Images courtesy Mrs. J. Jones.
I'm gathering up information on these events at the moment (contributions and memories from readers of this blog always appreciated), but here is what I know so far in summary.
In 1947, the Auckland Provincial Public Relations Office was inaugurated. The first challenge for the new organisation, linked with thye Auckland City Council and Chamber of Commerce, was the 1950 Empire Gamers held in Auckland. In conjunction with that event (held mainly at Eden Park but the closing event was at Western Springs), the first birthday carnival was organised.
In 1951, a second was held in January to early February at the Epsom Showgrounds -- then in 1952, it shifted to Western Springs Stadium and nearby open areas beside the old pumphouse. The following year, the PRO took out a 50 year lease with the City Council for the Western Springs Stadium and surrounds, and intended creating a sports and pleasure park, including conversionn of the pumphouse into a restuarant. Fortunately for those of us which like the pumphouse as it is today, the gem of MOTAT, the plans didn't go ahead. The carnival ruptured money in its declining years, and by the middle of 1961 the PRO pulled out of the lease, operning the way for MOTAT and the Western Springs Park we know today.
The image above is from the 1952 float parade at Western Springs. Below is the carnival grounds that year (this expanded rapidly in ensuing years).
I hope to write a more in-depth piece for the Point Chevalier Times soon.