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Bannockburn’s Across the Bridge art festival will return next week with a line-up of events – some new, some tried and true.

The festival, which is into its ninth year, will feature a range of activities, including workshops, plays and artistic displays.

Festival spokeswoman Jan Hawkins said the popular Central Otago News Poetry Competition will be among the events to return.

It has attracted 100 entries from pupils and adults, and winners from both categories will have their work published in The News after judging.

Events will also include a celebration of works by Lloyd Jones, who is the author behind titles such as Mister Pip. He was also shortlisted this year for New Zealand Novel of the Year for The Cage

His sons, sculptor and award-winning poet Sam Duckor-Jones and writer Avi Duckor-Jones, will also attend, and between them will feature in a segment called Three Men Reading on October 5.

Mrs Hawkins said workshops will be among this year’s highlights, including one by Avi for his play called On Dry Land, on October 5.

An open mike poetry event will also take place on October 5.

Lloyd Jones, Sam and Avi will take part in a segment called Writers and Wine on October 6, alongside children’s writer Kate de Goldi.

One of the new events this year is a Felton Road Masterclass – an exploration of Bannockburn Wine.

This year’s festival will feature three drama productions – the first, Friday’s Flock on October 2-3, is a one-man play by Reihana and Karla Haronga.

The Keys are in the Margarine, a story about Alzehimer’s, will be performed on October 4, and On Dry Land the following day.

Mrs Hawkins is impressed by this year’s plans and hopes people take the time to enjoy the festival.

“This is the most exciting line-up we have had, so we urge people to support this wonderful opportunity,” she said.

For more information about each event visit artscentral.co.nz

ALEXIA.JOHNSTON

@alliedpress.co.nz