Northfield Kiwanis Club’s holiday fair morphs into online auction

  • A variety of gift baskets and other items, pictured at the Centennial House Bed and Breakfast, will be auctioned off during the Northfield Kiwanis Club’s first-ever online auction. Staff Photo/Paul Franz

  • A variety of gift baskets and other items, pictured at the Centennial House Bed and Breakfast, will be auctioned off during the Northfield Kiwanis Club’s first-ever online auction. Staff Photo/Paul Franz

Staff Writer
Published: 12/1/2020 4:02:36 PM

NORTHFIELD — In place of its regular December fair and fundraiser, the Northfield Kiwanis Club has organized its first-ever online auction.

The event will be held via Zoom on Saturday from 10 a.m. to noon.

As the winter holidays approached in the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Kiwanis Club was faced with two options — members could either cancel their traditional fair and fundraiser altogether, or find another way to draw attention to their charitable mission, to raise money for the families who have come to rely on the club during the holidays and to provide a range of locally made gifts for shoppers.

“We felt we couldn’t leave families on their own,” said Kiwanis Club member Joan Stoia.

The Kiwanis Club organizes events throughout the year, including a fair in December and the Great River Challenge triathlon in the fall. These events help fund Kiwanis Club scholarships for students in the Pioneer Valley Regional School District, and provide food and clothing to families. The Great River Challenge also provides “camperships,” which are outdoor experiences for children who otherwise may not be able to participate.

“All of our signature programs benefit things in the community,” Stoia said.

With the assistance of resident Lisa McLoughlin, the Kiwanis Club found a way to cover these charitable bases through an online auction. With McLoughlin’s technical support, the inaugural Northfield Kiwanis Club Online Auction was born.

“There are now over 40 items,” Stoia said.

The auction will feature some of the high-value prizes that typically attract shoppers to the in-person fair, including a handmade quilt donated by Pickering Farm Quilt Shop and an outdoor grill from Aubuchon Hardware in Winchester, N.H. Other items include themed gift baskets, luxury sheets, crocheted baby items, “sports mom” knit items, a collection of books and a gift certificate to Toadstool Bookshop.

More information, including a list of auction items, is available at northfieldkiwanisma.org. There is no need to register in advance. Those who are interested can participate in the auction by visiting bit.ly/2JgkNiY on Saturday. Items will be up for bid throughout the two hours, and volunteers will help you by phone with the payment and pick-up process.

Zack DeLuca can be reached  at zdeluca@recorder.com or 413-930-4579.

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