Crystal Lorette, auction organizer, said the community needs the money raised through the auction to fund community projects. (File photo)

Crystal Lorette, auction organizer, said the community needs the money raised through the auction to fund community projects. (File photo)

Rotary Club of Prince Rupert’s first online annual begins to close

More than $30,000 raised for community projects so far

Bids are abuzz at the first online Rotary Club of Prince Rupert’s annual auction, which began incrementally closing on Nov. 15.

Momentum built throughout the auction period, which opened Oct. 25, with more people bidding and more businesses donating items as it went on, Crystal Lorette, auction committee co-chair, told The Northern View.

This is the first year the auction has been held fully in the online format.

Lorette admitted she was a little worried when making the jump online, but so far everything has run pretty smoothly and exceeded expectations.

“Going into something new like this, it’s always a little bit scary for us,” she said. “Our ultimate goal is to support our projects and the community. We’ve had a budget put together and we’ve exceeded that already.”

Money raised through the auction goes to help fund the club’s philanthropic array of projects such as Halloween Fest, the school district apple program, Salvation Army and many others.

Starting at 9 a.m. on Nov. 15 sets of 25 to 30 items started to close for bidding. The Auction fully closes on Nov. 16.

As the auction incrementally closes, winning bidders will get their items delivered to them on Nov. 15 and 16.

The inaugural online auction opened strong, seeing more than $10,000 in bids tabled over the first two days.

So far, the auction has raised more than $30,000.

“We really need to generate revenue for our community events [and] community projects in Prince Rupert,” Lorette said.

“We usually (before the pandemic) raised about $40,000 to $45,000,” Lorette said. “We usually have about 700 items. So, we’re just happy with the way it’s are going for out first [online] shot at this.”

More than 500 items of goods worth more than $50,000 in retail value have been put up for bidding, this year.

The shift to online has had its challenges, especially to those who prefer more traditional auction methods.

“We anticipated a few glitches with the new system … So we put out a few resources, especially emailing or potentially phoning, to help people get onto the new site and get them signed up,” Lorette said.

The rotary club said it has appreciated everyone’s feedback and will use it to further smooth out its future online auction process.

READ MORE: Prince Rupert Community Hallowe’en Fest Society asks residents for treats


 
Norman Galimski | Journalist 
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