a passport or driver licence. As a result, they are currently reliant on the 18+ card to provide the required identification. The card’s new name, Kiwi Access, aligns better with the needs of everyone across all segments of New Zealand society and provides a form of identification that is more appropriate to their personal needs and situation.

The security features of Kiwi Access have also been enhanced, with a state-of-the-art upgrade, making it more difficult than ever before for the card to be fraudulently produced.

The Kiwi Access card will be in circulation in January 2019, and will retail at $55 including GST.

It is important to note that there have been no changes to the process in obtaining a card, so the integrity currently held by the 18+ card remains with the Kiwi Access card.  In fact, the security enhancements made to the Kiwi Access card increase the integrity, making it an even more secure means of identification.

Please also note that the current and previous versions of the 18+ card remain valid for 10 years from the date of issue.

If you have any questions please contact Rebecca Dobbs (ph 0800 500 503 or email, or visit


Excellence Recognised at Entertainment Venue Awards

Wednesday 28 November 2018

The 2018 Entertainment Venues Association of New Zealand (EVANZ) annual awards dinner took place at Eden Park, Auckland, on Tuesday 27 November, in conjunction with the EVANZ Annual Conference.

Awards were presented in nine award categories and there were two Supreme award winners. Finalists came from throughout New Zealand including Auckland, Hamilton, Taranaki, Porirua, Carterton, Wellington and Nelson. This year’s winners came from Auckland, Hamilton, Taranaki and Porirua.

Judging was undertaken by a panel of judges assembled from leading entertainment and events organisations and EVANZ Executive members.

This year the Contribution to Industry Award, recognising dedication and success within the industry, went to Miles Davidson who recently retired as General Manager of EVANZ after 15 years. Eden Park, Auckland took out the Health Promotion Agency Excellence in Host Responsibility award, and security firm Platform 4 Group won the Best Industry Supplier award.

In the Venues section, ASB Waterfront Theatre of Auckland was awarded Small Venue of the Year, Te Rauparaha Arena from Porirua won the Medium Venue of the Year award, and Auckland’s Spark Arena won the Large Venue of the Year and Supreme Venue of the Year awards. 

In the final section of the awards, the People category, Stacey Donaldson of Auckland Live won the Rising Star award, Ben Slatter from Hamilton’s H3 won Operations Manager of the Year, and Nelita Byrne from New Plymouth Event Venues took out the Venue Executive of the Year and Supreme Venue Person of the Year awards.

The EVANZ Award Finalists and Recipients for 2018 are:


Health Promotion Agency Excellence in Host Responsibility Award


  • Eden Park, Auckland
  • Montana Group – in partnership with H3, Hamilton
  • Hannah Playhouse, Wellington

WINNER: Eden Park, Auckland

Judges’ comments:

The judges loved the fact that Eden Park is working in partnership with local bars and businesses to minimise risk not just in the venue but in the wider local community. Eden Park is truly a stadium leading the way in host responsibility.

Excellence in Host Responsibility Eden Park - EVANZ Awards 2018

EVANZ Best Industry Supplier Award


  • Platform 4 Group
  • Sidekicker
  • Red Badge Security

WINNER: Platform 4 Group

Judges’ comments:

The decision was a close one, but the deciding factor was that P4G takes the next step in dedicated education for their clients with knowledge obtained from industry forums.

P4G’s ‘end client’ mentality shows in the feedback received from event attendees. Their security teams seem to understand that it is not just a relationship between them and the venue, but also those attending the events. P4G shows real flexibility and the ability to adapt to the needs of their clients.

Best Industry Supplier Platform 4 Group - EVANZ Awards 2018

EVANZ Contribution to Industry Award            

RECIPIENT: Miles Davidson (former General Manager, EVANZ) – Miles recently retired after 15 years as General Manager of EVANZ.      

Miles Davidson Contribution to Industry Award - EVANZ Awards 2018


Eventfinda Large Venue of the Year Award (Over 5,000 Seats)


  • FMG Stadium, Hamilton
  • Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland
  • Spark Arena, Auckland

WINNER: Spark Arena, Auckland

Judges’ comments:

In conjunction with a busy calendar of events, the Arena and Spark rolled out a number of customer focused initiatives as part of the partnership, as well as leading the industry in sustainability.

Large Venue of the Year Spark Arena - EVANZ Awards 2018

Sidekicker Medium Venue of the Year (1,001-4,999 Seats)


  • Trafalgar Centre, Nelson
  • Te Rauparaha Arena, Porirua

WINNER: Te Rauparaha Arena, Porirua

Judges’ comments:

Our medium size venues serve an important part of our regional footprint and we commend our finalists for the work they are doing within their venues and communities. Te Rauparaha has more than exceeded both income and visitor target numbers consistently and has proven its value to the community and the citywide economy.

