Visitors kept busy in BIG WET
Last weekend’s wet weather did not tarnish Queen’s Birthday events’ popularity in Waihi and Waihi Beach. Hundreds of people sheltered from the rain at the Lion’s Book Fair, Waihi Art Group expo and the Waihi Beach Art and Craft Fair (right).
Waihi and Waihi Beach Queen’s Birthday events were even more popular this year as visitors escaped the weekend’s wet weather.
Many were browsing through hundreds of books, jigsaw puzzles, music and films at the annual Waihi Lions book fair.
Organiser and Lions member Brian Ager was pleased with the attendance.
“It has been very well and the hall was packed on Saturday.
“And the weather did not put people off,” he said.
The club worked for weeks before the fair to sort out the 470 boxes of donations they received. Proceeds from the two-day event will go back to the community, the Lions Cancer lodge but also Waikino’s Victoria Hall,and St John’s Anglican church.
“Just on Saturday, we had 20 volunteers helping there. It was a good club effort,” Brian said.
Waihi Art group had a busy exhibition on Saturday. There were more than 100 paintings — from impressionism to abstract, landscapes and more — on display painted by 16 local artists.
“We had quite a few paintings and we sold quite a few,” artist John Stubbenhagen said.
He said he was pleased the local events were well supported despite the heavy rain.
“We have a lot of people who came just after visiting the book fair and vice versa. It is good to have both events — it is a reciprocal help,” he said.
The group has about 24 members coming from diverse backgrounds.
“We had people joining who had never touched a brush in their life and said ‘I can’t paint’ but over time they improve and we show them that they can do it.”
Nude will be the theme of next year’s bi-annual exhibition in January.
Last Sunday, the Waihi Beach Art and Craft Fair attracted crowds to the Waihi Beach Community Centre with a record display of stalls.
Organiser Colleen Low says the day was very busy.
“It was packed all morning and we were quite pleased to see so many people visiting, especially when the rain got worse outside,” she said.
Next year, the fair will celebrate its 15th birthday and surprises may be in store.
Many found comfort in a good book during the wet weather.
Others went to Waihi’s art exhibition.