The Society organizes and hosts an Auction and Ball every December with the mission of raising money to be donated primarily to women and children in crisis. In short, The Talkeetna Bachelor Society is a collection of single men who want to create the best possible living conditions and opportunities for women and children. Help us raise awareness of domestic violence, find ways to prevent it, and in the worst case scenario provide treatment to its victims.
The Society was created and hosted its first Auction in 1981 at the Fairview Inn. In 1986, Pam Rannals created the Wilderness Woman Contest in order to allow women to show off their uniquely Alaskan skill sets. The events, which had previously been underwritten by the Fairview Inn, reached profitability in 1989. The Society decided to make a donation to the Valley Women’s Resource Center in order to show their appreciation for the women that attended their extravaganza. Donations to the Valley Women’s Resource Center quickly became a tradition. The Society also made donations to local non-profits and organizations that addressed community needs.
In 1997, DX Russell joined Pam Rannals as an event coordinator, and the Society’s efforts soon reached a new level of success. In the ten years that Pam and DX worked together, the Talkeetna Bachelor Society made $32,200 worth of donations. In 2002, with the help and foresight of Jessica Stevens, The Society created the Talkeetna Bachelor Society’s Fund for Women and Children in Crisis with an initial donation of $2,000 to the Sunshine Community Health Center. By 2006, $10,000 had been donated to the Society’s Fund at the Health Center.
After the 2006 Auction and Ball, which was billed as the last of its kind, Marne Gunderson and Loudon Wilson agreed to keep the Talkeetna Bachelor Society and its efforts in existence. Beginners’ luck carried 2007’s event to $9,630 worth of success, and tragedy governed the Society’s donations. $2,000 was donated directly to women that were victimized by violent crimes that occurred in Palmer and Anchorage just before and after The Society’s events. In addition, $2,000 was donated to the newly formed Jessica Stevens Foundation, and $2,000 was donated to the Fund that Jessica Stevens helped the Society create.
The overwhelming success of the Talkeetna Bachelor Auction in 2008 allowed the Talkeetna Bachelor Society, with the consent and encouragement of Sharon Montagnino of the Sunshine Community Health Center, and the advice and assistance of Suzanne Yack of the Alaska Community Foundation and Robert Ambrose of the Jessica Stevens Foundation, to create a dedicated and managed fund with the Jessica Stevens Foundation. With an initial investment of $5,000, the Talkeetna Bachelor Society created an endowment, the proceeds from which will be donated to the Talkeetna Bachelor Society’s Fund for Women and Children in Crisis. With this critical investment, The Talkeetna Bachelor Society has guaranteed that the money the Society raises will be used to improve the lives of women and children for a long time to come.
A key figure in the success of the Talkeetna Bachelor Society is the emcee and a member since 1998, Robert Forgit. He thrives in the spotlight, but is no less valuable behind the scene.
The Talkeetna Bachelor Auction and the Wilderness Woman Contest would not be possible without the enormous volunteer efforts of many people. We are grateful for the spirit and energy that all of you have provided over the past 29 years. Thank you. Please keep up the good work. Now it’s time to enjoy yourselves!
Even if you can not make it to the Talkeetna Bachelor Auction, you may still make a contribution. Please send your check to:
Talkeetna Bachelor Society
P.O. Box 1063
Talkeetna, Alaska 99676
Thanks to you, the Talkeetna Bachelor Society made donations totaling $9,400 in 2011-2012.
$4,500 Jessica Stevens Foundation (creation of dedicated fund)
$500 Upper Susitna Food Pantry: Food Purchases
$500 Sunshine Transit Coalition: Operation expenses
$500 Upper Susitna Seniors: Meals on Wheels
Talkeetna Elementary PTA: Healthy Snacks
$400 DAC - Green Light Circus: Expenses
$400 Single Mothers-to-Be, Inc: Referral Program Funding
$350 Sunshine Child Care: Unit Block Play Package
$300 Trapper Creek Elementary School: Defibrillator
$300 Friends of Talkeetna Library: NewBuilding Fund
$300 The Free Box: Operating Expenses
$250 KTNA Radio: Professional Headphones
$200 Talkeetna Taxi (dba Sober Rides): Year-round Expenses