RestoreUVa aims to raise Rotunda repair funds
After generating $10K last semester selling University-related items, Hunter, others launch online auction to aid $51M restoration project
Restoreuva.com, an online auction raising money for Rotunda repairs, went live Saturday morning with 42 University and Charlottesville-related items available for bidding. Items range from dinner for four at a local vineyard to a set of Rotunda china to a day of golf with Dean Groves. All proceeds go to Rotunda restoration efforts, except for processing and web maintenance fees.
This is the second online auction to raise funds to repair the Rotunda, fourth-year College student Whit Hunter said. The first was last semester’s Restoration Auction, which collected online bids for University antiques from February to mid-March.
“Last year’s auction was version one, so to speak,” Hunter said. “Once that concluded, we made some changes and brainstormed [RestoreUVa]. It was really a communal effort.”
Anyone can donate items to this semester’s auction. Last semester’s efforts raised about $10,000, Hunter said in an email.
The total cost of the Rotunda restoration is estimated at about $51 million. The University hopes to get about half that amount from the state and will rely on private donations, such as those funneled through restoreuva.com, for the remaining funds. The restoration project began in May and is expected to last several years. The website’s creators hope their efforts will speed the process.
The group is looking to take this year’s auction to the next level, expanding its reach within the University and Charlottesville communities, first-year College student Reid Morin said.
“Basically the objective is to get as many people interested as possible,” Morin said. “We’re incentivizing charitable giving in a way that could interest a wide variety of people, so it’s important to get the word out.”
After bidding closes Nov. 25 for this phase of the auction, 42 new items will become available for purchase online.