Margaret Graham was sitting in a lawn chair next to a gray, older television on the ground. It had been broken for two weeks.
“It’s the only TV I have, and the only TV I want,” Graham said Sunday. “If I can watch OPB (Oregon Public Broadcasting), I’m happy.”
Graham was among more than 170 people who came out Sunday to Eugene’s first Fix-It Fair. The participants in what the city hopes will be a frequent event gathered outside the Amazon Community Center, many of them eating pizza and sitting in the sun next to their broken appliances while waiting for their numbers to be called.
From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Fix-It Fair participants could bring their tools, clothing, small appliances and other items in need of repair to professionals from eight local businesses who could fix them. The city of Eugene paid the business owners — aptly nicknamed “fixers” — $50 an hour. They came from businesses such as Cellular Makanix, Imagine Alterations & Custom Sewing, and Brighter Homes Lighting. Volunteers also showed up to apply their know-how to whatever needed fixing. And whether volunteer or pro, there was no shortage of demand for their services.
People stood in line holding lamps, small vacuums, picture frames and lawn mowers. Whirled Pies donated pizzas. And residents could save up to $100 in repairs on items such as radios and water distillers — while also…