DALLAS – The athletic fields and courts at Dallas High School might be quiet, but support for sports programs remains strong.
That is, in part, the message the Dallas Booster Club wants to send by hosting an online auction starting on Monday and ending on Dec. 12.
Deena Loughary, the president of the Dallas Booster Club, said athletes and coaches have experienced a lot of disappointment since the COVID-19 pandemic started. She hopes that the auction will show them that they are not forgotten, and also serve as an appetizer for what is now being planned as a return to normal with an in-person auction in the spring.
“As we all have experienced, 2020 has thrown nothing but curve balls, technicals and reversals,” wrote Loughary in the auction’s invitation letter. “Despite all of that, we continue to want to celebrate our Dallas High School athletes and show our commitment to supporting them despite distance learning and delayed sporting events.”
The auction includes items that were donated to sell during the annual spring auction that had to be canceled due to COVID-19 restrictions on crowd sizes.
Items on the auction list includes: a coffee basket from Dutch Bros, a free drink a day for a year from Dutch Bros, a Salt Creek Cider House basket, a Traeger Grill, wine baskets, a signed football, and a signed Dallas football jersey.
Those are just a few examples of what the auction has to offer. The proceeds from certain items are donated to specific sports. Information about which program your bid supports will be listed with the item on the auction site.
“We’re sending out an email notification to all of our boosters, all of our school district employees, asking them to commit to sharing the link,” Loughary said. “We also will be placing the link on Facebook and other social media sites.”
For those who would like to contribute directly to a team, the auction’s “paddle raises” portion begins early (Dec. 1) and ends on Dec. 19, a week after the auction closes.
Loughary said paddle raises happen at the beginning of the annual in-person auctions. The auctioneer calls out the program and donors raise their paddle to offer a donation. The online format gives people the same chance to donate any amount they choose.
Loughary said each team has a list of needs posted on the auction website. She said while practices and competitions can’t happen as they normally would, that doesn’t mean program costs are eliminated. Each sport needs new uniforms and equipment, she said.
“The paddle raises that we refer to, we are actually opening that up a week prior and leaving it open for a week after, just to allow people a little bit more time to donate,” Loughary said.
She said the auction process is easy. Those wishing to participate simply click on the link, register as a bidder, and then bid or donate.
“Ultimately, we recognize that people may not be comfortable, so they can sit at home or wherever they feel comfortable, and bid online,” Loughary said. “We are trying to make it as easy as we can for those who want to support the program. It’s a very simple process. Just like shopping online. You literally click, go to your cart and you check out.”
Winning bidders will receive their items on Dec. 13 in a drive-thru pickup event or receive them via contact-less delivery with items be left on their doorstep.
Loughary said the boosters don’t have a specific fundraising goal for this auction, but hope that people will share the link as much as possible.
“The biggest thing we want to convey is how much we appreciate the Dallas community and that includes our extended community, our prior boosters. We could not support the athletic programs the way we do without their support, and so we have no doubt that they will step up with the online auction just like they do when we’re together in person,” Loughary said. “We are hoping that we can do something like that in the spring.”
The link to the auction is: dhsboosterclub.schoolauction.net/auction2020/homepages/show.