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Hunger and Homelessness auction raises $25,000

With items including massages, fencing lessons, and nights on the town, the auction raised money for several New Haven organizations.

Offerings that included California wines, fencing lessons, movie tickets, and an incomparable evening of sports or action movies on TV plus a dinner of corn dogs and turkey burgers garnered more than $25,000 for New Haven charities at the 2010 Hunger and Homelessness Auction.

The auction on November 18 started with a silent auction in the Harkness Ballroom, where students offered a selection of offbeat services: First-year medical student Anna Duncan offered to be a running buddy “for any distance and any speed. … Run around New Haven with a true townie.” Another first-year student, Wenjie Xiao, offered a breakup service. “I will make a breakup phone call for you and explain to your significant other why the relationship is over.”

Later that evening the live auction began in Marigold’s, starting with bidding on a bow tie belonging to William Stewart, Ph.D., associate professor and chief of the Section of Anatomy and Experimental Surgery. Bidding was fierce as students in the Physician Associate Program tried to maintain the tradition formed in recent years and win the bow tie. It cost them more than $1,300—but tradition won out.

First-year students Alex Kula and Conor Grady served as auctioneers and led the bidding on items that included a faculty vs. medical student softball game; dinner and wine tasting at the home of Dean Robert J. Alpern, M.D., Ensign Professor of Medicine; tickets to a Red Sox game; and a four-hour cruise on the sailboat of James Jamieson, M.D., Ph.D., professor of cell biology, complete with “lunch, single malt, barf bags, and broad hints on how to pass the qualifiers.”

This year’s proceeds will benefit Loaves and Fishes; Columbus House; New Haven Home Recovery; Downtown Evening Soup Kitchen; the Community Health Care Van; and the Community Soup Kitchen.