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Match day sponsor SKYCITY is staging an ‘Arabian Nights’ halftime show as well as giving members and fans the chance to win a $2000 travel package when the Vodafone Warriors host Newcastle in Monday’s fourth-round NRL clash at Mount Smart Stadium (4.00pm kick-off).

A troupe of belly dancers will perform on the pitch at halftime to provide the crowd with a preview of the 2016 edition of SKYCITY’s site-wide April promotion which follows on from ‘Aloha April’ in 2014 and ‘Best of the West’ in 2015.

As well as putting on their halftime performance the belly dancers will be at the gates on Monday to greet Vodafone Warriors members handing out chocolate coins. They’ll also be outside the Members’ Clubrooms in the Fanzone at the northern end of the ground encouraging fans to enter the draw for the travel package. That draw will be made and the winner will be announced at halftime of the Vodafone Warriors-Newcastle match. Also on location on game day will be mascot Scotty Sky Tower.

As match day sponsor SKYCITY provides the feature attraction on the entertainment programme but the day will be packed with a full range of other activities and sponsor activations.

A special feature of the 2016 game day experience is the facelift Mount Smart Stadium has been given including the newly-erected Members’ Clubrooms, eye-catching Vodafone Warriors banners and flags plus a special match day ritual.

The Members’ Clubrooms provide a focal point directly behind the dead-ball line in the Fanzone at the northern end of the ground.

As well as providing a number of exclusive features for Vodafone Warriors members, the new clubrooms are a base for SKY Sport’s live game day coverage. Current players, former players and other guests pass through the area to make appearances on SKY Sport’s set.

Complete with bold branding, the look of the Members’ Clubrooms is complemented by new imagery around the stadium including a huge ‘Our House’ sign on the back of the East Stand above the entrance to the club’s offices, another ‘Your Team’ sign in the car park, banners and flags in other locations and impressive facelifts for the Corporate Lounge and the Captains’ Club in the East Stand.

One of the most significant changes to the match day experience is a ritual building up to the main game.

About 35 minutes before the scheduled kick-off a clarion call will signal the countdown proper as the Vodafone Warriors and the Knights begin their warm-ups. Setting off the ritual each home game is a celebrity drummer.

For their warm-up, Vodafone Warriors players emerge wearing T-shirts bearing their name and club number on the back; the T-shirts will be collected during the warm-up with four selected to be fired into the crowd by a T-shirt cannon. The four fans who claim the shirts will have an exclusive opportunity to meet the relevant players in the gym after the game; the T-shirt winners will need to make their way to the Members’ Clubrooms at the northern end of the stadium so they can be accompanied to the gym.

The pre-game ritual will climax with the announcement of the Vodafone Warriors’ team followed by a cacophony of sound as captain Ryan Hoffman and the players emerge from the East Stand tunnel to make their way onto the field.

The SKYCITY cheer team remains an integral component of the pre-match ritual as do the Drums of the Pacific while the Ray White Coin Toss at halftime in the NYC game is another regular ingredient.

Apart from events in the Members’ Clubrooms a lot of other activities and attractions will be on offer at the northern end of the ground, especially in the Harvey Norman Community Fun Zone where there’ll be a passing wall, face painting and a photo booth.

While SKYCITY will have a presence as the official match day sponsor many of the club’s other partners have activities including:

  • Red Bull | Best seats in the house
  • SKYCITY Member of the Week | Enter in the Members’ Clubrooms or online
  • DTR | VIP experience
  • Flava | Favourite Fans (photos taken inside Gate A)
  • TAB | Caravan at Gate C; TAB terminal inside Corporate Lounge
  • Suzuki | Road Warrior in photo zone
  • Canterbury of New Zealand | T-shirt cannon

The special guest in the Corporate Lounge will be former Kiwi captain Graeme West.



Monday, March 28

Mount Smart Stadium

1.30pm | Gates open

1.45pm | NYC | Vodafone Junior Warriors v Newcastle Knights

4.05pm | NRL | Vodafone Warriors v Newcastle Knights

Acknowledgement of Country

The New Zealand Warriors honour the mana of the Indigenous peoples of Aotearoa, Australia and the Pacific. We acknowledge the traditional kaitiaki of the lands, elders past and present, their stories, their traditions, their mamae and their mana motuhake.

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