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Innovation to help save Te Horo Hall

By Ian Carson - Otaki Today

The Te Horo Community Hall Society is at a pivotal stage in its restoration project for the historic hall. Having received strong support through a local survey to save the hall from almost certain demise, the committee sought tenders for earthquake strengthening, finally deciding on Crowe Construction and Associates. This work will cost about $350,000, which will include finish work, such as painting and floor sanding, insurance and regulatory requirements.

Hall society chairman Andrew Annakin says quake strengthening remains the hall committee’s first priority.

“There’s little point in doing anything else without it,” he says. “If we only raise enough to quake strengthen the hall and make it suitable for future users, then that is all we will But now that we have a clear budget to work to, we can begin the serious business of fundraising.” Set the target, the committee is embarking on an ambitious and innovative fundraising drive led by Te Horo local Grant Robertson. Through his real estate connections, Grant has secured a donation of $3000 from Property Brokers Ōtaki for marketing and promotion.

But now it gets interesting, with the idea of the Great Te Horo Road Rai$e. It’s a concept that challenges designated areas of Te Horo (roads or a cluster of roads) to raise $10,000 or more during March, April and May. “This is three months of concentrated effort, innovation, and fun among neighbourhoods to outdo each other for a good cause,” Andrew says. “If we raise $400,000, earthquake strengthening will be undertaken, painting and redecorating undertaken, plus a new kitchen will be installed. If we raise $500,000, we hope to convince KCDC to help put car parking on the adjoining KCDC-owned paddock.”

Every Thursday, one of the “roads” can make use of the hall for fundraising, which might include debates, celebrity speakers, long lunches, dancing or card games. Area 12 (Addington and Te Waka roads) is kicking off the campaign with a quiz night at 7pm on Thursday, March 7, followed by a committee-hosted opening drinks at the hall the next day, Friday, March 8.

Road Rai$e champion Grant Robertson says he’s been overwhelmed by residents’ enthusiasm. “The sheer imagination and the wide variety of ideas based on what most suits each ‘road’ group is amazing,” he says. “It’s going to be an incredible event. If nothing else The Great Road Rai$e is a fantastic way to meet your neighbours, have fun, and contribute to something local and important to all of us”.

In support of the “roads”, the hall committee is organising a monster raffle with big prizes, and a major promotion one weekend each month on which teams can hang their events. While Road Rai$e is the most exciting and engaging part of the hall’s funding plans, other avenues are being pursued such as the Lotteries Commission and other large donors. Several companies and corporates might also be interested in supporting the hall.

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