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Worth Every Penny

What exactly is a “penny social” you ask? For those of you unfamiliar, here’s a little primer to get you ready. Penny Socials are special fundraising events dating back in origin to European countries where tickets were sold for a penny each. Hence, the name penny social or penny sale. It combines the elements of both an auction and a raffle. The common factor is that the bidding is done with a ticket. Each participant buys a certain number of tickets for a set price. They then use those tickets to “bid” on a variety of donated items on “auction.” They can bid as many tickets as they wish on each item they are interested in by depositing the tickets in a container assigned to that item. The items are displayed on tables or shelves and bidders walk around and browse the wares, bidding on favored items as they go. It doesn’t take long to figure out, of course, that the more tickets you bid on a “must have” item, the better your chances are of winning. Rather than going to the highest bidder, though, as it would at a regular auction, the item goes to the person whose ticket is drawn at random, from the container. 

As an aside, when I was growing up, these type of fundraisers were often referred to as “Chinese Auctions,” but as our culture became more socially aware, aka politically correct, those whose lives are dedicated to finding offense in all that surrounds them deemed that since there is nothing culturally “Chinese” in raffling off donated prizes, perhaps “penny social” would suffice as a less offensive description of the event.

In any event, sound like a fun way to spend an evening? If so, pay close attention to the following. The Broad Channel VFW will be hosting our town’s very own annual “Penny Social” at the American Legion, 209 Cross Bay Boulevard, on Saturday, November 3. Doors will open at 6 p.m., accompanied by a $10 admission, with raffle calling starting at 7 p.m. Of course, there will be “early bird specials,” a door prize, and 50/50s. By the way, and keep in mind that you’ll only read about this here, I have it from a solid source that a rather generous donor has also offered a pristine 2017 Ford Mustang Eco Boost Premium Convertible ES as a raffle prize for this event, so you might want to arrive early. Oh, before I forget, due diligence requires that I mention the term “die cast metal collectible” when referring to the Mustang Convertible.

As always, all proceeds from this fundraiser will go to fund Thanksgiving Dinner for the Disabled Veterans of St. Albans Hospital and other veteran-related events and activities. If anyone would like to assist us by donating a “prize” for this Penny Social for our disabled veterans, all “new” donations will be gratefully accepted this weekend (Friday evening after 7 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday afternoon, at the Broad Channel VFW located on Shad Creek Road).  

Broad Channel, why would anyone want to live anywhere else?

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