Canterbury's Robotic Cow

Welcome to New Zealand’s only Alpine and Agricultural Encounter, a place of education and inspiration (and a friendly robotic cow).

The Encounter tells the stories of the mountains, plains and the people who live there, bringing to life the tales of the tenacity and ingenuity behind the development of two very important industries central to New Zealand - snow sports and agriculture.

Climb into a header cab, operate an excavator or see how milk is made. Experience being in an ice-cave or laugh at the antics of early Kiwi skiers.

The Encounter is located in the Methven Heritage Centre, home to conference facilities, i-SITE Visitor Centre and the Heritage Café. Methven, New Zealand, is home to the world-renowned Mt Hutt Ski Area.

The Encounter makes it easy for visitors to navigate through history, and the region, with the following exhibits:

1.       Early History

2.       Farming Today

From harvesting and baling, to seeds and bees, “Farming Today” is full of insights (and fun interactive displays like “Drive the Digger”).

3.       The Dry Plains

Watch out for the “moo” behind you . . . modern irrigation and dairying today take on a whole new meaning with this larger than life exhibition.

4.       Sheep

Learn the meaning of “merino,” have a go at spinning wool and leave with a new appreciation for sheep shearing.

5.       Snow

The Encounter’s alpine section sets the scene with plenty of insights into “Kiwiana.” Have a giggle at ski fashion gone by, and a scramble into an ice cave. You’ll enjoy the tribute to loyal alpine dogs and the more sobering avalanche lesson. If you don’t know the story of Hubers Hut, this is the place to find out. Willi Huber spent three and a half months in solitude on Mt Hutt, recording weather and snow conditions as part of a feasibility study for a ski field ‘of the future.’ Relive his adventure and imagine his courage.

Methven Heritage Centre has a theatre known for its great variety of films – fun for the whole family. What’s showing at present:

·         NZ’s First  Ever Winter Olympic Team

·         Development of Mt Cheeseman Ski Field

·         Flare – 1970s Ski Fashion

There are so many ways to Experience Mid Canterbury - fantastic places to stay and people to meet.


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