What do a trip to Disney World, a Wii Fit Plus, a Brett Favre jersey, a Flip video camera, a handmade queen-sized quilt and Casting Crowns tickets have in common? They are all going to be auctioned off at the Northwestern College Alumni Association’s 27th annual Gala Auction Saturday, Feb. 20, at 6 p.m.
“There are some things we see donated more often than others,” Aletha Beeson of the NW Alumni Office said. “But we usually get a variety of new things that are different and keep it exciting.”
The Gala Auction is the second largest fundraiser NW holds, and it is unique in that all of the proceeds go toward helping students with tuition. Senior Krystal Van Wyk, who is serving as an intern in the Alumni Office and will be working at the Gala Auction, said she was unaware of how effective the auction actually is to the NW Campus.
“I had no idea this event was so huge and how much it really does for carrying out our financial packages,” she said.
The proceeds of the Gala Auction directly affect students in easing tuition costs.
“So many generous people have given so much to this school to make it possible for almost anyone to attend NW,” Van Wyk said. “I was one of those people who thought I would never be able to come here, but because of the Gala Auction and the generous donations of businesses and other NW supporters, I was able to get an education here.”
Last year the auction raised enough money to give out $1,000 scholarships to 40 students. While every year is different, Beeson is confident that the auction will be successful in its 27th year.
Not all of the items being auctioned off this year are as extravagant and expensive as the Disney World package, airfare to Europe or the variety of golf packages. Van Wyk said that her favorite item this year was free Culver’s ice cream for a whole year, which is one of the items that could be affordable for students.
The coordinators encourage students to come and take part in the whole day of activities, such as the basketball games against the University of Sioux Falls at 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. and a family meal in the RSC at 5 p.m.
If the sweet items “aren’t convincing enough, then at least come and see what happens when item 48 is being auctioned off,” Van Wyk said. “I feel like you won’t be disappointed.”