(If you have not read the previous post, do that before reading this one.)
Of course, you can’t have a party, eat barbeque, and drink beer without music. At this kind of a party, the music has to be country music. And it was a live band. Of course, they donated their time. As a part of giving, a local radio station also contributed time and money to the fund raiser. The band would play a song or two, then the announcer would use the microphone to encourage people to join the auction and help raise even more money for Heather.
The auctions. People and businesses donated a huge number of items to be sold to raise money. They were laid out on tables for viewing – and all kinds of things were for sale, from fishing poles to bird houses to brush-busting grills for pickup trucks to bottles of wine. If you liked it, and you wanted it, then you promised to pay for it if you offered most money.
Auctions can be a lot of fun. One person stands up front and asks people how much they would pay for an item. If you are want to buy it, you raise your hand. But, somebody else may want it too, so they may offer more money. A third person may want it even more, until finally, somebody offers money that nobody else is willing to pay. Once again, people donate the items to be sold. In this case, the grandmother of the cancer victim’s husband offered a quilt. Handmade, it had been in the family for generations, but she was willing to have it sold to help someone else.
The party lasted for four hours. People had a good time, but in the back of their minds, they knew they were helping somebody else.
How much did the community raise?
Would you believe $87,000!
One last thought about volunteerism in America. Obviously, Americans like to help one another – but they aren’t always so crazy about receiving help. You see - - they want to do things themselves.
But they always want to help others. In this case, Heather and her husband have decided to “pay it forward.” Since she cannot bear children – they will adopt, and the money will help do that.
One more person helped.
(A note to my Vietnamese friends. Barbeque is both a verb and a noun. To “barbeque” meat is to cook it very slowly, usually over a wood fire of mesquite or other fragrant wood. As a noun, it refers to the meat, either pork or beef, covered with barbeque sauce. Everybody has their own recipe for barbeque sauce, but it is usually a spicy tomato-based blend.
Country music is very popular in America. It is not necessary that you live in the countryside to enjoy country music. Think of it as a different kind of music to differentiate it from rock n’ roll, or rap, or classical, or ethnic music.
Hoedown is an old word. It derived from a time in the early pioneer days of America when farmers worked hard all day. If they had been out in the fields using a hoe, putting the hoe down meant it was time to stop work. A “hoedown” became a term that meant a gathering of neighbors for music, food, and talk.)