Annual FWKCC auction May 18

Natalia Sparaiten bids on and wins a giraffe-themed live auction item during last year’s Farragut West Knox Chamber of Commerce annual auction and dinner, from which the proceeds supported the Chamber and its charities. This year’s auction is scheduled at start at 6 p.m., Friday, May 18, at Rothchild Catering & Conference Center in West Knox County.
Farragut West Knox Chamber of Commerce invites everyone to get “Friday Night Fever” by attending its annual auction.

The gala, presented by TDS Telecom, will feature a silent auction, dinner, a live auction and dancing starting at 6 p.m. Friday, May 18, at Rothchild Catering & Conference Center, 8807 Kingston Pike.

“I can’t wait for people to see the ballroom when they arrive; and in keeping with the theme, of course, there’s going to be disco lights, lots of fabric draping, and the entry way is actually going to be covered, much like when you entered one of the old disco clubs,” said Julie Blaylock, FWKCC president and CEO.

“People will have to pass through a curtain before they can see the entire room,” she added.

Tickets are $60 per person for FWKCC members, $70 for non-members, and a table of 10 may be purchased for $550.

Tickets remain available at and clicking on the events menu to the auction, or by calling the office, 865-675-7057, and reserving tickets.

“Every single table will come complete with two bottles of wine on it, complimentarily, and there will be a signature drink available,” she said.

Blaylock said this year’s attendees should expect some new features, as well as returning favorites.

“There’s going to be a lot going on at this year’s auction — tons of opportunities for people to have fun, meet folks and businesses they’ve never met before, as well as bid on some fabulous items,” Blaylock said.

One of the gala’s new features is a live band.

“We are really, really excited to have the Boogie Knights,” she said. “It plays all over the area and specializes in music of the era we are themed with.

“So, we are going to have that live band there, keeping the crowd energized during the silent auction.”

The event also will have a dance floor, and Chamber member Go Dance will have professional dance instructors on hand to give people tips on dance steps and moves, Blaylock said.

A returning favorite includes food stations the Chamber initiated last year.

“The guests had a lot of fun with it, and there was a lot of variety in the menu,” she said.

“We used to do a plated sit-down dinner for the auction, and that was wonderful; but we wanted to make the event a little more fun and promote networking because it’s really a great opportunity to still do that,” Blaylock said.

“This year, we again will have food stations tying into the theme, ‘Friday Night Fever,’” Blaylock said.

The Chamber will have the silent auction from 6 to 7:30 p.m., followed by announcements and presentations, dinner and the live auction.

Live auction items continue to come in, so the line up still could change, Blaylock said.

“We will auction off the table-top displays, as we have in the past, and there are several other items we are looking at making a live item,” she said.

One of those is a driving experience with BMW. The package includes an overnight stay, a tour of the BMW factory and museum and track time in a BMW of the bidder’s choice

Rothchild Catering & Conference Center and Town of Farragut sponsor the event. Rick Terry Jewelry is “bling” sponsor; other sponsors include Pinnacle Financial Partners amd NHC Assisted Living-Farragut; media sponsors are farragutpress and Viamedia.

One of those is a driving experience with BMW. The package includes an overnight stay, a tour of the BMW factory and museum and track time in a BMW of the bidder’s choice.

Another favorite is a chance to win a piece of jewelry, valued from $1,500 to $2,000, from Rick Terry Jewelry Designs.

“We are on pins and needles to find out what the item is going to be,” she added.

After the live auction, attendees are invited to stay and dance.

Blaylock said the gala is one of the Chamber’s fundraisers that help support its programs and continuing education scholarships, but it also donates a portion of the gala’s ticket sales to a local non-profit, which will be the Change Center of Knoxville this year.

“I was just fascinated with what they were trying to do, the positive change they were trying to affect for at-risk adolescents,” she said.