On the Home Straight!

This summer, Everyone's Adventure businesses are chipping away at a collective goal to make gear hire free for everyone to enjoy. Our business model works to cover the operating costs of the three participating businesses as early in the season as possible through your bookings and purchases. Once those are covered, we promised we'd make gear hire free til Easter 2017!

Bike, hire and standup paddleboard hire, as well as food, drinks, cold treats, and event bookings, all go towards that total. These are all great summery favourites, so we thought we'd reach the free gear hire target with plenty of time to spare.

Two things were really important to us when we came up with this model. One was that we wanted to do something good - to foster a spirit of generosity and community and to give people a go at outdoor adventures who wouldn't normally get the chance. Basically, we wanted to give away free adventures, pretty badly! The second thing was that we wanted to be transparent in our business. That's why we made our total operating costs for the season public, and why we've kept you updated on our progress towards that goal.

It's in the spirit of that transparency that we're letting you know that we're reducing the goal for free gear hire from $300K to $225K. This puts us less than $100K away from meeting it! The reason we've reduced the goal is because our operating costs this season have been much lower than we projected.

This summer has seen the worst "summer" weather I can remember, in five years of running The Boatshed Days Bay. In November and December, we were only open a very small handful of weekend days, which is when we're normally busiest. The number of days that we haven't been able to open at all has been a real bummer, but it also means we've spent less money than we expected. Rather than keeping the total at $300K, we wanted to be transparent about it, work out what our operating costs have actually been, and make sure Wellington is still in with a chance for free gear hire now the sun's actually out!

The bottom line stays the same: getting to the point where we can give away outdoor adventures for free is totally up to you! We're now less than $100K away from the goal, and we've pared back our operating costs as much as we can, while keeping the businesses sustainable. So round up a group of mates or whanau and get out here as soon as you can!

As a wee treat to sweeten the deal: remember you get 20% off all our adventures for booking ahead. Use the code EARLYBIRD when booking on our site. If the weather sucks on the date you've booked, we'll sort you out with another day!

Getting Out There

The Lazy Person's Guide to Finding an Adventure

by Charlotte Graham

 

I’ve lived in Wellington for nine years but I am lazy as hell. Whenever anyone suggests any activity that’s more than two bus zones away from where I currently am, or is situated in a suburb I don’t recognise the name of, I’m suddenly incredibly unmotivated to go and do it, no matter how fun it sounds.

So if you’ve been following along with the Everyone’s Adventure campaign, and you’re like, “Oh, cool, they want to make bike and kayak hire free to all of Wellington! What a nice idea! I must go out there and contribute to their running total!” And then you see it’s in Days Bay and you’re like, “Ugh, maybe I’ll just go to Newtown and drink coffee again,” then this blog post is for you.

 

HOW DO I GET THERE?

If you have a car, this is super easy.

To get to The Boatshed Days Bay: plug "Days Bay" into Google Maps, or;

  • Simply take the motorway out of Wellington follow SH2 toward the Hutt

  • Take the Petone exit, and stay on this road along Petone foreshore

  • Take the third exit (Seaview Road) at the roundabout, and follow this road all the way to Days Bay.

To get to The Bike Shed - Pencarrow: plug the name into Google Maps, or;

  • Use the same directions as for Boatshed but follow the final road all the way to The Bike Shed.

  • There's a carpark right at the end of the road and you'll see our little shed there. You can't miss it!

 

I DO NOT HAVE A CAR, BECAUSE I AM ENVIRONMENTALLY CONSCIOUS, AND/OR BROKE.

Good for you. Me too (on both fronts).

Easily the most fun way to get to The Boatshed is to travel from the CBD on East by West Ferries. Going on a boat anywhere automatically makes it a more fun day. The Boatshed is right by the Days Bay ferry terminal. If you’re going kayaking or SUPing, sweet - you’re in the right place!

If you’re going biking, you can either follow the directions below to get to The Bike Shed,  or if you let us know in advance, we can bring your bikes down from The Bike Shed and have them ready and waiting for you at The Boatshed by the ferry terminal. Contact Dave to make that happen.

Otherwise, you’ve got a couple of options to get from the ferry to The Bike Shed. Either walk along the waterfront from the terminal (it’s about 4 km), or jump on the 81, 83, or 85 buses the rest of the way.

If you hate boats, well, we’re not sure how you’re going to go in a kayak, but you can still get to us by bus.

 

YES, I WOULD LIKE TO GET THERE BY BUS.

The trusty 81, 83 or 85 buses will get you there, in 40-60 minutes from town for The Boatshed, and 45-65 minutes for The Bike Shed.

If you’re heading for The Bike Shed, get off at the last stop then walk 200m further down the road. We're on your left once you get to the carpark - you can't miss us.

 

BUT IS THERE EVEN COFFEE THERE?

What a Wellington question.

But yes, there is! We serve Harpoon Cold Brew Coffee at The Boatshed and The Bike Shed, which means an ice cold caffeine buzz is ready for you when you come off the water or the trails.

