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Waitangi Day in LA

A giant sand sculpture of a silver fern on a Los Angeles beach

MadeFromNewZealand.com, the website behind the effort to build a giant sand sculpture of a silver fern on a Los Angeles beach on Waitangi Day, has gone live with a t-shirt fundraising campaign and a YouTube video guaranteed to tug at any expat's heartstrings.

We wrote about the project, the brainchild of Simon Shattky and Steve Adams, in the last issue of Idealog. Santa Monica beach in LA is planned to be just the first in a series of giant sculptures. Next up: Valencia, the (temporary) home of the America’s Cup.

Expect a big production: LA is full of expat Kiwis who have promised their support, and Maori TV is even broadcasting the event live as part of its Waitangi Day coverage. It's not a first though: the Santa Monica sculpture follows a 2001 effort closer to home, at Auckland’s Bethels Beach. You may remember seeing footage from that in cinemas at the time. The Bethels footage has now been made into a YouTube video, complete with a soundtrack from Kiwi band Evermore. 

To pay for the milion-dollar project, the organisers are selling t-shirts (on Trade Me, naturally) designed by Daniel Buckley of Huffer and Michelle Dowd of Kerosene Design. Check them out. Each one contains a ‘magic thread’: a piece of merino yarn spun from one of Sir Edmund Hillary’s climbing socks. Magic indeed.