For some time now, you may have seen the white signs beside the roads all around Marion and McDowell County. And we are not talking about political signs.

These signs, which initially aroused the curiosity of many people, are letting everyone know that the Rotary Club of Marion will hold its 33rd Annual Auction Thursday evening at the Community Building. This year’s auction should be the biggest and best yet, said local Rotarians.

“We’ve got a lot of good stuff,” said Walt Bagwell, one of the organizers.

David Wooten is also organizing this auction, which is the biggest yearly event held by the Marion club.

The preview of the numerous donated items starts at 3 p.m. Thursday at the Community Building. The auction will begin at 6 p.m. Many of these items have been donated by local businesses, organizations and individuals.

One of the items to be auctioned off is a 1990 Harley Davidson motorcycle, which is in pristine condition with only 16,500 miles. Another item to be sold is a package from Camping World complete with a tabletop gas grill, a cooler, portable chairs, sleeping bags and other outdoor-related items.

Morrow Insurance is donating an outdoor bar set complete with a bar, a large umbrella and bar stools. Some other items include a Fender electric guitar and a Gregory Wind River backpack. A baseball signed by McDowell native and Kansas City Royals Pitcher Greg Holland will be sold on the auction block too. Steve Duncan is donating one of his hand-carved walking sticks.

Still more items are 20 sheets of ¾-inch plywood, office furniture and equipment, a large tool chest with DeWalt drills. You can also bid on metal art work crafted by Turtle Laboratories in Marion. Lots of folks may have seen their creations at the Mountain Glory festival, said Bagwell and Wooten.

Then, there are the vacation packages. Folks can bid on packages for a one-night stay at the Stonewall Jackson Hotel in Staunton, Va. with six tickets to the American Shakespeare Theater. They can also bid on one-week accommodations in private vacation homes at North Myrtle Beach and Hilton Head Island in South Carolina and Avon beach and Wilmington beach in North Carolina. You can also buy two lift tickets for the Cataloochie Ski Resort in Maggie Valley and passes for the Biltmore Estate and Tweetsie Railroad.

Season tickets for Foothills Community Theater and a hand-crafted bowl from MACA are also on the list of items.

Private dinners will be sold at the auction. Janet Williams, wife of Rotary Club President Jim Williams, will prepare a five-course German dinner for a party of four. Likewise, Rotarian Alpo Portelli, who is an Italian-trained chef, will prepare a five-course Italian meal for a party of six.

Folks can bid on these dinners and the winners can work out the details with Williams and Portelli, said Bagwell.

Katy Cook is donating a $350 gift certificate of a photography session for the auction.

Those are just a few of the items that will be sold Thursday evening.

Both Bagwell and Wooten say the club has so far gotten $5,000 worth of gift certificates from restaurants, businesses and other donors. There will be a “buy now” table for gift certificates so you can buy those immediately and not wait around for the auction.

During the sale, people can enjoy pizza and food from Chick-Fil-A. Beverages will be available. Homemade desserts, including cakes and pies, will be sold too.

All proceeds from this event go to fund Rotary scholarship programs for McDowell students and the annual Christmas party for local children.

“This is our one fund-raiser of the year,” said Bagwell. “This money will go back to the community.”

Rotarian Rick Moore will be the auctioneer and there will be no minimum and no reserve.

For more information, visit the Facebook page for the Rotary Club of Marion.