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Paeroa Lions president Wei Zhang at the inaugural book fair held over Auckland Anniversary Weekend. PHOTO: KELLEY TANTAU

First-time book fair a success for Paeroa

Paeroa Lions’ very first book fair was such a success that the charitable organisation is already planning a “bigger and better” event for 2025.
Around $6000 was raised from the two-day book fair held at the Paeroa Memorial Hall over Auckland Anniversary Weekend.
Club president Wei Zhang said on the first day they had “a long queue from the hall entrance to the main road” before the doors were set to open.
“I didn’t expect it at all,” she said, “because I had no experience of running a book fair. All of the Lions were thrilled.”
The money raised is going to be donated to the Lions Cancer Lodge in Hamilton, which had been struggling financially since the Covid-19 pandemic, Wei said.
She commented on the generosity of the community over the two days, and also said the fair would not have been as smoothly run without the help of Lions members – and their wives.
Wei said thanks to Annette Buchanan, wife to Alistair, for “baking for the crew” over the event’s duration; to Bev Sharp, wife of Kevin, and Heather Brown, wife of Walton, for helping to sort the books in the summer heat; and thanks to Kerry Christensen, wife of Gavin, Raewyn Wood, wife of Graeme, and Justine Cook, wife to Adam, for all having hands on deck.
She also wanted to thank Ian Meredith, whose daughter travelled from Kerikeri to help with the fair, as well as Paeroa Info Hub and Caltex Paeroa for collecting the donated books.
“It became not just a Lions event, but a whole community event,” Wei said.
There were about 90 boxes of books left over from the fair, and Wei said they will be stored by Lions members until the next event in early 2025, which would be “bigger and better”.