The tallies are in from this year’s version of the Mobile Arts Council’s biggest fundraiser, the Arts Throwdown held Sept. 26. If you were anywhere in the vicinity, this shouldn’t surprise you. In talking with organizers, the success is in the numbers.
“Well, we collected 272 ticket stubs at the door,” Mobile Arts Council Executive Director Bob Burnett said. “We had 210 last year so that’s an increase of nearly a third.”
It was obvious if you were there. The crowd was eclectic and thick, the energy level high. There were problems, but good problems to have.
“We had the same amount of food as last year but ran out in the first hour,” Burnett said. “Luckily David Rasp, one of our sponsors, was able to help out there and get some other stuff in there.”
Their ever-popular cocktail with the sizable wallop, the Red Rooster, suffered the same fate. Mixologist Bunky Ralph tripled the recipe this year but they still ran out after about 90 minutes.
Burnett said the live auction pulled in a new record to go along with new champion Rando Dixon’s victory for his artwork-on-the-fly. He defeated two-time crown-holder Jim Hayward.
The director was also quick to thank emcee John Nodar who filled in at the last minute and did an exemplary job.
The silent auction isn’t finalized yet as there’s close to $6,000 of silent auction material still in place at MAC. Those figures will cement as the items are picked up but Burnett thinks they’ll set new marks there as well.
“We’re confident we’ll meet our $25,000 goal,” he said.
So what was the difference this year? It was the first time they’ve used assorted ticket outlets throughout town. The weather also had to be a factor. It came days after the intensity of Mobile’s humidity somewhat relinquished to autumn.
Most of all, moving the event from a Thursday to a Friday had the biggest impact.
“I think a lot more people were able to make a date night of it, getting babysitters and whatnot,” Burnett said.
Congrats on the winning recipe as this was easily the best of the trio of these events thus far. Now, if they can just keep the Red Roosters flowing …