Silent Auction for Flashes of Hope a Huge Success

Posted October 25, 2011

Photos by Nicole Weissman

When Caps fans gave a loud standing ovation during 12-year-old cancer survivor Anthony Holley’s ceremonial puck drop at the start of Saturday’s game against the Detroit Red Wings, it was the beginning of a night that would end with fans donating $28,225 through a silent auction benefiting Flashes of Hope.

During warm-ups, the Caps wore special jerseys with their names and numbers outlined in purple, the signature color for cancer advocacy. Each player signed his one-of-a-kind jersey, and the pieces went up for auction on the lower level of Verizon Center.

The table was crowded during both intermissions, and the jerseys quickly climbed in value, with some topping the $1,000 mark by the beginning of the second period.

Opportunities like this bring out a particular kind of fan – one who feels a special connection to sports memorabilia. For these folks, cost is not nearly as important as meaning or sentimental value. One fan told me he’s “Only interested if it’s one of one,” and commented that one of these special shirts “has a place in my son’s bedroom.”

On Saturday night, collectors had another reason to bid generously: Flashes of Hope. Flashes of Hope is a national nonprofit that helps children undergoing cancer treatment to “feel better about their changing appearance by celebrating it.” Award-winning photographers photograph children, a gift that is especially meaningful to families of terminally ill children, for whom it is “especially important to have a portrait that preserves forever the beauty, grace and dignity of their child.” Flashes of Hope promises to “photograph every child until every child is cured.”

And with a total of $28,225 through the silent auction, Caps fans can feel proud of their contribution to this worthwhile cause. But which players’ shirts were the biggest winners in the auction? Here’s the full breakdown:

2011-12 Team-Signed Guitar $3,000
Alex Ovechkin $2,025
Tomas Vokoun $2,000
Brooks Laich $1,350
Nicklas Backstrom $1,250
Alexander Semin $1,200
Mike Green $1,200
Marcus Johansson $1,150
Dennis Wideman $1,150
Mathieu Perreault $1,100
John Carlson $1,050
Mike Knuble $1,000
Michal Neuvirth $1,000
Troy Brouwer $1,000
Matt Hendricks $1,000
Karl Alzner $1,000
Jeff Halpern $975
John Erskine $950
Joel Ward $900
Jason Chimera $900
Roman Hamrlik $825
DJ King $650
Jay Beagle $575
Jeff Schultz $525
Dany Sabourin $450

Some surprises in there, but overall it’s good to see that Caps fans value this cause and this team highly enough that each and every one accounted for a sizable charitable donation.