Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Fundraising in a down economy...

As some of you know, I'm the Director of a non-profit that does not have any state or federal funding backing. We are supported with local funds through the Chamber of Commerce and our own fund raising efforts. (ouch!) Someday I'll tell you alllll the things that we do for workforce development and literacy in a southern rural county....

We sponsor two major fund raisers a year... 1) A golf tournament in the Spring and 2) A New Year's Eve Gala.

We usually raise around $14,000 from the Golf Tournament and around $20-25,000 for New Year's Eve.

Well tomorrow night is the night! We are all set with food, monte carlo entertainment, fabulous auction items, and a great band- "DownStroke- which are Velcro Pygmies prodigies). But as you can guess, our ticket sales are down. It seems that people are qualming over the $100 per person price for the Benefactor package (brings you in at 7:00p - includes everything including Beef Tenderloin dinner, 2 drink tickets, Mexican Buffet at 10:00, and BBQ buffet at midnight. A great band and lots of fun. And of course, most of it is Tax Deductible). We also have the Patron package which brings you in at 10:00p for the Band Party and Mexican and BBQ buffets all for only $30 person or $50 a couple. Luckily we have started having a bunch of last minute callers... and hopefully they will keep coming!

So how will we fare? Will we clear $25,000? Will we break even? How we do on this event could determine how many programs and to what extent, we will be able to offer in 2009. If you are so inclined - I would appreciate you saying an extra pray for us. Prayers that the evening for the non-profit is profitable and for the safety of attendees.

I will let you know how we do with our fundraising efforts in this down economy!


Jim said...

I'll sent up and extra prayer for you. Hopefully it will be great. Are you having the silent auction again this year? Maybe you should just level with everyone and tell them that you are worried and how much you need their help. Heck, they might respond and give even more than usual. Good luck. I know it will be a big success, as always!

Ann said...

We ARE having the silent auction this year. In fact we have even bigger and better items than usual. Does anyone want the list of items we are offering? You could pick out a few and let me bid on them for you? :-)

We have everything from:
*original oil paintings,
*vacation get-a-ways to Memphis, Nashville, Montgomery, Destin, and Atlanta - Chateau Elan....
*Home cooked meals delivered (within reason :-)
*Diamond watch
*Fishing Package
*Guided Deer Hunts
*Pool Parties
*Baby package
*Cabin stays (yes our cabin is one of the packages - for up to 6 people, for a weekend, with food and beverages provided) Last year this went for $495.

I can get you or anyone an over the phone bid number.... just let me know!

Waynette said...

Wow, it sounds like you have some really great auction items. The cabin is a Great Deal. I know we went to Mt. Ida here in AR, and off season rates for a cabin(family of 4) were 300 and up a night. For 6 people plus food, that is a steal.

I'll say a prayer for you. Good Luck!!!

Sue said...

Ann, you must have been working your tail off to put this thing together! What a job and I'm sure you're perfect for it. Sounds like ya'll are going to have a blast. I'm not able to do any bidding, but would have taken you up on it in years past! Love silent auctions. Those oil paintings sound interesting.
And I must comment on the food! Is that an Alabama thing to eat every few hours? My gosh, this party sounds like your family on Christmas Day...lol.

Ann said...

LOL.. I guess it does sound like all we do is eat! There are several reasons for all the food tonight.
1) When people pay $100 per person they want to at least get some good food. Thus the beef tenderloin at 7:30.
2)The we were going to put out some Mexican at midnight for the late crowd but that fell through and they opted for BBQ.
3) Then the guys from the Mexican said - "Hey what all are we supposed to bring at 10:00..... and they are donating.. So Hey... bring it on.
4)Also, hopefully if we supply food people won't won't drink as much. :-)

I will probably only get to nibble out of the kitchen tonight and won't drink anything (alcohol- that is) till I get home.....!

We've had a couple of calls from Birmingham today saying they are band followers and will be here. In fact we are hearing there may be a large band following which will be good dollar wise for us but it sure changes the dynamics of the evening. This event has been pretty much the (hmmm... how do I say this polietly?) more sophisticated crowd. People who could pay $100 per person and still bid on auction items. The bar sold mostly wine (red wine at that). We have NO idea what to expect with this 10:00 crowd. It could be a Party Hardy, beer guzzling, Yippie Party Down group. Hope our 2 security people are ready!

I just hope we make a lot of money so we will be able to provide all the programs we have in the past!

Wish all yall could come!

Sue said...

Oh My, Ann! You may just have a tiger by the tail girlie...lol. All of Down Stroke's roadies are goin to the civic center to party down! Lets just hope the young blond man in the picture keeps his pants on...they're riding pretty low in that pic. Oh Lordie, I'll be praying for you dear. For sure, let us know how your bash turns out!

Ann said...

LOL... They are pretty HOT... aren't they Sue?