High bidders for coal at a Sandy Chamber of Commerce benefit auction received the fuel last week just in time to stoke up their stoves and fireplaces before the Alaskan Clipper snarled into the Salt Lake Valley and left up to 18 inches of snow.

The coal was donated by Utah Power & Light and was part of dozens of items donated by some 100 firms and individuals and auctioned by the chamber at a special sale late last year.Chamber executive secretary Sherry Scroggin said the auction earned the chamber about $5,000. "The money will be used to help promote business and economic development in Sandy," she said.

High bidders for the coal included Sandy City Councilman Ron Gee, who ordered two tons; and Holly Ernest and Mel Nimer, who each ordered a ton.

The councilman's wife, Beverly, who is president of the chamber's Women in Business organization, said she and her husband began using their coal the very day they received it.

"We have a fireplace insert upstairs in our family room and a fireplace in our basement. We'll make good use of the coal this winter," she said.