Long-time Onerahi residents have fond memories of the St Stephen's Anglican Church summer gala days of old and this weekend it is being resurrected with a twist.
St Stephen's Church administrator and deacon Paul Doherty said locals remember it as being a 'real happy community event' but it eventually fizzled out.
"There was a lovely core of people who made up a wonderful team and made quite a big effort for a mainly ageing group of people. Those market days of old are in our collective memory and we want to invigorate that and revive that sense of community."
The idea developed during lockdown when Doherty was dreaming up ideas of how to support the local community.
"We also wanted to encourage reconnecting, plus support folk in trying out new business ideas with little risk/cost, etc."
Doherty took his idea to the church community and the Market of the Common Good was born. After initially discussing a night market to be held every full moon, they decided to hold it over the afternoon and early evening.
Saturday's event will run from 2pm-6pm and include a show by Circus Kumarani who will also be running workshops for kids, live music by Whangārei Heads-based Little Ripples, along with an open mic to encourage musical talent, a line dancing demonstration, a healing centre with foot and cranial massage and healing prayer, sign language classes, village green stalls with crafts, an indoor market with new and near-new bric-a-brac, and Kai Kourt with The Little Chef – vegan delights from the caravan, Cornish Pasties, made in Onerahi and the church's Heavenly wood-fired pizzas from their pizza oven for $5 each.
Whare Bike will also be there with their cycle workshops for those who like to tinker on bike repairs and kids can enjoy rides on the cargo bikes. There will also be sites from Zero Waste and NorthTec's pest operations.
Aside from the food and stalls, everything is free and Doherty said any funds raised will go toward the church. However, it is about celebrating 'creativity, community, spring and freedom'.
"We are building on the market days of old and our Heavenly Pizza fundraisers – but also it is to celebrate community and help new ideas find some light.
"We're also keen to promote awareness of the Maara Kai o Wai-a-Ariki Onerahirahi Food Forest (across the road from the church). Our local fully-volunteer food forest – every neighbourhood should have one."
Since posting the event on social media and through word of mouth, the response has been positive.
"It was very grass roots but it seemed to really resonate that deep memory of community, I've been really surprised and delighted by the enthusiasm from both young and old.
"It will create an awesome family atmosphere and if it goes well and the stall-holders are happy, we hope to carry it on through the summer."