A touch of Paris at St. John's Gala

The bell within the tower at St. John’s is original and is not electronic. It rings out the beginning of services, during the Lord's Prayer, and tolls for the recently departed. (Press photo by Molly Moser)


By Molly Moser

A night of fine dining, live music, and fundraising is planned for Nov. 2 at Lakeside Ballroom. The first annual St. John’s Gala Auction will begin with a social hour from 5:00 to 6:00 p.m. Dinner and the live auction will follow.

Funds raised during the auction will be used to make facility repairs, especially to the church bell tower. “The bell tower is original to the church building, circa 1948, and has been an issue for several years that has been addressed with patches, band aids, etc. Now, this upcoming year, we are trying to get it fixed correctly so as to avoid water damage,” said St. John’s Pastor Shane Anderson. “We need to raise a significant amount of money to get it fixed correctly.”

Gala committee member Linda Benskin told The Press, “We started brainstorming as to what we could do to raise some money for the church, and this gala auction came up. We’ve been planning for over a year, and we really started getting the wheels rolling at the first of the year.”

A catalog of auction items is available online at www.stjohnsguttenberg.com. Roughly 100 items are listed, and many were donated by local people and businesses. “The community has really stepped up,” said Benskin. 

“We have a lot of exciting donated items,” she said, listing a few examples: Rides in an airplane, a helicopter, and a pontoon; guided area kayak and fishing trips; many handmade items like quilts, planters, and a lamp; a Kindle; locally prepared dinners and drinks, and much more. 

“The organizers want this to be a very special event,” said Anderson. Formal attire is suggested. The main course will be choice of stuffed chicken breast with cranberry sauce or smoked Iowa chop. Adam Radcliffe will set the mood with piano music during dinner.

The event is open to anyone in the community who would like to attend, but tickets to dinner and the auction must be purchased in advance. Contact the church office at 252-2355 to purchase tickets.

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