Santa Store Auction looking for donations ahead of 23rd annual event

by Stephen Dafoe

The 23rd Annual Santa Store Auction in support of the Midstream Support Society is Nov. 21 at Coach’s Corner in Morinville, and organizers are looking for auction items for the fundraising event.

“This is a tougher year than most [with] anxiety about finances, loss of jobs, fear of getting Covid-19, to say the least,” said long-time Santa Store Auction volunteer Joyce Preeper. “Children are feeling the uneasiness and worry that is overflowing around them. Hopefully, making Christmas somewhat normal by Santa bringing gifts under the tree will give at least a little positive experience.”

The annual auction has been a popular Morinville event for more than two decades and is the charity’s largest revenue source to help families in need provide a Christmas experience for their children.

Organizers are looking for auction items, gift certificate or monetary contribution. Items are displayed for the duration of the event and listed in the auction program with the donors’ name.

Items can be dropped off at Coach’s Corner, or arrangements can be made by emailing or calling Joyce Preeper at 780-939-4307, Tina Gougeon at 780- 497-0957, Kal MacDonald at 780-939-2205, Lisa Piche at 780-292-5734, or Adam Parenteau at 780-720-8262.

The Nov. 21 Auction starts at 7 p.m. with viewing running from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Covid-19 distancing will be in effect this year with a limit of six people per table.

Reserved tables are required. The Morinville Food Bank will receive the monies raised from table reservations. Call Kal McDonald at 780-939-2205 to book a table.

Preeper said the Midstream usually puts on a Christmas Party and supper for families with Santa and Mrs. Claus in attendance as well as Karaoke, crafts, games, and Christmas meal.

“This year, it is not happening for the obvious reasons,” Prepper said, adding the auction is even more critical this year to help families. “And with businesses not doing as well this year, we are concerned that with the lack of donations to raise money, there will be less money to buy gifts.”

Last year the Santa Store Auction raised $18,285.00. Despite COVID-19 and economic setbacks, the Midstream is hoping to raise sufficient funds to help out.