Dart Tournament
Darryn Van Der Veldon in the new tournament facility. Photo Jan Hawkins

Central Lakes Darts enthusiasts are in for a treat on 6 November, when a Cromwell venue opens its doors to a unique facility, hosting a tournament with top quality guest players.

This is not an open tournament – it is exclusive to players in the Central Lakes region but will cater for all levels.

The venue is the brainchild of keen darts player Darryn Van Der Velden, who has slowly taken over the redundant packhouse on the family cherry orchard.

Darryn’s father, Henry, had a 3500 sqm packhouse built in the Cromwell’s industrial area back in 2014.

That left the original packhouse on Kawarau Gorge Road empty.

Darryn and his fellow organisers have managed to lure several top professional players.

Desi Mercer ranked number 2 New Zealand Ladies Darts Player; Tahu Parata, ex-Cromwell local, has won the Australasia qualifier and has won against top New Zealand players on the big stage; Warren Parry, ranked Number 2 in New Zealand; Darren Dummigan, who has won championship events in Queenstown, Otago, South Island and England.

In fact, it was Darryn who got Darryn hooked on the game, after seeing him play in Queenstown two years ago.

The tournament’s team events start at 11am, with teams from Glenorchy/Queenstown, Cromwell, Frankton and Wanaka/Alexandra.

At 3.30pm, entries will close for the singles tournament, which starts at 4pm.

Organisers hope to attract new players, and representatives from each of the region’s clubs will be on hand to encourage people to play at their local club nights.

The packhouse has been a hive of activity in the lead-up to the event, with wonderful support offered by local businesses, generously giving over $5000 of sponsorship. Major sponsors have been Mr Henry Cherries and Guthrie Bowron, who are providing carpet and other flooring.

Darryn acknowledges the great support of the sponsors and of the Queenstown Dart Club. He says,

“We’d like to encourage new people to come and have a go, and talk to their local club reps. The darts community is so welcoming and a great, fun place to make friends.”

There’ll be an MC, entertainment and prizes to be won.  Next year, Darryn hopes to have a license and catering facilities, but for now, it will be a case of DYO refreshments.

Where: 100 Kawarau Gorge Rd, Cromwell

When:  6 November, 11am

Queries: Darryn Van Der Velden – Phone 021 103 6124

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