The Ad Club in Boston, MA, in conjunction with sponsor Newsweek & The Daily Beast, gathered for the Mad Men Season 5 premiere. The Boston Sales Manager of Newsweek & The Daily Beast, Paul Gillespie, picked up the first drink for the first 100 people at the party. Guests came dressed in Mad Men attire and toasted the new season.
Gregg Oberg, Social Media Manager for The Ad Club, also offered a special treat to the guests – get your photo taken in Don Draper’s chair from Seasons 1 to 3. The chair was provided by A Chair 4 Charity, and all photo proceeds were sent to the Big Sister Association of Greater Boston. You can see pictures of Don’s chair at the premier party on The Ad Club’s Facebook Page.
Founder of A Chair 4 Charity, Fred Caserta (Principal/Creative Director of Stratford, CT-based Caserta Design Company, LLC), offered Don Draper’s chair to The Ad Club for the event through a social media posting.
A while back, Caserta received an e-newsletter (yes, a loyal fan, he joined the show’s mailing list) and learned that Mad Men was going to auction the set from Seasons 1 to 3. Still disappointed Jon Hamm’s appearance fell through, Caserta felt he owed the club some piece of the show, and if he couldn’t produce Don Draper in person, at least he could provide the chair.
Caserta said, “Owning the chair is like having a piece of television history.” Several of Mad Men’s promotional posters and ads showed Don Draper in the chair. The chair was, after all, where Don Draper smoked, had a drink or two, took meetings and even voted on merging his agency with another. It was the one item that anchored Don Draper over the first three seasons.
Auction Cause managed the auction for Lionsgate and AMC TV; eBay® facilitated the online bidding; and uShip’s Help on Wheels was the charity delivery vehicle. Bidding for the chair started slowly, but rose to a frenzy right before the auction closed, and Caserta had the winning bid.
Since ten percent of the proceeds from the auction went to City of Hope cancer center, Caserta thought he could continue to use the chair to do some good. (Hmm, wonder if Don Draper would vote “yea” on that!)
So, Caserta created A Chair 4 Charity. It’s Caserta’s way to share the chair with not only the fans of Mad Men, but also the advertising industry and aficionados of mid-century modern furnishings and fashion. Caserta makes Don Draper’s chair available for events -- proceeds from getting your picture taken in the chair benefits the charity the event sponsor chooses. So far, the Advertising Club of Connecticut held a benefit for the Connecticut Children’s Medical Center and The Ad Club in Boston sent donations to the Big Sisters Association of Greater Boston.
Mad Men’s set decorator Amy Wells has said that the show’s creator, Matthew Weiner, wanted such vérité on the sets that he requested “gum under the desks.” Sure enough, next to the prop department sticker number, there’s a wad of gum under Don Draper’s chair!
If you would like to use Don Draper’s chair to raise money for charity at your event, contact: AChair4Charity@gmail.com, Twitter: @AChair4Charity, www.facebook.com/AChair4Charity or call 203-378-5358.