This post is intended for others who are fundraising. I feel as though our Zumbathon was a great success for us and while I was a bit flustered by the time the event came around, I would totally do it again; especially now that I know what to expect. This was my first time planning an event (other than our wedding) and it really took time some time…and great friends to pull it off.
Details about the event:
I honestly have no idea how many people came out for the event; somewhere between 40-50 people. We had 4 people who came just to support and to take advantage of the refreshments and adult beverages. Everyone else Zumba’d their toshies off. The event was 2 hours long, with 2-45 minutes Zumba “sessions” with a break in between. This gave people time to check out vendor tables (we had 2 vendors set-up tables at the event, Scentsy and a nutritional product table), participate in the raffles and hydrate. We pulled winners for the raffles at the end of the event. Food and drinks were available throughout the whole event.
Alright, now for the breakdown…
ZUMBA Instructor: Free
I must admit, it wasn’t my idea to have a Zumbathon, my friend, Audrey originally came up with the idea, since she is friends with a certified Zumba instructor. Cyndi, the zumba instructor, volunteered her time for the event and also gave us some info to help us start planning. I am very appreciative and grateful for her taking the time out to help us out! I took many photos during the event; I hope she’ll be able to use for future advertising for herself.
First thing we had to book was the venue. Just like planning a wedding, we had to have dates in mind and check to see when the venue would be available. Cyndi was a great help in this department. She had suggested the local VFW and also the Purcell Friendship Hall. To be able to book the Purcell Friendship Hall, you had to either be alumni or an employee of Milton Hershey School. We booked this through Cyndi and Milton Hershey waived the rental fee, once they heard what the event was for. Yay! But I would suggest looking at firehalls, VFWs and churches as possible venues. Make sure you venue can hold a minimum of 50 people.
People can’t come to the event if they don’t know about it! I designed and printed flyers from our home computer, but I also had 4×6 flyers made using clubflyers.com (my hubby uses them for show flyers). You can get 500 4×6 flyers for “free”, you just pay shipping. The catch is that they advertise their business on the other side of the flyer (see photo below). I made sure to give my friends stacks of the 4×6 flyers, so that they could hand out to their friends, family, co-workers, etc. Friends and I posted flyers printed on 8.5×11 paper at local businesses; ie. Turkey Hill (gas station), Sheetz, Starbucks, Panera Bread, Borders, local library, grocery stores…any place that has a bulletin board. We utilized the internet and emailed the flyer to friends (who then forwarded the flyer to their friends and co-workers), we facebooked and tweeted the event and I put it up on craigslist. I also had an ad run in the local Merchandiser/Community Courier (free). And somehow a friend (Meghan!) got our event announced on the radio.
Front and back of 4×6 flyers from Clubflyers.com. What you can’t see is the nice glossy cardstock; super professional looking.
Besides having 2 dozen cupcakes donated by BeeBakes, which were sooo delish! A friend also donated 3 cases of beer.
We purchased most of the beverages from Sams Club, which included 2 cases of bottled water (36 bottles in a case, $3.98 a case) and 2 cases of 12oz bottles of Gatorade (24 bottles in a case, $9.88 a case). We also purchased 2 large bottles of wine, fruit trays, veggies, ranch dressing, crackers, pretzels, sausages, forks, plates and napkins. We purchased serving trays and tongs and cups (for the wine) from the dollar store. We ended up with leftover veggies, fruit and pretzels and also have PLENTY of plates and forks (purchased from Sams Club) to use at future events.
Almost everything we had to raffle off was donated. I really didn’t feel right asking for donations, considering we’re not a non-profit organization or anything, my friends really stepped up and took this task off my shoulders. Alex P., especially. She went to many businesses in the local area and got TONS of donations from them. I did purchase a $20 gift card to Tokyo Diner to go along with a sushi set that a friend (Audrey) had donated.
Some of the items we raffled off were:
- Scensty Warmer (donated by Erica)
- Sushi set w/Tokyo Diner gift card
- Movie Night gift basket (included 2 DVDs and TONS of movie type snacks, donated by Erin)
- Wine gift basket (included 2 bottles of wine, wine glasses, chocolates, donated by Culeen)
- $25 Bath & Body Works gift card
- $25 American Eagle gift card
- $25 Victoria’s Secret gift card
- $30 Great Escapes gift card
- 2 bags of Mary Kay products (donated by Irene)
We ran the raffles by selling tickets ($1 for 3 or $5 for an arms length of tickets), we had boxes placed in front of each raffle item and the person would put their raffle ticket in the box of the raffles they wanted to win. At the end of the night, we had lil’ B pull a ticket from each box and announced the winner. I think they also call this a “Chinese Auction”. Once we were done announcing who won the raffles, we mixed ALL the raffle tickets together and pulled a few names for giveaways.
Items we gave away:
- $10 Toys R Us gift certificate
- $10 Quentin Tavern gift certificate
- $10 Turkey Hill gift certificate
- $10 Sheetz gift certificate
- $10 A&M Pizza gift certificate
Luckily I have a friend who DJs (Tony from ITI Pros) and he was nice enough to provide his services and sound system for us. As “payment”, we gave him some of the left over beer. ;o)
Due to regulations of the venue, we had to supply a “certified bartender” in order to serve alcoholic drinks. Alex J. came through and hooked us up with a great guy who also volunteered his services for the night. I did have a tip jar out for him, but at the end of the night he refused to take any form of payment (I tried!) or the tips. He donated his tips to us. Thank you.
TOTAL SPENT: $145.89
Zumbathon & Raffle Donations: $1162.00
TOTAL PROFIT (Spent – Donated): 1016.11
I hope this was helpful for anyone who plans of fundraising an event similar to this, if you have any questions, let me know…you can leave them in a comment below.
We just completed our homestudy (I will blog about soon, promise!); we plan to use this $$ for our UCIS paper work, Pre-file I-800A with the US Citizenship and Immigration Services. We also still have to have Psych. evaluations done. Once we hear back from UCIS (and psych evals. are complete)…we send our dossier to the Philippines and we’re officially on the wait list! Yay! Paper work is almost done!