Valentine’s weekend saw the culmination of the Rotary Club of Grimsby’s newest fundraising effort, and a significant pivot in this time of Covid restrictions. 
Donate and Dine – This Valentine was a great success, garnering over $10,000 in gross receipts for the club over a span of 18 days of club members’ efforts.
Using a virtual platform, the fundraiser included an online silent auction website, a take-out dinner component and an opportunity to donate to local or Foundation efforts.  Community members were encouraged to pre-order either a Lobster Roll/Clam Chowder dinner or a Full Rack of Ribs dinner online and use curbside pick-up the evening of February 13th to enjoy a Valentine’s dinner with their loved ones, families, and partners.  
The instant notification function on the virtual auction site made bidding almost as much fun as at an in-person silent auction. Many of the bidders did come back several times over the two week period and enjoyed the thrill of bidding up their fellow 'competitors'.  Our most successful bidder enjoyed the process to the tune of almost $450.
Promotion for the event was primarily via word of mouth, donated mobile signs, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to keep costs down and generate an on-going virtual sense of excitement.  
Why this event and why in February?  Valentines is a time of expressing friendship, love, and support for one another. From school aged children sending cute Valentine cards to all their classroom friends, to couples enjoying a romantic dinner, to family members offering Valentine themed gifts to one another. And with Covid-19 upon us, Rotarians and our larger community could not participate in a lot of these Valentine traditions. The Rotary Club of Grimsby had figured out a way to recognize those we care about and help the community at large by bidding on donated items and ordering a wonderful meal to celebrate Valentines.
Rotary Club of Grimsby wishes to thank our in-kind sponsors JJ's on the Docks, Little Shop of Lobsters and PMG marketing, as well as the many silent auction donors and donors to Rotary projects who came together and made this event a success.  We also thank those who generously took an extra 3 minutes online to offer their thoughts and suggestions by answering an online survey and helping Rotarians to  prepare and plan for another similiar event in the future.
If interested, the website address was: