Auction Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Goods and Services Auction?

The twice-yearly auctions are OCUUC's main fund-raising events for the church. They consist of members and friends offering items, services and events for sale and others buying them with the money going to the church's operating budget.

What happens that day?

In the case of a Live Auction, everyone attending signs up for an auction paddle. The number on the paddle is used to keep track of your bids so we can send you a bill after the event. Most events are sold in live bidding, where an auctioneer controls the price of the item to fill the number of spaces available. Some events are called “poster items”. These are usually events with a large number of spaces sold at a fixed price. You just sign up for these events, first come, first served until the spaces are filled.

There are several components to the event, typically a meal, a raffle and sometimes sales of items to take home that evening. These components are likely to change for year to year. There are also activities to entertain children so their parents can attend the live auction.

How do I offer something?

You decide what you want to offer and fill out an Auction Donation Form listing the item or event, how many spaces you have available, a starting bid and a description of the item or event.

For instance, you might offer:

“Super Bowl Party, on ___________date, at ___________time, 20 spaces available, starting bid $10 per person, come to my house and watch the game on my big-screen TV< lots of snacks and betting on the outcome. Great for families, children's activities included.”

Your offers can be submitted in the Auction Box at church, handed to a member of the auction committee, or e-mailed to the committee.

How do I bid on an item?

For a Live Auction, see above. If you can't attend the auction, ask a friend to bid for you or ask the Auction Committee to find a Proxy for you. Unsold auction items will be available for purchase the following Sunday on the patio.

For a Silent Auction, goods, services, and seats at events are offered with a bid sheet and the bidder writes their name and amount they're willing to pay. Some goods and services have a "Buy it Now" price. This is similar to what we've offered in the past called "Poster Items."

When do I pay?

Raffle tickets and items for sale at the auction are paid for that night (bring cash). You can pay for your purchased auction items that night (cash or check), or you will be billed, which must be paid for by the end of the fiscal year in June.

In addition to your bill, you will also be sent a list of the items you offered and who bought them.

What if I buy a seat for an event and I can't attend?

You are financially responsible for the seat you bought as it could have been sold to someone else. You can offer your place to a friend (especially a new member or visitor who wasn't at the auction) or you can contact the host to see if they want to invite someone else.

What if I offer an event and then can't host it?

You can try to find another day, time or type of event that you are able to host. Remember that you promised something that someone was willing to pay for. The sooner you contact your buyers to work out another plan, the better.

Are there any other guidelines?

Things to keep in mind:

Use of the church: If you would like to use the church for an auction event, please remember that you must check the church calendar with Sarah Jones, Administrator.

Families: When you are deciding what to offer, keep in mind parents like to do things with their children (such as a bounce house party in your backyard or a hike and a picnic), children like to do special things without their parents (such as making crafts for Christmas presents or a trip to the zoo) and parents like to do things without their children (such as poker night). We try to have a good mix.

Timing: Auctions are organized approximately twice per year - spring and fall. Try to plan some things that happen months from now.

Work involved: It is really fun and a lot less work to host an event with a friend. Talk to your friends about hosting together or just brainstorm ideas for offerings.

There will be Auction Committee members on the patio to answer questions, offer advice, and help plan your offerings. Look for the brightly colored auction offering forms all around the church.

Questions? Contact the committee by email at auction@ocuuc.org.