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Soon you’ll have an opportunity to put on your Fifth Avenue finest and head on down to Savannah Arts Academy (SAA) for the annual “New York, New York” Auction.

The event will be held at the school, 500 Washington Avenue, on Saturday, November 13 at 6 p.m. Proceeds from the auction will benefit the school’s theatre department.

“Our goal here is to allow our students to experience professional theatre,” explains Andrea Verdis, head of the theatre department. “Talent goes a long way, but we still need funds for the technical side of things.”

In the two years that the school has hosted the auction it has raised enough money to produce full seasons of plays and musicals. That’s quite impressive seeing as how all the auction items are donated from Savannah area businesses, families, and individuals.

So, is Ginny Racz, event coordinator and parent of SAA junior Kat Racz, feeling the pressure?

“No, I guess not. I haven’t had much experience with this sort of thing, but the seasoned helping me out so much. I’m really just hoping for the best and that we can get a lot of people to come. We’re going to have fun, good food, wonderful auction items, and we’re supporting something really important at the same time.”

Having been in planning for several months now, the Theatre Guild -- SAA’s theatre parent organization -- feels quite prepared.

“This is our third year doing this. It’s still hard, but we know how early to start now and we know easier ways of securing donations," explains a Guild member. “The biggest challenge is getting it out to the public and getting them into the auction."

Yes, the public would be you!

Savannah area businesses have certainly been generous this year. The auction list includes items like golf packages, dental bleaching, gift baskets, a variety of artwork, modeling class discounts, and a wide array of gift certificates.

If you’re one for homemade goods there’s plenty for you, too. Homemade wreathes, scarves, wall hangings, and handmade dolls from Geppeddo’s will be up for grabs.

Savannah Art’s Academy’s award-winning Skylight Jazz Band will be performing. Besides the music, the very entertaining Sebastian Verdis -- SAA’s Dean of Fine Arts -- and Nancy West -- SAA’s craziest math teacher -- will be the evening’s auctioneers.

Are you saying to yourself, “Ooh, pretty auction things?” Are you saying, "Ooh, jazz band?” But are you also saying, "Six o’clock! Dinnertime! When will I eat?"

Fret not! Your auction ticket -- $10 for adults, $7 for students, faculty, and senior citizens -- includes the cost of your auction number and heavy hors d’oeurves.

No, we’re not talking about pigs in blankets. For such an evening the Guild pulled out the big guns. Restaurants including A.J.’s Seafood, Capone’s Bar and Grill, and Blue Sky Cafe along with Brighter Day and Food Lionhave made their donations by catering the event.

Other hors d’oeurves, such as pizza, barbeque, and middle eastern food, will also be available. Needless to say, all appetites and palates will be satisfied.

So, if you’re in the mood for great music, a fun atmosphere, and helping Savannah Arts Academy’s theatre department, then, my friend, this auction is for you.


Savannah Arts Academy’s “New York, New York” auction will be held at the school, 500 Washington Avenue, on Saturday, November 13 at 6 p.m. Proceeds from the auction will benefit the school’s theatre department.