Santa has made it safely through MIQ to the Mount

Santa and Mrs Claus have been out with a group of carol singers on board the Pepi Toot beach express train at Mount Maunganui on Saturday to help raise funds for a Tauranga man's fight against cancer. Video/Photos: Rosalie Liddle Crawford

Click the image above to watch the video

Streets around Mount Maunganui came alive on Saturday afternoon with the sound of Christmas carols after a group of singers boarded the Pepi Toot beach express train.

Mr and Mrs Claus were also on board, along with singers from Mount Maunganui RSA.

The good news that Santa has made it safely from the North Pole, through MIQ and arrived at the Mount, was received with relief by many as it's only six more sleeps until Christmas Eve.

Fay Cowan and her dog Neva. Photo: Rosalie Liddle Crawford.

SunLive understands Santa and Mrs Claus are taking a wee summer holiday at their favourite holiday spot - Mount Maunganui - before Santa gets busy delivering all his presents at the end of the week.

The Pepi Toot train left from the Mount RSA at around 3pm on Saturday December 18, with the group of carol singers on board -  many will recognise the singers from kareoke events held at the RSA.

Pepi Toot then made three stops around the Mount with about a dozen carols being sung at each stop.

There was a stiff westerly blowing into shore in Pilot Bay, and Lesley Smith the train owner and driver cleverly turned the train so that the singers were sheltered on the windward side by the train's clear plastic wind protection.

Once the speaker system arrived in the back of one of the singer's cars and was set up, Santa, who was sitting at the back of the train set up his laptop next to Mrs Claus, clicked on 'play' and the singers launched in to a few merry Christmas carols.

Santa descended from the train to greet a few passers-by including a toddler who immediately burst into tears, but apart from that everyone was very happy to see he had managed to make it here from his North Pole home.

After about 40 minutes of hearty singing, the train moved on to the next stop opposite Moturiki on Marine Parade, before finishing up at Mount Mainstreet in the centre of town.

At each train stop people gathered to join in and sing carols with the singers.

Also at each stop Lesley took up a collection to help towards currently unfunded treatment for a Tauranga man's fight against cancer.

In 2015, Jacob West was diagnosed with Gliomatosis Cerebri at 16 years of age while attending Tauranga Boys' College. 

Jacob West celebrating a recent birthday with his family. Photo: Supplied.

In October 2021 Jacob discovered his tumour had grown and changed again, and his family needed to look at different treatment options.

Jacob’s oncologist decided the best treatment option would be a IV chemo called Ironetecan which he receives in the Cancer unit and is publicly funded.
"We were also given the option to try an unfunded drug called Avastin which has being proven to help with other brain tumours and if everything goes in our favour (everything crossed) there is a good chance this will help hold or shrink the tumours and work alongside the chemo," says Jacob's mother Jo West.
Many who know the West family have been rallying and helping raise funds so they can afford to buy Avastin.
"These new drugs have given him hope and he is now starting to plan what he might do in the future,' says Jo.
"We all have so many people to thank who have helped us in so many different ways, the love and support we have received is amazing and we wish to thank you all."

For those who were unable to attend the carol singing fundraiser but would like to donate, there is a Jacob West Treatment Fun Account. Image: Supplied.

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Fabulous idea but....

Posted on 19-12-2021 21:27 | By Bruja

A whole heap of people, all singing their lungs out and not a mask to be seen. Oh dear.


Posted on 19-12-2021 20:50 | By

How many countries did he have to do MIQ in?