A group of bidders looks over a few of the many items up for bid at last year’s auction. (Lonnie Archibald/for Peninsula Daily News)

A group of bidders looks over a few of the many items up for bid at last year’s auction. (Lonnie Archibald/for Peninsula Daily News)

Forks annual scholarship auction to benefit graduating seniors

FORKS — The Quillayute Valley Scholarship Auction is expected to sell between 1,000 and 1,500 goods and experiences this weekend in the 55th annual auction to benefit Forks High School graduates.

The auction will be from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday at the Forks High School Commons, 261 Spartan Ave. It will be broadcast live by KBDB 96.7 FM.

“Our goal is to beat last year and make it better and better every year,” said Julia Lausche, a student coordinator of the sale with fellow senior Britney Dean.

“We’re racking in the donations,” she said Tuesday.

Said Volunteer Chairman Jerry Leppell: “We always try to break a record.

“If anybody can do it, they [the student coordinators ] can do it.”

Leppell listed some of the donations: a car from Wilder Auto, baked goods, hand crafted goods, paintings, guided fishing and hunting trips, antiques, lots of gift baskets, lots of firewood and lots of children’s toys.

And that’s just a sampling.

Also offered will be clothing, old books, homemade wine, automotive items, lamps, pickles, smoked fish and turkeys.

Back this year is the hand-crafted wooden furniture made by Olympic Correctional Center inmates, whose donations to the annual auction have become a tradition since the inmates began it in 1987.

In 2018, the auction brought in $141,000. Throughout its history, it has raised more than $2 million.

“I’m really proud of this community and what it does for the kids,” said Leppell, who has served as auction chairman for at least a decade.

“Only in Forks could this be pulled off.”

All proceeds go to the graduating seniors, which number about 75 this year. The seniors assist with the auction during its two days.

Forks High School graduates can apply for scholarships to business school, trade school, beauty school or college at graduation or anytime in the future.

The original organizers of the scholarship fund were inspired to create the event because they felt that because of the remoteness of the community the cost of college or trade school education was not always within reach for many Forks families, according to the Forks Forum.

Donations — which are tax-deductible — can be made today or on either of the two days of the auction, Leppell said.

They can be dropped by Leppell’s business, Jerry’s Small Engine Repair and Rentals at 1051 S. Forks Ave., or at the high school.

Bids can be made in person or by phone. Phone numbers for making bids are 360-374-6262, ext. 228 and ext. 229.

For more information, see the Quillayute Valley Scholarship Auction Facebook page, or call student coordinators Lausche at 360-640-2545, Dean at 360-640-1132 or Leppell at 360-640-1849.

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