I’ve been involved with fundraising golf tournaments since Christmas House of Pierce County back in the 1980s. I’ve helped raise money for Rotary Club of Tacoma #8, Tacoma Executives Association, Transportation Club of Tacoma, the Washington State Fair, and Soroptimist Club of Tacoma, and Chapter AY P.E.O.. For a successful golf tournament you need several important elements: a good cause, donations, prizes, profits, lots of golfers, and a fun time.
Silent auctions don’t have to involve hours and hours of work over months on planning. At full blown fund raising auctions you need expensive items like vacation packages. For auctions like the Soroptimist fundraiser, items can range in price from twenty-dollars to a couple hundred. The silent auction takes place after the golfing, during dinner. Items can attract individuals, children, or grandkids in mind to their grandparents.
I’ve found that successful auctions and fundraisers require a good meal. The fundraising golf tournament for the Puyallup Fair featured one of the best steaks I’ve ever had. The Soroptimist golfing event has gone a slightly different route. It has remained with the same menu each time I’ve participated: salad, cornbread, corn on the cob, baked beans, BBQ chicken, BBQ ribs, and dessert.
The event once again was held at Oakbrook Golf Course in Lakewood. The salad contained tons of shaved Parmesan cheese. The corn on the cob had been picked the day before and hand shucked by my wife and fellow members. The BBQ chicken and ribs had a nice, tangy sauce. The fall-off-the-bone-ribs were meaty and tasted like more. For the first time I didn’t make a second tour of the buffet line. Moist towelettes are thoughtfully provided to wipe away messy and happy grins. Although you had your choice between pumpkin pie and cheesecake, there was no problem if you wanted both. I drank several glasses of perfect lemonade, while my wife Peggy and our friend Dana shared a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc with the table.
St. Vincent de Paul of Tacoma donated several items, which became Tea with Tater Salad. The package was a box of organic tea, a tea light, two exquisite bone china cups and saucers, and an autographed photograph of Ron White AKA Tater Salad. White is the popular cigar smoking, Scotch swigging, comedian of the Blue Color Comedy Tour.
Although the name of the organization is Soroptimist Club of Tacoma, the members come from all around Pierce County. The scholarship funds go to women or girls to help them improve their lives. This year the Hallmark Store at the South Hill Mall got into the act and donated a very nice package. The package came home with the successful bidder (my wife). There were excellent Hallmark cards of course, stationary, candy (which I assume is for me), a very nice tea mug, a pen, and a pair of hedgehog-looking gloves (not for me).
There were prizes galore for the golfers. I’m sure the forty inch TV could help with my putting. The bean bag toss game . . . maybe not.
After all of the awards were handed out and the applause faded, the final joy was the dessert auction. There were pies by Angelika, cakes by caterer Jeannie Christian, Peggy’s Cinnamon and Nut Rolls, banana bread, and brownies. There are no losers in the dessert auction. We came home with an excellent pecan banana bread and a Peggy’s Nut Roll. I mourn the absent blackberry pie I didn’t get and I was a little jealous of the winners of Jeannie’s cakes. At the end people had a great afternoon golfing; a very, very nice dinner; lots of laughs; and some fond memories of a friendly event that helped women and girls of Pierce County.