This past weekend Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metropolitan Detroit hosted its 2nd annual Great BIG Auction at the MotorCity Casino Sound Board Theater. Shattering last year’s record, nearly 300 people attended the new-style charity event that was hosted by Fox 2 News’ Maurielle Lue, Detroit News Columnist Chuck “Style Guru” Bennett and chaired by Rick Hampson, president of Citizens Bank of Michigan.
The Great Big Auction- “A Night in Paradise” featured a chance to bid on once-in- a-lifetime, experiential live auction packages created by the Class of 2018 Great Big Auction Warriors. This year’s Warrior class included:
Event Chairman: Rick Hampson- Citizens Bank
Host & Warrior: Chuck Bennett- Detroit News Columnist
Hostess: Maurielle Lue- Fox 2 Detroit News
Angye Ennis- Ennis Entertainment Media
Armond Rashad Harris- Jabs Gym
Chris Pence- CR6 Business Solutions
Chef Bobby (Robert) Nahra- Fox 2 Detroit
Dewey Steffen- Great Lakes Wealth
Garyn O. Davis- GM Financial
Grace Keros- American Coney Island
Jeannine Gant- BBBSMD
Laith Hanna- Motor City Petroleum
Ngum Suh- NLS Consultants
Rob Sims- OBDIOS Group LLC, Former Detroit Lions Player
Surprise Warrior- HOUR Media
William “Bill” Avery- UBS
These movers and shakers of Southeast Michigan each possess a strong connection to
philanthropy, youth development and civic engagement. This year’s class created live auction packages with assistance from Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metropolitan Detroit value ranging between $2,500 - $10,000. Packages included private movie screening rentals and detroit sports tickets in “The District Detroit Sports & Entertainment” package presented by Rick Hampson and Paul Glantz, founder & chairman of Emagine Entertainment. Another high-bidding package included the “Ultimate Locker Room Celebrity Experience” (presented by former Detroit Lions Rob Sims) featuring an exclusive dinner, 18 holes, Michigan State Football press box experience with celebrity guest Calvin “Megatron” Johnson (former Detroit Lions WR) and Jason Strayhorn (Football Analyst). A once in a lifetime package item included a personal ride on the Zamboni during a Detroit Red Wings home game (presented by Dewey Steffen, CEO & Chief Investor of Great Lakes Wealth).
New elements and great surprises filled the evening including a live performance from
local recording artist Beth during the presentation of a “Day at Sea” yacht ride with food, cocktails and live entertainment (presented by Angye Ennis, Ennis Entertainment). BBBS incorporated a new style of pop-up bingo referred to as MATCH led by the comical BET "Comic View" comedienne, Coco. Guest filled their “MATCH” boards with seashells and pebbles from their table’s treasure box centerpieces, after Coco mentioned a “match activity” Bigs and Littles partake in, during her comedy sketch.
Over 50 guest left as winners receiving prizes from the silent auction (including 1 night hotel stays, concert tickets, wine etc.), live auction, pop-up “MATCH” bingo sponsored by Ally Financial and Hidden Treasure moments sponsored by Wells Fargo, Citizens and Terry McElroy. The evening concluded with the crowning of the top 3 GBA Warrior Fundraisers. First place was presented to Chef Bobby Nahra & Chuck Bennett’s “Top 12 Dining Experiences,” second place was awarded to Dewey Steffen “Doing it Up in the D, With Friends in the D,” tied in third place was Chris Pence “The Harbor Bay with Sara Bareilles” and Laith Hanna “Shop-N-See.” For a full review of the 2018 live auction packages click here. "We are so grateful to everyone who attended and supported our event,” says Jeannine Gant, CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metro Detroit. “We believe that mentoring plays an important role in helping at risk youth see the possibilities of a successful future. The money we raise allows us to match more children with well-trained supportive volunteers who serve as mentors."
Over $155,000 was raised to benefit BBBS mentoring efforts for kids in Macomb, Oakland and Wayne counties. If you would like to contribute to our mentoring efforts click here.
*Event photography provided by Be Updated Photography & Videography, Dan Moen (HOUR Media) and I Got Photobooth.