Friday, December 21, 2012

Just in the nick of time ...

Just in the nick of time, the Ruru team has created its second new scavenger hunt ... in a very festive green to compliment our red one!

The new hunt is called I digress ... on all things colourful and muses on all manner of brightly (or not-so-brightly) hued heritage objects.

So give our new scavenger hunts a go and collect your Christmas-inspired red and green badge set this holiday season!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Time for a gold badge or two

Our Central School label writers dropped by the office today to collect their GOLD badges ... here they are wearing them proudly and generally looking awesome!

They also presented us with a scavenger hunt they designed all by themselves.  The Ruru team looks forward to giving it a go and seeing if we can be as speedy doing their hunt as they were doing ours!

Amazing job guys, well done!  We hope we get to work with you again next year.  And don't forget to do a new RED scavenger hunt in the school holidays!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Fully fledged!

Our amazing Ruru apprentices from Central School are now fully fledged label writers!  And what an awesome job they did too.  Check out their labels about some of Puke Ariki's precious heritage objects and the personal connections that inspired their choices:

(click on the label to make it bigger)

Our fledglings are visiting again on Wednesday to collect their very well deserved GOLD Ruru badges ... we look forward to seeing them then!

Friday, December 7, 2012

Summertime ...

What does summer mean to you?  Is it a punnet of fresh strawberries?

Or some luscious looking raspberries?? (aye Andrew and Charlotte!)

Or your favourite Christmas ornament (that just happens to be a red London bus)? ...

Well, for a bunch of summer Puke Ariki visitors, we're hoping Taranaki's long hot months are going to mean doing a new RED Ruru scavenger hunt!

We have digressed on the subject of summertime ... surfing, catching kai, chillin' with the family.  The new scavenger hunt will be available to the public just before Christmas ... as will a second new hunt designed specially by our talented Education team member Erin Flanigan. 

In the meantime, feel free to tempt (or is that taunt??!!) Puke Ariki's keen Ruru fans with the promise of the long awaited, oft requested RED SCAVENGER HUNT!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Fledgling label writers, adzes and GIANT white gloves

Last week Ruru took some fledgling label writers from Central School under its wing.  Glen Skipper shared a bunch of interesting facts about adzes ... did YOU know that some of Puke Ariki's adzes are magnetic??  They spent a while in Takapou Whariki gallery learning about how the museum cares for its taonga - now any of them would be able to tell you why the light levels are low in the galleries and why you have to wear white gloves to handle museum objects! 

The kids overcame adversity when they were required to wear size LARGE white gloves while handling the adzes: 

Then our little fledglings took to the galleries and tried out some Ruru scavenger hunts ... smart young things were pretty speedy!  They came back to Puke Ariki the next morning and - after checking out the schooling displays in Taranaki Life - they each got to choose an object they wanted to research.  Back at school they intend to write their own Ruru labels about their objects and even design a scavenger hunt.  They will certainly deserve their gold Ruru badges when they're done!

Their teacher, the lovely Mrs Bastin, plans to forward the kids' labels to us when they're done.  We look forward to posting them on the blog for all to admire!   

Friday, October 5, 2012

What a hoot!

Our very first staff 'Night at the Museum' event went spectacularly well last night.  There was charades (the exhibition team had to act out 'Kelvin Day'!), bottle fishing, clue solving, texting, poem writing and playdoh modelling.  Photographic evidence of the fun everyone had and the exceptional sculpting talents of our staff is below.

But before we get to that, a HUGE thank you to Charlotte Stace and Linley Wellington for the time and effort they put into creating and supervising the awesome scavenger hunts.  Thanks also to Alice Franklin and Sue Page for their incredible origami and crocheted owls, which were much coveted prizes awarded for the best playdoh objects.  Lastly, thanks to the Social Angels for organising the drinks and snacks ... and inviting Ruru to be involved in the event!

So ... each of the three scavenger hunts started with acting out a famous Taranakian.  Here's Karen confounding Janie with her free-and-easy arm movements:

Jenny, Simon's daughter, takes the Exhibitions team in hand:

The CSO's were pretty liberal with the rules on the bottle fishing!  What kind of technique is THAT Walt??

In contrast, "The Winos" were much more orderly and proper:

One activity required the teams to write a poem inspired by objects in Taranaki Naturally and Harry Devine's poem about 'ratty little bats'.  Here's the CSO team (CSO stands for 'Charismatic, Sociable, Optimistic'!) writing their rhyming masterpiece:

Interlude - here's two of our favourite poems written on the night (though we did also like the CSO team's reference to Kelvin!).