Not only that, but we’ve got real fruit ice cream and Kaffee Eis gelato at The Boatshed, and at weekends, the Barrel Burgers crew selling hot stuff. You could easily spend half a day with us, or a whole day if you start at with a paddle at The Boatshed, grab lunch, and then take a spin out on a bike from The Bike Shed up the road afterwards.

 

REMIND ME WHY THIS IS SO IMPORTANT?

Everyone’s Adventure wants to make rad outdoor experiences free to as many people as possible, for as much of summer as possible. We’ll do that as soon as we cover our participating businesses’ operating costs for the summer. The operating costs amount to $300K, and cover safety, staff wages, and gear maintenance. We’ll reach our goal through your purchases, so book kayak, bike, or SUP hire, or a day-long cycle trip through Cycle Rimutaka, and help add to it.

 

BUT I DON’T LIKE GOING OUTSIDE.

There I cannot help you. Maybe brave it for the community spirit, just this once! You might surprise yourself by enjoying it. Drag your friends along. There’s nothing to make you feel better about the outdoors than seeing a friend fall off a standup paddleboard. Trust us on that one.

If you get a crew together, you can book out the whole place for an evening like a celebrity. You’ll get gear hire at The Boatshed and a BBQ on our deck at sunset. If you bring 20 mates it’s only $30 a head, and it’s all going towards the free gear hire goal! Plus we’ll put a pic of you and your crew on our Facebook to say thanks.

Any more questions? Ask us!

Get an adventure for Christmas and we'll give to Wellington Women's Refuge

By Charlotte Graham.

Use the code WOMENSREFUGE to book any gear hire or cycle trips, or buy any gift vouchers, between now and Christmas, and we'll give half the money to Wellington Women's Refuge. Book now.

Most of us have a whole lot of great Christmas memories to draw on, often involving wonderful outdoor adventures. But many Kiwi kids grow up not knowing a happy or safe Christmas, ever. Sadly, Christmas is a time when domestic violence spikes dramatically in New Zealand, and many women and children will be at risk this holiday season because of it.

Wellington Women's Refuge is among refuges across the country doing an amazing job, with very little resourcing, to make sure as many women as they can help are safe at Christmas. One of the awesome things they've told us about is the counselling they fund - a critical support for women to recover from the legacy of abuse. But services are stretched further at Christmas with more families in unsafe situations - last year, 6,000 women and children throughout New Zealand requested help from the Police during the holidays.

Dave Woulfe, who owns the outdoors businesses involved in Everyone's Adventure, came up with the idea of free gear hire because he wanted to give families a go at the kind of Kiwi summer so many of us grew up taking for granted. For us, $15 for kayak hire or $30 for a scenic spin on a bike is a nice treat; for many families, it's out of reach. Those are the kinds of Wellingtonians we wanted to extend the gift of free gear hire to, once our operating costs are covered.

But at this time, just before Christmas, it's time to take stock and recognise that for some families, even safety at Christmas is an uncertain possibility. So even though it will mean it takes us slightly longer to reach the Everyone's Adventure free gear hire goal, we're okay with that, because we want to also support Wellington Women's Refuge while they support Wellington women and families.

Between now and Christmas, when you buy an adventure or a voucher from our site using the code WOMENSREFUGE, we'll give half the money to Wellington Women's Refuge. So if you want to make a booking for kayak, bike or stand up paddleboard fun later in summer, do it now and we'll give half away. If you've still got Christmas pressies to buy, or you don't yet know what date you want to come and have an adventure with us, buy a gift voucher for you or a recipient to redeem later. You (or the recipient) will still get the awesome adventure you paid for, half of the money will go towards our “free gear hire by the end of summer” goal, and half will go to Women's Refuge. We'll let you know how much we end up donating!

Everyone's Adventure still plans to make gear hire free as soon as our businesses' $300K operating costs are covered. We'll get there - and you're still helping. But we wanted to take a moment right now to contribute to those helping out our most vulnerable women and their whanau at Christmas.

Use the code WOMENSREFUGE on our site to give. All spending until 11:59 p.m. on December 24th 2016 counts. Thanks so much to Wellington Women's Refuge for agreeing to partner with us on this fundraiser.

If you’d like to know more about Everyone’s Adventure, check us out in the Dominion Post, or read Dave’s story.

Why we're making Adventures free for Everyone

Dave Woulfe - Owner / Operator, Everyone's Adventure.

The Wellington outdoors are special to me. There’s heaps of variation - from rugged coasts with great kayaking, diving and surfing, to rolling hills perfect for mountain biking and running. It’s all massively underappreciated though, which means you can be on a bike or a surfboard just 20km from the CBD, but it feels like it’s just you and your mates in the middle of nowhere. I also love that there’s a great community of adventurers around Wellington, who are super keen to help get others into the things they love.

