GW students packed the Hippodrome Friday night as campus leaders were sold to the highest bidders to raise money for Habitat for Humanity.
An “Old Hollywood” theme consisting of black and white balloons and silver stars dotted the stage as 31 student organization leaders strutted their stuff in front of 175 audience members.
The date auction’s emcees – sophomores Erin Lamb and Matt Lowry – read a brief biography about each contestant before the student entered the stage.
Residence Hall Association President Matt Frisbee was described as an “international tango champion,” while SA Sen. Steve Beam (U-SEAS) was introduced as being “raised by a pack of wolves,” amid jeers from audience members to “take it off.”
Executive Vice President-elect Anyah Dembling stripped from a black business suit to a silver metallic dress while on stage.
“I was nervous,” said Dembling, who was auctioned for $200. “I’ve never done that before, but I did the best I could. My family personally donates to Habitat for Humanity, so I was excited.”
Two “mystery dates,” SA President Kris Hart and Mary Mai, SA vice president for community affairs, were auctioned off, along with both emcees.
Lowry, one of the emcees, did a play on Tom Cruise in the movie “Risky Business,” wearing only socks, sunglasses, a shirt and white briefs, while dancing to Bob Seeger’s “Old Time Rock and Roll.” He was met by whistles and applause from audience members for his performance.
“I would definitely do it again,” Lowry said. “It brought in money, and I’ll help out anyway I can.”
Most audience members came to bid on friends, and many said they were relieved donations could be made on Colonial Cash.
Sophomore Megan Gordy said she would spend “as much money as I have on my GWorld.” Gordy won the bid for her friend Sean Holiday, sophomore Class Council chair.
The event earned more than $3,000 with 65 bidding numbers sold. Eric Wiegand, executive chair-elect of the Program Board, earned the top bid of $250. The minimum bid was $20, which all students received.
Each student leader will choose from more than 30 area restaurants for a free dinner. The highest bidder gets first choice from five top area restaurants including The Four Seasons, Blacky’s, Shula’s or dinner at an Orioles baseball game.
Proceeds from the auction, which was sponsored by the SA and Class Council, will go to GW’s Habitat for Humanity chapter. The chapter has plans to build a house in D.C., in conjunction with American University later this year.
Mai, who has helped plan the Date Auction since January, said the auction was successful.
“Our student body does care about the community a lot,” she said. “We’re going to give back to the community as much as they’ve given to us.”