As the final preparations for Nashville’s HRC Equality Dinner are being made, excitement is building around what has become one of Music City’s most popular silent auctions.
Dinner co-chair Jeremy Davis said more than 100 items have been collected so far with a total value of about $60,000 in merchandise, travel, pampering and more.
The auction and dinner will be held on Saturday, Feb. 27, at the Loews Vanderbilt Hotel. The auction will run from 6 to 7:30 p.m., then again from 8:10 to 8:30 p.m. A live auction will take place during dinner.
Auction items will be divided into categories – Art, Celebrity, Entertainment, Fashion, Gourmet, Interiors, Living, Pampering, Travel & Live Auction – in order to help bidders easily navigate the wide variety of options and find their way back to their favorite items to up the ante and secure a win.
Davis and co-chairs Debra Hyslop and Keith Hinkle estimate that the auction is similar to last year’s in size and scope, but with the exciting addition of new donors and much larger travel section than last year, including a 5-day stay in an ocean-facing king room at the Parrot Cay Resort in the Turks and Caicos British West Indies (valued at $4,650).
Hyslop said last year’s silent auction brought in about $40,000 despite the economic woes of the time.
While the economy hasn’t full recovered, Davis said the event organizers have been inspired by the large number of businesses which have stepped up even in tough times.
“Last year, actually, was the year where we really had to dig deep,” Davis said. “The year previous (2008) was much easier. Things seem to be picking up this year, but it’s still a struggle.”
Items already secured for bid include a Mitchell Gold Bob Williams shopping spree (valued at $5,000), a Cancun resort vacation ($4,598), two Delta Roundtrip Flights to Hawaii or Central America ($3,400), four tires from Bridgestone ($1,200), artwork from Herb Williams, a guitar signed by Dolly Parton, and several entertainment, landscaping and pampering packages.
Hyslop said there is still time for donors to feature an item in the silent auction. A full list of items and information about donating to the auction can be viewed at equalitydinner.com/auction.html.
“HRC’s auction has been a favorite in town, and I love that folks are excited about it each year.” Hyslop said. “We are so very fortunate that such a diverse group of businesses and individuals give so generously each year. It really is an auction that showcases all that Nashville has to offer.”