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Tiger Auction raises more than $220,000

Special to the HDN

Fort Hays State University's raised more than $220,000 at the fourth annual Tiger Auction and Dinner in August. The auction has come to be the kickoff to the athletic season at FHSU. Proceeds benefit the FHSU Athletic Department.

More than 450 people attended the Aug. 24 event, and more than 300 items, large and small, were auctioned off. Items included a vacation getaway, works by local artists and a co-coaching experience at an FHSU game.

"Once again, we were in awe of the generosity of those in attendance and of the items donated for the event," said Curtis Hammeke, athletic director. "Through a unified team effort, this event has provided great resources to enhance our ability to recruit quality student athletes. Improving facilities and growing scholarships are two integral pieces of the recruiting process and the Tiger Auction has allowed us to address both."

The live auction involved 91 items, the most successful of which was "Live Auction Item No. 40," in which Tiger fans bid donations totaling more than $80,000 to renovate and equip the weight room, used by men's and women's basketball, volleyball, wrestling, cross country, softball, tennis and men's and women's golf. Other upgrades include basketball goals, volleyball standards and netting.

Participants at a $5,000 level will have a brass name plate on a piece of new equipment within the weight room in Gross Memorial Coliseum. In addition, all who contributed to this project will be recognized at various levels on a plaque inside the weight room.

"The volunteer auction committee is extremely thankful to area businesses, individuals and alumni who contribute in many ways to this annual event," said Gary Wentling, auction committee chairman. "Without those three elements, along with those attending and all the volunteer help, this success could not be possible."