2016 Press Release

July 28, 2016

“What’s a Peach Cobbler Mennonite Relief Auction?”  Take one part high energy country auction.  Add two parts of classic handcrafted quilts and a generous dollop of home cooking. Throw in a barn-full of fun-loving, good-hearted folks with a touch of four-part harmony all intended to http://male-viagra.com/ meet the world’s most urgent human needs – and, presto! There you have the recipe of what happens Sept. 16-17 in Perry at the Georgia National Fairgrounds, I-75 Exit 135 in Perry, Georgia.  The cherry on the top is that entry is free, and all are welcome.

Relief sales are unique celebratory auctions organized by Mennonites across the United States and Canada to raise funds for people in need around the world.  All items for sale at the auction are donated and sold to benefit Mennonite Central Committee (MCC), a worldwide ministry of Anabaptist churches that responds to basic human needs and works for peace and justice.  The sale also benefits Christian Aid Ministries, a similar relief organization of the Amish and Mennonites.


The “Special Giving Project” at the Peach Cobbler Relief Sale will be clean water. Around the world, one in 10 people don’t have access to clean, safe water. Women and girls spend hours every day walking to collect water to drink or use for cooking and washing. And farmers lose crops when they can’t access water for irrigation. MCC works with local partners to make sure people have access to clean water closer to their homes, both today and in the future. This includes projects such as: constructing systems for collecting rainwater, digging wells and building dams for drinking or irrigation, training people to construct and maintain water pumps, and teaching sanitation and hygiene practices.
The menu of activities on Friday and Saturday includes a hymn sing and sale preview beginning at 7:00 p.m., Friday.  Saturday’s events begin with a sale preview and breakfast at 8:00 a.m.  The auction begins shortly after at 9:00 a.m. — don’t miss the delicious quilts, sumptuous handicrafts, and yummy antiques.  If you come too late, you won’t be there for the best items as the auction ends mid afternoon when all is sold and gone!   There is a quilting demonstration, children’s activities, & a homemade craft corner!  BUT most of all you are welcome to some down-right good home cooking — barbequed chicken and peach cobbler!  Everyone is welcome!
Contact:  Brenda Shelby, Treasurer at 404-344-5012 or  ashelby@comcast.net, Sharon Rensberger Co-Chair at 404-404-536-3577 or rensberger@comcast.net or Marilyn Schertz Co-Chair at 404-373-2907 or Mschert@emory.edu.

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Lee Family Vacation to the Mennonite Relief Sale

contributed by Jonathan P. Larson
Allan Lee with a favorite world globe purchased at the sale auction pointing out his dream destination: culinary school in New York City

Allan Lee with a favorite world globe purchased at the sale auction pointing out his dream destination: culinary school in New York City

Every year in mid-September, a remarkable family threesome appears early at the Peach Cobbler Mennonite Relief Sale, taking their seats in the very front row of the Perry fairgrounds hall, auction number at the ready.  A grandfather, a mother and her teenage son have already scanned the quilts, the antiques, the tables of model tractors, tools and knick-knacks. What sets them apart is that the savvy bidder, the one who holds the all-powerful auction number, is the teenager, Allan Lee.  His grandfather, John William ‘Billy’ Gray, and Allan’s mother, Amanda Lee, who live together on the northern edge of Perry, may whisper encouragement or counsel, but it’s Allan who’s in charge having a discerning eye for interior decoration, a love of world globes, old manual typewriters and cash registers, given his fascination for ‘buttons’.

It just so happens that this annual visit to the auction that Amanda calls ‘a sort of – uh – family vacation’, falls about the time of Allan’s birthday.  This year is a biggie – his sixteenth.  When they take a breather from the excitement and shouting of chasing rare deals, they sit together at the lunch tables with a circle of family and friends. ‘It actually turns into a birthday party,’ explains Allan.  ‘And, get this, when we drive away it takes a pick-up truck to move all my ‘presents!’ That pickup truck might also come in handy for Allan whose dream is one day to go to culinary school in New York and gladden the world with exquisite French pastry. Amanda laughs an aside, “Imagine. His grandpa is a ground beef kinda guy.”  She adds with a mischievous twinkle, “If it’s New York, I’m coming, too!”  Allan’s not so sure about that.

But cialistoday.com – there there’s more to this story of an intriguing family and its yearly appearance at a local charity auction.  Billy grew up near the neighboring town of Unadilla.  In late March, 1961 before there were advance warning systems, an F3 tornado tore into the community leaving behind a morning swath of a dead neighbor, of injury and ruin. Billy describes what he witnessed: ‘In the growing darkness, debris came skidding down the roads on the wind, limbs from old oaks tumbling down on homes and yards.’  And then there was the  aftermath: residents traumatized, roads impassable due to fallen trees, people paralyzed by an air of helplessness and bewilderment as the wind and rain died away.  “About 10 AM,’ recounts Billy, ‘a 2 ½ ton truck approached the town.  Out jumped a crew of plain-dress Mennonites from Montezuma.  With axes and chainsaws they began the all-important work of opening the blocked streets so that service vehicles could come and go.’

No one called them.  No one gave them orders.  They just showed up.  And they began clearing the roads.  “Through the day, they filled that truck with debris from the streets and hauled it away to the town dump,” remembers Billy.  So began the work of restoring a shattered town.

It is this encounter of 54 years ago, that draws Billy – and now his family, Amanda and Allan – to the Mennonite charity auction. Yes, the quilts are beautiful, the antiques and baked goods may delight your heart and belly.  But for Billy, it’s all about grateful remembrance of a certain terrible day when help appeared unbidden to get a punch drunk hometown back on its red clay feet. And that somewhere else today, some community has been rocked by trouble and needs a ‘2 ½ ton truck to roll in’ with able bodies, willing hearts and donated assistance.

This year’s Peach Cobbler Mennonite Relief Sale happens Sept. 11-12 at the Perry fairgrounds.  Proceeds go to help communities in need around the world. This year’s theme is education for neglected minorities in Europe and Africa.

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