Otaki Community Expo

By MARGARET ANDREWS

If you ever wanted to know about a craft, hobby or community group, then the Otaki Community Expo held recently was the place to be.

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Otaki Bridge Club members Jan Sparrow, Alastair Pain, Mari Hosiaux and Claudia Duncan engrossed in a game of Bridge during the Community Expo

The expo was organised by the Otaki Village Promotion Group (OPVG) and held in the Memorial Hall. With 33 organisations exhibiting their interests, there was something for almost everyone: from health to family support groups, education to sporting activities, service groups to environmental organisations.

“It’s providing the opportunity for connections to be made. Often people don’t know what’s available in our town,” Carol Ward, OVPG member said. “This is one place they can come and find out. We’ve had some very positive signups at many of the groups.”

Among the service groups were members of the newly formed Lions Club of Otaki keen to enrol new members, Volunteer Kapiti putting people with time and skills with people wanting assistance, Otaki Community Patrol and Otaki Probus Club for our senior citizens. For those interested in the history of our town or their family both the Otaki Historical Society and Genealogy groups were on hand. The newly formed XOtaki College Foundation Trust had members there keen to sign up former pupils to the new group.

Sports and activities included swimming, athletics, golf, indoor bowls, petanque and bridge were showcased. Several environmental groups were there and children visiting Waitohu Stream Care Group’s table could pot up a carex grass to take home and grow before they planted it at the beach.

The Otaki Spinners group created some interest as people watched cleaned and dyed wool being spun into yarn for knitting and crotchet. One member was busily knitting a colourful blanket for the children’s Stand Village (Health Camp). They would welcome any spare synthetic yarn – not wool -you may have for the blankets and garments they knit for the children.

Are you a night owl? – you may be interested in joining the Community Patrol, this involves two people driving around the wider town area, working alongside the police as their eyes and ears. Patrollers work in pairs and don’t leave their vehicle. They are in contact with the police at all times. Interested? Then your first call is the Otaki police station and a police check and if you’ve got a clean record you’ll pass and then will work with a trainer. They are looking for more volunteers, the more they have on the books the fewer nights each person is rostered on to patrol.