The Abbe Museum is proud to announce that its annual fundraising auction called The Gathering: Reflection & Celebration Gala was a success this year on many levels. On Wednesday, July 15th, local admirers of the Arts and the Abbe arrived at the Bar Harbor Club where they were greeted with a preview of live auction items on display in the main lobby. As they mingled, they made their way down the broad lawn to the “pool house” where a silent auction and cocktail reception were in full swing. With a three piece band playing in the background, the atmosphere become charged as people aggressively bid and out bid each other to acquire their favorite pieces. With 22 items in the silent auction, the total raised was $6675. At the ring of a bell, the silent auction closed and guests made their way to the main ballroom for dinner and the live auction.
As the 208 guests entered the ballroom they found their seats and took a moment to absorb their elegant surroundings of soft blue tulle, live birch trees with white lights and handmade Butterfly Houses by Tim Smith which adorned each of the 22 tables as a centerpiece. After a three course dinner was served and many people were thanked by John Collier and Bonnie Flaherty, co-chairs of the gala, the Abbe’s new CEO, Cinnamon Catlin-Legutko addressed the room with heartfelt words of thanks to all of the Abbe’s supporters.
With a roar of applause, Christie’s very own John Hays took the mic and the live auction began. Mr. Hays graciously donated his time as auctioneer and his expertise and enthusiasm helped gather top dollar for many of the items, most notably, $2000 for a watercolor by artist Eric Hopkins, $1700 for a traditional birch bark moose call by Penobscot artist Butch Phillips, and $1300 for and oil painting of Mount Katahdin by Ojibwa artist John Potter. The live auction was comprised of 23 items including paintings, photographs, prints, baskets, sculpture and jewelry and raised a total of $18,000 and guests even had a chance to bid on the centerpieces! With the last item going to the highest bidder, the live auction closed and the dancing began. Brian Catell and the Jump City Jazz Band played center stage to many guests who cut loose and showed their best moves on the dance floor.
The Gathering Gala grossed over $62,000 in total which will help fund the Abbe Museum’s mission of promoting the understanding and appreciation of Maine’s Native American culture, history, and archaeology. Cinnamon Catlin-Legutko, Abbe’s CEO said "This year's Gathering Gala was a warm gathering of ardent art lovers and Abbe supporters. We are thrilled by the success of this year's event and we look toward next year with great enthusiasm.”