What is Hard Labour Weekend all about?


The Meridian Twizel Hard Labour Weekend had its background back in 1985 when a half marathon was started as a fundraiser for kids sport. It has morphed through a number of different events at different sites to what we have today – three events (mountain bike, kayak and off-road run) over two days. Competitors can enter individual events or for the really keen, complete all three events and become a Hard Labourer.

However apart from providing some really good events in a very relaxed atmosphere, the weekend still has its focus on fund raising for local kids sports teams (snow sports, rugby, netball and rowing) which are burdened with the costs of travel and purchase of equipment. In recent years we have helped support individual students with their Outward Bound fees and travel to national sports tournaments. We also help other community groups such as St Johns, Kindy and the Twizel Early Learning Centre. Over the last five years, well over $100,000 has been raised for these worthwhile causes.

In return for these donations, the kids and their parents are expected to help out at the events. They are the people in hi-viz vests directing cars in the car park, marshaling you on the course, handing out drinks or cooking sausages for you at the end of your race. Without their help and without your participation, this fundraiser wouldn’t happen.


The events also couldn’t take place without the support of many individuals and businesses. Sponsors are acknowledged on the sponsor page  but we would particularly like to thank the following:

  • Simon and Priscilla Cameron, Mike and Elaine Lindsay, Doug McIntyre, the managers of Pukaki Downs and the Department of Conservation for access to land and tracks
  • Meridian Energy for use of the canals
  • Twizel St Johns and the local police for support during the events
  • Tim Mills and Rex Toneycliffe for doing traffic management plans