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Powercat Auction Reaches New Levels

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K-State's assistant athletic director Lon Floyd auctions items during the Ahearn Fund's 30th Annual Powercat Auction at Bramlage Coliseum in Manhattan, Kansas on April 25, 2014. (Scott D. Weaver/K-State Athletics)

May 5, 2014
By Kelly McHugh

On Friday, April 25, Ahearn Fund members from all over the nation gathered in Bramlage Coliseum for the 30th Annual Powercat Auction.

A night filled with excitement, more than 500 K-Staters were in attendance and helped raise a record $430,000 for K-State student-athletes to help provide a world-class student-athlete experience.

From Alaskan fishing trips donated by K-State alumni to traveling with the K-State basketball team to exclusive autographed memorabilia from some of the Wildcats' most memorable former athletes, this year's auction was a success for all who participated.

"One of the focuses for our live auction items is providing unique moments that put our supporters in experiences they may have never had before," explained Alex Kringen, Senior Director of Development. "Whether that's traveling with the basketball teams or going on a bowl trip with the football team, what we try to do is provide them with once in a lifetime experiences they will remember forever."

The night didn't stop there, though. 

Kringen said the evening's biggest highlight was the 100 K-State student-athletes in attendance during the evening's silent auction and social. This gave loyal Ahearn Fund supporters the opportunity to get to know these Wildcats who, otherwise, may not have the opportunity to meet.

Along with mingling with student-athletes, those in attendance also had the opportunity to take the first look at plans for the Vanier Football Complex and North Stadium Project.

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"They were very excited and the response was what we had hoped for and what many had been working towards," continued Kringen. "It was another exclusive element that we were able to include for the night. The K-Staters that come to this event are very supportive of us through Ahearn Fund donations and season ticket purchases so we wanted to give them a sneak peak of the plans for the Vanier Football Complex."

Kringen said the annual Powercat Auction would not be what it is today without Assistant Athletics Director of Development Events Lon Floyd.

"He's kept the fire burning," said Kringen. "For an event to be successful for 30 years and to keep the momentum going, doesn't happen too often, and it's a true testament to all the hard work that he's put in over the years."

Floyd, a man of many hats, ran the Powercat Auction for nearly 20 years before Kringen took over the event three years ago, and though his work as the event's director may be done, he continues to grace the auction each year as its auctioneer. 

When Floyd puts on his best cowboy hat, walks up on stage in front of the 500 in attendance and starts the bidding, Ahearn Fund members know they are in for an evening filled with excitement. 

"He's the main reason that this event has continued to grow over the years," continued Kringen. "He's really been instrumental in developing it further and building to what it is today, K-State Athletics' largest annual fundraising event."

When the evening in Bramlage was all said and done, the members left with new memories while the Ahearn Fund celebrated its most successful evening to date.

"500 attendees and raising over $400,000," began Kringen, "that's $100,000 more than we raised last year. That's a pretty good night."

To learn more about the Ahearn Fund, click here.

AHEARN FUND REACHES 10,000 MEMBER MARK
The K-State Nation has once again stepped up in record fashion as department officials have announced that participation in the Ahearn Fund, K-State's National Fund for Student-Athlete Excellence, has reached new heights and eclipsed the 10,000 member mark for the first time in school history following its 50-for-50 membership campaign.

"Grass-roots support of the Ahearn Fund and the unrestricted dollars given by our more than 10,000 members are the lifeblood of K-State Athletics," said Athletics Director John Currie. "With more than 500 new members in just over the last month, K-Staters have proven once again their tremendous support to the vision of a Model Intercollegiate Athletics Program and goal of a World-Class Student-Athlete Experience."

The campaign, which was designed to celebrate the Ahearn Fund's 50th year of supporting K-State student-athletes, was a grass-roots initiative to reach prospective members and drive new Ahearn Fund memberships starting at $50. With the first 50 years of the Ahearn Fund generating more than 9,000 total members, the 50-for-50 membership campaign was to push Ahearn Fund membership to the next level and reach 10,000 members.

To continue reading about the milestone, click here.

 

We hope you enjoy K-State Sports Extra. We would like to hear your comments and any story ideas for future emails, so fire them our way. Contact Kelly McHugh or K-State Assistant AD for Communications Kenny Lannou.