Vis­i­tors kept busy in BIG WET

Waihi Leader - - Front Page - PHOTO / ME­LANIE CAMOIN

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.

PHO­TOS / ME­LANIE CAMOIN.

Oth­ers went to Waihi’s art ex­hi­bi­tion.

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