The sixth annual Holy Family Parish Charity Auction is Sunday at St. John Nepomucene Catholic Church in Pilsen.
The event has proved to be a major social event for the entire Marion County community. It includes silent and live auctions.
The large silent auction starts at 8 a.m. A kids’ room offers a silent auction of items beginning at 25 cents.
The live auction will begin after a free-will offering meal is served following the 10:30 a.m. Mass. Prepared by the First Catholic Slovak Ladies Association, the meal will feature biscuits and gravy with farm-fresh scrambled eggs.
Donations will be accepted until the day of the auction.
More than $1,200 was raised the first year of the auction, and $7,000 was collected in 2008. According to committee member Terri Bina, donations increase every year. Everything related to the auction is donated, so 100 percent of the proceeds go to charity.
Donors and buyers come from a wide area. Many area businesses contribute items and/or cash. Joe and Tish Vinduska of Lincolnville donate their auction services.
Most of the money usually goes to local causes such as Community Christmas, Marion County Emergency Food Bank, Marion Ministerial Alliance, and Main Street Ministries in Hillsboro. St. Jude Children’s Hospital also has received support.
In recent years, a large chunk of the money raised has gone to soldiers in Iraq, and victims of Hurricane Katrina and the Greensburg tornado.
A wide variety of items will be available. They include an oak entertainment center, a Pfaff serger, K-State football tickets, a whole hog including processing, many handmade items including jewelry, rosaries and embroidered pieces, gift cards from seed dealers, pies by Millie Vinduska, and quilts.
Unique live items are a pygmy goat and a basket of rare-breed chickens.
Members of Holy Family Parish — religion classes and church groups — donated themed baskets.
The winning ticket will be drawn Sunday for a raffled queen-size quilt handcrafted by St. Mark’s Quilters.
Although women coordinate the event, men are becoming more involved, according to organizers.
For example, Ron Makovec, a truck driver from rural Ramona, sells raffle tickets at truck stops. He recently hauled a cabinet from Missouri to Kansas to be sold at the auction. He also contacts local truckers for cash donations. One trucker who heard about the event donates handcrafted woodcarvings.
“We’re still waiting for someone to donate a side of beef and 40 acres,” organizer Terri Bina said with a smile.
According to Margo Yates, a Marion Community Christmas committee member, the money the organization receives from the auction gives a big boost to the effort to provide gifts for children in Marion and Centre school districts.
“It makes a huge difference in what we do every year,” she said. “It takes a lot of people and a lot of fundraisers to pull it all together.
“A lot of small donations can add up to large donations, and a little bit can go a long way.”