Medium Venue Award Te Rauparaha Arena - EVANZ Awards 2018

Ticketmaster Small Venue of The Year (1-1,000 Seats)


  • Carterton Events Centre
  • ASB Waterfront Theatre, Auckland
  • Q Theatre, Auckland

WINNER: ASB Waterfront Theatre

Judges’ comments:

It was fantastic to see a wide range of venues submit entries into this category and some new nominations this year from very different venues and resources. Although only recently celebrating its second birthday, ASB Waterfront Theatre is performing strongly across both the performing arts and meetings/corporate markets and delivering exceptional service to customers.

Small Venue ASB Waterfront Theatre - EVANZ Awards 2018


Ticketek Venue Executive of the Year Award


  • Nick Sautner, Eden Park, Auckland
  • Jason Wade, Clarence Street Theatre, Hamilton
  • Nelita Byrne, New Plymouth Event Venues, Taranaki

WINNER: Nelita Byrne, New Plymouth Event Venues, Taranaki

Judges’ comments:

A strong leader herself, Nelita is always looking for ways to provide development and leadership opportunities to her staff. She has led her team in consistently delivering outstanding results this year during a period of challenges, including the unexpected partial closure of Yarrow Stadium. Judges were impressed by her well-laid-out submission which provided excellent examples relating to the award criteria.

The winner of the Ticketek Venue Executive of the Year award receives complimentary registration to the Venue Management Association (VMA) Asia-Pacific Venue Industry Congress for 2019.

Venue Executive of the Year Nelita Byrne - EVANZ Awards 2018

Simpson Grierson Operations Manager of the Year Award


  • Blair Christiansen, Eden Park Auckland
  • Chynna Phelan, Eden Park Auckland
  • Ben Slatter, H3 Group Hamilton

WINNER: Ben Slatter, H3 Group Hamilton

Judges’ comments:

With his cool and calm demeanour, strategic mind and passion for events, Ben is a rising star of both H3 and the event industry. Ben has a great motivation to improve the venue and events they deliver, as well as to make sure his team is able to have their own opportunity to grow within the organisation.

The winner of the Simpson Grierson Operations Manager of the Year award receives complimentary registration to the 2019 EVANZ Conference.

Operations Manager of the Year Ben Slatter - EVANZ Awards 2018

Ungerboeck Rising Star of the Year Award


  • Mark Mekalick, Trafalgar Centre & Trafalgar Park, Nelson
  • Megan Bloomfield, Napier Venues
  • Stacey Donaldson, Auckland Live

WINNER: Stacey Donaldson, Auckland Live

Judges’ comments:

Despite juggling two busy roles as Production Manager and Event Coordinator, Stacey has been instrumental in getting Auckland Live’s various teams working together smoothly. One of her most notable contributions was overseeing the rollout of a new event management software (Ungerboeck) in 2017. Stacey understands first-hand the pressures on a client and can focus on their needs matching the operational requirements to ensure a positive outcome. She has a natural knack for making each client feel that nothing but their show matters.

The winner of the Ungerboeck Rising Star award receives a $5,000 scholarship to VMS – the Venue Management School in Australia. This scholarship covers years 1 and 2.          

Rising Star Stacey Donaldson - EVANZ Awards 2018

Award accepted by Kerry Griffiths on behalf of Stacey



VIDCOM Supreme Venue of the Year Award (highest scoring nomination across the 3 venue awards - large, medium and small)

WINNER: Spark Arena, Auckland

Judges’ comments:

Spark Arena is a shining example of a highly successful New Zealand venue. It continues to exceed the expectations of its stakeholders while engaging with the community and leading by example with sustainability initiatives. A world-class arena well on its way to achieving its goal of being the best Arena in Australasia and regarded as one of the leading venues in the world, Spark Arena is a deserving recipient of this award.         

Supreme Venue of the Year Spark Arena - EVANZ Awards 2018 

EVANZ Supreme Person of the Year Award (highest scoring nomination across the 3 people awards)

WINNER: Nelita Byrne, New Plymouth Event Venues, Taranaki

Judges’ comments:

Nelita is the Venues Manager for New Plymouth District Council. Her team manage and deliver events at the TSB Bowl of Brooklands, TSB Showplace, Yarrow Stadium and TSB Stadium. She has led the team to consistently strive for excellence, continuously aiming to improve processes and deliver a sensational service to clients and customers. Nelita was EVANZ President for 2 years, stepping down at the 2017 conference. She has devoted a lot of time and energy into the development of the industry and is a truly worthy recipient of this award.

