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An Interview with Waihi Beach Local - Pip Jones

Posted in Bay of Plenty Locals

Pip is almost part of the furniture at Waihi Beach. She runs the vet, owns one of the local pubs and runs an organic dairy farm. She’s passionate about the Bay of Plenty and says it’s been the perfect place to raise a family.

How long have you lived at Waihi Beach?

I’ve lived here for 16 years. I studied as a vet in Oklahoma and then moved to San Francisco where I met my late husband. We moved over when our two boys were one and four because we wanted to be in a beach town within two hours drive of Auckland, which is where my mum was at the time. I started the Beach Vets clinic in 2006 with Michelle, who works here with me, and I also run an organic dairy farm and own the Waihi Beach Hotel building across the road.

What do you love most about living in the Bay of Plenty?

It’s just an incredible lifestyle. My 18-year-old son Cam gets up at 6am, has a surf, goes to school and then comes back home and surfs again. I enjoy horse riding and the other day I tied my horse up outside the Waihi Beach Hotel to enjoy a beer and I saw my son walking home with a surf board under his arm. How many places does that still happen?

The people Waihi Beach attracts are just magic. When my husband passed away the support from the community was amazing. I love it here.

What are your main interests?

I have a horse called Meg and I go riding down at Tuapiro Reserve near Katikati or at the former Wilson Farm just behind Waihi Beach. I also play a bit of golf and enjoy fishing. You always catch something when you go out into the harbour.

What do you recommend family and friends do when they visit Waihi Beach?

Take a wander through the village because we have the most incredible shops. Or you can’t go past a walk to Orokawa Bay, it’s such a neat hike. Other times I’ll take visiting friends and family out on the harbour for a fish, or we go horse riding at Tuapiro Reserve near Katikati.

What is your perfect day in the Bay of Plenty?

It would start with breakfast with the kids – Swedish pancakes are our thing. Then I would go for a horse ride, swim in the ocean, and have friends around for a BBQ dinner. We’d cook meat from the Waihi Beach Butchery, or fish we’d caught in the harbour.

You clearly have a passion for food. What’s your favourite recipe?

My whole family has cooked over the years. I get great meat from the local butcher and one of my best friends owns a honey business called BeeNZ, near Katikati. The Manuka and Kanuka honey they produce is beyond anything I’ve ever had.

Everyone knows I will work for food and I have a client who loves to fish and hunt. He had a successful Marlin fishing trip recently and I’ve been making this insane Marlin dip with the catch.

Try my Smoked Marlin dip - click here for the recipe.