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Rotary sets lofty goal for auction

POULSBO — The fast-paced sounds of an auctioneer will soon echo through the Sons of Norway lodge as the Poulsbo-North Kitsap Rotary Foundation readies for its 24th annual auction.

The event slated for April 29 at the Sons of Norway lodge will once again feature a catered dinner as the group seeks to meet its $100,000 goal this year.

“Our goal last year was $100,000 and we raised about $81,000,” said Poulsbo-North Kitsap Rotary President Hugh Nelson. “We’re hoping we can reach it this year.”

The auction is a partnership between the Poulsbo-North Kitsap Rotary and the Kingston-North Kitsap Rotary chapters and proceeds will benefit programs sponsored by both clubs, he said.

Auction items will be displayed in both the upstairs and downstairs areas of the lodge, but the club is currently seeking donated items from the community to make the event a success, Nelson said.

“We are looking for new or unique goods and business services (that) sell well,” he said. “We’re still a month out and we have just about 10 percent of our goal for things for the auction.”

An example of a unique item from last year’s auction is a set of earrings that was blessed by the Pope, which sold for $400, he said.

In the past, the Courtesy Auto Group has donated a vehicle to be auctioned off and both North Kitsap Fire & Rescue and the Poulsbo Fire Department have offered birthday parties, he said.

Travel opportunities, tickets to special events and timeshares are also suggestions for donations, Nelson said.

“The next two weeks are critical to the success of the auction and the success of the auction helps the community,” said Rotarian Brad Camp, who is organizing this year’s event.

All of the proceeds from the event will be returned to the community either directly or through work being done by the club, Camp said.

“It’s not a problem to fill the hall but it’s a matter of having the right amount and kinds of items available,” Camp said.

Another standing tradition of the auction is raising money for scholarships for students in the North Kitsap School District, Nelson said.

“Last year, that came to $18,000, and as a single item, it was the biggest item,” he said.

Last year’s event was held in early April because the club had to move it from the Clearwater Casino to the Sons lodge, but this year the event is being held on its traditional date, he explained.

“We have no complaints about the Sons, but we would love to have a bigger venue so we could get more people,” he said.

To make a donation to the auction, people are encouraged to call (360) 265-2926. The club’s website, www.poulsborotary.org ,features a link to the auction, where already donated items can be viewed.

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