1 Sock Monkey + 1 Steam Engine + 1 Rabbit =

Nov 18, 2012 | 2 comments

I don’t know how the Columbia Heritage Museum fared financially at last night’s 6 x 6 auction, but on a scale of one-to-ten in the Fun Department, the event scored a twenty.  Bruce Peterson is the quintessential auctioneer for an art event here at the beach; the crowd was enthusiastic and just the right mix between zany and artistically knowledgeable; the paintings were even more delectable than usual.  It was the perfect formula for Fun with a capital ‘F.’

Though we rushed to get there, the bidding had begun by the time that we arrived at 6:10, fresh from a standing ovation for “Shoalwater Shenanigans” and an impromptu cast party at our house afterwards.  We considered, for about five seconds, not making the effort to change out of costumes and scrub off the make-up.  I’m so glad we decided to go!

Gordon Schoewe and Peggy Christianson saved seats for us so we had an up-close-and-personal view of the ‘artiste’ himself when Gordon’s “6 x 6 x the C” came up for bids.  It featured his iconic rabbit and was an instant favorite with the crowd.  The bidding was hot and heavy and I’m here to tell you that even though Gordon’s only remark was “So silly!” and he kept ‘chastity of the face,’ I know he was pleased.

On the opposite end of things, at least subject-matter-wise, was Noel Thomas’s stunning pen and ink drawing, “Train that Ran by the Sea.”  Again, I was covetous but was pleased that it went to long-time friend Nancy Lloyd who later told me that she was giving it to Cherry Harding – “for all her remarkable work as a volunteer.”  Somehow, because all the people involved have known one another for years, it felt like Noel’s offering was staying in the family.

The traditional sock monkey painting by Leslie Hall Lipe was, as usual, kept for last and, this year featured the monkey with a bag of razor clams in hand, and was appropriately titled “Limit.”  And, as usual, Karla Nelson won the bid but not before the price had run up to the highest of the evening — $500!

Afterwards, Karla told me that she had already named the monkey – “Jim for Jim Peterson,” she said.  “He is the beach’s best clammer, hands down.”  Good to know, I guess, but I wonder how he feels having a sock monkey painting named after him!

All-in-all, a busy and fun-filled day at the beach.  And now to get ready for the next one featuring another “Shenanigans” performance, this time at Fort Columbia.  Maybe we’ll even get another SRO crowd and a standing ovation!  You never know here at the beach…


  1. Leslie Hall Lipe

    Yikes, what am I going to be able to come up with next year? Maybe I should just ring Karla up and ask her what she wants…..or her sister Kathy.

    • sydney

      As long as that sock money is there, no worries!


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