Chamber pie auction sails to success

Posted: Wednesday, October 24, 2007


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  Crew member Laurie Goodman delivers a gourmet pie at 13th annual pie auction.

Crew member Laurie Goodman delivers a gourmet pie at 13th annual pie auction.

It would appear that the price of calories has hit an all time high on the Central Peninsula. Two weeks ago at the Kenai Chamber of Commerce wine and beer tasting event Kenai Mayor Pat Porter’s cinnamon rolls for a year brought in $10,000, then last week at the “Sail Away” Soldotna Chamber Pie Auction, the average price bid per dessert for some 47 entries was nearly $1,000 with the Vera Horwarth Scholarship pie bringing in nearly $6,000. “When some people come to our pie auction for the first time and see bidding starting at $500 and pies going for a thousand dollars or better they wonder what’s going on,” said Soldotna Chamber executive director Michelle Glaves, “But it’s a great event and the one that funds all of our scholarships plus a lot of other Chamber activities. Here’s how it works, we sell each pie to the highest bidder, and each gourmet dessert has a number and at the conclusion of the auction we draw from a variety of prize packages each with an average value of $700 and this year the final two numbers drawn won a South Texas Beach vacation and a Princess cruise for two, so it’s the kind of event where everyone ends up a winner and without the outstanding community support we receive for this event and all our volunteers it just couldn’t happen,” explained Glaves.


Stanley Ford team bought Vera Horwarth's Scholarship pie plus 6 others at Soldotna Chamber Pie Auction.

Known as the Grand Lady of Soldotna, Vera Horwarth was a pioneer businesswoman who opened Vera’s Variety Store in Soldotna in 1956 and was a charter member of the Soldotna Chamber of Commerce. Until her death in 2002 Vera was the oldest active member of the Soldotna Chamber and a tireless volunteer who gave her time and effort to many worthy causes and young people of the community, but especially the Soldotna Chamber. The Vera Horwarth Memorial Scholarship is awarded to a high school senior annually who exemplifies Vera’s spirit and passion for community service. It is hoped that the fund will eventually be able to fund four year scholarships. As in years past, First National Bank of Alaska provided a match for the first $2,500 bid for the Vera Horwarth pie.


Treasure Chest yields cold cash at Soldotna Chamber Pie Auction.

Stephanie Erkeneff, of the Kenai River Raven resort bought a $50 key that opened a treasure chest that had $1,000 cash inside, “I was in shock, they said turn you key both ways, and I turned it one way and it didn’t open and I turned it the other way and it came wide open and I couldn’t believe it, I never win anything,” said Stephanie who then went on to buy two pies during the auction. In the luck of the pie prize drawing Stephanie won a two night stay at her own Kenai River Raven Resort, “It was a great prize and we had a lot of fun,” added Erkeneff.

Having just returned from their honeymoon, newly weds Chris & Sarah Hough, of Stewart Title won the raffle for a Holland American Mexican Rivera or Caribbean Cruise and the Grand “Sail Away” Passport prize of a Princess Cruise for two was won by Terry Best of Best Transit who said it was a great night but that the prize might end up being a honeymoon cruise for their daughter who is getting married next summer, “Unless they want to take their parents along on the honeymoon,” laughed Terry, “But the thing is there just isn’t any better place to come to play, work or live than right here on the Kenai Peninsula,” said Best.

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