By Tim Saunders on
The giving just keeps on going this holiday season, with a whole bunch of celebrities donating items to charity auctions, and others taking the time to attend events and fork out massive amounts of money for good causes.
“They bought the two works for a price much higher than their commercial value, because the proceeds of the auction went to UNICEF," said Denise Ratinoff, head of the auction house that ran the event. “It was virtually a donation to UNICEF, and it helped a lot. Their presence in the auction made many other people also pay steeply for what they purchased.”
The previous day, on the other side of the world, another auction also saw generous donations for a good cause. A classic car belonging to actress Sharon Stone was sold for $400,000 at a charity auction during Dubai’s fourth international film festival, with the money going to the American Foundation for AIDS Research, of which Stone is the Global Fundraising Chairperson.
The 1961 Lincoln Continental was valued at only a fraction of the price it attracted, and went to a mystery bidder. It was the biggest item to be sold at the event, which drew other celebrity guests such as Michelle Yeoh and Hayden Christenson, and raised a total of $3 million for the charity.
Rockers Linkin Park launched their third charity auction through their non-profit organization, Music for Relief, last week, and raised thousands of dollars for survivors of the November 15 cyclone in Bangladesh.
The band donated items such as VIP concert tickets and a customized Xbox to the eBay auction, and were joined by donations from Avril Lavigne, the Smashing Pumpkins, Madonna, Avenged Sevenfold, Slayer, and the Deftones, with all proceeds going to the humanitarian organization, CARE.
Over 3,500 people were killed during the cyclone, and many more were left homeless, with the government seeking $2.2 billion in foreign aid to assist with helping survivors. The auction followed Linkin Park’s auction in November to raise money for victims of the California wildfires.
That auction may have finished, but one still running right now offers bidders a vehicle with a difference – a BugE. If you don’t know what a BugE is (or even how to pronounce it – the advertising information says it is pronounced “Bugeeeeeeeee”), then you are not the only one. However, to enlighten you a little bit, a BugE is a clean, green cross between a motorcycle and a three-wheeled car that draws its power from electricity stored in batteries, instead of from harmful liquid fuels. And this particular BugE up for sale has been signed by nearly 100 different celebrities, such as John Legend, Rodney Peete, Ne-Yo, and Chris Daughtry.
Another celebrity stepping into the world of internet auctions this month is Brad Pitt, who is going to part with his favorite gray hat. Pitt and his gray cap have seemed inseparable since he moved to New Orleans, and he has worn it for photos, at the Beowulf movie premier, and even during his recent Larry King Live interview. But now he is going to throw his hat into the ring, so to speak, for charity, with all proceeds going to his Make It Right organization. There will be more information when the auction dates are finalized.
And finally today, Paris Hilton is set to make a splash with her new champagne in a can, Rich Prosecco.
The hotel heiress was in Berlin, Germany, last week to launch her new “bubbly blonde” drink – which comes in original, passion fruit, and strawberry flavors – and to announce that 20% of all sales will go to a charity that provides fresh drinking water to those in need.
“It is the perfect ‘starter drink’ for your night out,” said the 26-year-old. “Or a special pleasure as a reward for the end of your day.”
The drink will be released in the US early next year.
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