As much as we love wildly innovative fundraisers, there's nothing wrong with relying on a good old fashioned event that's been done before. Because an event is on a much larger scale than other fundraisers, like using Fun"d"2 Raise cards or selling coupon books, it's best to keep your event simple, unless you have a lot of experience holding fundraisers. Here are a few ideas that are simple but still fun:

Car Wash
A car wash might just be the simplest event fundraiser. The biggest hurdle is finding your water supply and getting access to an empty lot. Your best bet is to ask school administrators to use the school parking lot. There is likely a lot of space and easy access to a few hoses for water. Make sure you bring a lot of buckets, sponges, soap, and squeegees. You may also want to bring a handheld vacuum to clean the inside of cars. This can be a great add-on customers can purchase for a few extra dollars!

Community BBQ
Everyone loves food and, as the summer months approach, a BBQ is a great option. Whether you hold it at the beach or the park, a BBQ can be pretty simple to host. First, check to see if your local park or beach offers BBQs or grills to use. If not, you'll need to bring your own. Make sure you have plenty of charcoal or gasoline, depending on what your BBQ uses. Keep the food simple to avoid any order mix-ups. For a BBQ, it's best to stick to the classics: burgers and hot dogs. If you know a lot of vegetarians, you may want to also offer veggie burgers. Don't go crazy with the sides. Offer two or three, like potato salad, chips, and/or cole slaw. Bring a large cooler for canned soda and bottled water. Don't forget napkins, plates, cutlery, and condiments! If you want to hold a BBQ where there's more foot traffic, talk with your local grocery store, Home Depot, or school (if there's a sports game playing). They may let you hold your BBQ out front.

Yard Sale
Every neighborhood holds yard sales, particularly in the summer months. If one of your teammates' neighborhood is holding a community yard sale, use that opportunity to fundraise! At the teammate's house, sell old items teammates and their families no longer need. If you don't have any furniture or clothing to sell, you can always sell food. People get hungry when they're shopping and a yard sale is a great place to sell beverages and snacks. Keep things simple, like offering lemonade and cold bottled water for drinks and bagged popcorn and trail mix for snacks.

General tips for event fundraiser:

  • Don't accept checks. Checks can be problematic and what happens if one bounces? Cash is king for a reason -- it's simple. If you'd like to draw more customers, consider looking into ways to accept credit cards. Many companies now offer easy ways to charge cards on smartphones.

  • Stick to whole dollar amounts. Don't charge $2.50 or $4.25 for something. Most people don't carry exact change and you don't want to deal with a bunch of nickels and dimes. For whatever you sell, stick to $1 increments. Similarly, try to charge amounts based on bill sizes. Rather than charge $9 for something, charge $10. The easier it is to pay, the less likely you'll have to worry about carrying around a bunch of change or $1 bills.

  • Advertise ahead of time. It's never too early to start telling people about your event. Advertise in as many places as you can.

  • At least week or two before your event, hang up signs around the neighborhood and advertise at school. On your signs, include the price in large letters and emphasize cash only if you can't take checks or credit cards. Don't forget the other important basics: location and date.

Have you ever hosted an event fundraiser? What did you do?