This was the 20th year for the Rainbow Center auction, which was Saturday at the Riverport Landing in Kansas City. All proceeds from the event are used to handle the center’s daily operations such as utilities and fuel. The Rainbow Center, which opened in 1977, provides services to children and adults with special needs. Cerner, which owns the former Sam’s Town building, has donated the location to the Rainbow auction since 2006.

Billie Foster looks forward to the Rainbow Auction Gala every year, and this year was no different.   “I come every year,” said the Independence resident. “I enjoy seeing all of the Rainbow Center kids. They just look so excited, and there are some great items to bid on too.” This was the 20th year for the Rainbow Center auction, which was Saturday at the Riverport Landing in Kansas City. All proceeds from the event are used to handle the center’s daily operations such as utilities and fuel. The Rainbow Center, which opened in 1977, provides services to children and adults with special needs. Cerner, which owns the former Sam’s Town building, has donated the location to the Rainbow auction since 2006.   “We are so very excited for the event this year,” said Colleen Foudree, chairperson of the Rainbow Center auction. “I think the evening is special because we see so many people come together to support a worthy cause. There are many people to thank for the continued success of this event. It is not just the volunteers, but the community members and donors who come out in support.”   The evening got off to a slow start not only because of the snow storm, but because of the University of Missouri basketball game, which ended shortly after the auction began. However, Marilu Herrick, director of the Rainbow Center, said the event continued to have the same exciting atmosphere with those who braved the elements.   “It was warm and sunny inside the venue, especially with all of the people who were willing to be adventurous,” she said. “I think the most fun aspect of this event is getting the people together and seeing those that we might only see once a year. We are getting back in touch with the people who continue to be friends of the Rainbow Center.”   Items this year in the silent auction included gift baskets, certificates for spa services and carpet cleaning, art, sports memorabilia and home décor items. In the voice auction, people were able to bid on larger items such as a Lakewood dinner cruise, a shopping spree package to the Country Club Plaza, a barbecue grill, jewelry and a high definition television. Although the total raised is not known yet, the year’s goal was to raise $100,000, after expenses.   “I have been coming to the auction for several years, and it is still pretty incredible to see all these people who come to the event,” said Abby Snyder, of Greenwood. “I think it is important for everyone to come together in support of this event simply because it is a fun evening.”   Warren Goessling, of Oak Grove, said he has been an active volunteer with Rainbow Center and was eager to participate in the auction this year.   “We came here last year and had such a good time,” he said. “I think it is important to support the work the Rainbow Center does for the children. I believe once you go there to volunteer, you truly feel obligated to keep going back to help these children. It is such a special organization that is doing great work.”