I run three outdoor adventure businesses in Wellington: The Boatshed - Days Bay, which hires out kayaks and standup paddleboards (as well as making mean Real Fruit Ice Creams!); The Bikeshed Pencarrow, which rents bikes; and Cycle Rimutaka, where we arrange supported daytrips or multiday adventures for people on the Rimutaka Cycle Trail.

I’ve been at it for five years now - before this I was working for big corporates, and got a bit disenchanted by the “profits over people” business model. So I jumped on a plane to Indonesia with a one-way ticket, a surfboard and a backpack, and wound up working with a medical crew on a remote island, mostly doing handyman stuff and cooking and cleaning. I saw some things there that really changed my perspective on what I wanted to do with my life, and also met Alice (we’re now married), who happened to be a Wellingtonian.

When we moved back to Wellington six months later (after backpacking and hitch-hiking around Europe and Morocco together for a few months), I wanted to work for non-profits doing awesome stuff, but couldn’t find anything suitable. Then I saw a picture on TradeMe of a wee boatshed with a bunch of kayaks out the front going pretty cheap. I thought I could buy it, have a crack at building up the business, and run it in a way that meant everyone had access to the cool experiences that I’d been lucky enough to grow up with, and affect some sort of social change by doing business better.

I wasn’t quite sure what that would look like, but found pretty early on that the thing that gave me the biggest buzz within the business, was seeing kids and families who don’t ordinarily get to do this sort of stuff, getting to have a go. I wanted to make that happen more often for more people. That’s where the idea for the Everyone’s Adventure campaign this summer came from. I’ve tried little things before, like having a “koha kayaks” promo, but I was after something bigger - I wanted to move away from the idea of trying to make as much money as possible from each person who comes through the business, into figuring out a plan that’s good for business and great for the community. I don’t want my business model to rely on everyone having money, or to make distinctions between those who can afford outdoor adventures and those who can’t. Five years, and a lot of help from friends and family later (thank you all - Alice in particular), Everyone's Adventure is here.

Here’s the deal with Everyone’s Adventure:

1. We've got three awesome outdoor adventure businesses, where we hire gear (kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, and bikes) and sell ice creams and other snacks.

2. We've figure out how much money we need to bring in this summer across all of those businesses: it's $300,000, including stuff like overheads, safe practices, and paying our staff.

3. Every dollar people spend at our three businesses over summer goes towards that $300K total - gear hire and ice creams included, as well as vouchers for future use.

4. We're making our earnings transparent to the public, and once that $300K amount is reached, gear hire is FREE at those businesses, for the rest of summer, til Easter weekend 2017.

And that’s it! I can’t wait to see what our community can do together through Everyone’s Adventure this summer. I think people hanging out together having great experiences brings communities closer, and that these great experiences also make people appreciate and think a bit more about their natural environment. Making it free means everyone gets to do it, and everyone wins - the business, the environment and our community will all be healthier for it. And as an Everyone’s Adventure customer, you can feel good about your decisions helping others have experiences they might not otherwise have had.

I have so many great memories from these awesome Wellington summers I’ve had running the businesses so far. For example, the very first day of operations after I bought The Boatshed with a mate. It was one of those classic Wellington summer days that we get three of every year: perfectly flat, still, and sunny. There was a birdman competition on with people jumping and riding off the wharf in costume and on crazy contraptions, and we were super busy and super stoked. We proceeded to extrapolate out that one day’s business, multiplied by every day for the rest of the summer, and started talking about how awesome early retirement was going to be. The next day, it was gale force winds and rain (the other kind of classic Welly summer day).

I also love getting to paddle with orca - each season a pod or two cruise through Days Bay. I’ve been lucky enough to be out on the water twice when they’ve come through, and one time they decided to cruise along with me as I paddled, with a young calf rolling up on its side to watch me, eye (and teeth) close enough to reach out and touch. Pretty special. And I never get sick of the daily 5pm show throughout the school holidays, where local business people in their suits run the wharf gauntlet as kids (loose interpretation - pretty sure I’ve seen some dudes in their mid 20s) do bombs off the wharf trying to splash them. Pays to be either the first (if you’re fast!) or the last business person through - it’s always pretty funny seeing the locals hang back while the less experienced get allowed through first as sacrificial lambs.

For those who are new to Wellington, or who aren’t new but have never ventured much outside the urban zone, I’d say buy a jacket and get amongst it. There’s heaps of awesome adventures to be had, and some really supportive communities that will take you under their wing. So come and be part of it!

 

Like Everyone’s Adventure on Facebook to keep track of the campaign.

Friends Wanted!

Friends Wanted!

We're on the lookout for some super cool like-minded businesses to partner with. You might be a bike supplier, have a new brand of SUPs you're looking to launch, or make great coffee that you'd like to see being sold out at Pencarrow. Or, you might be a large corporate with similar brand values, that could help us get this summer cranking. We should be friends! Contact Dave if you're keen to have a chat.