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SAFETY ZONE ART AUCTION STARTS ON THE WEB

Say there's an art auction to raise funds for a good cause. You like the idea of supporting the organization, but how do you know if the art to be sold even includes anything you might like to bid on?
Well, has St. John's Safety Zone got a marketing tool for you!
Coming up Saturday, Feb. 17, the not-for-profit social services agency is hosting its third annual art auction. If you want to see at least 70 of the items up for bid, all you need to do is click on the link given below to the web page displaying each piece individually with a "click and enlarge" function built in. What's more, you can even telephone in your bids in advance of the event – with the understanding that somebody might outbid you in person Saturday night.
Safety Zone is known primarily as St. John's crisis intervention and counseling agency, providing assistance to victims of domestic violence, sexual abuse and other crimes. Like its counterparts on St. Thomas and St. Croix, it sees education through community outreach as a part of its mission. The proceeds from this year's auction are earmarked for a new initiative, agency executive director Iris Kern says: introducing a dating violence prevention program in the high schools on St. Thomas. "We have permission already from Eudora Kean, which is where most of the St. John students go," she says, "and we are hoping to be able to extend it to the other schools."
Among the items to be auction are paintings, artist's prints and drawings by Les Anderson, Aphrodite, Anethea Barton, Laura Brego, Jerry Cajko, Kathy Carlson, Janet Cook-Rutnik, Donald Laurent Dahlke, Alvin Dalmida, Susan Edwards, Lee Eng, Elaine Estern, Lisa Etre, Edney Freeman, Calvin George, Marcia Reed Hendricks, Bente Hirsch, Traci Kegeweis, Allison Kibbe, Diane Kreiner, Moe Kunsch, Maud Pierre-Charles, Robin Clair Pitts, Jennifer Robinson, Jean Rosow, Lucinda Schutt, Eunice Summer, Aimee Trayser, Corinne Van Rensselaer, Pat Whitehead and Denise Wright; photography by Fritz and Tina Henle, Chickie Lenga, Greg Miller and Constance Wallace; woodturning, ceramic, glass and mosaic works by Lisa Crumrine, Avelino Samuel, Donald Schnell, Shomo, Joy Stillman and Maho Bay Camps glassblowers; a mobile by Larry Lipski, sculpture by Jon Euwema, batiks and wearable art by Juliana Aradi, Miller Graves and Doreen Walsh; and quilts by Karen Samuel and from an Amish collection.
Historic prints, Haitian art, teak furniture items from Bali, vintage jewelry, leather goods and cases of champagne also will be auctioned.
While "St. John is an artist's colony," Kern says, "the participating artists and businesses are from St. Croix and St. Thomas as well." Some are donating items outright. Others are agreeing to Safety Zone's terms of a sales split, 60 percent going to the agency and 40 percent to the artist. Others have specified that it's an outright donation "up to a certain point," and if the bidding goes higher, they will get a percentage.
The art auction is one of two annual fund-raising events for The Safety Zone. The other is Island Stylin,' a fashion show held in August. Between the two, Kern says, the agency reaches out to just about everyone – both donors and attendees – on St. John, and beyond. "The fashion show is a big draw for locals," she explains. "With the art auction, we're focusing on snowbirds and other island visitors, as well as residents."
From the start, St. John's two resorts have supported the efforts – the Westin as the site of the auction with its attendant dinner dance, and Caneel Bay as the venue for the fashion show.
Saturday's event will get under way with cocktails and previewing of the auction items at 6 p.m. There will be a silent auction through the evening of items valued at $250 and under. Dinner is at 8 p.m., with the live auction to follow. Former St. John resident Tate Conkey, who owns an auction house in New Hampshire, will call the bids, with Jamz radio's Robert Luke and the government television channel's Lorna Nichols serving as master and mistress of ceremonies. Carlie Powell and Paradise People will provide music for listening and dancing.
Introducing an element of chance into the proceedings, as many as a hundred teddy bears will be offered for outright sale at $20 apiece. Each will hold a miniature shopping bag. "All but one of the bags will contain a chocolate kiss," Kern says. "One will have a $600 gold ring from Verace St. John" – designed by John Kennedy, who pioneered the use of cylindrical gemstones set into gold. How many bears will be up for sale will depend on how many the auction committee members can lay their hands on. "We've got 45 so far," Kern says, "and we're looking for more."
Internationally recognized artist Don Dahlke, a former St. Croix resident, donated the oil painting used for this year's auction poster. It's one of his signature "portal" images, depicting an architectural exterior with a window enticing the viewer's eye into the dark interior and then, through a window on the other side, to a bright sea view beyond.
As of Monday evening, 70 of the auction items were up on the web site, with at least 10 more recent arrivals awaiting posting. "The site will be updated throughout the week," Kern says. To view it, just click here www.zoneauction.org.
Those wishing to submit bids in advance on any of the displayed items may do so by telephoning the Safety Zone office at 690-7233 or 693-7233. Successful bidders – to be confirmed at the end of the auction – may pay for purchases by cash, check or charge card.
"If an artist has specified a reserve (minimum) opening bid, we will respect that," Kern says. "When people call in to bid on such an item, we will give them that information."
While the web site is a work in progress, Kern says, "We thought this was an excellent first step. Kevin Patrick donated the work and we got it up. The government has been talking since last year about a $750,000 web site that still isn't up."
Tickets for the dinner and auction are $65 per person, or $600 for a table for 10. Admission to the auction without dinner is $20. Tickets are being sold at Connections, the St. John Drug Center and the Safety Zone office on St. John, and at Color of Joy (American Yacht Harbor) and Blue Turtle Gallery (Government Hill) on St. Thomas.

