Tibbits 41st Annual Auction took on a brand new form as the event went totally virtual Saturday, November 7, 2020 still raising $51,200 for the Tibbits Opera House in Coldwater.
With the theme “CLUE! The Game is On” the live-stream event filmed in the empty opera house still led viewers through a portion of the auction in which bidding was live via online bidding. The 45-minute “show” featured Ken Delaney as Master of Ceremonies, Darin Spieth and Dan Satow of Spieth & Satow Auctioneers, Tibbits Executive Director Christine Delaney and Operations Director Stephanie Burdick. Home Town Media produced the event.
Most of the event featured nearly 400 silent auction items up for bid via the website with sections closing Thursday, Friday and Saturday. A Super Silent Section, featuring many of the items which in the past would have been on the live auction, encouraged bidding through the evening, closing after the live auction. According to Christine Delaney, “The initial response is people enjoyed the new format, but we all hope we can return to an in-person event for next year.”
According the Tibbits Board President Rick Merrill, “Our Tibbits staff did a great job rethinking the traditional event into a safe and unique event for the community. Kudos to their creativity and a huge thank you to all of the donors, bidders and sponsors who still showed their support of our community’s gem. The support for this theatre is heart-warming.”
Dinners and special experiences highlighted the items up for bid and garnered some very generous donations. High bids for the evening came from four separate dinners donated by Kathy and Rick Merrill, one of which teams with Two Bandits Brewing, as well as several unique shopping packages. This year’s Barton S. Tibbits Sponsorship which gives the high bidder four tickets to every event at the theatre was purchased by Kaiser Electric, Jim and Renee White, David and Caroline Austin, and Paul and Kathy Bair.
This year’s auction committee included Stacy Gilbert, Betty & Marv Malovey, Gail Russell, Bill Trebilcock, Angie Washburn and Tibbits Development Director Andy French, plus Luba Fry auction office volunteer.
Winners of the auction raffle sponsored by Great Lakes Chiropractic were Wayne Weaver $1000 first prize, Vena Wade $250 second prize, and Rick Hess two Tibbits Summer Theatre season tickets third prize.
Cash sponsors for the auction followed the CLUE! Theme and included Game Board Sponsor Ken & Becky Bible; Secret Passageway Sponsor James W. Gordon, CPA, PC; Room Sponsors Michael & Linda Burke, William & Sharon Chinery, Mark & Janet Ott, Senator Mike Shirkey, Taylor, Plant & Watkins P.C., Vested Risk Strategies; Character Sponsors Aviza Insurance Agency, Inc., Bronson Banking Center, Branch Insurance Agency, Doug’s Auto Recyclers, Jimmy John’s, Marble Lake Resort & Marina, Bernie & Becky Stankewicz, Linda Woodhams; and Weapon Sponsors Branch County Abstract & Title, Inc., Case Welding & Fabrication, Michael & Laurie Caywood, Joyce Hubbs, Leon & Evlyn Parrish and Blue Ox Credit Union.
For more information on Tibbits Opera House, its many programs for the community and how to support it, go to Tibbits.org or call 517-278-6029.