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Rotary Club raises $5,033

Simon Whitehouse
Northern News Services
Published Wednesday, May 30, 2012

A number of bidders rode away with a "new" old bike Saturday morning as the Rotary Club of Yellowknife held its annual bike auction at the Yk Education District No. 1 parking lot.

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Chenitzia-Mellin Hernandez stands with her son Mario Hernandez, 5, as he tries out one of the bikes at the auction. - Simon Whitehouse/NNSL photo

One of the event organizers, Celestino Oh, announced the club raised $5,033 in the auction, which saw 42 bikes go to the highest bidder.

The bicycles are generally acquired by the club from the RCMP and the municipal enforcement office, who either find bicycles or receive lost items from the public. The Rotary Club then goes about fixing the bikes so that they can be auctioned off. Money is then raised from the auction to go to various projects put on by the club.

"Oh, the day went super," said auctioneer and Rotarian Tony Whitford. "We sold every bike and the highest (bid) was $400, while the lowest was $5 I think."

While Whitford said he was hoarse from calling out price bids, he said he was able to ensure all bikes were gone in about 60 minutes.

"My voice is a little harsh now because there was a lot of talking, but it took an hour to sell them."

Rotarian John Argue said he thought the numbers of people in attendance were a little lower than in past years, but overall the day was good and bikes sold at fair prices.

"We have had 70 bikes in the past at times, but sometimes a successful day comes down to how long can you hold your audience and things like that as well," he said.

Argue said money will go to continuing Rotary projects such as the snack program at Mildred Hall School and Weledeh, which sees the club sponsoring some food for Grade 1 students every day.

The club also sends students abroad to internship programs like the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards and the Adventure in Citizenship event in Ottawa every year. The club also works on international causes like the eradication of polio.

"We're definitely not short of programs to support," he said.

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