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During the year the Sanctuary holds a number of special events; each year we hold two open days, generally held in April and October. During the winter months, generally from June to September we offer glowworm tours which have proven to be extremely popular over the last two years.  We also run a number of pop-up events throughout the year, so keep an eye on this page (and our Facebook page) for the latest information!

If you, or your organisation, are planning a ‘special event’ – get in touch to discuss holding your event in the Sanctuary. (The Sanctuary has previously hosted corporate events, weddings, remembrance services/gatherings (note, scattering of ashes in the Sanctuary is not permitted). Contact:

Olivia Gallagher, Events Coordinator – or
Ru Collin, Chief Executive –


Thanks for the fantastic community support for Open Day

Open Day was a huge success, we counted almost 2,100 visitors passing through the ‘air gate’ into the Sanctuary (nearly triple the number through last year)! It was great to welcome the Hon Willow-Jean Prime, the Minister of Conservation on her first visit to the Sanctuary and Rachel Boyack our local MP – Open Day was the perfect way to demonstrate to the minister the depth of support in the Nelson/Tasman community for the Sanctuary, it’s aims and achievements.

The Kids Zone was quite frantic from the moment Open Day kicked-off right through to the end of the day. We’re delighted with the number of traps sold, along with all the baking goods and Sanctuary merchandise. Our thanks to the food truck vendors who served up delicious fare. Our Open Days are a major undertaking for the Sanctuary and we couldn’t run these without significant support from our volunteers and staff – great efforts everyone involved. In particular, thanks to our traffic management marshals who dealt with 600+ cars visiting the Sanctuary on Sunday.

Our thanks to event sponsor the Bowater Motor Group, and to our media partners at MediaWorks for their help promoting the event.

Once again, thanks for your support and a heartfelt welcome to all our new supporters who sign-up on the day. Our next Open Day will be in October.

Check out the Facebook event here:

Open Day, 16 April 2023 - the busy kids zone
(L) Rachel Boyack, MP for Nelson, (C) Ru Collin, Sanctuary Chief Executive, (R) Hon Willow-Jean Prime, Minister of Conservation - Open Day, 16 April 2023
16 April 2023 - Open Day visitors building traps
16 April 2023, Open Day - Ru briefs Minister of Conservation on the Sanctuary


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