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CCA prepares for 43rd ABC Auction and Dinner

By Staff | Jan 23, 2009

If you’ve seen the brightly colored T-shirts popping up across Captiva on the backs of islanders, then you might know it’s almost that time of year.

As indicated by the vibrantly multi-hued geckos adorning this year’s ABC commemorative t-shirts, you can probably guess that it’s finally time again for the Captiva Civic Association’s annual ABC sale, their 43rd to be exact.

In the early days of the CCA, the Captiva Women’s Club hosted a rummage and bake sale in an effort to raise funds for the Red Cross during. This simple little bake sale later evolved into the ABC rummage sale and auction (the ABC stands for Attic, Basement and Closet sale) and, as finer items became available for the auction, the rummage sale began to fade out.

The ever popular ABC T-shirt sales, a practice that began in the late 1970s, are an additional way of raising funds and for locals, both year-round and seasonal, to commemorate this annual island event.

Proceeds from past auction events have gone to various organizations, including the Children’s Education Center of the Islands, the “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society.

According to CCA executive director Paul Garvey, the auction pulls in between $30,000 and $50,000 on average.

This year, 10 percent of the funds raised by the 2009 ABC auction will be given to the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation.

Last year, some of the items up for grabs on the auction block included a bi-plane flight, a fire engine ride, a kayak and special storage chests decorated by local artists.

There will be approximately 15 items for sale this year, including five specially designed bookcases, hand-painted by local artisans.

Items for the 2009 auction are still undetermined, but many local artists have already begun to work on this year’s exclusive bookcases.

ABC Auction chairperson Sue Sherlock is one of the special artists who will be designing a special bookcase for the event.

Sherlock noted that she’s excited about the auction, especially because of all the wonderful people that she gets to meet and that attend the event every year.

“Captiva is very special to me. It’s a wonderful place to live and there are such terrific people down here,” she said, noting that she is always excited to be back on Captiva after spending her summers in Massachusetts.

Sherlock also said that this year’s ABC sale will be, as always, a fun time for all those involved.

“It’s for a good cause and I’m really excited. I think it will be a great evening,” she added.

The event will take place at the CCA, located at 11550 Chapin Lane, on Saturday, March 14 at 6 p.m. It will again be hosted by auctioneer extraordinaire Warren Schwab.

The invitation-only event, due to limited seating, will begin with cocktails on the lawn at 6 p.m., followed by the indoor auction and then dinner. After dinner, guests are invited to socialize and dance to the musical stylings of entertainer John Key.

If you would like more information about the event, please contact the CCA at 472-2111.