Knights of columbus

For the past 17 years, Knights of Columbus members ran their annual Christmas turkey-wheel fundraiser at a table in the mall. (CBC)

The Port Hawkesbury Shopping Centre says they won’t charge charities to set up tables in their mall next year, after they were berated for asking the Knights of Columbus to pay for a spot earlier this holiday season.

For the past 17 years, Knights of Columbus members have had their annual Christmas turkey wheel fundraiser at a table in the mall. Winners would get a turkey, while money from the tickets was used to buy Christmas dinners for needy families and support other causes.

This year the mall’s administration started charging $75 per day. The charity said they make about $3,000 a year during the drive and would have had to pay $2,200 back to the shopping centre.

The mall's owner — Montreal-based Toulon Development Corporation — said it has had problems at another mall where someone set up a fundraising table for free and collected money after pretending to be a non-profit organization.

But the company seems to have had a change of heart.

Roddie MacDonald, with the Knights of Columbus, told CBC he has received assurance from the mall owner that next year there will be no rental fees for any charitable organizations.

“Also as of today we have received $400 from individuals who were sympathetic to our cause,” he said.