Reliving the Roaring Twenties

Be swept up in the era of exuberance and sophistication which heralded the ‘roaring twenties’ at MOTAT’s annual Prohibition Party on Saturday 24 February.

Infamous for its ritzy parties, fashion, music and rebellion, the Museum once again brings this period back to life, recreating the atmosphere of a time notorious for secret cocktail parties and extravagant fun.

Gangsters and flappers set the scene as they socialise amongst guests kept entertained throughout the evening by an exciting line-up of live bands and dancing. Patrons will be spoilt for choice by the array of activities on offer including cocktail bars, fashion shows, a pamper parlour, silent movies and more.

Public Programmes Manager, Sarah Somerville notes that events themed to specific historic eras, such as the Art Deco Festival in Napier, continue to grow in popularity. “People love the drama and decadence of the twenties and this is their chance to get dressed up, escape the reality of everyday life and enjoy a glamourous night out on the town. I imagine it will be a bit like a scene from Baz Luhrmann’s film, The Great Gatsby,” she says.

“Most of MOTAT’s other events are family focused so this is something a bit different specifically for our grownup audience,” says Ms Somerville. “Apart from all the glitz, the 1920’s also celebrated many technological advancements so the Museum’s vintage transport collection and buildings create the perfect backdrop.” Visitors will be treated to heritage tram rides, vintage vehicle displays from the Model A Ford Club and MOTAT’s own collection, including an operational 1929 Wallis & Steevens Roller.

Guests are encouraged get into the spirit of the evening and dress in their best 1920’s attire.  This is an R18 affair with alcohol available on site from speakeasys and cocktail bars located around the museum.

1920’s America and the prohibition period inspired many works of literature and film, heavily influenced by the social scenes that emerged from this time of economic prosperity. The much romanticised era also boasts many historical milestones in technology, including the first solo non-stop flight across the Atlantic, radical innovation in automobile manufacturing, and advancements that reinvented the film industry with the introduction of ‘Talkies.’

The boom in technology was also apparent in New Zealand, with the first radio broadcasts hitting the airwaves, cinema and American jazz gaining popularity, and a wide adoption of automobile technology. Although prohibition was never officially passed in New Zealand, temperance, liquor trade regulation, and proposed embargos on alcohol were the subject of much political debate at the time.

MOTAT’s Prohibition Party is an occasion not to be missed so get your tickets and start planning your outfit for an exciting evening of free-wheeling pop culture. Saturday 24 February from 7 – 11pm. Costs are $20 for adults and $15 for students or SuperGold card holders (plus booking fees). Free parking available at the Aviation Display Hall in Meola Road with trams and event buses running between the two sites throughout the evening.

Tickets and further information are available through the MOTAT website.

For further information, photos, media passes or interviews, please contact:

Vanessa Hefer
Communications Advisor
Museum of Transport and Technology (MOTAT)
Phone: (09) 845 3703, Mobile: (021) 340 518