Success . . . Thousands of visitors flocked to the debut Night Market at the Timaru Festival of Roses at Caroline Bay on Saturday evening. PHOTO: CLAIRE ALLISON

The 16th annual Timaru Festival of Roses was another successful event, its director says.

Festival director Chris Thomas said he was “absolutely delighted” with the event, and the addition of a night market brought 4000 people to Caroline Bay.

“[There was] a great atmosphere,” he said.

The three-day event, from Friday to Sunday, included Shakespeare performances, floral exhibitions, a baby photograph exhibition, the night market and the Christmas Market Day on the Sunday.

Mr Thomas said the popularity of the Saturday night market exceeded his expectations for the first-time event, and food stalls had run out of food.

“It’s a nice problem to have to deal with.”

The Festival of Roses activities, held at Caroline Bay, allowed residents to continue their day’s entertainment on from the Saturday afternoon Timaru Christmas Parade into the evening.

He was also surprised by the number of out-of-towners attending the event. Along with visitors from Oamaru and Ashburton, there were many others from the North Island.

He was also pleased about having the Shakespeare in the Gardens performances back at the festival for another year.

While he was still due to have discussions about the future of the night market, the popularity of the event meant he would definitely do another evening event during next year’s festival.Sportswear free shipping