Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Charity Auction to Benefit 2 Groups

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Charity Auction to Benefit 2 Groups

Article excerpt

Byline: Gordon Jackson, Times-Union staff writer

ST. MARYS -- For the second consecutive year, Camden County residents are asked to open their wallets soon after hearing distressing news.

Organizers of one of the county's largest annual fund-raisers considered rescheduling the event last year because the community, and nation, were still reeling from the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

Saturday's sixth annual Osprey Cove Charity Auction is scheduled nine days after one of the county's largest employers, Durango-Georgia Paper Co., announced it will close in mid-November. More than 900 people will lose their jobs.

Maury Stewart, one of the event's organizers, said last year's auction raised nearly $30,000, as much as the previous year. She didn't foresee any problems reaching this year's goal, despite news of the mill's closing.

"People in this community rally when tough times hit," Stewart said. "This is a time for our community to get together again."

As in previous years, the fund-raiser combines good food and more than 350 items for bid in silent and live auctions to benefit the St. Marys Submarine Museum and American Cancer Society.

The auction's theme is "A Night at the Races," where bidders will have the opportunity to bet play money on videotaped horse races. Winners use the play money to help pay for items they successfully bid on in the auctions.

Many of the items are packages together to make it easier and more attractive to bidders, Stewart said.

Television fans, for example, can choose from scripts autographed from the casts of Hill Street Blues, Days of Our Lives and Touched By an Angel. Or Sesame Street fans may consider bidding on an autographed photograph and feather from Big Bird.

Vacation packages to New Orleans, North Carolina, and closer to home at Jekyll Island, Amelia Island and World Golf Village are also available. …

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