The 44th annual Waxahachie Chamber of Commerce auction is off to a wild start.

The Oct. 6 event will feature several new auction items and WFAA’s Dale Hanson will serve as the emcee.

The chamber will auction up to 150 items that connect back to Waxahachie. Waxahachie Chamber of Commerce President Sandy King was quick to note the VIP suite package for a Waxahachie High School football game of the bidder’s choice that includes a signed helmet and a catered dinner. Another experience includes breakfast with a police officer that concludes with a ride to school. Since the theme is "safari," plenty of excursions and guns will be auctioned off as well.

“The biggest thing I’m proud about is that everything is going to be local,” King assured. “Last year we kind of went far and wide and we thought, ‘you know what, we need to bring it back home.’ It’s going to be a great opportunity for local businesses and artists to get exposure for what they do.”

The silent auction will take place from 6—8 p.m. and in the meantime bidding for a karaoke act will occur. Mayor Kevin Strength and Melissa Ballard, as well as several others, will be bid on to sing a song of their choice. The chamber is still seeking brave names to commit for a chance at performing.

The live auction will start between 8:15—8:30 p.m. Right now, the auction is set up with paper ballots.

The chamber is also still accepting auction items. If interested in donating an item, contact the Waxahachie Chamber of Commerce Director of Development Victoria Martinelli at vmartinelli@waxahachiechamber.com.

The committee that organized the auction is comprised of all men, which consists of Brian Stevens as chair and Adrian Sanchez as co-chair. Also on the committee is Marcus Armstrong, Kip Fedora and Dale Sigler and a few others.

There is no particular attire this year, though King acknowledged people could come as they are or arrive in cocktail attire like in years past. Committee members who helped organize the event will be dressed in safari-themed clothing. King and Martinelli encouraged other guests to dress up if interested.

One noticeable change this year is the ticket prices, dropping from $75 to $50 with a table for eight running $350.

The ticket includes an exotic, high-end meal provided by My Sister’s Affair and an open bar. DJ Alexx will provide live entertainment.

The chamber has contracted The Mix to decorate and Source Craft Cocktails will tend the bar.

Money raised goes toward the chamber budget that helps pay for guest speakers and free courses provided to chamber members. A portion of the auction proceeds will be funneled back into local nonprofits as well. So far in 2018, the chamber has donated over $16,000 to 21 different nonprofits. A total of $1,500 will also be given toward Waxahachie High School Project Graduation.

Ticket sales will cut off a week before the event. For more information or to purchase a ticket, visit waxahachiechamber.com. The event will take place on Oct. 6 from 6—8 p.m. at the Waxahachie Chamber of Commerce.

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Ashley Ford | @aford_news | 469-517-1450