MANY CANDLES: Beacon managing director John Spring and his mother Helen Spring cut the birthday cake as party-goers, including Wally Sutherland and Tony Bonne, look on. Photos Troy Baker D8484-028

EIGHTY years of keeping the Eastern Bay informed was celebrated at the Whakatane Beacon newspaper’s birthday party last Friday night.

The event marked eight decades since the first edition of the Bay of Plenty Beacon– as it was called for its first year – rolled off the press.

The event, held at Beacon Print, in Pohutu Street, was attended by shareholders, the paper’s present staff, two former editors, representatives from members of the Beacon Group’s other businesses, and friends of the Beacon.