Online Exclusive!!! Date auction raises more money than expected

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    Many girls could only dream of flying to dinner on a private jet with their date or taking swing dance lessons after a dinner in Dallas. Thursday night, several ladies bid on the opportunity to do just that.Brothers Under Christ hosted their annual date auction Thursday.

    From a camping trip to a homemade dinner to a Galleria shopping spree, the members offered a wide variety of dates, all that include four or more people.

    Date auction chairman Jonathan Leer said the purpose of the date auction was to raise money for its campus-wide Island Party event in April. The Island Party, Leer said, is their yearly outreach event that features free activities, food and concerts.

    With the Sid Richardson Building lecture hall filled to capacity with more than 200 people, 42 BYX members auctioned off dates they had planned and are paying for themselves.

    Sophomore finance major Blake Billings auctioned off a date last year and participated again this year by offering dinner and a drive-in movie with two of his friends. He said he wanted to support the Island Party by participating in the auction.

    The bidding started at about $20 and last year went as high as $495. The event was open to anyone on campus.

    “I try to make it an event, like a big party,” Leer said, “so everyone can have fun.”

    Senior radio-TV-film major Renee Ducote said she has attended in the past and was entertained by the creative ways BYX members presented their dates. She said whether bought a date depended on what was for sale.

    “It’s more about the date than the person,” she said.

    Leer said last year they raised $2,500 and hoped to raise at least $3,000 this year.

    At the end of the auction, Leer announced the event had raised $6,730.

    BYX President Kirk Oliver said, although their goal is to ultimately raise money for the Island Party, they also use the event to promote BYX on campus.

    Some of the attendees don’t buy a date at all, they simply come for the experience.

    “The entertainment and the buzz is very exciting,” Oliver said.

    Sophomore social work major Kyndel Grimes said she went to the auction last year just to watch but ended up going home with a date.

    “It was an impulse,” she said.

    When Grimes went to the event Thursday night, she again wasn’t planning on buying a date but said she probably would.

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