WELLESLEY ISLAND, N.Y. (WWTI) — An upcoming virtual auction will not only benefit a North Country organization, but also help continue outdoor education along the St. Lawrence River.

The Minna Anthony Common Anthony Center, along with local Auctioneer Don Peck, will be hosting a virtual auction on August 17. This three-hour auction will be similar to a “typical” in-person bidding war, where viewers can compete for the highest bid on items.

The idea for the event was first brought proposed to the Friends of the Minna Common Anthony Nature Center Board by the Nature Center’s Outreach Coordinator Darlene Sourwine. According to Sourwine, this was after Peck offered the organization his services for free.

“We really are appreciative of Don Peck, who is the auctioneer who brought this idea up to Darlene,” Friends of the Minna Anthony Common Nature Center President Andy Kane said. “Darlene approached us at the board level and we decided to try this out. So far things are going great.”

Items for the auction also have been based exclusively on community donations. For weeks, items have come in from local businesses, local and seasonal residents in the area. Donated items so far include antiques, decorations, brand-new televisions, china sets and even a Ford 600 Restored Tractor and a 2009 Honda CRV.

And funds raised from the auction will go to support the many programs and events hosted by the Minna Common Anthony Center.

“We have events every single Saturday, right through the winter, Kane emphasized. “And one of the most important events that this, this money will go towards is our field trips, our school field trips, where the elementary school kids come over.”

According to Kane, on a “normal year,” the center sees over two thousand students from local school districts. This, according to Sourwine, includes districts in Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties.

The Nature Center is continuing to seek donations for its upcoming auction. Items will continue to be accepted on August 14 and August 15 at two different drop-off locations> These will be located at the entrance to Wellesley Island State Park and at the Alexandria Bay Recreation Center. Following the auction, items can be picked up on

The auction held by Don Peck Auctioneers will be held on Facebook live on Tuesday, August 17 from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Following the auction, items can be paid for by either cash or check, and can be picked up at the Alexandria Bay Recreation Center on August 19 from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. Volunteers will be onsite, helping to carry and place heavier items in vehicles.