Auction offers a little bit of everything

PARKERSBURG – A little bit of everything is available at the 33rd annual Harvest of Opportunities Benefit Auction for SW Resources on Aug. 9.

“We are very excited for this year’s auction because we are celebrating our 50th year as an organization helping people through services, training and employment,” said Terah Klein, executive director of SW Resources. “While it is not our 50th auction, we want to celebrate our first half-century with the community through the event.”

For the milestone, the event will have photos and informational comments throughout the organization’s history on display in the auction venue, said Ben Summers, SW Resources marketing and sales manager.

“We want to honor where we have been as we celebrate our current and future accomplishments,” he said.

All of the more than 250 items donated for the auction this and each year are provided by community members and businesses.

The auction will be held at the Grand Pointe Conference Center, 1500 Grand Central Ave. #118, Vienna. The silent auction will be conducted from 5-6:15 p.m., with the live auction beginning at 6:30 p.m.

Admission is $30 a person and includes food and beverages. For more information, for tickets or to make a donation, call SW Resources at 304-428-6344, email info@swresources.com or visit www.swresources.com/auction/ or www.harvestofopportunities.com.

One of the most talked about items this year is a guitar signed by more than 50 music artists,including Blue Oyster Cult, Grand Funk Railroad, Travis Tritt, America, .38 Special, Laundau Eugene Murphy Jr. and more.

Rick Modesitt and Associates donates a similar guitar to this auction every year with different signatures each time.

Modesitt, president of the local talent booking agency, said he knows the positive work of the nonprofit organization first-hand.

“This is something we have been doing for many years,” said Modesitt. “My brother, Gary Hellberg, was a client-employee for over 40 years until his death in 2004.

“SW Resources gives a meaningful life to many with disabilities and RMA wants to do our part by annually donating celebrity items to help raise funds for this worth facility,” he said.

For the third year, one of the featured items will be a mosaic collage created from recycled plastic and other materials by client-employees.

“I’m always impressed with what our client-employees create, but this year’s parrot mosaic is, I think, the best we’ve had,” Klein said.

A few changes will be seen with this year’s event, including the venue.

“The country club was great last year, but we wanted to try something different and Grand Pointe offered their space,” Klein said.

Another change is the length of the silent auction, which will be an hour-and-15-minutes as opposed to the previous two hours.

“Since the majority of the silent auction bids don’t come in until the last few minutes, we didn’t think we needed to put as much time into it,” Klein said. “So, we decided to put more time into the main event.”

Last year the auction netted about $90,000 for the agency with the hopes this year’s event will raise a similar amount, if not more.

“We are hoping that because this is our 50th anniversary people will be more willing to come and support SW resources,” said April Pennell, director of development and rehabilitation.

Along with the guitar and mosaic, other items include a Kindle Fire HD, a wine basket, an Eiffel Tower-inspired wine bottle carousel with French wines, a large-screen television, a Vera Bradley bag set, jewelry, handmade quilts, furniture and tuition to West Virginia University at Parkersburg.

Sports items for the auction include football season tickets to West Virginia University as well as season passes to both Parkersburg and Parkersburg South high schools.

“There are a lot of great items available and more come in every day,” Summers said.

During the auction, hundreds of community members are expected fill the conference center to support the organization and its work by purchasing items.

Summers said the auction is the only true fundraiser SW Resources has each year and the money raised goes to their workshop and aids the job placement program.

SW Resources provides employment opportunities and vocational services to roughly 250 client-employees with disabilities. In the last several years the client-employee wages reached record highs of more than $2 million, said Summers.

Sponsors for this year’s event are: Harry and Kathe Deitzler, Grand Pointe Conference Center and The PM Company, Groggs Heating and Air Conditioning, Highmark West Virginia, TheNewsCenter, WesBanco Bank and Woodcraft.