Tradition returns

By Christina Calloway
Senior writer
ccalloway@pntonline.com

For Clyde Powell, the annual KENW-TV Auction has always been about raising money for the local public television station. The live call-in bidding part of the auction, that was about fun.

The retired director of instructional television for Eastern New Mexico University and KENW participated in the first ever live auction for the station more than 25 years ago.

Christina Calloway: Staff photo Tonight marks the return of live call-in bidding to the KENW-TV auction. Auctioneers will be standing in front of the cameras at this studio between 7-10 p.m. today, Thursday and Saturday, auctioning items to raise money for programming.

Christina Calloway: Staff photo
Tonight marks the return of live call-in bidding to the KENW-TV auction. Auctioneers will be standing in front of the cameras at this studio between 7-10 p.m. today, Thursday and Saturday, auctioning items to raise money for programming.

This year’s auction will bring the return of the live, call-in bidding, which starts tonight. Powell couldn’t be more excited.
“It was an absolute blast in the studio,” said Powell.

Before auction preparation and procedure was simplified, Powell said he remembered having to drive to Roswell just to pick up auction items and then auctioning the items off in hand. He also remembers ad-libbing the script for the show.

He’s hoping to relive the good times between 7-10 p.m. today, Thursday and Saturday.

“The people in the television station, we had a blast. It was just constant laughing,” Powell said. “Then the phones would start ringing and it would get exciting. I’m just looking forward to being back and having the people around.”

KENW-TV’s Director of Marketing Sheryl Borden said this year’s fundraising goal is $65,000. Borden said each night of the call-in bidding, there will be 84 items auctioned off. The online portion of the auction began Monday.

The total amount of merchandise being auctioned for the fundraiser amounts to about $68,000, Borden said.

Borden said the excitement of bringing back a community tradition has made it easy to get volunteer participation. This is the first time the live auction will be held in the KENW’s building, according to Borden.

“This is going to be fun,” Borden said. “We have lots of good people, but everybody here at the station has helped.”

Nearly 50 people will be in the studio each night the auction is live.

With last year’s auction bringing in a low of about $30,000, Borden feels bringing it back to the community with the help of community leaders is going to make the auction a successful one that community members will be excited to watch.

“People couldn’t relate to someone calling from Florida,” Borden said.

Borden says there are people who will be watching who remember watching the live-auction in years past.

“I’m looking forward to the spontaneity,” Borden said. “The enthusiasm the auctioneers project is the most exciting part.”

Borden said all of the proceeds will go to programming.

“We are a public television station and our public likes to be a part of it,” Borden said. “I think it’s a neighborhood feeling.”

Local business owner Cassidy Self is a newcomer to the auctioneer gig. Self said her parents participated in the auction when she was a child and now she and her sister are carrying on the tradition.

“I just hope that it brings in a lot of money,” Self said. “I’m just there to help and support and do what I can. I have no idea what to expect but I’m just going to roll with it.”

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