NORTH WEBSTER — North Webster Community Center, serving as the “Heart of the Community,” raised more than $70,000,nearly 20 percent of its annual budget, at its 10th annual auction Saturday, Oct. 6.
The slogan coined by the late Jon Sroufe, “Keeping the Lights On,” could not have been more appropriate.
Prior to the start of the live auction the North Webster Community Center President Dennis Wagoner made a special presentation of Volunteer of the Year to Larry Kinsey. He has served the center as a board member and is a willing worker when things are needed.
Wagoner noted the great contributions of Sroufe who passed away Sept. 23. Sroufe served as the president of the North Webster Community Center for 10 years and was a champion in supporting the center. Sroufe made a long-term commitment to the betterment of the North Webster community and his presence certainly will be missed.
As auctioneer Brian Wuthrich started the auction he called for recognition of Sroufe in a special way. As Wuthrich asked those who were willing to donate $50 to the roof fund for the community center in Sroufe’s name, bidder numbers were raised all over the gym in memory of Sroufe.
Donations in memory of Sroufe for the roof are still being accepted by the North Webster Community Center and can be sent to NWCC, PO Box 379, North Webster, IN 46555. Please note the donation is for the Sroufe Roof Memorial Fund on the envelope.
Volunteers gathered early to get their final instructions and to enjoy a meal provided by The Sleepy Owl. Volunteers came from all walks of life and local organizations that appreciate the center and its value to the community
As attendees found their way to the gym where the auction was held, they found elegant tables decorated in black and white with lights, gossamer and decorations adorning the ceiling. The party atmosphere made the evening a fun event. Mums donated by Clayton’s Garden Center adorned the stage.
There were more than 100 silent auction items that kept attendees frequenting the halls to increase their bids to ensure they were the successful bidder. The live auction included some special items that brought great flurries of bidding along with the traditional items.
As the evening progressed, the anticipation for the top prizes swelled. The third-place winner receiving $100 per month gasoline from Freedom Express was Beckie Moore. The second-place winner receiving $200 of groceries per month from NewMarket was Jill Baker. The first-place winning ticket was Cheryl VanLaeken on behalf of her daughter Brynn VanLaeken. Cheryl’s father, Mark Grady, was the purchaser of the ticket.
When contacted, Grady advised the prize should go to his daughter for his granddaughter’s education. He purchased tickets for several family members to enjoy the evening.
While the pontoon provided by Pro Wake and the fishing boat provided by Sock’s Marina were top choices for many, the decision was made without hesitation to select the $12,000 cash prize with the plan for the money to be used for Brynn VanLaeken’s education.
North Webster Community Center remains the heart of the North Webster Community because of the support of so many who care about the facility.