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Published: 2003-03-10 00:00:00

Waikato high school students will bury themselves in slime and eat possum brains in an Eco Fear Factor Challenge later this month to launch the annual Festival for the Environment.

Competitors from Waikato Diocesan, Fairfield College, Tokoroa High School and Hillcrest High School will team up with sports celebrities Rob Hamill, Regina Sheck and two basketballers to complete four Eco Fear-ful tasks.

The competitors will be immersed in a bath full of slimy substances such as pond weed, canola oil, bread, burger rings and other squishy stuff, before dining on a ‘brain buffet’ eating possum brains, with the fastest time winning.

Competitors will then bob for objects in a worm bin without using their hands and sort out a pile of objects into underwear, bottles, cans and other objects. The competition will be hosted by The Edge DJ and Flipside Presenter Mike Puru on Saturday morning, March 15.

Mike Puru said the environment was important to recognise.

“It seems to me we are fighting the wrong war. There is no point looking for world peace if there is no world to live in. Every little bit helps.”

Popular children’s character Bumble will give a free show at Centreplace from 10.30am till 11am to launch the Festival’s Green Mardi Gras. The Mardi Gras takes place on Ward Street, which will be partly closed for live entertainment and street performers.

The festival runs from March 14 to 23 throughout the Waikato Region and is sponsored by Environment Waikato, Hamilton City Council, Waipa and Taupo District Councils and the Department of Conservation.

People will be able to pick up a festival directory at the launch event which has details of over 60 action-packed events which give people the opportunity to explore the environment, become environmentally aware and participate in actions that improve the Region’s environment.