Charities reminded to be in to win

By Sandra Conchie

Plans for the 18th annual Tauranga Police CIB Charity Auction are well advanced and organisers of the event are again calling on worthy charities to put their names forward as recipients.

Since the charity lunch was first launched in 1995, more than $1.3 million has been raised for the local community.

Last year's event, held at TECT Arena Baypark, raised more than $250,000.

Last year's selected charities, Impact Tauranga and Tauranga Riding for the Disabled Trust, each received $100,000, and $25,000 was also donated to quake-ravaged Canterbury victims.

This year's auction will be held at the TECT Arena Baypark on October 12.

Event organiser Detective Sergeant Pete Blackwell, a trustee of the Tauranga Police CIB Charitable Trust, said applicants were asked to compile a detailed report outlining the work their charity did, funding sources, financial position and how the funds would be used if selected.

"It's important that applicants provide as [full] details as they can so the trustees are in the best position to select the most appropriate final two recipients," he said.

Mr Blackwell, the 2011 Bay of Plenty Times Person of the Year, had already been knocking on many doors to ensure this year's auction was again a major success.

"I'm confident by the end of year, the trust will have broken the $1.5 million mark in its fundraising effort thanks to the continuing fantastic support of businesses such as the Tauranga Motor Group, who give so generously each year to this worthy cause," he said.

Once again thousands of dollars of items will go under the hammer.

"Already there are a number of exciting quality items on the auction list," Mr Blackwell said.

Items up for auction included an electric guitar signed by American band the Doobie Brothers and an acoustic guitar signed by the members of Australia's Little River Band.

Among the array of sporting memorabilia and prized mementoes were two framed All Blacks jerseys - one signed by the 2011 winning World Cup team and the other by the 1987 winning squad.

Mr Blackwell said Kerre Woodham would be MC while the guest speaker would be the former Australian fast bowler, Merv Hughes, who was recognised as one of the best speakers in the business.

Hughes, synonymous for his large drooping moustache, and known as the king of sledging, was nicknamed Fruitfly by his team mates, after the famous Aussie pest that has been causing a few problems in Auckland lately.

He would be "grilled" by TV3's Andrew Gourdie during a question and answer session at the lunch.

Mr Blackwell said it was a coup to score Woodham as MC - the first female master of ceremonies over the history of the charity lunch.

"This year's charity lunch is promising to be an incredibly exciting and entertaining day," he said.

Applications should be sent to Detective Sergeant Pete Blackwell at PO Box 1444, Tauranga by June 30. Tickets for the event are expected to go on sale mid-August, but people can pre-book their $100 tickets or tables by emailing If anyone is able to donate items for the auction or help out to make the day a success email Mr Blackwell at the same address.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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