Bachelor bachelorette auction finishes strong
For 45 minutes last night, 10 bachelors and bachelorettes were the center of attention at Finnegans Wake in Avon. Roughly 250 people packed the downstairs of the Avon restaurant to bid on dates with the top 10 finalists from the Vail Daily bachelor/bachelorette contest. In all, $2,625 was raised; all proceeds will benefit the Salvation Army. Thats fantastic, said Tsu Wolin-Brown, director of the Vail Valley Salvation Army, upon learning the final dollar amount. I thought (the auction) was adorable, and I think it was so wonderful of the bachelors and the bachelorettes to donate their time for the auction and the date. And Im just thrilled you guys chose us as the charity.Kip Tingle from KZYR served as the evenings auctioneer, riling up the audience in an effort to raise the bids, which started at $25. The audience crowded around the stage, even standing on booths in the back of the restaurant for a better view of the single men and women. An anonymous bid of $300 started out Corey Lamothes time on stage. In the end, a date with the bachelorette brought in $700, the highest bid of the evening. I was really impressed, Lamothe said about the event. It was a great turnout. I wasnt sure what to expect, but it was really neat to see that much money raised for charity. Next year, you guys need more space.Wearing a red bow tie and a black jacket, bachelor Chaun Powell shed his jacket and tie onstage and offered to match $150 to raise the bidding. In the end a date with him was auctioned off for $320. I just thought it was a fantastic event, Powell said. It was nice that we raised some decent money for Salvation Army.The Salvation Army raises most of its budget around the holidays, Wolin-Brown said, but the contributions will allow the emergency-help organization to support local residents in need year-round. The money raised can help us feed and clothe and keep shelter over peoples heads and maintain their heat source all during the year, she said.With a benevolence budget of less than $200,000 a year and only one full-time staff member, the Vail Valley Salvation Army helps hundreds of local residents each year. In 2005 the caseload was 464, Wolin-Brown said. This year, she expects that number to be more than 700, she said. A case can be anything as small as a person needing food or gas or as big as this local mom who has five kids and grandkid shes supporting six kids. They were about to be evicted, and we helped pay their rent and utilities, link her up with some budget counseling and helped her find a second job. Were an emergency-help organization, and we help link (people) up with the means to be self-sufficient the following month, Wolin-Brown said. To learn more about the Vail Valley Salvation Army or to volunteer, call 926-3704 or visit http://www.salvationarmyvail.org.Arts & Entertainment Editor Caramie Schnell can be reached at 748-2984 or email@example.com.
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