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Say there's an art auction to raise funds for a good cause. You like the idea of supporting the organization, but how do you know if the art to be sold even includes anything you might like to bid on?
Well, has St. John's Safety Zone got a marketing tool for you!
Coming up Saturday, Feb. 17, the not-for-profit social services agency is hosting its third annual art auction. If you want to see at least 70 of the items up for bid, all you need to do is click on the link given below to the web page displaying each piece individually with a "click and enlarge" function built in. What's more, you can even telephone in your bids in advance of the event – with the understanding that somebody might outbid you in person Saturday night.
Safety Zone is known primarily as St. John's crisis intervention and counseling agency, providing assistance to victims of domestic violence, sexual abuse and other crimes. Like its counterparts on St. Thomas and St. Croix, it sees education through community outreach as a part of its mission. The proceeds from this year's auction are earmarked for a new initiative, agency executive director Iris Kern says: introducing a dating violence prevention program in the high schools on St. Thomas. "We have permission already from Eudora Kean, which is where most of the St. John students go," she says, "and we are hoping to be able to extend it to the other schools."
Among the items to be auction are paintings, artist's prints and drawings by Les Anderson, Aphrodite, Anethea Barton, Laura Brego, Jerry Cajko, Kathy Carlson, Janet Cook-Rutnik, Donald Laurent Dahlke, Alvin Dalmida, Susan Edwards, Lee Eng, Elaine Estern, Lisa Etre, Edney Freeman, Calvin George, Marcia Reed Hendricks, Bente Hirsch, Traci Kegeweis, Allison Kibbe, Diane Kreiner, Moe Kunsch, Maud Pierre-Charles, Robin Clair Pitts, Jennifer Robinson, Jean Rosow, Lucinda Schutt, Eunice Summer, Aimee Trayser, Corinne Van Rensselaer, Pat Whitehead and Denise Wright; photography by Fritz and Tina Henle, Chickie Lenga, Greg Miller and Constance Wallace; woodturning, ceramic, glass and mosaic works by Lisa Crumrine, Avelino Samuel, Donald Schnell, Shomo, Joy Stillman and Maho Bay Camps glassblowers; a mobile by Larry Lipski, sculpture by Jon Euwema, batiks and wearable art by Juliana Aradi, Miller Graves and Doreen Walsh; and quilts by Karen Samuel and from an Amish collection.
Historic prints, Haitian art, teak furniture items from Bali, vintage jewelry, leather goods and cases of champagne also will be auctioned.
While "St. John is an artist's colony," Kern says, "the participating artists and businesses are from St. Croix and St. Thomas as well." Some are donating items outright. Others are agreeing to Safety Zone's terms of a sales split, 60 percent going to the agency and 40 percent to the artist. Others have specified that it's an outright donation "up to a certain point," and if the bidding goes higher, they will get a percentage.
The art auction is one of two annual fund-raising events for The Safety Zone. The other is Island Stylin,' a fashion show held in August. Between the two, Kern says, the agency reaches out to just about everyone – both donors and attendees – on St. John, and beyond. "The fashion show is a big draw for locals," she explains. "With the art auction, we're focusing on snowbirds and other island visitors, as well as residents."
From the start, St. John's two resorts have supported the efforts – the Westin as the site of the auction with its attendant dinner dance, and Caneel Bay as the venue for the fashion show.
Saturday's event will get under way with cocktails and previewing of the auction items at 6 p.m. There will be a silent auction through the evening of items valued at $250 and under. Dinner is at 8 p.m., with the live auction to follow. Former St. John resident Tate Conkey, who owns an auction house in New Hampshire, will call the bids, with Jamz radio's Robert Luke and the government television channel's Lorna Nichols serving as master and mistress of ceremonies. Carlie Powell and Paradise People will provide music for listening and dancing.
Introducing an element of chance into the proceedings, as many as a hundred teddy bears will be offered for outright sale at $20 apiece. Each will hold a miniature shopping bag. "All but one of the bags will contain a chocolate kiss," Kern says. "One will have a $600 gold ring from Verace St. John" – designed by John Kennedy, who pioneered the use of cylindrical gemstones set into gold. How many bears will be up for sale will depend on how many the auction committee members can lay their hands on. "We've got 45 so far," Kern says, "and we're looking for more."
Internationally recognized artist Don Dahlke, a former St. Croix resident, donated the oil painting used for this year's auction poster. It's one of his signature "portal" images, depicting an architectural exterior with a window enticing the viewer's eye into the dark interior and then, through a window on the other side, to a bright sea view beyond.
As of Monday evening, 70 of the auction items were up on the web site, with at least 10 more recent arrivals awaiting posting. "The site will be updated throughout the week," Kern says. To view it, just click here www.zoneauction.org.
Those wishing to submit bids in advance on any of the displayed items may do so by telephoning the Safety Zone office at 690-7233 or 693-7233. Successful bidders – to be confirmed at the end of the auction – may pay for purchases by cash, check or charge card.
"If an artist has specified a reserve (minimum) opening bid, we will respect that," Kern says. "When people call in to bid on such an item, we will give them that information."
While the web site is a work in progress, Kern says, "We thought this was an excellent first step. Kevin Patrick donated the work and we got it up. The government has been talking since last year about a $750,000 web site that still isn't up."
Tickets for the dinner and auction are $65 per person, or $600 for a table for 10. Admission to the auction without dinner is $20. Tickets are being sold at Connections, the St. John Drug Center and the Safety Zone office on St. John, and at Color of Joy (American Yacht Harbor) and Blue Turtle Gallery (Government Hill) on St. Thomas.