Randy Wyrick

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July 15, 2014
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Masons' scholarship auction is a son of a gun

EAGLE — The local Masonic Lodge is raising scholarship money with a bang.

The Masons are hosting their inaugural gun auction, featuring hundreds of firearms from several dealers and individuals. The event is expected to attract people from all over the Rocky Mountain West.

Local Masons Matt Solomon, owner of Alpine Arms, and Don Anderson are coordinating the auction.

“This is something the people in our lodge decided was important. A college education can change lives and possibly lives for generations to come,” Anderson said.

The Masons have been awarding scholarships to local high school students for decades. The winners can use the money to attend colleges and universities as well as vocational schools.

This is just a different way to raise the money, Solomon said.

“Buy a gun, help a kid go to college! College is expensive, and you’ll help a local student pay for it when you buy your next gun through our scholarship funding auction,” Solomon said.

The auction is set for July 26 at the Masonic Lodge in Eagle. The guns will be on display prior to the auction.

The process is simple.

• Show up and bid, or bid remotely.

• Consign a gun.

• Donate a gun.

Every dime above the wholesale price goes to the Lodge and its scholarship fund.

For buyers from out of the area, there’s a gun list on the website alpinearms.com. If you see a gun you want, tell them what you want and what your minimum bid is.

You can bid remotely by phone. If you’re going to bid remotely, you need to call in the week before the auction with your credit card number, product number and the maximum bid you are willing to pay for the item.

If people want to donate guns or consign guns, those options are also available.

Consignment guns need to be dropped off to Alpine Arms no later than two days before the event. You’ll give 20 percent of final bid price on consignments to the Masons’ scholarship fund.

“Don’t bring guns to the auction. Bring cash,” Solomon said.

There will also be guns at the auction not listed on the website.

Solomon and others in the firearms industry are putting up some or all of their inventory.

“We’re putting every in-stock firearm at Alpine Arms up in the auction, and some other dealers are sending guns up, as well,” Solomon said.

It’s not a going-out-of-business sale for Alpine Arms. They’re doing fine and are in business to stay, Solomon said.

“Castle Lodge No. 122 is a group of men who want to help their community. This is a way to do just that by helping to make college a little more affordable for some local kids,” Anderson said.

Shawn Hagler is the auctioneer. All you have to do is bring some money and raise your paddle, Solomon said.

Hagler is worth the trip just to see him work, Johnson said.

He’s a Colorado state champion auctioneer and a world champion ringman at the World Automobile Auctioneering Championship.

Hagler also competes professional as a rodeo team roper and played football on the University of Northern Colorado’s 1997 Division II national championship team. He earned his degree in speech communication.

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The VailDaily Updated Jul 18, 2014 07:10PM Published Jul 15, 2014 04:28PM Copyright 2014 The VailDaily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.