Silent auction co-chairs Marvin Albright and Jim Olds check out the condition of a a recently received sofa. The furniture section of this special annual auction features a fine assortment of quality pieces for living room, dining room and bedroom.

It is silent auction time again in the Blue Barn in Pleasant Hill. Under the direction of co-chairs Jim Olds and Marvin Albright, teams of volunteers are once again gathering for work every Wednesday morning. The sale will take place in early fall on Sept. 27, 28 and 29.

Preparation for the auction begins as soon as the summer book sale ends. Each of the eight departments has its own co-chairs to supervise the work of cleaning, sorting, pricing, and display. Behind the scenes, however, is the cleaning crew that scrubs silver, shines up the crystal, polishes the brass, and the furniture. Mid-morning coffee break is a sit-down affair, with goodies brought each week by offsite volunteers. Locked into a backroom are the computer "pros" who log in every single item that will be on sale. During the week vans ferry in from donors the many items that are still to be added to the inventory. It's a grand enterprise with the bonus gift of camaraderie and fellowship for those who take part.

The end result for which all the work is actually undertaken is the provision of funds for the May Cravath Wharton Association and its social service projects. The primary beneficiaries are the Wharton Nursing Home and Fletcher House Assisted Living, but the association also offers scholarship aid to local students, support to the Pleasant Hill Child Care Center and to Neighbors Together.

The Wharton Association was founded 50 years ago to make possible the continuation of Dr. May Wharton's example of community service. It is under the umbrella of Uplands Retirement Village, founded also by Dr. May.

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