O2e fundraiser at the Anthologist
O2e fundraiser at the Anthologist, Gresham Street, 18 July 2018, for the Lands End to John O’Groats cycle.
After months of gruelling training, the boys were rewarded with a cocktail making class at the Anthologist with friends and family to celebrate all that they have achieved so far and to hopefully push their fundraising total over into their target of £5000. Amazingly, they seem to have met and surpassed this milestone with just under a week to go until they start, with donations still flooding in from far and wide. The support has been staggering and very humbling, the passion people show towards o2e has made this fundraising feat all the more special to the boys as they learn to appreciate day by day what this money will mean to families across the UK.
The evening was a real mix of events, the cocktail making class was kindly donated by James and various prizes for the auction, silent auction and raffle were generously donated by o2e, friends and family. The silent auction included a Royal Ashdown two ball, a bottle of whiskey, framed John Terry and Wayne Rooney signed arm bands and Cheltenham Festival tickets. All of these went and helped to raise the phenomenal total as accounted for at the end of this post.
The cocktail making involved a very patient instructor and a lot of flamboyant lemon juice pouring, most of which ended up anywhere but in the glass. Everyone got to try their hands at it and various levels of ability were on show- less Tom “Cocktail” Cruise, more Tom “Total Mavericks” Cruise, and the sticky gin mess left in everyone’s wake was a testament to this!
Then we moved onto the raffle. Oh wow the raffle. Sue Smith managed to pull her own numbers three times out of the hat but was still able to grab the Ryder Cup 2018 golf balls before anyone else. However, there was but one prize for most of the room. And that was a giant. Fluffy. Pink. Unicorn- jaw to the floor… So the real winner of the evening was Phil, one of James’ university friends, who got to take this squidgy slice of heaven home with him, arguably the best thing he’s ever picked up at, and taken home from, a bar. Other prizes included the inevitable shortbread, James’ ultimate favourite bath bombs and lots of booze.
The standout highlight of the evening, especially for Lucy and Harriet, was the sponsored leg wax, which in James’ case soon escalated to very much a sponsored ‘intimate area’ wax affair… colleagues and friends pulled away to their hearts’ content as a £10 wax strip got you two opportunities to cause some hysterical damage. Much laughter, cries of pain and shouts of glee emanated from a very weird group of people hunched over two screaming, initially very hairy, grown men. Mark even offered up his chest to Oxted HC’s Chairman for £30, much to the delight of his girlfriend (that mess had to go). Kev Smith, never to be left out of the action, pulled his shirt up (calm ladies, calm) and got £20 for a back wax, expertly delivered by keen beautician Brett Aldridge.
The patchy mess that remained of their leg hair was so horrific (strangely people weren’t going for a tidy finish approach, more a ‘where hurts the most’ tactic) that when Mark got home later that evening, fair enough a few beers and sambuca shots down, that he made Lucy finish the job (no complaints there, viva feminism).
The close of the evening was an auction, with Mr “Talk the Good Talk” David Turner expertly guiding the room around three sensational items- a signed Man U Rashford shirt, a signed Lions shirt (Lawes, Biggar, Haskell, kindly organised by a friend at the Northampton Saints) and the ultimate prize. Dinner for 8, all hosted, cooked and served in the buff by (the now very hairless) Mark and James. Plus there will be added (and we would like to reiterate, very much clothed) glamour in the form of Harriet waiting on the table and Lucy doing a terrible job of the washing up. Kev Smith and Mark Garroway will soon be sending out invites to a dodgy dinner party so do bear this in mind if you get an invite from either of them in the coming months, it may be best avoided so get thinking of your creative excuses early!
The silent auction brought in an astounding £950, the auction a phenomenal £1080 and the raffle, waxing and general donation of the night (text donations still to come in) a whopping £860. So an outstanding £2890 raised on the night! This brought the boys over the total of £5000 at the time of writing.
The boys had this to say of the generosity and spirit of the evening:
“Unbelievable how much we managed to raise in the evening! Just want to give a massive thank you to all those that donated items/prizes, those who came out and enjoyed the evening and also those who could not make it but have donated. Every little bit helps this fantastic charity.
All becoming very real now and it’s starting to sink in just how big of a challenge the 9 days will be but excited to get going and just hope the streamlined legs will help!”
The evening was captured on film and camera, so watch this space for a video montage online and potentially even at the ball in November (full disclosure – there will be some very uncomfortable viewing of grown men waxing one another’s legs for cash). New faces were introduced to, and captivated by, the fantastic work brought about by o2e. Hopefully the event and cycle itself will rouse another set of clueless individuals to sign up to something very much outside of any comfort zone they used to have! Thank you all very much again, it was a fantastic evening and thank you all for your on-going support.
To donate, please visit here – https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/o2ejamesandmark – or text “JHMG99 £10” to 70070. Thank you!