Nicaraguan charity to benefit from signed box auctions

The idea for the auctioning the cigars came from Arthur Zaretsky, who, in December of 2009 attended the first annual “Sabor y Aroma de Nicaragua” tobacco festival in Esteli. The festival was organized by the Asociación Nicaragüense de Puros, an organization comprised of Nicaragua’s leading tobacco growers, cigar manufacturers, and other related industry professionals. Headed by renown cigar grower and manufacturer, Nestor Plasencia, some of its high-profile members also include such manufacturers as Padron, Oliva, Drew Estate, Joya De Nicaragua, the Don Pepin Garcia Family, and Perdomo.

According to Mr. Plasencia, the main goal of the organization is to “educate cigar consumers and promote the benefits of Nicaraguan tobacco products.” But the association does much more than that. Its members help supervise and improve the overall quality of Nicaraguan tobacco and cigar production, while also promoting the importance of the tobacco industry to the country.

The association’s efforts have helped forge a stronger bond between the manufacturers and the Nicaraguan government. One of the by-products of this relationship will be more cooperation in the area of government regulation. Moreover, it should be noted that Vice President of Nicaragua, Jaime Morales, as well as Robert J. Callahan, the American Ambassador to Nicaragua, also attended the Sabor y Aroma festival.

In addition to the field and factory tours, industry seminars, and other festival events, there was an auction to raise money for Nicaraguan charities. One of the items up for bid was a box of Padron Family Reserve cigars signed by Orlando and Jorge Padron, which was won by Arthur. Zaretsky. Upon returning to the U.S. Mr. Zaretsky decided to hold a similar charity auction on in which one of the lots would include that very same autographed box of Padron Family Reserve.

Calls were also made to several other Asociación Nicaragüense de Puros members asking to donate their own signed cigar boxes. The resulting donations included a box of Liga Privada No.9 Flying Pig signed by Jonathan Drew of Drew Estate, a box of My Father No.3 signed by Don Jose “Pepin” Garcia, and a box of Oliva Serie V Torpedo signed by Jose Oliva. All bids started at $1.00, and the money raised by the auctions will go to the Asociación who, in turn, will donate the money to the Santa Lucia Home for The Elderly in Nicaragua.

The one-time only cigar auctions will end on Monday, April 12 at 9:59 PM (ET). For more information and to participate in these special box auctions, interested bidders should visit

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Gary Korb

Gary Korb

Executive Editor at

Gary Korb has been writing and editing content for since its debut in 2008. An avid cigar smoker for over 30 years, during the past 12 years he has worked on the marketing side of the premium cigar business as a Sr. Copywriter, blogger, and cigar reviewer. A graduate of the Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, prior to his career in the cigar business, Gary worked in the music and video industry as a marketer and a publicist.

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