From the Exhibitions team (but written by 7 year old Jenny ... a magnificent effort!):

A moa is a bird,
It's tall as a wall.
The shark is wacky grey,
And it chomps on its prey!

And from the team known as "The Individuals":

Oh hark a shark!
Oh crikey it has a jandal!
A surfer's been man-handled,
Shark's shiny teeth a-glow,
The surfer had to go!

Not sure if this is Duncan showing Jenny how it's done or the other way around:

"The Individuals" were the first team back and thus the first team to start modelling butter coloured playdoh into collection objects (or other sources of inspiration):

Though it may appear that Kelvin was Karen's muse, she was actually modelling Banks' silhouette on the 'Shadowing Venus' signage.  Kelvin refused to mould any playdoh, claiming he got so much hassle about his percussion drill bit last time that it wasn't worth it!

Some of the first playdoh offerings - an elephant from Hannah; a mailbox from Polly; Karen's Banks silhouette; Stephanie's shark; Kerri's Ferdie the bull and Dale's buzzy bee:

Clare recounted a beautiful story about how the object that inspired her playdoh offering reminded her of her father.  It got her quite emotional ... such is the power of museum objects:

Members of the Exhibitions team stroll back with their playdoh goodies:

The Exhibitions team's offerings - Simon's fungus (I guessed what it was before he told me!); Jenny's Ferdie the bull; Geoff's buzzy bee and Gerard's vacuum cleaner.

All the offerings laid out ...

The winning playdoh model - Adrienne's amazing surfboard, complete with leg rope and ankle strap!  Adi claimed Alice's gorgeous origami owl with this effort:

More winners ... Kerri's Ferdie and Stephanie's Meg won crocheted owls:

Duncan tried to pull a swifty on us by making Orinoco the Womble to claim a prize, but we knew he'd had prior practice at making wombles from playdoh!  We gave him chocolate anyway ...

Polly's postbox and Simon's fungus won prizes too:

And Sue might be a busy woman for a while ... her owls have attracted a lot of attention and requests from people for their own owl.  I hope you have lots of audio books you want to listen to Sue!

We should probably also mention that - after a late suggestion they should have been given a time penalty - the Exhibitions team got the most points and thus claimed Niles.  Janie, you just have to liberate Niles from the closet and hand him over ... though we're not sure Exhibitions are the most responsible parents for an innocent garden gnome! 

Congratulations Exhibitions and THANK YOU to all the staff who came along.  You're awesome!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Niles eat your heart out!

Now THIS is a reason to come along to Thursday's staff 'Night at the Museum' scavenger hunt extravaganza!

Made by the incredibly talented Alice Franklin, her magnificent origami owl is going to be up for grabs as a prize.  Yeah, sure, Niles is a coveted trophy ... but Alice's awesome Ruru may well give Niles a run for his money in the popularity stakes!  So, what do you have to do to win it?  We haven't decided yet! 

Anyway, the countdown is on ... three specially designed scavenger hunts have been completed, Janie's bought the drinks and teams are getting themselves sorted.  Don't forget to bring your mobile phone ... you'll need it to receive a clue or two!

Thursday 4 October ... SEE YOU THERE!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Only eight days to go ...

Charlotte, Linley and I have just been labouring over THREE extra specially awesome Ruru scavenger hunts for our extra specially awesome staff ... it's only eight days until the 'Night at the Museum' event (Thursday 4 October at 6pm), so register a team with Janie NOW!

Prove to us you have the brains to figure out our cryptic clues.  It's yet to be decided if brawn will be required as well ... 

There will, of course, be snacks and drinks ... oh, and a garden ornament that requires a new home.

Come on ... show us what you're made of!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Ruru goes nocturnal with a staff 'Night at the Museum' party!

WAY back before Ruru became Ruru, a handful of people helped create Puke Ariki's very first interactive scavenger hunt.  Those of you who were there will remember a crush at the Little fakes, receiving clues via text message and moulding butter-coloured Playdoh into the shape of beloved Heritage Collection objects.  You'll spot a likeness of Ferdie below:

However, you'll be forgiven if you don't recognise Kelvin's object as a percussion drill bit!

