Elementary School Carnival Ideas

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Fundraising Ideas - Understanding School Auction Fundraisers

So, yesterday I talked a bit about Fall gift and wrap fundraising catalogs.  I  believe them to be the easiest fundraisers to host that raise significant funds in a short amount of time. But there are a number of top fundraisers out there that schools succeed at regularly and with some consistency.  A type of fundraiser with a proven track record is a school auction.

An auction is a great way to raise a significant amount of money.  Classes and businesses provide the items to be auctioned off and then an event is held that includes an auction of those items.  Most of the time when it comes to elementary schools, theme baskets are put together.  For instance, a 'Chocolate Dream' basket may include a gift certificate to a candy store, some chocolate bars, a chocolate fountain and perhaps a gift certificate to a fondue restaurant that ends every meal off with a chocolate fondue.  This is just an example, however, there are many themes from hollywood to travel which makes the items being offered fun and exciting.

There are, of course, many variations on how to throw and auction from silent auction styles to live auctioneers and combinations of many other fun things that can be integrated to earn more money.  Being good at an auction is somewhat of an art but first-timers can have success as well.  I believe that a first-time event does get traction because it's new.  If the schools pulls of the auction the first year, it should be repeatable with similar returns.

The pros - on the upside, a very significant amount of money can be earned and parents will enjoy a great night out.  A successful school auction can be an annual gala offering proven success over and over again.

The cons - hosting an auction is a very big deal and requires many, many hours of work to organize.  Volunteers are needed throughout the process as well both on auction day and during the organizational process.  If baskets are paid for with cash, it is possible that the income does not exceed the value of the item.  This means that it is best to arrange donations from parents or businesses instead of paying full price for auction items.

Alrighty... So, today is school auctions and tomorrow we'll discuss cookie dough fundraisers!  Until then!


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