Smethport Web — by Nathan Muller
The 23rd Annual Hamlin Library Dinner & Auction was held Saturday evening at the Smethport Fire Hall, drawing 115 attendees who enjoyed drinks and hors d’oeuvres amid 200-plus items on display for auction or raffle. The social hour was followed by a lavish buffet dinner created by local master chefs Rose Campbell and Phyllis Russell.
The event helps pay for library operating expenses, ensuring continued services that are vital to the community. In addition to Smethport, the library’s service area includes Norwich, Keating, and Sergeant Township with a population of over 5,500.
Among the highest grossing silent auction items was a Thinkpad laptop computer donated by El Paso Corp. which went for $275. A year’s worth of cookies baked by head librarian Lori Rounsville went for $175.
There were also a number of unusual items, including a laser engraved duck-theme oak toilet seat donated by Tom Weiser, which went for $35. A felt-lined Victorian photo album, complete with family photos, donated by Bob and Shirley Digel, went for $30.
Ross Porter presided over the live auction and was assisted by several guest auctioneers: Keppel Stone Works owner Jeff Keppel; Smethport native Bart Barton, 92-year old Harriett Rockefeller, a long time teacher at SAHS; Connie Grenz, General Manager of Kane Hardwoods; and McKean County Judge John Pavloc.
During the live auction, a corner cabinet unit handcrafted by Karl Fitzsimmons sold for $600. An 1850-era French percussion muzzle-loading rifle converted to a “Zulu” shotgun, donated by Seth and Lynn Digel, went for $400, as did a gold-framed painting by Pat Bosworth, also donated by the Digels. A stunning Adirondack-style garden bench made of sassafras donated by Brian Gustafson went for $375.
The event generated nearly $14,000 in profit for the library. Cash donations came in from the following individuals and organizations:
American Legion Auxiliary
Bob and Shirley Digel
Cino and Betty Faes
Hamlin Bank & Trust Co.
Pat and Ernie Long
Northwest Savings Bank
John and Louise Pavlock
Koleen and Brian Press
Blaine and Donna Puller
Sons of the American Legion
Bill and Mary Todd
Straub’s Brewery of St. Marys, PA supplied the beer. Flickerwood Wine Cellars in Kane provided the wine. Decorations were done by Joncine Willis and Julie Mader.
The mild weather contributed to making this a thoroughly enjoyable evening in Smethport.
If you missed this event, you can still make a tax deductible donation to the Hamlin Memorial Library by sending a check by mail at any time using this form.