LAWRENCE – If you love music, collect vinyl records or simply need to update your stereo system, you can do that all from the comfort of your home as Audio-Reader’s annual benefit sale, For Your Ears Only, is going virtual this year. What normally is a two-day sale in the fall is transitioning into a series of online virtual sales to benefit Audio-Reader.
“Given the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 and out of an abundance of caution and safety for the community, our staff and our volunteers, we decided to change our event to a series of virtual sales,” said Beth McKenzie, development director of Audio-Reader.
The first virtual sale begins at 6 p.m. Thursday, July 16, on Audio-Reader’s Facebook Live page. Hosts will showcase 20 pieces of numbered audio equipment, each priced below market value. This first sale will feature only audio equipment and will include unique pieces such as stereo receivers, turntables, speakers, reel-to-reel tape decks and more. Simply comment “Sold” along with the equipment number to secure the item. Audio-Reader will send a link via Facebook Messenger to pay directly online for the item. Customers will be able to pick up their equipment at Audio-Reader by appointment July 17-18. Audio-Reader is only offering local pick-up and is unable to ship or deliver at this time.
Future sale dates, to be announced, will include more items that normally would be featured at the annual sale, such as vinyl records, CDs, DVDs, musical instruments and more.
“While we are sad we cannot have the sale in the same format as we normally do this year, we think this can be a great opportunity to reach more people who didn’t know about our sale or who wouldn’t otherwise be able to attend. As we continue these virtual sales, we plan to have fun with them, focusing on specific equipment, records, instruments and much more. We will have Kansas Public Radio guests and audio technician guests that will make the show even more entertaining,” said Meredith Johanning, Audio-Reader’s assistant development director and virtual sale organizer.
Audio-Reader is not taking in donations for the sale this year. Instead, the audio equipment, records, instruments and other items that will be featured in these virtual sales are excess inventory received over the last year. Dedicated Audio-Reader volunteers have inspected, cleaned and repaired the items so quality pieces can be provided at discounted prices.
Proceeds from the sale benefit Audio-Reader, a service organization providing free reading and information services for individuals who are blind and visually impaired. The University of Kansas decided in the last few years to cease direct funding to Audio-Reader, making fundraisers like these virtual benefit sales vital to Audio-Reader’s operation.
Funds from the sale go directly to helping Audio-Reader listeners stay connected with their communities and live a life of greatest, possible personal independence. More information about Audio-Reader and its upcoming Facebook Live sales is available at https://reader.ku.edu or by calling (800) 772-8898.