What to do when you lose a year and a half of ticket sales? While they cannot sell tickets, the BurlOak Theater Group in Oakville can sell a range of items donated to get through the final stages of a pandemic.
The local amateur theater company is launching its very first online silent auction starting today, Sunday, June 20, 2021, at 11 a.m.
“The BurlOak Theater Group thrives with our audience, creating entertaining theater for all ages,” said President Tim Cadeny. “The local support over the years, for which we are so grateful, has shown us how important community theater is.”
More than 120 items are up for public tender, and the auction is not limited to Oakville. Item categories range from freebies to art, fashion, housewares, gift certificates, experiences, and sporting goods. The silent auction will run for eight days and end on Sunday, June 27 at 8 p.m. EST.
Profits collected from the silent auction will make a big difference: “We are a non-profit organization, and the impact of COVID-19 and all of its restrictions has been very difficult,” said Marketing Director Karen Didow . “We have lost 90% of our income in the last 14 months and have had to adapt our 2020-2021 season to virtual.”
The group maintains a studio space which houses all of their sets, costumes and rehearsal space. According to Cadeny and Didow, this space is expensive and 99% of the income to be paid depends on the sale of tickets and subscriptions to tickets.
BurlOak’s last live performance was Neil Simon’s The strange couple at the Oakville Center for the Performing Arts in January 2020 – almost a year and a half ago. All online performances performed by BurlOak this year have been free, but made free with the hope that the grateful audience will consider donating to bear the high costs.
The goal of the auction is to make $ 6,000, but that’s only part of the total goal of $ 20,000 that BurlOak also hopes to achieve in this year through the sale of merchandise and direct donations.
“Your [the public’s] financial support will be the key to helping this community we have built together thrive beyond this pandemic, ”Cadeny said. “Your help, any help you can offer, will keep us going into 2021 and be ready to get back on stage when that time comes.”
A full list of online silent auction items is available here. More information about the BurlOak Theater Company and their ongoing fundraising efforts can be found here on their website.