Auction raises $30,900
For 26 years, people have opened their wallets and their hearts at the massive pie auction which opens the Brooke-Alvinston-Watford Fall Fair. But this year was unlike any other. And one special little pie started it all off.
The auction started in 1991 and raised $2,800 for a little girl from Bright’s Grove who needed a heart transplant. The auction grew until last year the top selling raspberry pie sold for $1,500 and almost $21,000 was raised for the Children’s Health Foundation in London.
But when Lily and Julie Hayter presented their pie for auction on stage Friday night, all records were broken. Lily is the granddaughter of Jim and Mary Louise Hayter, The couple died just a few weeks apart this spring.
Jim was a long-time member of the fire department, had been the fire chief and served on council.
Mary Louise had also served on council but spent a lot of time helping with community events like the fair and Canada Day.
“Mary Louise sent many pies up here,” Auctioneer Dennis Eves told the crowd adding Jim had spent a lot of time convincing people to bake something special for the auction.
By the time the bidding had stopped, Jim Hayter’s long-time friend, Ken Alderman, was the proud owner of the pie at a cost of $3,100.
Later that evening, Alderman donated the pie back to the auction committee which sold it again, raising another $2,100 from Lily Hayter’s pie.
Another 40 pies were auctioned off throughout the course of the evening. By the time the last tart and pie were purchased, $30,900 was raised – nearly $10,000 more than the year before.
With this year included, the pie auction at the fair has raised over $133,000 for the Children’s Health Foundation.
It is money which is put to good use according to Jennifer Baxter of the foundation. This year, the money will go to help provide child life specialists to patients. They talk with the children and explain what is going to happen, right down to where the incision for their operation will be and how they will feel when they leave the hospital.
Baxter says the goal is to make the children as comfortable as possible during a difficult time and it seems to be working. She says one child recently told her staying at the hospital was like “going to a hotel.
“We make it as fun as possible for them,” says Baxter.