Rotary Club goes green for Radio Auction, St. Patrick’s Day

PUNXSUTAWNEY — With the right bid, you could have the luck of the Irish this Saturday.

The Punxsutawney Rotary Club is going green for its annual Rotary Radio Auction, but that’s only because this year, the annual event lands on St. Patrick’s Day, again broadcast live from BFG Electroplating on WPXZ-FM 104.1.

“It’s on St. Patrick’s Day, and everyone has to wear green when they’re calling in to bid, or we just have to paint everything green before it goes out,” said Rotarian Tom Chelgren.

Just in time for St. Patrick’s Day, it’s no coincidence that the club’s largest item up for bid is the very green John Deere X320 garden tractor with a 48-inch mower deck, donated by West Central Equipment, a friend of the club.

There will be two notable changes during this year’s auction, the first of which is how participants learn that they won their respective bids.
Chelgren said Rotarians manning the phones will use a callback method — i.e., calling participants to let them know they won their bids — to winning bidders. That’s something that Rotary Clubs in DuBois and Clarion have done for years during their respective events, and have successfully reached the winning bidders via telephone.

On-air club members will announce participants with high bids on items, but now, winning bidders will know they won the item only if they receive phone calls from Rotarians manning the phones. On-air members will then proceed with the names and descriptions of the next available items.

Also new this year, Chelgren said, is items will be available for pick-up until 5 p.m. Saturday at BFG, but those who do not pick up their items Saturday may do so from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, also at BFG.

“That allows us to organize all the purchases before people come, so they should be able to walk through the door,” he said. “The items will be sitting there with their invoices. It’s a matter of coming through, and it will be much more expedited.

Also for the first time this year, winning bidders may pay with VISA or Master-Card, as well as with a check or cash.

In addition to the John Deere X320, some of the prime items up for bid this year include:

• A sandblast and E-coat — great for a car restoration or a motorcycle frame — from BFG.

• An oak mantle with gas fireplace insert from CRW Home Centers.

• An autographed jersey from the Pittsburgh Penguins’ Marc-Andre Fleury, complete with a certificate of authenticity, from Renda Radio and WPXZ-FM.

• A 14-carat white gold and 26-diamond and black onyx pendant with a 16-inch necklace, from Paul Beatty Jewelers.

• One adult 2012 membership to the Punxsutawney Country Club, with the winning bidder eligible to receive a second-year rate at a reduced price, from the PCC.

• A one-week vacation at the Sands Harbor Resort in Pompano Beach, Fla., from Charles and Laura Seitz.

• A Cub Cadet rear-tine tiller, donated by Proform Powdered Metals, which manufactured some of the parts on this device, which is sold at Tractor Supply Company.