Well, the chance to participate in such hilarity is here again!  Ruru has been invited by Puke Ariki's Social Angels to devise a scavenger hunt to beat all scavenger hunts, created especially for our next Puke Ariki staff event on Thursday 4 OctoberOf course, Ruru began its days as a staff initiative, so here's your chance to renew your passion for Ruru, show us what you're made of and win a much-coveted prize.

Oh no, they're not going to make me give away my jumbo owl eraser, are they??

NO!  It's Niall that's up for grabs! (I always thought his name was Niles ... but on closer inspection of the photo below, his tag explains his name is Niall, which means 'champion' ... who knew??)

So get a team together, register with the Social Angels (Karen or Janie) and show off your scavenger hunting prowess.  In the meantime, your dedicated Ruru team will endeavour to make you the most AMAZING scavenger hunt imaginable ... possibly involving fishing, acting, texting, making and more!

* Disclaimer:  all bribes will be considered, particularly if they involve coffee, chocolate or trips to Tahiti!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

An artistic young owl

Since December 2011, our Ruru trail ... for curious young owls has introduced more than 450 keen little explorers to awesome objects like fuzzy kiwis, a hefty anchor stone, a cheeky duck and Glen Skipper's amazing ceremonial doors ... and, of course, they collect a well deserved Ruru sticker at the end!

But every now and again we have an extra specially curious - or in this case artistic - young owl who catches our attention.  Last week, Mikaere had the pleasure of providing additional paper to Zoē Clough, a very creative 8 year old.  She put the paper to good use by making a range of colourful rubbings from Glen's bronze castings ... check out a couple below.  Great job Zoē! 

Ruru is delighted our trail is helping young people get excited about exploring the museum and is helping talented kids like Zoē unleash their creativity.  We hope to see you at Puke Ariki again soon Zoē! 

Wednesday, July 25, 2012


How many??

Seven hundred!  Seven hundred!  SEVEN HUNDRED!   S E V E N   H U N D R E D !!!

Over the school holidays, 700 scavenger hunts were done by Puke Ariki visitors.  Phwoar, that's AMAZING!  Obviously our Ruru fans were amping to get their hands on the new hunts ... and the new badges of course!  Though our awesome personalised labels took a bit of a battering, lots of kids said how the Ruru trails made them look at Puke Ariki's amazing heritage objects in a whole new way.  Great to hear!

Thank you to Natalie and Charlotte for their fabulous clue writing efforts, and to the Visitor Hosts for facilitating, smiling and badge making on Ruru's behalf.  Geez, your biceps must be positively bulging after pumping out that many badges!

Since the voracious demand for our scavenger hunts continues, we plan on writing another one or two in the coming months.  What colour will the next ones be??

Stay tuned!

Monday, July 2, 2012

A Ruru party like no other ...

Wow, look at that Ruru cake!  This amazing creation - a collaborative effort between Natalie, who made the cake, and Mikaere's partner Sophia, who did the incredible decoration - served as the centrepiece for Sunday's Ruru 'private viewing' party.  If you recall (which we're sure you do!), after April's Ruru Revolution event the team selected 25 awesome labels written by 25 awesome people to turn into long term labels.  Sunday was about celebrating the efforts of the label writers with certificates, new scavenger hunts, home baking and, of course, THAT CAKE!  In addition to Natalie and Sophia, Linley and Charlotte also whipped up some delicious treats.  Look at that spread ... thanks bakers!

And strangely enough, the Moffat children were VERY keen to help me get underway with cutting the cake!

Then the feeding frenzy ensued ...

... and in a matter of minutes, this was all that was left!

It was an incredibly successful event for the label writers and their families.  There was coffee drinking, cupcake eating, certificate presenting, congratulations abounding ... and some scavenger hunting!  All with our delightful Ruru Revolutionaries that we're getting to know so well.  We can't wait to see them at our next event (whenever that might be!).  Until then, here's some photos of our amazing label writers ...

Felix Ashworth with a remarkable array of badges ... note all the Ruru ones!

Tarashar, Oceania, Baillie (a label writer extraordinaire) and Serrin finished ALL THREE new hunts!

The Ashworth family takes a pit stop as they read their next clue ...

WATCH OUT!  The Ashworth girls hide from Meg the shark

Elena Honnor with Ruru Ruth (as she calls me) ... thanks for the card Elena!

Revolutionaries in various states of scavenger hunting activity

Jessica, Jemma and Haylee with big smiles and plenty of Ruru badges between them

Tayne looking ace in his Ruru tee