15th Annual Santa Auction ready to help those in need

More than $20,000 was raised during the Annual Santa Auction last year. Organizers are hoping to raise some solid funds again this year for the Santa Store. – Morinville News Photo

By Stephen Dafoe

Morinville – For a decade and a half residents have been gathering for an evening of good fun and good bids in aid of a good cause. The 15th Annual Santa Auction is set to take place at Coach’s Corner Nov. 17, once again raising funds for the Midstream Support Society’s Santa Store, a venue through which parents are able to acquire gifts for their children they would not otherwise have.

Auction organizer Deb Kruger said proceeds from the live charity auction would assist underprivileged families at Christmas time. “A large majority of it is in support of the Morinville Santa Store,” she said. “There are two different sides of it. There is the Midstream Support Society that handles all the background financial aspects of it. And every year we have a cast and crew of volunteers that go out and solicit donations and are responsible for the auction side of it.”

The focus leading up to the annual auction is getting the auction items participants will bid on. Kruger said this year has seen items coming in at a little slower rate than normal, but she remains hopeful things will ramp up as auction day arrives. “It’s a little bit slower this year,” she said. “The feeling I’m getting from the people that actually pound the pavement and knock on doors is that it is a bit of a tougher year for businesses who have taken a little bit of a downturn. I’m certainly optimistic but I can’t say we are at the same place we were in previous years.”

Businesses and individuals who wish to donate items for the auction can do so by dropping off items at Coach’s Corner on 100 Street or making contact by emailing santastoreauction@gmail.com.

[SUBHEAD]Get there early on auction night

There is no charge to attend the auction event but Kruger said people should come early. “It runs just like you would see any live auction,” she said. “People are invited to arrive early. We’ve had a packed house for the past seven or eight years. It’s really important that you get there early.”

On arrival, participants register with their contact info and are given a bidding card. Viewing of auction items begins at 4 p.m. The auction begins at 7 p.m.

Organizers are hoping for a packed house again this year. “We would love to see everybody out there,” Kruger said. “It’s a good reason to do your Christmas shopping and it double dips as contributing to a great cause.”

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