The Port Angeles Symphony has brought class through classical music to the North Olympic Peninsula since 1932.
As the economy haunts residents’ minds, symphony volunteers and staff feel that if the annual auction on Feb. 27 struggles, the symphony could see cutbacks in operations and rising ticket prices.
"Donations to the orchestra are at a 10-year low, so having a successful auction is critical to the financial stability of the orchestra," said Mark Wendeborn, its executive director.
The auction makes up about 10 percent of the symphony’s annual budget. It slipped from $59,594 in 2008 to $39,662 in 2009.
This year’s goal is $50,000. All money goes to operating expenses.
Wendeborn said some people might not know where money goes from tickets and special concerts.
"Cost of music is very expensive," he said.
"We have to pay for royalties, advertising, printing facilities, music, guest soloists and administrative costs."
Chamber orchestra and full symphony concert ticket sales provide about half of the annual budget.
About 20 percent of the budget comes from fundraising by volunteers.
Wendeborn said almost 50 percent of symphony-goers are from Sequim and this year’s auction will let local listeners contribute
and listen to personal classical music.
Throughout the evening, string players from Port Angeles High School will play.
The silent and live auctions offer items that similar events might not offer. Among the items are:
n Seven-day cruise to Alaska, the Caribbean, Mexico or Canada/New England
n Trip to New Orleans
n African photo safari
n Glass-blowing lessons
n Load of horse manure and wood
n Barrel of fine wines
A rare opportunity presents itself through a golden ticket raffle.
Participants pay $50 for a ticket and a chance for first pick of any live auction item. Only 100 raffle tickets will be sold. It isn’t necessary to be present to win, but ticket buyers who don’t attend must let Wendeborn know their choice by Feb. 22, so if they win, it can be withdrawn from the auction.
Shuttle transportation to the auction from Sunland Windermere Real Estate, 137 Fairway Drive, Sequim, will be provided.
For reservations, information or raffle tickets, contact Wendeborn at 457-5579 or visit www.portangelessymphony.org.
At a glance
What: Port Angeles Symphony Applause! Auction!
When: 6 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 27
Where: SunLand Golf and Country Club, 109 Hilltop Drive, Sequim
How much: $75, reservations required. Call symphony office, 457-5579.