November 10, 2014 in General
Aucklandâs GABA Charity Auction went off with a bang yesterday, raising around $30,000 for the community.
A wide range of items went under the hammer including theatre tickets, artwork, business packages and antique collectibles.
The highest-selling item was a romantic five-night stay for two adults in a luxury Waterfront Villa at The Havannah in Vanuatu, including return flights to Port Vila.
The Havannah and Air New Zealand jointly donated the prize, which was scooped up for $4500.
A Peaches & Cream gift pack that included the official Fifty Shades of Grey riding crop and flogger also drew loud cheers from the audience, with auctioneer Michelle Maitland suggesting a whipping if the bidding didnât go high enough.
GABAâs Gresham Bradley paid tribute to the many groups and organisations that had made the event possible.
âThe level of sponsorship weâve received this year is above every other year,â he said.Â âThis allows us to give support to scholarships, community awards, and private awards.â
Prominent sponsors included ASB, ANZ, Volvo, Jaguar, Land Rover, and Grey Lynn Tyreworx.
Bidding was fierce, and political rivalry broke out with former Labour candidate Tamati Coffey going up against Nationalâs Auckland Central MP Nikki Kaye for a large traditional tapa cloth from Samoa.
Tamati also bid unsuccessfully on a boxed and signed bottle of Oban 14-year-old single malt Scotch whiskey donated by Labour MP Jacinda Ardern.
Other politicians had better luck, with Labourâs Manurewa MP Louisa Wall bidding $1000 for a stunning painting of Carmen Rupe by contemporary MÄori artist Te Mete.
The 1000 x 610mm oil on canvas, Carmen Rupe â The Final Portrait (2013), was first unveiled during a ceremony to mark the handover of taonga that were bequeathed to national museum Te Papa.
Green MP Jan Logie also picked up an untitled pastel by contemporary New Zealand artist Anna Palmer.
The Big Splash event was held in the Aqua Room at the Hilton on the Auckland waterfront, with stunning views across the harbour.Â Entertainment had a watery theme, with guests being treated to a splashing performance by James and Benjamin from the Burning Man Dance Company.
Later, Miss Leda Petit brought the house down with her burlesque routine in and around a bathtub. Several in the audience were seen fanning themselves afterwards.
MC Mika also drew loud applause, keeping the crowd warmed up between auctions. At one stage he pulled audience members onto the stage for an impromptu dance routine.
Gresham Bradley said a wide range of people in the community would benefit from the money raised.Â He paid particular tribute to AUT University, who this year increased their support for the event.
âWe would like to acknowledge AUT, who have come to the party with our scholarships,â said Bradley.Â âWe are able to give away four scholarships this year.â
Previous recipients of GABA scholarships have included Joshua James, Rawinia Thompson, and Samantha King.