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Sunflower lists some items donated for Gala auction
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Sunflower Diversified Services has accumulated an impressive list of auction items for its annual gala but it can always use more, said Connie Oetken, director of development.

The gala is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Saturday, March 3 at the Highland Hotel, 3017 10th, Great Bend. The event is the non-profit agency’s biggest fundraiser of the year.

Sunflower serves infants, toddlers and adults with developmental disabilities in Barton, Pawnee, Rice, Rush and Stafford counties.

So far, items for the live auction include a Polaris Trailblazer four-wheel adult sports bike; an Ecowater system, including installation; Traeger grill; diamond and black onyx pendant; Lenovo Think Pad, with accessories; remote car-start system; and a flat screen TV.

"These are just a few of the many items we have collected from our generous donors," Oetken said. "We would like to add to the list in the short time left before the gala."

Items for the silent auction include Silpada jewelry, purses, tools, wall hangings and kids’ shelves. "We have many other items and hope to add even more to the silent auction too," Oetken said. "There will be a little something for everyone’s taste and budget."

Mike Niedens will be the auctioneer and Scott Donovan the emcee. Both men have a long history of supporting the people Sunflower serves and will be donating their time at the gala, Oetken noted.

Tickets to the gala are $100 each. This donation includes a prime rib dinner, with wine on every table and an open bar. The golf-putting competition is returning for its second year and there will be a brief presentation about the people Sunflower serves.

All proceeds remain in the agency’s five-county service area. They will help supplement the costs of direct services, such as early education, independent living and employment opportunities.

In addition, the funds help pay for adaptive equipment, communication devices, and medical and dental care for Sunflower clients.

"State and local tax dollars do not come close to meeting all the needs," Oetken stressed. "Our gala and other events throughout the year allow us to offer a wide range of crucial supports for the people we serve."

To secure tickets, make donations or ask questions, contact Oetken by calling 620-792-1325.