Simpson Guild spreads holiday cheer early, keeping valuable tradition alive


by Vania Quiroz

In the keeping of a 23-year tradition, the Simpson Guild willhost its annual Elves Auction Saturday, Nov. 8 at 9 a.m.

Becky Beaman, adminstrative assistant to the academic dean, hasco-chaired the event for the past four years.

Beaman said the Elves Auction is one of many activities theSimpson Guild does every year with the purpose of raising money forscholarships.

“[The Elves Auction] started with just a small group of womenwho bid on jelly, jams, and cookies they made over in the BrentonStudent Center,” said Beaman. “Even though now we have a few morevaluable items, the purpose of the auction is still the same.”

The auction is run by the Putney Auctioneers.

The group doesn’t charge the Simpson Guild for their servicesduring the charity auction.

The Elves Auction is an event that is open to everyone who wouldlike to make a contribution to Simpson students.

“I like to call the Elves Auction a charity auction,” saidSheila Albee, an organizer for the auction. “When people come theyknow they probably will end up paying more than what the item cost;but they do it because the money goes to help our students.”

For the past couple of years, the amount of money raised by theauction has increased.

Last year, the Elves Auction earned more than $4,000 in lessthan three hours.

Beaman said the auction is probably the only event where theSimpson Guild doesn’t have to invest a lot of money, because allitems are donated.

However, the members still have to donate their time to organizeand make sure the event will be a success.

Some members donate items as well.

For this auction, the P. Buckley Moss Society has donated ahomonymous print, for the third consecutive year, to theauction.

The author has signed the print, and it has also been framed andmated.

According to Beaman, the print is valued at over $300.

The money collected from this print always goes to help Simpsonstudents interested in children’s education.

Among the many items this year, those who attend will be able tofind jewelry, furniture, gift certificates, Christmas decorations,quilts and other hand crafted items.

This year there will also be two round-trip tickets from DesMoines to Las Vegas that can be used from now until October of2004.

Simpson Guild members plan to begin organizing for the nextauction as soon as this year’s auction is over.

“We have to make sure the Matthew Simpson Room will be availableand that the [Putney] auctioneers will be free that day to book ourevent,” said Albee.

“The Elves Auction requires a lot of work, but knowing in oneway or the other we’re helping Simpson students with theireducation makes it worth it.”