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Annual fundraiser: Philip Cross and Vida Smart, rotary members of Wagga Wagga branch, at the 2021 Rotary Book Fair. Photo: Emma Hillier

Fill a bag with the books of your choice and feel good raising money for local and international charitable causes at the same time.

That's how the Wagga Rotary Club's Book Fair turns donated books into a very popular fundraising event.

Oh, and a $2 entry for adults helps too.

This year's event is set to take place on the weekend of May 14 and 15 at the same venue previous visitors should be familiar with, that of Kyeamba Smith Hall at the Wagga Showgrounds.

Filling each aforementioned bag is a neat and tidy $50, and (with some exceptions priced separately) it's up to you what you fill it with.

These bags are generous in size too so you'll also get plenty of books in there, and they have EFTPOS available to make it easy as well.

The club and other volunteers spend most of the year sorting through the book donations to ensure they're fit for sale and then putting them in one of the many categories available.

About half the hall will be fiction, and about half non-fiction, with each then separated into many sub-categories.

There are loads of children's books to choose from. There's fiction of just about every kind. Or you can wade through the non-fiction and learn about all sorts of things.

In addition to the plethora of books that you could pop into these bags, you could also buy some of the many CDs and DVDs available, as well as some sheet music and some old, rare and collectible publications too.

Adding to the atmosphere, and the funds, there will be a barbeque running hot all weekend, so you can look forward to that as well.

The Wagga Book Fair has been running annually since 2003, and having skipped 2020 for obvious reasons this will be the 19th running of the event.

Total funds raised over what is now nearly 20 years of work is pushing its way towards the $600,000 mark.

Each year the funds from the book fair go into a pool of funds from other activities the Wagga branch has conducted through the financial year. Those funds are then distributed out to many causes, local and international, as the committee sees fit in order to clear out the account and start fundraising again the next fiscal year.

Kyeamba Smith Hall: Fill a bag with a huge choice of books on May 14 and 15, and raise money for local and international charitable causes at the same time.

Organiser Graham Russell said that people travel from far and wide to attend this event, including interstate.

The books are donated from a variety of sources. As the sign that you'll see at the hall says, the event is from the community, to the community.

It's a serious undertaking to prepare for the book fair each year, with last year's event featuring over 50,000 books on display.

Volunteers to help with tasks big and small come from the host branch of Rotary as well as other branches, plus the Clontarf Foundation boys from Mt. Austin High School as well as others who just want to help the cause.

Ron Crouch Transport and other local organisations help move stock about and others make space available to store it safely as well.

Then there's the epic task of setting up the hall for the event and packing it up again afterwards.

The club is also always grateful to all their other supporters and sponsors.