New Zealand: Nelson Founders Heritage Park

After we left Wakefield (on our way to the Rai Valley area, which is between Nelson and Havelock), we stopped at the Founders Heritage Park in Nelson for a couple of hours.

You enter the park through the windmill gift shop, which was kind of cool!

This beautiful church has been relocated to the park but still holds weddings and ceremonies upon request. We happened to be there on Palm Sunday, but there was no service going on, so G and L are the only people in the congregation.

Onsite is a great little brewery, bar, and cafe, the Founders Brewery, with a playground out back for the kids!  The brewery has been has been in the same family for six generations!  Small world story:  While we were eating, we saw a toddler with a Twins hat on!  Mike and G went to chat with the parents to get the story.  It turns out the guy (toddler’s dad) is from Minnesota and married a woman from New Zealand!

The radio station that broadcasts from one of the buildings had this random cutout of Yoda.  Who can pass a photo cutout board??


Or an opportunity to stand in the stocks?  Don’t they look so sad?  We didn’t hurl any rotten fruit or insults at them.  They were just pretending to be sad. 🙂

There were a couple of cool displays of old fire fighting equipment.

And across the way was a big shed with information about old transportation modes, actual old cars and buses, and lots of interesting stories about how they used to travel around New Zealand from the horse and carriage days to trains to cars and buses.

This train actually runs on a short track from the park down to the shore and back.

Out back was an old cargo plane — a Bristol Freighter.

G and L plopped down in a couple of chairs to watch a really old video of how they used to process fruit — pulling the good from the bad, etc.  Then they had a seat in a bench made from a wine barrel…fun idea! 🙂

On the way out, there were two phone booths several feet from one another.  You could call from one to the other on an old rotary phone! L and I were in the other phone booth talking to G (and taking this picture)! 🙂

We left the same way we arrived — via the windmill.

The kids played for a couple of minutes on the playground near our car and then we were on our way to the Rai Valley.

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