Annual Gables’ fundraiser with auction set for Sept. 12, 5 p.m.
SALEM — Anyone making plans during the time of the pandemic has learned how easily plans must and do change. The House of the Seven Gables is no exception.
Amid an uptick in COVID-19 infection rates and related unknowns regarding public safety, The House of the Seven Gables has decided to remake its annual fundraiser into a fun virtual event. It’s still set for Sunday, September 12 at 5 p.m., and still includes presentations by Gables’ staff and an auction. Those who attend will also have a chance to direct some of their donations to specific projects at The Gables.
“We’re transitioning to a virtual event similar to what we presented last year,” says Pilar Garro, director of development at The Gables. “We plan to show a video we’ve made. It’s a heartfelt testimonial to the work we do in support of our multi-faceted mission. Those who attend online will get a chance to see behind the scenes, how we set priorities and where we still need help.”
The House of the Seven Gables’ operating funds come primarily from ticket sales to house tours and events. Events have been free and house tours have, at times, been either greatly reduced or cancelled altogether because of the pandemic. To get through these uncertain times and ensure the survival of the National Historic Landmark site and all seven historic structures The Gables preserves, and to accomplish the important settlement work, The Gables relies on the generosity of the regional community it serves. The popular annual fundraiser is one of The Gable’s most significant fundraisers of the year.
As always the auction will include getaways, special experiences and artwork. Speakers who will talk about the ongoing work at The Gables include Ken Turino, board chair; Kara McLaughlin, executive director; Christine Thomson, board member and conservator; and David Moffat, senior historical interpreter who has been doing research on the enslaved people that worked at The Gables early on. The video will also showcase the ESL and citizenship end-of-season celebrations. Among the students featured are Willdy Jose Tejada Cespedes who obtained his citizenship and Johnaury (Johna) Garcia who was enrolled in ESL Level 2.
Members of The Gables’ supportive and enthusiastic community can help make this turn of events into something positive. “You don’t have to dress up,” says Garro. “You don’t even have to buy tickets for the event. This year you can donate from the comfort of your home. What you might have spent on food, drinks and special attire can go directly to The Gables.”
To participate and help The Gables get through these very difficult times, those interested are asked to make a donation before the end of the day Friday, September 10. Those donors will receive a link to the online event with an acknowledgement of their donation. The online auction starts on Friday, September 10, and will run through Wednesday, September 15.