By Karen Lunde
Ever bought a musician at auction? On October 20, The Olympia Peace Choir will auction off some of its finest musical talent at its gala benefit, Tune in to Fall. Guests will be able to bid on six different acts, and musicians will then perform for the winner and everyone at the event.
“Guests are going to be surprised at the twist we’re doing on a traditional fundraiser,” said Dena Lee, event co-organizer. “In addition to a gourmet palette of fresh, fall foods of the season — served by singing servers — we’ll auction off talent and have an experiential raffle.” Lee explained the choir will raffle experiences like concert tickets and classes rather than goods: ”no potato chips with ranch dip or another homemade necklace.”
“I think the performance auction will be the most fun and unique part of this event,” said Lee Ann Gekas, co-organizer. The Olympia Peace Choir had held fundraising events at concerts in the past, but the choir’s board of directors opted to discontinue those. “It seemed to take away the focus from our music,” Gekas said. “A group met to brainstorm ways in which we could do a benefit not connected to one of our concerts but still involving music. Dena Lee has prior experience in this type of event and it all came together.”
The Olympia Peace Choir began in 2010 when Kerri Lynn Nichols, the group’s artistic director, shared her idea for an inclusive community chorus with a few close friends. The choir grew from 40 initial members to over 100 today. With a focus on songs related to peace, social justice and environmental stewardship, the choir performs free concerts each season at venues around Olympia, including the Capitol rotunda, The Olympia Farmers Market and spring Arts Walk. It relies on community support and membership dues, which it works to keep affordable, to meet its operating expenses. A performance by Nichols herself will be among the items auctioned at the event.
Tune in to Fall — A Gala Benefit for The Olympia Peace Choir
4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 20
Abigail Stewart House (Women’s Club of Olympia)
1002 Washington St. SE, Olympia