As technology becomes increasingly more mainstream, many traditional silent auctions are moving online. What are the advantages and disadvantages of a paper auction vs an online auction? Should you jump on the band wagon and trash the traditional paper auction?

Have you ever received a last minute donation? Its great to get the donation but its 30 minutes before the doors open and all prep is already finished.

The makers of Pearl Bids Silent Auction Manager have created a quick and easy solution - Pearl silent auction bid Sheets, an app to quickly print a couple of bid sheets.

It turned out to be just perfect for small auctions or that last minute crisis. This app is available in versions for your Mac (at iTunes), iPhone, iPad, Android (at Amazon or the Google Play Store), and Windows (at the Windows App Store) and... it's free! 

We hope this handy dandy simple bidsheet generator will help out you low-low-low budget fundraisers. For a real professional look, you will still want to purchase Pearl Sheet silent auction manager for $19.99.

October 2013

For Immediate Release: 
Press Contact:

Cameron Carey 

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Schools, Churches, Clubs and Hundreds of Non-Profit

Charity Events Can Benefit From This New App


1/13/13 - Marin county, CA – Oakgrounds Inc., a Mac consulting firm, brings its business-to-business expertise to an innovative new solution for volunteer-run charity events: Pearl Bids, silent auction management software. Pearl Bids puts the flexibility, ease and power of a tailor-made, user-friendly database and management system into the hands of non-profits for a one-time fee of $19.95.


For Immediate Release: 
Press Contact:
Cameron Carey 
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.




5/6/14 - Marin County, CA - Oakgrounds Inc. is excited to announce the newest release of Pearl Bids Silent Auction Software, the popular application that is quickly becoming a favorite of schools, churches and clubs. With the release of version 7.2, added enhancements and increased functionality make it an even more effective tool for silent auction managers. 

Pearl Bids puts the flexibility, ease and power of a tailor-made, user-friendly database and management system into the hands of non-profits, all for a one-time fee of $19.95. Heralded as the tool of choice for creating eye-catching bid sheets, Pearl Bids provides professional looking results for any user. Based on the feedback from users, the newest release incorporates additional report generation and printing capabilities, including the ability to print name badges for attendees. Improved import functions allow the user to take advantage of pre-existing spreadsheets.

The optional $99 add-on bidding license, which allows the non-profit to easily generate hardcopy or email receipts, and generate additional reports, and track bids, also includes new report capabilities.
A well-run silent auction can mean the difference between success and failure for many non-profit fundraisers. The little extra touches will have both attendees and volunteers remembering your auction and looking forward to participating again.

Filling a void in silent auction software market for small-to-midsized non-profit organizations, Pearl Bids is simple, powerful and inexpensive. 

For more information about Pearl Bids, please visit 


Oakgrounds Inc.

Oakgrounds Inc. is a full-service Macintosh business consulting company located in Marin County, California, specializing in the construction, support and maintenance of Mac servers, databases and networks. Ward Bouwman, Founder and CEO, holds a Masters Degree in Mass Communication as well as a Bachelors Degree in Electrical Engineering and Computer Technology. He brings over 10 years of experience as a Systems and Network Administrator, and is an Apple Certified Technical Coordinator. In addition, Bouwman has developed several Custom Filemaker applications that have been in use for over 10 years.



When planning an event for a school, many organizers forget one of their most valuable resources, the kids. In many instances, the students may not be mature enough to take on a leadership role for the event, but finding a way to include them, without them feeling as if it is mandated, will spur excitement, as well as a sense of belonging and pride for the kids involved.

What type of jobs could students have? Consider how the students can help with the decorating or prep work. If you have an event where food will be passed or even served from tables, enlist “children volunteers” to help with the serving. Even a 5-year old is great at helping put bread baskets on the table… Yes, you will need to have a responsible adult monitoring these young volunteers, and it may seem much easier for adult to take over the job themselves, but with each exposure the children will become more confident and excited about volunteering.

Be organized and keep them busy. One common pitfall is that children are recruited to help with an event, but then are not given enough responsibilities or duties to keep them active. While the duration and skill level should reflect the age of the helper, it is important to remember that they consider their time valuable, just as an older volunteer would. Be prepared; have a list of what needs to be done and when. For younger children, the volunteer time maybe less than 20 minutes, but let them know that no matter how they have contributed, it is appreciated and has made a difference.

Rewards or competitions can help. You will encounter slackers or kids who are “too cool” to help, especially if your volunteer crowd includes middle schoolers. By assigning a specific task or providing an award, you can help keep these kids motivated. Consider having some type of treat in place, such as a pizza for all volunteers once they have finished their duties. For clean up, assign different pairs areas and the crew that gets done first and has the cleanest area gets a special ice cream treat. (You my even want to present the job as a contest, but actually have enough treats on hand so that you award ALL the hard workers.)

The more they are able to physically see the result of their input, the greater will be the pride in a job well done. Children volunteers will also draw their parents to an event, whether it is to simply accompany them or because they are proud of their child’s involvement. Once these young volunteers get started, you all be surprised how many volunteer next time the opportunity arises.



Pearl Bids silent auction manager  is the perfect tool to easily set up, keep track, and run your silent auction.


Scroll through the feature slides or watch some of the how-to videos to see for yourself why our customers continue to use Pearl Bids year after year for all of their silent auction events. 


*The original downloadable Pearl Bids is available as an alternative for those who do not have wifi access at their event.