“It’s really a great way for everyone to show off their talents and support a good cause.” – Sophia Boisvert
Last Friday night, the TAMS HOPE club hosted the 2018 annual HOPE auction. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the concept of a HOPE auction, think of it like your not-so-average school talent show, only after every performance the performers are auctioned off to the crowd. All proceeds go to water.org, an organization dedicated to bringing clean water to underprivileged countries.
Photo courtesy of Yearbook
“Guys, she just sold for over a thousand dollars.”– Manasi Ramadurgum
The reality of auctioning off your friends to a crowd doesn’t feel quite as creepy as it sounds, although it does come pretty close. The concept is that the highest bidder can take the auctioned-off performer to the Saturday HOPE Auction dance. Bids for single performers ranged from the $15.00 minimum to over $1,000. The bidding process is a light – hearted bloodbath, with best friends and significant others hashing it out over the performers in a hand raising/number shouting contest, all regulated by a pair of iconic red bow ties trying to glean more money from the crowd. One of the best parts of the night was watching a performer’s face go to an elated shock as bids for them got into the hundreds, and even thousands.
Photo courtesy of Yearbook
“I was positive nobody was going to bid for me. But we’re all so close, and we all want to see other people succeed, so people come together and bid for everyone! It’s amazing how connected everyone is and how this brings everyone is.” – Riya Kumar
The HOPE auction is truly an ingenious way to raise money for charity. It was so powerful to see classmates shouting out amounts, all to support their friends that have become family. Nobody in the crowd came into Mac Café thinking “I’m going to bid $200 on this person” because that’s not how it works. Everyone in the crowd gets so wrapped up in the moment and all the love in the community that “an extra five dollars won’t hurt”.
Photo Courtesy of Yearbook
“Before the performance, Maya and Srivi kept telling us to make sure we smiled, but once we got on stage, it was so hard not to smile.” -Cari Reinert
All in all, the experience is magical. The buzz of the crowd between acts, the goosebumps that appeared when that one guy pulled out a knife, the adorable MC couple, the illuminated stage magnified by the darkness of your surroundings, the club executives proving their hips don’t lie… It’s all a part of what makes TAMS so special. Spectators were blown away by the number of skilled performers among the student body. For some reason, the Mean Green Mitochondria know no fear when it comes to performing. Everyone puts as much effort into their acts as they would a research project or calculus test. The TAMS HOPE Auction, if nothing else, is proof that there is nothing a TAMS student cannot do.