Nelita Byrne Winner Supreme Venue Person of the Year - EVANZ Awards 2018

2018 EVANZ Awards Finalists

EVANZ Awards Finalists 2018

The judging is complete! Congratulations to all the finalists for the EVANZ Awards 2018. They are:

HPA Excellence in Host Responsibility  
Eden Park, Auckland
Montana Group (in partnership with H3), Hamilton
Hannah Playhouse, Wellington

EVANZ Best Industry Supplier
Platform 4 Group
Red Badge

Ticketek Venue Executive of the Year 
Nick Sautner, Eden Park
Jason Wade, Clarence St Theatre
Nelita Byrne, New Plymouth Event Venues

Simpson Grierson Operations Manager of the Year 
Blair Christiansen, Eden Park
Chynna Phelan, Eden Park
Ben Slatter, H3 Group

Ungerboeck Rising Star of the Year Award 
Mark Mekalick, Trafalgar Centre & Trafalgar Park
Megan Bloomfield, Napier Venues
Stacey Donaldson, Auckland Live

Eventfinda Large Venue of the Year (over 5,000 seats)
FMG Stadium, Hamilton
Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland
Spark Arena, Auckland

Sidekicker Medium Venue of the Year (1,001 - 4,999 seats)
Trafalgar Centre, Nelson
Te Rauparaha Arena, Porirua

Ticketmaster Small Venue of the Year (under 1,000 seats)
Carterton Events Centre, Carterton
ASB Waterfront Theatre, Auckland
Q Theatre, Auckland

EVANZ Contribution to Industry Award - Announced on the night

Vidcom Supreme Venue of the Year EVANZ Awards sponsor

Vidcom Supreme Venue of the Year Award (highest scoring nomination across the 3 venue awards - large, medium and small) - announced on the night.

EVANZ Supreme Venue Person of the Year Award (highest scoring nomination across the 3 people awards) - announced on the night.

All winners will be announced at the 2018 EVANZ Awards Dinner, Eden Park on Tuesday 27 November.

Book your ticket to the Awards Dinner now! Just complete the online form or email

Thank you to all our Awards Sponsors!

2018 EVANZ Awards Sponsors

Public Liability Insurance Survey

Sally-Anne Coates from New Plymouth EventVenues is undertaking some research into how venues deal with Public Liability Insurance. She would love to hear how other venues handle Public Liability and will collate and share the results. You can find the short survey here - please complete the form and send it back to by Weds 7 November.

Speakers Announced for EVANZ Conference - Media Release

The Entertainment Venues Association of New Zealand (EVANZ) has announced the speakers for its 2018 Annual Conference, which will take place at Eden Park in Auckland from 26-28 November 2018.

The Conference’s opening Keynote will come from Martin Snedden, project lead with New Zealand Cricket and former Chief Executive of Duco Promotions, New Zealand Cricket and the Tourism Industry Association of NZ, and the Tournament Organiser for the 2011 Rugby World Cup.

Snedden and a line-up of industry leaders from around New Zealand will cover everything from sustainable events and venues, to crisis management and workplace culture.

EVANZ President, Keith Parker, said "Successful events and venues rely on teams of people working together effectively, so this year the theme of our conference is around people and culture. Sustainability is also a key focus and we will be providing tools and ideas to enable venues to operate more sustainably within their communities, with audiences and visitors, economically and environmentally."

The programme will feature a pre-conference Performing Arts Network of New Zealand (PANNZ) workshop and special events including a Welcome Function on Monday evening and venue tours of the ASB Waterfront Theatre and Spark Arena on Wednesday afternoon. The 2018 EVANZ Awards Dinner will take place on Tuesday 27 November.

Introduced in 2013, the annual EVANZ Awards recognise and reward the success of venues while also acknowledging the contribution of individuals in leadership and operational management roles and identifying the stars of the future. Categories include Small, Medium and Large Venue of the Year, Venue Executive the Year, Operations Manager of the Year, Rising Star, Excellence in Host Responsibility and Best Industry Supplier.

Online registrations for the conference are now open. Further information can be found at


EVANZ Executive Nominations 2018 - 2020

Nominations are being called for the EVANZ Executive. Nominations are required for 2 positions. If a vote is required this will take place at the EVANZ AGM on Monday 26 November 2018 at Eden Park at 4.15pm.

The deadline for nominations is Monday 29 October 2018.

Please ensure all nominees are aware that this is a two year term from the 2018 AGM until the AGM in 2020.  Also ensure that a 2-3 paragraph bio is supplied for each nominee.

Current Executive:
Keith Parker - Eden Park (President - End of Term)
Joelene Elliott - Events and Venues Rotorua (Vice President - End of Term)
Adam Lynch - Hobbiton (Entering Year 2)
Megan Peacock Coyle - Hawkes Bay Opera House (Entering Year 2)
Helaina Keeley - Auckland Live (Entering Year 2)
Mark Gosling - Trusts Arena (Entering Year 2)
Ashley Quensell - Platform 4 Group (Co-Opted Associate Member Representative)


Auckland Live Scholarship Recipients

Auckland Live Scholarship Recipients Announced

We are pleased to advise that Simon Long from Rangiora Town Hall and Kathy Nicholls from Rotorua Events and Venues have been named as recipients for this year’s Auckland Live scholarships. Mitchell Richmond from North Shore Events Centre was awarded a one-day session at Auckland Live, focusing on specific areas of interest. Congratulations to all the scholarship recipients.

Thanks to Auckland Live for making these scholarships available to EVANZ members. Your support of the industry is very much appreciated!