Cheap dates, dance raise money for charity in Port Townsend

PORT TOWNSEND — It was a buyers’ market at the Pre-Valentine Charity Ball on Saturday at the American Legion Hall.

Dates for the big day — along with dinner for two — went for bargain prices.

“I can’t believe they’re so cheap,” said Suzy Rossi, as she capped the winning bid for the first bachelor on the block.

The start of the auction was delayed while police dealt with a downed power line that cut power to the police station on nearby Madison Street.

But learning that electricity to the Legion Hall would not be cut off, emcee Janet Emery got the bachelors and bachelorettes rounded up and ready to roll.

Bidding started at $20 and topped out at $40 to $50 — a bargain considering the winner picked up a gift certificate at a local restaurant along with a date.

A poet and a bean-cooker

Rossi, a volunteer with the Port Townsend Food Bank, said she bid on bachelor No. 1, Joe the Poet, because she knew where the money was going — the food bank.

Jeff Chew, Port Townsend/Jefferson County news editor for Peninsula Daily News, was snapped up by Rose Harris for $45, which went to Habitat for Humanity. It was a 10th of his true value, she said.

“He’s worth $400,” Harris said, surveying her catch.

“He has a home, a car and a job, and cooks a mean pot of beans.”

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