Devoted readers flock to annual Lion’s Club Book Fair
From the left: Deux-Montagnes Lions Club Giant Book Fair co-organizer Martin Hensen, Lake of Two Mountains High School leadership program volunteer Jaida Wilkins and book fair co-organizer Nancy Rupnik.
Martin C. Barry

Persons in need of wheelchairs and walkers, eyeglasses as well as large-print books will be well served in the North Shore region in the coming year thanks to thousands of dollars in sales last weekend at the Deux-Montagnes Lions Club’s annual Giant Book Fair.

Books for everyone

Held at Veterans Hall in Deux-Montagnes on Oct. 4, Oct. 5 and Oct. 6, the popular fundraising event proved to be as successful as ever. Hundreds of book lovers explored tables heavily loaded with an amazingly diverse assortment of volumes for everyone’s reading delight.

“It’s gone very well this year,” said fair co-organizer Nancy Rupnik, noting that the event was scheduled three weeks earlier than usual because of the coming federal election.

“But I think we’re going to probably keep it like this,” she added, “because the weather is nicer and it doesn’t conflict with the pre-Christmas bazaars taking place this time of year.”

Books for a long winter

Autumn is a time when everyone seems to want to get out before winter sets in and makes it more difficult to get around. It’s also a period when a lot of people buy books for the months ahead when they’re at home during the winter feeling a need for comfort and warmth.

As such, it was an opportunity for anyone with an interest in books to stock up on their favorite reads.

The book sale usually raises $10,000 to $15,000 for the Lions’ local philanthropic activities, which include support for the Deux-Montagnes Canada Day celebrations as well as service projects that involve the visually-impaired.

Devoted readers flock to annual Lion’s Club Book Fair

Helping North Shore causes

The money is usually distributed to causes over a wide area on the North Shore, from Oka in the west, to Deux-Montagnes and St. Eustache along the Mille Îles River, and St. Augustin and Mirabel more to the north of the region.

In all, there were more than 30,000 books, in good condition, all classified into categories normally found in a book store in both English and French, including a great choice of children’s reading.

Among the many volunteers helping were a group of students from Lake of Two Mountains High School taking part in a leadership development program. LTMHS grade seven student Jaida Wilkins was one of them.

LTMHS volunteers helped

While the others had put in their time and seemed to have left when the North Shore News dropped by on Saturday, Wilkins saw fit to stay behind. “I just wanted to help out and I like doing things like this,” she said.

Rhonda Gibson, a teacher at LTMHS who helps oversee the student leadership program, said this wasn’t the first year they helped out at the Deux-Montagnes Lions Book Fair. “We do this every year as part of the student leader program,” she said. “It’s part of getting the teens to become involved in their communities.”