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Fair Auction Contest Showcasing Art of the Sale

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Auctioneer Tom Howard of Winterset (WHO-HD)

Auctioneer Tom Howard of Winterset (WHO-HD)

DES MOINES, Iowa — There was a lot of fast talking at the Iowa State Fair Tuesday morning and it wasn’t coming from any politician.

Twenty two auctioneers from all over Iowa and the Midwest competed in the State Fair Auction Contest.

Each auctioneer was given three items to auction off.  The money raised by the auction goes to support the Iowa Auctioneers Association.

“The reason we have this is to showcase to the public what an auction is,” said Burton Prunty, president of the Iowa Auctioneers Association.

He also says they hope to inspire more people to become an auctioneer. Prunty runs an auction and real estate business in Allerton.

“It might be a good business to be into,” said Prunty. “It is also a tough business, you have to learn how to manage an auction,” he added.  The duties of an auctioneer include working with the customer to get
the best price for each item, and then collecting the funds, as well as advertising beforehand.

For Tom Howard of Winterset this was a first to be entered in the contest. He auctions cattle each week at the Winterset Sale Barn. “You gotta like people to be an auctioneer,” he said.

Asked how he fared in his first competition, he said, “I got a little winded at the end, it went as good as I expected.”