For years, we’ve gone and not purchased a thing.
And believe me, there is no harm in that. If you can’t afford it, don’t spend it. My dear parents tried to teach me that for nearly 60 years and it took a bald-headed dude from Tennessee on the drive home every day before I would listen.
So this year, I thought it would be fun to participate at the 2020 Reverse Raffle & Auction to benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Wyoming, the thousands of kids the various branches serve, and more specifically this time, the tech programs it offers.
The live auction is for the big, big spenders who learned long before us about making oodles of money. It’s a blast to watch them bid on things like a family trip to Disney World, including airfare ($5,700), a private reception with the governor and Air Force Thunderbird pilots ($25,000) and a private dinner with Vice President Dick Cheney ($25,000). It helps that the event takes place during the raucous PGA Waste Management Phoenix Open, so golf nuts and their spouses yearning for some sun were hot for a sky box for six on the 16th green during the final round of the 2021 tournament in Scottsdale. The bidding was bonkers and the package ended up selling for $15,750.
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And a one-day — one day — jet trip down and back to a Broncos game, with club level seats and pregame on-field passes sold for $7,000.
We had our fun over at the silent auction, where hundreds of items were on display and available for bidding on our phones. I wonder what my Nana, who loved using her Hudson’s credit card more than anything, would have thought about that. I think she would have loved it. The online bidding is super easy to use — too easy, the friend would warn — and allows you to keep track of your bids without leaving your chair. That’s my kind of shopping.
We played for a while with a girls’ night out wine and cheese basket, which quickly got out of range, and some handcrafted buckin’ horse jewelry that — shock! — I do not have. I really, really wanted that but let it go so that I could buy a golf package for the friend. Sometimes, it’s the little things that count, and while just a couple of years ago I could not have made it happen, this year I was able to.
Boys & Girls Club CEO Ashley Bright reports that a preliminary event total for the one evening is estimated to be $837,450. Pledges made during the Impact Auction portion of the evening will fund the remaining 20 percent of the construction costs of the club’s expansion of the Susie McMurry Technology Center, improve access to updated technology at all club sites and grow college education opportunities for youth and their families.
When the daughter was still “Mouse,” and I was a struggling single mom, I sent her to the Boys & Girls Club one summer for childcare because it was the only place I could afford. No matter how many golf trips I may be able to purchase in the future, it will never be enough to repay the staff there for taking care of the youngest half of my most prized possessions.
Follow Sally Ann Shurmur on Twitter @wyosas