New Zealanders drink on tiny island to avoid local alcohol ban

By Ray Downs  |  Jan. 1, 2018 at 11:11 PM
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Jan. 1 (UPI) -- A group of drinkers in a small New Zealand town created their own island to get around a local ban on alcohol during the New Year holiday period.

The local government of Tairua, located in northern New Zealand, bans consumption of alcohol in public places each year from Dec. 23 to Jan. 6.

But this New Year, a group of about seven people created an island in the middle of the Tairua estuary so they can drink outside. According to the New Zealand Herald, the group used the low tide waters to shovel together enough mud to create a mound big enough for a bench and several people.

As the waters surrounded the newly-formed island, the revelers imbibed in public, successfully flouting the local laws and doing so to the delight of local law enforcement.

"That's creative thinking," Waikato eastern area commander Inspector John Kelly told Stuff. "If I had known that I probably would have joined them."

The local alcohol ban during the Christmas and New Year holiday was put in place to cut down on illegal behavior that resulted in several arrests.

"[Th police] were getting frustrated with the result and said it has to change," local resident Noddy Watts said.

No arrests were made in the drinking island incident.

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