I think that this was one of our best auctions! For the most part, we had a wide variety of corals in all price ranges. There were some fantastic deals to be had, too good to pass up! Jeff does a great job as auctioneer. It is hard work, but he makes it look easy. We had over 75 people, so turnout was much better than last year.
I agree with Ron on these suggestions to reduce the number of corals a bit:
"...reduce the total number of corals allowed from 350 to 300, reduce the number of corals allowed per member from 35 to 30, and reduce the total number of single species from 10 to 6 or 8."
The BBQ from Mission BBQ was fantastic and it went very smoothly. I think it was much appreciated by those who participated. I think this arrangement is a keeper.
As far as sorting goes, one idea that Wayne came up with was to post a You Tube video showing the best way to bag a coral. This may help with the consistency in the coral bags for sorting. With all the numbers written in the same area of the bag, how much water/air to use, etc. I know that some of those numbers were so hard to see that we almost had to guess what they were. It may also help to use more bins, and maybe make the bins a bit smaller so that we can sort the corals with less handling. I did coral sorting for two years and I think shallower bins to hold about 25 each would be ideal.
Another video might be on the best way to take pics too. I hesitate to buy corals without pics, in fact I did not buy any without pics yesterday. Another thing that we can address in the video is the lighting to use. Corals look very different when you throw all that blue light on them. We try to take pics with about 75% white and 25% blue to show how the coral really looks. Last year we took two pics of some of our corals, one with blue and one without, and noted that in the pics. It is disappointing to see a beautiful colorful zoanthid pic, only to get it home and find the color in white is a drab brown!
The schedule held up well. We finished about when we thought we would. Maybe next year we can shorten it just a bit.
A big thanks to all who helped out and volunteered! The BOD is so grateful for the help! That being said, we could have used about 2-3 more volunteers. It's hard to wear so many hats at an event. We would happily train new volunteers to help. Maybe to sell drinks and raffle tickets during one of the breaks...at the end to help check each bidder's box for the correct corals...to greet the caterers and show them where to set up...just small things really, but they free up the BOD to tend to others things and not be pulled in so many directions at once.
I liked the way the room was set up, with half tables and half rows of chairs. This space works well for our auction, but it has to be reserved almost a year in advance, so we have to jump right in and set the date for next year's auction.
One negative, and this definitely does not apply to those who had to check out for an emergency at home:
Even after we made it clear that people could check out only at break, or at the end, we still had people trying to check out just a few minutes early (to be first in line I imagine). Not cool. We just can't run reports and check people out during the active auction. Heather made that clear, and I know some people still tried and were a bit huffy when it didn't work. I know that standing in line after such a long day isn't what anyone wants to do, our focus during bidding is just that, the bidding. It is just not possible to do check outs during the bidding without it being a major distraction, which isn't fair to those sellers whose items are at the end.
Please, everyone who attended, post up your thoughts (the good, the bad, and the ugly lol) so that we can compile our notes for next year. Thanks! Save Save