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Fourth issue lucky for 1964

LAURA One Piece At A Time 1

Fourth issue lucky for 1964 

Conceived and created in the Southern Lakes, 1964: mountain culture / aotearoa magazine has quickly established a cult following across New Zealand. Named for the year Mount Aspiring National Park was founded, 1964 is a quarterly print magazine that focuses on our country’s remote places and the people who seek them out. The team had to drop an issue this year due to you-know-what, but they are back again with their second issue since lockdown, and fourth issue since the magazine launched in December 2019.

Editor Laura Williamson is an ex-ski instructor who is a veteran of the Queenstown Lakes District literary scene and the former editor of the national mountain bike magazine Spoke. As is typical in this region, she also has another job as the current General Manager of the Festival of Colour arts and ideas festival in Wanaka.

At 1964, Laura says her job is to lead an “eclectic group of local artists in the creation of a binge-worthy, cover-to-cover reading experiences”.

She adds that, like the first three issues, the upcoming summer incarnation (due to hit the streets any day now) will not disappoint. It explores the top long drops of the rural south, the Nelson Lakes’ sexiest beetle, the story behind the rare fruits of Southland, the cool cats at Queenstown’s best music venue, and what she calls “ the class warfare at the heart of New Zealand’s fly fishing scene, including everything you ever wanted to know about the monarchy and trout.”

Laura says 1964 was inspired by the incredible creative talent she and 1964’s co-founder Nathan Weathington, found themselves surrounded by in this region.

“Everyone knows about the landscapes, the skiing, the biking and the scenic marathons in this area, but a lot of people don’t realise the place is chock-full or writers, photographers, musicians, designers and artists. Also, there’s such a creative side to pursuits like climbing, skiing power, fly fishing or building a bike track. We wanted to capture that.” She says one of the magazine’s readers described it as the “off-piste Smith Journal”, which she thought summed it up nicely.

It has been a difficult year, but Laura says the magazine has gone from strength to strength, thanks to significant local support. “So many people have contacted us to get involved just because they want to see a publication like our thrive in their community. It’s becoming a point of local pride. We’re thrilled.” And lockdowns and gathering restrictions have meant there’s an extra-large appetite for good things to read these days – people have subscribed to the magazine from across New Zealand and all over the world.

If you’re fast, you can find a free copy of 1964 at your local pub, outdoor store, café, lodge or backcountry hut. You can also subscribe at And if you’re a fan of the magazine, join the team for a beer or two at the 1964 Christmas Party on 3rd December from 5pm at Altitude Brewing in Queenstown.

Cover 1964 21964 Issue1 2019 1Final 1964 Issue3 2020 Cover