55th Annual Auction

Posted By Fgrant

The 55th Annual Houlton Rotary Radio & TV Auction will take place Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, November 22nd, 23rd, and 24th.  The event will air from 6:00-10:30pm each night on WHOU Radio 100.1 FM and on Houlton Cable Channel 13. The auction is held at Watson Hall at the Episcopal Church on Main Street and the public is welcome to attend.

The auction is the major annual fundraiser for the Houlton Rotary Club.  A supplement detailing the auction items for each half hour, special items, phone numbers and store room hours appeared in the November 17th issue of the Houlton Pioneer Times.  The supplement sponsor for this year is Madigan Home Health Care.  The information is also available on the Internet at www.houltonrotary.org.  There will be links from the web site to view the auction live on the Internet.  Details will be provided on the site.  This year’s on-line sponsor is Houlton Water Company.

Each year, a major project or projects are funded by the Rotary Auction in addition to their many other charities.  The major projects for the 2010 auction are contributing to the Northern Maine Soap Box Derby for construction of a new building at the top of Derby Hill, contributing to Cary Library for a digital archiving project for older issues of the Houlton Pioneer Times and supporting the Riverfront Park.  Other projects that will benefit from auction proceeds are the Dollars For Scholars, Rotary Youth Exchange, Student Recognition Day and the Salvation Army.

The auction will feature a list of items for bid on each half hour (6:00-10:30 – 9 half hours per night).  Items on the half hours generally range up to $100.  Bidding on these items is only accepted during their individual half hours with the high bidder being awarded the item at the close of the half hour’s bidding.  Corporate sponsors for each night of this year’s auction are Crawford Homes, First Wind and Elm Tree Diner/Elm Tree North.

Nightly special items generally ranging between $100 and $300 are also featured.  These items may be bid on throughout a given night.  Successful bidders at the close of each night will be awarded these items.  The nightly special items include a leather jacket, coffee brewer, golf lessons, a ladder, a handcrafted children’s table with 2 chairs, sunglasses, a helmet with electric shield, half a pig, an iPod Touch, area rugs, bikes, a quilt, an art supply package, a wooden rustic bed frame, fire wood, a Colbert Report package including autographed photo, advertising packages, gift certificates and a variety of other items.

There are also 3-night special items, which will be featured throughout the auction and this year range up to $11,800.  The 3-night specials this year include a 18’X24′ camp package from Ward Log Homes, a student built playhouse, a pellet stove, a Bison pump, snow blowers, chainsaws, hardwood flooring, an entertainment center, a computer work station, a Soap Box Derby car kit, a Suzuki helmet, an ice auger, fencing, area rugs, a settee combo, a 9 piece queen-size comforter ensemble, LSL lumber, a man’s watch, 100 gallons of fuel oil, a kayak, sanding & refinishing of a hardwood floor and a Boy & the Boot picture.  The successful bidders at the close of bidding on Wednesday evening will be awarded these items.

The retail value of the items donated by area businesses and individuals is nearly $60,000 and add-on items are still coming in.  Add-on items can be contributed by contacting a Rotarian.  For this year’s auction, the retail values for all items as listed in the auction supplement have been rounded to the nearest whole dollar.

Bids can be made for any items by calling the Rotary Auction room at 521-0086.  Those outside the local area but in state may call toll free at 1-866-239-3914.  The Rotary Club is asking bidders to make minimum bids of at least 50% of the listed value for the items.  Some items may carry a higher minimum, which will be indicated in the supplement.  Bids will be taken in whole dollar increments to assist programming and tracking of bids.

Individuals calling in give the Rotarian on the phone the item number they are bidding on and the amount of their bid along with their name and phone number.  The bids are then posted on a board.  They are subsequently taken to the on-air auctioneers who will read the bids and indicate if they are high, low or even.  The auction room is located in Watson Hall and the public is welcome to visit.   Bids can be placed from the auction room until 3 minutes before the close of each half hour.  No bids are accepted from the auction room after the 3-minute bell has been rung.

Successful bidders can pick up their items at the auction storeroom sponsored this year by the Katahdin Valley Health Center.  The storeroom is also located at Watson Hall in the Episcopal Church on Main Street.  The storeroom is open daily during the auction from 9:00am to 10:00pm and is open the three days following the auction.  Specific hours are listed in the auction supplement.  All items should be picked up by the close of the storeroom on Saturday, November 27th at 1:00pm.  The storeroom phone number is 521-2979.

Members of the local Rotary club run all aspects of the auction including serving as on-air auctioneers.  The Rotarian auctioneer schedule is as follows: Monday, 6:00, Scott Dionne & Scott White; 6:30, Paul Adams & Marguerite Lawler; 7:00, Tammie Mulvey & Andy Mooers; 7:30, Joyce Fitzpatrick & Matt Nightingale; 8:00, Dana Delano & Jon McLaughlin; 8:30, Torrey Sylvester & Forrest Barnes; 9:00, Tony Bowers & Chris Anderson; 9:30, John Tribou & Elizabeth Dulin; 10:00, Ryan Bushey & Steve Nelson; Tuesday, 6:00, Tammie Mulvey & Fred Grant; 6:30, Tony Bowers & Elizabeth Dulin; 7:00, Marguerite Lawler & Max Lynds; 7:30, Matt Nightingale & Andy Mooers; 8:00, Tom Moakler & Tammie Mulvey; 8:30, Jon McLaughlin & Dana Delano; 9:00, Scott Dionne & Scott White; 9:30, Torrey Sylvester & Forrest Barnes; 10:00, John Tribou & guest auctioneer Joe Fagnant; Wednesday, 6:00, Tom Moakler & Elizabeth Dulin; 6:30, Tammie Mulvey & Tony Bowers; 7:00, Torrie Sylvester & Forrest Barnes; 7:30, Elizabeth Dulin & Jim Brown; 8:00, Andy Mooers & Jon McLaughlin; 8:30, Frank Thompson & Fred Grant; 9:00, Dana Delano & Lori Weston; 9:30, Butch Asselin & Ryan Bushey; 10:00, Scott White & Scott Dionne.

Also part of the annual auction is the Boy & the Boot Endowment Program. Individuals may call in during the auction to pledge a Boy & the Boot statue.  The pledge represents a $1,000 contribution to the endowment fund of the Houlton Regional Health Services Foundation, which benefits local healthcare.  Some businesses also offer payroll deduction programs for the pledges.  At the completion of the pledge, the contributor receives a limited edition pewter replica of the Boy with the Leaking Boot Statue.

Another giving opportunity is being offered again this year.  Individuals will be able to call in during the auction to sponsor an auditorium seat to help provide new seating for the Houlton Community Arts Center project.  One seat can be sponsored for a $300 pledge.  Two seats can be sponsored by a $550 pledge ($275 each).  Three seats or more can be pledged at $250 each.  All sponsors will be recognized by name plaques on the seats and a recognition plaque in the facility.

In addition, $500 worth of #2 fuel oil donated by Dead River Company will be given away during the auction.  Tickets for the fuel oil are available from any Rotarian and will be available at the auction.  Tickets are $1.00 each or books of 6 for $5.00.  The fuel oil will be delivered anywhere within the Houlton-Patten Dead River district.  The drawing will be held during the final night of the auction

The Houlton Rotary Club extends its thanks to all of the generous businesses and individuals who contributed items to this year’s auction and encourage the public to call in and enjoy the auction by bidding on the many items available.

Further information on the Rotary Radio & TV Auction is available by contacting auction chair Scott Dionne, club president Scott White or any member of the Houlton Rotary Club.

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