The glitz and glamour of Hollywood abounded Friday night when the Pawhuska Chamber hosted an estimated 280 guests for its 11th annual gala. The theme ‘Hollywood Osage County’ prevailed from the red-carpet entrance throughout a beautifully decorated Elks Hall. A black-draped backdrop provided guests an opportunity for glamorous photo ops with a coveted golden Oscar.
An abundance of silent items drew swarms of potential bidders with nearly 100 items up for grabs. Vacation packages included a ski trip to Breckenridge, Colo. The diversity of the vast assortment provided opportunities for everyone. The live auction featured delectable pies from some of Pawhuska’s finest cooks — Debbie Reed, Elsie Atterberry and Sally Carroll. Dinner party packages, a 600-pound bison, rifle and handgun also drew soaring bids.
Following invocation by Pastor Kathy Morris, guests were treated to a delicious prime-rib dinner prepared and served by Pawhuska Elks Lodge members. After dinner, tuxedo clad Ron Reed and Chamber Executive Director Mike McCartney invited guests to join in laughter-provoking games.
PDBC Coordinator Cindy Helmer outplayed her opponents in the “52-Card Draw” game, earning a Savage 22 WMR Bolt Action rifle which was donated by Chamber President Jeff Bute and wife Terri.
Dozens of guests joined in the popular “Heads or Tails” game which eluded unbridled laughter as “heads” was the prevailing call. Reed and McCartney assured the crowd they were not using a two-headed coin and even solicited four replacements.
“Tonight’s coin flip has to qualify for the Guinness Book of Record as the most times a coin has landed on heads,” said Reed. “Officials are obtaining verification to request to register Friday night’s event as possibly the NEW WORLD’S RECORD. We saved the quarter, two pennies and nickel and may frame them as a world record.
“We just kept flipping heads all night which is what the six finalists continued to select. It looked like we were either going to have no winners or all winners. So, we re-grouped and drew a high card so there would be winners and the game could finally be completed.”
Jana Sellers chaired the 2014 Gala. She was assisted by Maryjane Mashunkashey, Cindy Tillman, Elizabeth Hembree, Cathy Worten, Debbie Reed, Beth Reed, Diana Gaffney, Patricia Wilson, Jon Marie Wilson, Kathryn Chambers, Debbie Long, Marlene Mosley, and Beverly Tolson. Laura Reed was the Live Auction Clerk. Steve and Debbie Easley handled all auction receipts.
Chamber Board of Directors are Jeff Bute, President, Patricia Wilson, Vice President, Kathryn Chambers, Secretary, Mike Tolson, Treasurer, Jana Sellers, Laura Glentzer, Joey Lee, Jared Lemons and Debbie Long. Reba Bueno assists McCartney as Chamber Secretary.
The Gala is the Chamber’s major fund-raising event. Its success is made possible through the generous donations of supporters.
“With members like you, we are able to provide a sustainable business community in Osage County as well as foster growth and positive change,” McCartney said. “Did you know that 63 percent of consumers are more likely to purchase goods and services from a business if they know they are a member of the Chamber? That is two out of three customers and shows true membership value!”
McCartney explained that the mission of the Pawhuska Chamber of Commerce is to preserve and protect the history of Pawhuska and ensure its future by promoting community participation and involvement in tourism and economic development. He also noted that benefits extend to a member’s employees and staff.
“Whether you choose to take advantage of our fabulous bi-monthly ‘Food for Thought’ seminars, post a hot deal online, sponsor an event, or serve on a committee, your engagement will help you development our business and make valuable connections,” said McCartney.
Reed added, “The Gala is truly a big time event for Pawhuska. The Silent Auction and Life Auction items are unbelievable with the many buyers stepping up to make an enjoyable evening.”
“I also wish to extend a thank you to the donors and the bidders for making the Gala a success,” said Gala Chair Sellers.