BBES hosts annual carnival, silent auction
Items up for bid at Barkley Bridge Elementary School could have been yours, if the price was right.
The school’s annual Winter Carnival and silent auction hosted hundreds of students, parents and community members to help raise money for the school. In the process, adults bought a number of gifts during the auction that included anything from a signed guitar by country music star Keith Urban to lawn and gardening equipment.
“We have some of the best gift baskets that I’ve ever seen,” said Barkley Bridge Elementary Principal Susan Hayes. “I don’t know how our parents and teachers do it, but they always outdo themselves every year. We have a lot of great parents, teachers and community members who are on the lookout for great prizes throughout the year.”
The Keith Urban guitar came from a teachers’ son who is in the music business.
Another gift was an American Doll Box, which is given to a non-profit organization every year to help them raise money.
Local businesses also donated packages including home and gardening equipment from Corum’s Building and Farm Center; hats, jackets and oil changes from Eddie Preuitt Ford; a softball gift basket from Diamond Pro; and Alabama and Auburn calendars from Slate Gallery and Framing.
Hayes said her teachers also offer unique opportunities that students and their parents can bid on. One teacher offered to stop by their house and read them a bedtime story.
Another offered to do a fun activity or dinner and a movie with the highest bidder. School Superintendent Dr. Vic Wilson even offered lunch to the two highest bidders.
Hayes is also giving up her chair to allow a student to be principal for a day.
The only difference between this and the normal silent auction is that the bidder doesn’t know what was the highest bid, as they had to bid blindly.
“You don’t know what everybody else has bid,” Hayes said. “So you just have to guess that no one will outbid you.”
The cake auction also featured some unique cake designs, including one that was lined on the outside by Kit Kat bars.
Hayes said the bidding usually picks up as the deadline nears.
“Some parents start to position themselves to make sure that they aren’t outbid at the last second,” Hayes said. “It gets hectic, but it’s a lot of fun. We did learn that we had to stagger the end of the auctions because we couldn’t shut them down all at the same time.”
In addition to the auctions, students also enjoyed playing games and redeeming their tickets for prizes. They also got to participate in cupcake and book walks to win tasty and educational prizes.
“This is our biggest fundraiser every year,” Hayes said. “We appreciate everyone who makes this event a success every year.”