When Molly (King) Lounsbury sat on the anchor desk, broadcasting on WLNH for each annual Children’s Auction, she often welled up in tears. “The hardest thing was to not cry over things,” she says—as she cried while sharing her experiences. “The sense of community was so great,” she says of the people she worked alongside and the outpouring of support.
Molly reflects on the little actions that made a big impact on Auction fundraising, such as donated items, people paying $10 or $15 over the value for a gift certificate, and little kids bringing in $4.58—or other small yet mighty amounts—from their piggy banks. “I cried every year, especially when I was trying to get through my very incredibly long thank you lists,” Molly adds. “I usually lost my voice—that was a joke too.”
As an intern at WLNH in 2003, Molly was then hired as the nighttime DJ on air and was immediately assigned to work on the Auction. She worked on event logistics and keeping the radio station up to date with information. She notes that she was always, “figuring out what went well, what didn’t, how to improve, constantly brainstorming and trying to build the event.”
Eventually, Molly moved into a program director position and became a daytime DJ as she also became more involved with the Auction. “WLNH was captain of the ship at that time,” she says. “And the group that owns the radio station was managing the behind-the-scenes tasks. It was part of your job, but it was a very awesome part of the job. There was rarely a time of the year there wasn’t something going on for the Auction.”
Molly worked passionately, and as the Auction date got closer each year, her workload intensified with phone calls, equipment set-up and volunteer coordinating. As an anchor for WLNH, Molly not only contributed her vivacious personality on-air, but also her strong command of the technical aspects of sitting at the anchor desk and managing the flow of the Auction.
She reflects on the challenges of being in her position and the preparation and quick-thinking it required:
“At the anchor desk, there was a small board that controlled all the mics on set,” Molly explains. “You had to know what was going on, and where you were on the bid boards and set happenings. Should you close a board or let more bids come in? Had I thanked a sponsor recently? Had I shared where funding went last year? I liked to have information readily available too on where the money went in the prior year so people could see or hear how the funds were used and who they helped.”
Molly kept color-coded prep cards on hand so she could keep track of everything.
Molly says she was constantly balancing what needed to happen with what was happening next and taking breaks for music and commercials. “It was fun,” she says. “There were times when it was overwhelming because so much needed to happen in such a short amount of time. Sometimes I thought, ‘What do I do? What do I say?’”
She was dedicated to the Auction year-round and worked relentlessly to ensure that there was success in her department. Since Molly left the radio station in 2014, she’s worked with the New Hampshire Humane Society and currently works in her family’s business, Natt King Stoneworks.
She has continued to be involved with the Auction through donations, despite moving to the other side of the lake with her husband and two young children.
“I’m getting teared up just thinking about it,” she says. “Every year, it was just take-your-breath-away amazing because of the generosity of people. I miss the people, the laughter, the camaraderie, and most of all the magic that is the Greater Lakes Children’s Auction.