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McCaws star at The Tauranga Gala Dinner

Thousands of people packed tha arena on Thursday night for the annual Tauragna Gala Dinner. Supplied photo.

More than 1000 people packed into Trustpower Arena on Thursday night to enjoy candid discussion with Gemma and Richie McCaw as part of the seventh annual Tauranga Gala Dinner.

Led by the hugely knowledgeable and insightful Peter Williams, who was the MC for the event, the crowd heard about everything from the couple’s sporting careers, businesses, outside interests and family life.

Starting with a packed VIP function that saw groups getting their photos with the McCaws, the event flowed into wining and dining while enjoying music from Dan Sharp and Abby Wolfe, alongside three separate sessions with Gemma and Richie on stage.

The night capped off with Peter reading out questions that were submitted from the audience, which included the upfront query of, “how many more kids do you want, and when will you have them?’

The Tauranga Gala Dinner also gives local charities the chance to raise funds each year via a charity auction, and the recipients on Thursday were Wish 4 Fish. Over $70,000 was raised in the auction, overseen by local auctioneer Frank Vosper. Some of the biggest items to sell were a Backyard Cricket Bash at Bay Oval for $16,000 and a two-piece item of signed All Blacks jersey and Black Sticks top that went for $13,500.

Many of the attendees at the event were local businesses hosting staff and clients, with people from as far as Auckland, Rotorua, Whakatane, Hamilton and Wellington travelling through to enjoy the evening.

Official photographs from the evening will be available in the coming weeks via Events Innovated’s website and Facebook page.

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