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Founders Annual Book Fair 2021

Are you ready for the Founders Annual Book Fair? The tables are loaded and there’s plenty of fabulous books for you to choose from. Doors open at 10am on Saturday. Remember to bring your shopping bags!

Saturday 5 – Sunday 13 June, 10am – 4.30pm
Entry $2 or 9 day pass $5

​An abundance of fiction awaits visitors to this year’s Founders Book Fair as it returns to its usual time of year, Queen’s Birthday weekend.

Taking place from June 5-13, the annual Book Fair is expected to draw about 12,000 people to Founders Heritage Park over the course of nine days.

The Book Fair was delayed until October last year after the COVID-19 shutdown, but despite the reduced timeframe between fairs, donations had been steady, and the tables will be full, Founders Book Fair co-ordinator Karen Clark said.

“We have more fiction books than ever, particularly crime and science fiction. Philosophy books are always wildly popular, and we have more than usual this year.”

Volunteers started unpacking the donations on Monday, 24 May, and a day later, the tables in the Energy Centre were almost all full. They will be replenished at intervals throughout the sale, so there is always something new to find, Karen said.

“We also have a lot of art books – things like calligraphy and how-to-draw instructional books, as well as those detailing the works of artists. New Zealand history, people and nature have also been popular among the donations.”

Among the books, there is a wide variety of puzzles, board games, magazines and mixed media such as vinyl records, CDs, DVDs, and cassette tapes. Unique to this year’s Book Fair is a slice of its history – the trestle tables the books have been set out on since the Book Fair began.

Karen said the Friends of Founders Trust recently replaced all the tables with new, lighter ones that are easier to store and manoeuvre.

The original handmade wooden tables are selling for $25 each, and there are about 60 of them up for grabs, Karen said.

Nelson City Council Community and Recreation Committee Chair Tim Skinner said the Book Fair was full of hidden gems.

“The Book Fair has gone from strength to strength, and there’s no doubt this year will be another exceptional event. I have made many a great find among the stacks of books in the past, and it’s an excellent opportunity to delve into some new authors, genres and even get inspired to take up a new hobby.”

The Book Fair takes place at Founders Heritage Park from 10am-4.30pm, June 5-13. Fair-goers are asked to bring reusable bags to take home their purchases. Entry to the fair is $2, or a nine-day pass costs $5. Entry is free for under 12s.

Money raised from the Book Fair goes into development projects at the park, such as new displays and venue improvements.

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