Navigation for Summer Times


8:00: A Government in shutdown 

Christmas in the United States has not been a peaceful one. The federal government shutdown is stretching out to it's fifth day, a second migrant child has died in custody and resignations continue to dog the administration. David Smith is the head of The Guardian's Washington bureau and tells Emile there is a real feeling of crisis in the US capital.

A sign is displayed at the National Archives building that is closed because of a US government shutdown in Washington, DC, on December 22, 2018. - AFP

Photo: AFP

8:15 NZ wildlife hospitals 

Dunedin's Wildlife Hospital is approaching its first anniversary of offering medical care to ill and injured birds and animals, many of them endangered and threatened species where every life counts.

The Wildlife Hospital is a partnership with Otago Polytechnic and its School of Veterinary Nursing.  So a year on, what are some of the most memorable patients, what have been the main causes of hospital admissions, and how is the summer shaping up for our wildlife?  

8:25 Cricket for Christmas!

RNZ sports reporter Barry Guy has been been keeping a weather eye on the cricket, and it's certainly been interesting times. 

New Zealand cricketers 2018


8:30 Stewart Island

Rakiura/Stewart Island is only just coping with the influx of international and New Zealand tourists heading there and another record breaking summer is anticipated.

With only an estimated 600 visitor beds available and restricted facilities, what does the future hold for this unique island that's 85% National Park? And are tourist expectations of seeing kiwi, one of Rakiura's biggest attractions, putting the iconic bird under too much pressure?

Lynn Freeman joined the throng of tourists as the summer season got underway.  

9:00 Dana Johannsen

Dana Johannsen

Dana Johannsen Photo: Flava

It's been a big year for sport in New Zealand. It's also been a successful 12 months for Stuff national sports correspondent Dana Johannsen! Since starting her career writing digital copy for TVNZ, Dana has broken some of the biggest and best stories in sport.

She was the TP McLean Sports Journalist of the Year back in 2012 and this year swept the sports journalism awards, jointly winning journalist of the year and also taking home gongs for best Longform journalist, and best coverage of women's sport. 

Dana's also a regular sports correspondent on RNZ's Nights with Bryan Crump, possibly the greatest award of all!

9:30 NZ Volunteers - Katie 

No caption

Photo: Duo Photography

Every day on SummerTimes we'll be meeting one of Aotearoa New Zealand's hundreds of thousands of volunteers. Without them the country simply would not function.

But is the current low unemployment rate, and the fact so many people reaching retirement age are continuing to work, seeing a shrinking pool of volunteers.

Either way, why do so many people offer up their time and expertise to help others? Dr Katie Bruce is the Chief Executive of Volunteering New Zealand and she sets the scene for our 15 part series that will take us all over the country, into rural firestations and wildlife sanctuaries through to  netball courts and gliding clubs.

9:45 Northland in 2019

We check in with RNZ Northland correspondent Lois Williams about what 2019 may look like north of the Bombay Hills. 

10:00 The New Zealand horse

The New Zealand Horse by Deborah Coddington and Jane Ussher

The New Zealand Horse by Deborah Coddington and Jane Ussher Photo: Supplied

Horses have only been in Aotearoa for a short period of time but have been a big part of people's lives up and down the country since they arrived. 

The New Zealand Horse is a new book by author Deborah Coddington and Photographer Jane Ussher  

Jane Ussher is one of this country's best  photographers, she's now working freelance after almost 30 years with The New Zealand Listener. Deborah Coddington is a writer, journalist, broadcaster and former Member of Parliament and a keen rider - which Jane is not. 

10:30 Music of the present 

We were keen to know what people were buying each other for Christmas when it came to music.

So we sent our producer down to Wellington's Slow Boat record store and spoke to find out who's buying what from music selling afficionado Jeremy Taylor.

Record Store Day

Record Store Day Photo: Yadana Saw

10:45 Vintage cars 

Veteran, Vintage, Classic and now 1980s cars - and the people who lovingly restore them then take them on the road in all weathers.

Roger White from Stokes Valley is one of them and Lynn joins him in his garage, sitting in his pride and joy while beside them the next restoration project is well underway.  

11:00 A very Polish Christmas 

First though - Keeping age old traditions alive when you've moved to the other side of the world is hard enough, but especially so at times like Christmas. Barbeques in the hot sun can be one of the biggest culture shocks for many of our migrant families. 

Barbara Tumilowicz and her family have moved to New Zealand from Poland, she regularly cooks for the Polish Association in Wellington and her mother has come over this year for a very traditional Christmas.

11:30 Off the beaten track with Elizabeth Easther 

At a time when many Kiwis are hitting the same old holiday hot-spots, Travel writer and explorer Elizabeth Easther suggests some lesser known parts of New Zealand well worth the effort to get there.  

Today we're looking at the night sky sanctuary on Great Barrier Island and going snorkeling in places you can get to without hitching a lift on a boat. 

11:45 Robert learns to knit 

A big part of holidays is trying new things and I've always wanted to know how to make things. Unfortunately that desire is completely unmatched by my actions.

In an effort to learn at least one skill I went to visit professional yarn dyer Nikki Jones to see if I could make my hands do something useful.