Aroostook County - The Presque Isle Rotary Club continued its seven decade tradition of supporting local non-profit organizations by recently dispersing funds raised during the 71st Annual Rotary Auction to their Auction Partners.
 
Last November, nearly 500 items valued at more than $50,000, donated from businesses and organizations across Aroostook County and beyond, were auctioned off live on WAGM-TV and online by Gregg Auctions.  The online component was new this year in an effort to bring the auction into the 21st Century. As technology and the way society consumes media changes, the auction needs to continue to adapt. The auction has been the organizations largest fundraiser for decades, and the goal is to keep it going.
"Now more than seven decades strong, the Presque Isle Rotary Auction stands as a true testament to the Aroostook County Community that supports it, and the community that in turn benefits each year from its proceeds.  Since its inception it has been the signature event of our Rotary Club.  More importantly the millions of dollars that have been raised through, and in conjunction with, the auction have resulted in so many community programs and projects that might not have otherwise happened and arguably have been made better as a result of Rotary's partnership.  This is certainly true of the 2018 joint community project with the Presque Isle Kiwanis Club - the Children's Advocacy Center, and the numerous community organizations that received funding support for key projects across our area," said 2018-2019 Presque Isle Rotary Club President Jason Parent.
 
The 2017 conception of the “Community Project” has already provided a great impact within central Aroostook County starting with the Riverside Community Park that celebrated its grand opening late last fall. The Presque Isle Rotary Club and the Presque Isle Kiwanis Club came together again for the 2018 Rotary Auction to raise funds for the Child Advocacy Center which is operated by AMHC and provides services and support to children who are victims of sexual assault. "The past two years Kiwanis and Rotary have come together to leverage our efforts to fundraise for community projects.  As the old adage goes, 'Together we can move mountains!'  Well we are certainly doing that with the joint efforts of the members of both our organizations.  I feel our collaboration has brought energy and a shared vision for the future of our community.  I am looking forward to seeing our relationship grow to make an even more lasting impact with future projects," added Auction Co-Chair Clint Deschaine.  Over $25,000 was raised to purchase furnishings for the facility and other items for the children they serve. 
                      
Proceeds from the 71st Annual Rotary Auction were also dispersed to its proceed partners which included the following six community non-profit organizations: Presque Isle ATV Club, Hope & Justice Project, Presque Isle High School Athletic Boosters, Friends of Aroostook, Grace Interfaith Food Table and United Way of Aroostook.  Auction Co-Chair Sarah Ennis commented “Local community support has been the heart of our club for 71 years now.  When we partner with these proceed partners we multiply the impact made by either group on their own.   The Presque Isle Rotary Club firmly believes in service above self.  To our club it is more than just our motto, it is a service that we are giving that truly is coming from our hearts.”
 
Planning has already begun for the 72nd Annual Rotary Auction and additional details on that effort will follow.