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SILVER ANNIVERSARY: 25TH CHANNEL 56 AUCTION CARRIES ON TRADITION BEGINNING SATURDAY, APRIL 17

 DETROIT, April 15 /PRNewswire/ -- On Saturday, April 17 at 10 a.m., WTVS-Channel 56 will begin broadcasting the 25th Annual Channel 56 Auction. The televised auction will continue for eight days.
 In 1969, the first televised auction in Southeastern Michigan was held at Tel-Twelve Mall and aired on the fledgling public television station to raise funds and keep "Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood" and "The French Chef" on the air.
 This once bold experiment captured the imagination of the city and has become a Detroit institution, bringing nearly 3,000 volunteers from every walk of life together at one time to support a common purpose.
 This year, WXYZ-TV veteran Jim Herrington and Carol Camiener serve as the celebrity chairpersons of the auction.
 "The Channel 56 Auction is a great Detroit success story," says Auction Manager Levona Whitaker. "In addition to being a major fundraiser for WTVS, it is a glowing example of how people can come together and bring out the best in our town. Jim and Carol are an example of the kind of commitment we've relied on over the years."
 This year the auction carries on the 25-year tradition with an eight-day event that is expected to sell over 6,000 items and raise $600,000 to help support Detroit Public Television.
 The Auction will air from 10 a.m. until 11:45 p.m. on Saturdays; Sunday from noon to 11:45 p.m. and Monday through Friday from 5:30 p.m. to 11:45 p.m.
 Donations are welcome now and through auction week. To contribute goods or services call Auction Central at 313-876-8350. To volunteer, call the volunteer department at 313-876-8369.
 Everything from Functional to Fanciful
 Items that viewers can bid on during the auction range from the most basic to the most exotic including the opportunity to actually climb the Mackinac Bridge or purchase a new set of top quality Goodyear tires for the car.
 A hand-made replica of a classic clipper ship, the U.S.S. Harvey, is up for bid and is valued at $5,000; an antique rosewood square grand piano by Newhall of Boston is appraised at $2,500. Flying lessons are available to the highest bidder as well as a catered dinner for 12 from the renowned Opus One Restaurant or a deluxe condominium vacation in the Virgin Islands.
 "Art, Wine and Antiques Sunday" is a longstanding auction tradition within a tradition and is scheduled for Sunday, April 18, showcasing an array of the finest wines, original art and authentic antiques. Most of the broadcast day is devoted to these items. The first Auction Celebrity Chairperson Mary Fisher, has already donated one of her own works of art.
 Proceeds from the Channel 56 Auction help support daily operations at WTVS. The 1992 auction raised $616,192 or about 7 percent of the entire operating budget. The auction helps make possible such programs as "Barney and Friends," "Sesame Street," "Masterpiece Theatre," "The Civil War," and locally produced programs like "Detroit Black Journal" and "Club Connect."
 -0- 4/15/93
 /CONTACT: John O'Donnell, 313-876-8164; or Linda Ashley, 313-548-3779, both of WTVS/


CO: WTVS Channel 56 ST: Michigan IN: ENT SU:

KE -- DE024A -- 6409 04/15/93 15:53 EDT
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