The economy isn’t great right now so you may be struggling to fundraise those final dollars to get you through the season. If you get creative, there are plenty of options outside of cookie dough and loyalty cards (although those can be big hitters).
If you’re still looking for that one great idea to help your booster club bring home the bacon, here are some ideas. We asked around and came up with ten unique fundraising ideas to help you cover everything from your shoulder pads to your Hudl subscription and still have some dough left over.
Run-a-Thon, Lift-a-Thon, Wrestle-a-Thon, Mow-a-Thon—really Anything-a-thon. If players ask for pledges per how many hundreds of pounds they can lift, miles they can run, or matches they can win – you can come up with the dollars fast (and your players get some extra conditioning along the way).
Set a minimum of $150 raised per player and all of a sudden you are looking at $2,250 for your entire 15-man basketball roster.
Punt, Pass, & Kick
The NFL does a great job with this concept and there’s no reason it can’t be brought to the high school level. Parents and local community members can pay a fee to have their kids involved in a Punt, Pass & Kick competition to win prizes, but more importantly showcase their talent in front of the entire audience.
Usually there are 5 separate age divisions (6-7, 8-9, 10-11, 12-13, and 14-15). Each participant is allowed one punt, one pass and one placekick as part of his or her competition. Check out the rules to make sure you score the contest correctly.
Basketball team? Do a shooting contest at halftime instead. Allow each player to shoot 10 balls. Put a time limit of 1 minute for each shooter. The player who makes the most shots wins. It’s that easy.
Hall of Fame Party
Invite the local celebrities from past teams – 10, 15, 25 years ago to attend a dinner at your high school or a nearby restaurant. Charge $25 per seat and have a celebrity sit at each dinner table. Need more money outside of the dinner tickets?
- Have the celebs autograph sports memorabilia. Sell raffle tickets and raffle off the merchandise.
- Host a silent auction. Get local business to donate golf foursomes, dinner gift certificates, movie tickets, or weekend getaway packages to include in your auction.
Have teams pay to participate in your scavenger hunt and the winning team earns the pot o’ money. Make an off-the-wall list and have participants hunt to find your unusual items. Have your teams dress up in costumes and judge for the wackiest outfit.
Online Garage Sale - Use eBay to Its Full Potential
Local team garage sales have always been successful. Now, they can be even easier by turning your garbage into someone else’s gold.
Ask everyone on the team to get their miscellaneous items out of their parents’ garage and attic to sell on eBay. Use what has become the world’s largest online auction to raise money for your team’s fundraising goal.
Jail N’ Bail
Create a prison cell at your school and arrest coaches from your staff, your athletic director or even your student athletes. Allow them to make telephone calls to family and friends to raise their bail. They’re not allowed to leave until they raise their bail. This is a great way to get tons of people at school and in the community involved.
With Halloween right around the corner, this is a unique way to raise funds for your team all the while disposing of left over pumpkin and jack-o-lanterns in your community. Here’s how it works:
Volunteers build (or you can buy) a medieval-style catapult (a.k.a. trebuchet):
- One person pulls the long, catapulting arm to the ground, while two others push the 214-pound weight on the other end of the arm up in the air.
- The arm is then secured by a rope and the pumpkin put into a large sling.
- Another volunteer gives the rope a good yank, the trigger is let loose, the arm swings, and the pumpkin soars through the air.
Charge $10 per pumpkin and allow part of the money raised to go to the person with the longest Punkin’ Chunkin’ toss. Make sure no people, cars or three bedroom houses are in the way of your Chunkin Contest. You never know, maybe your team will be so great they’ll be World Championship Punkin Chunkin contest bound.
Not everyone is the D-I-Y type. Likely members of your community would rather pay someone to do certain chores than do it themselves.
Turn your players into the best gardeners, painters, roof gutter cleaners, or dog walkers in town.
Ask your players to each pay $20 prior to the season’s kick off. Not only will they get an entire season of using Hudl and their own Hudl highlight page, but also agree to burn their highlights to DVD at the end of the season. We charge $25 per highlight DVD, but coaches can burn DVDs for free with their Hudl Video Editor.
It’s that simple. Ask family and friends to raise money in their offices. Then get social and ask the community to help chip in. You’ll usually find community members love to support their local students in their activities. You never know what you can get.
- Social Media: Tweet the request or post a message on your team’s Facebook page.
- Dial for dollars: Have everyone on the team call three people in the community to ask for donations.
- Send an Email Blast: Email marketing services such as MailChimp allow you to email up to 1,000 contacts for free. Use the Chimpster to send an email blast out to the community asking for donations.
- Set up a small display: Outside a grocery store, in front of a coffee shop, close to your local movie theater.
- Email Signature: Include a link on your email signature where people can donate to your team online.
- Put your heart into it: a personalized letter is the most basic and commonly used fundraising tool. Why? Because it works.
Have a fundraising idea that’s worked for your team? Post here and share the money-making knowledge with fellow coaches.
Kim is head of marketing at Agile Sports Technologies. She’s the genius behind our monthly newsletter and creative advertisements.