Thanks4Giving Auction FAQs

What is the auction?

Aside from our pledge drive, it’s the biggest fundraiser for the running of our beloved church. It’s also a really fun party and a chance to purchase neat stuff and social activities for the year ahead.

How can I participate in the auction?

Buy a ticket

$20 a person gets you great food, free child care, and a chance to meet and mingle with other members and friends of the congregation. There is a large variety of items to bid on at the auction for all budgets. Many people shop for gifts for family and friends.

If you can’t afford the cost of a ticket, consider volunteering to help out with setup, cleanup, serving, etc. We need lots of help to put on this great event. Contact a committee member at the auction table every Sunday for more details.

Bid in the Silent Auction

Items are bid on “silently” by writing your offer on a bid sheet. Outbid the prior written bid, and when the end of bidding on each table is announced, the highest bid wins! Take your winning item home with you that night. Some items get into bidding wars and raise hundreds of dollars while others are a steal at a fraction of their value. 

Purchase Fixed Price Items

Items and events are available at a set price (usually under $20). Just record your bidder number and quantity to buy the item. Examples of past fixed priced events include: Ethnic Grocery Store Tour, craft workshops, Board Game Night in Fessenden Hall, Bike the Towpath and Ride the Train back. Examples of past fixed price items include: hand-knit hats and scarves, homemade cider, fresh bread from a local bakery, and small art prints. 

Bid in the Live Auction

After the silent auction, a professional auctioneer leads the live auction for highly-valued items and events. Hold on to your program; it doubles as your auction paddle that evening.

Even for those not bidding on the items in the live auction, the auctioneer and emcee provide entertaining banter, and the bidding wars are great fun to watch and join.

Other Opportunities

Heads or Tails (50/50 raffle): Buy a bead necklace for $10 (or two to double your chances of winning) for the “Heads or Tails” game played at the start of the Live Auction. Winner gets 50% of the proceeds. Choose Heads or Tails and the auctioneer will flip a coin. If you guess correctly, you stay in the game. 

Fund-a-Need (aggregate donation): The auctioneer leads a straight fundraising effort for a specific congregational need (e.g. a new roof on the annex, kitchen equipment for the fellowship hall), where bidders raise their paddle at the dollar amount they want to contribute. 

Event Raffle (variable prizes): Each raffle ticket buys a chance at two seats to any dinner, outing, or event of the winner’s choice (fixed-price or live auction) that still has seats available at the time of the drawing. Two drawings will be held: at the beginning and in the middle of the Live Auction. Eligible events are marked in the program.

Where is the auction held? 

Our church doesn’t (YET!) have the space to contain all the wonderful items available, so the auction is held at the United Church of Christ located at 1400 East Main Street, in Kent.

How do I sign up for child care?

When you purchase your tickets for the auction, there’s a place on the ticket to let us know that you need child care. It’s that simple. Did we mention it’s free?

Child care is provided on site for children through 5th grade and in accordance with our congregational safety policy. Added peace of mind for you and your little ones. We will provide kid-friendly dinner and activities.

I have an idea but I don’t know how to describe it or I can’t do it alone.

Don’t let that stop you. We can help you with the details. Talk to any of the auction committee members available at the auction table every Sunday. We can connect you with others who want to co-plan events, or help you with enticing descriptions to get others excited to bid on your offering.

I want to host a dinner but I don’t have space.

Folks who like to cook often team with one or two others and hold the dinner party in the home with the most space. Alternatively, you can reserve Fessenden Hall at the church. Contact the church office for details on reserving space ([email protected]).

If you don’t know who to team up with, talk to an auction committee member. We can help pair you with a cook (if you desire to host), or a host (if you only want to cook).

I won an item! How do I get it?

Most items at the auction event you will take home with you on the night of the auction after paying your invoice.

Events and services offered on specific dates will be noted on your invoice, in the program, and on the calendar on the auction website. Mark your calendar! Some events are far in the future, and no one will want to miss out on the fun! Automatic email reminders for dinners and events will be sent prior to the event from the auction website.

It is the donor’s responsibility to contact buyer(s) and arrange delivery of goods or services promptly. Donors can find out who purchased their items and events by checking their statements at

How do I log into the auction website?

Go to

Click on the blue “login” link in the upper right corner of the screen. You will log in using your telephone number and the last 4 digits of your phone number as the PIN. This works for new and returning users.

How do I see who bought my item/event/dinner?

Everyone can log into the auction website at to see a complete statement showing payment status, donations, purchases, and contact information for buyers and donors of events and services.  Once logged in, click on the “my statement” tab at the top of the screen.

On your statement, you can see all of your auction donations and/or purchases. It shows who bought each item you donated, and how much it went for. You can also send email to the purchaser(s) of your items from there. 

Finances are tight. How can I contribute to the auction and stay on a budget?

There are lots of inexpensive ways you can help the church raise needed funds. Some ideas for low or no cost:

  • Donate your time! Offer leaf raking, house cleaning, or babysitting. What do you do well that others would love for you to do for them?
  • Host a poetry sharing
  • Coordinate a trip to places with no admission fees, e.g., museums, greenhouses, hike in the park
  • Co-host a dinner event with a friend (half the cost and half the work – twice the fun!)
  • Donate a themed basket, e.g. “The Art of Glass” – several items of decorative glassware packaged together.
  • Donate new-quality items that you no longer need e.g., new-quality silver jewelry, pretty decorative pottery, a chalice, a meditation stool, small framed pictures, handmade wooden bowl, etc. 

Share this: