From Pool Parties to Charity Runs: The Best Summer Fundraising Ideas

Written by
Quinn Wilder
April 28, 2023
5 mins

You're reading Fundraising Ideas - these lists give you new and exciting ideas for your next fundraiser!

Group of people at a summer festival

Summer is a great time to host fundraising events because the weather is warm, and people are likelier to attend events. Whether you are a non-profit organization, a school, or a community group, plenty of summer fundraising ideas can help you raise money for your cause. This blog will explore some creative and effective summer fundraising ideas to help you make the most of the season!

Host a Charity Walk or Run

In summer, people are more inclined to be outside and engage in physical activities. A charity walk or run is the perfect fundraising idea. By organizing such an event, you can promote healthy living while raising funds for your cause. You can create a registration fee that covers the cost of organizing the event and includes a t-shirt or other branded merchandise for participants. To further maximize your fundraising efforts, you can encourage participants to also fundraise through pledges from friends, family, and colleagues. Setting up a fundraising page can make it easy for people to donate and track their progress toward their fundraising goals. 

You can also offer incentives for top fundraisers, such as VIP access to the event or special recognition at the event. Moreover, you can engage local businesses as sponsors to help cover the event's costs and provide additional fundraising opportunities. With careful planning and promotion, a charity walk or run can be a fun and effective way to engage your community and raise funds for your cause.

Organize a Garage Sale

Summer is a popular time for garage sales as people tend to clean out their homes during this season. A garage sale is an excellent opportunity to declutter and fundraise for a good cause. By organizing a garage sale for your non-profit organization, school, or community group, you can turn unused items into valuable resources for your cause. You can ask supporters to donate items they no longer need, such as clothing, furniture, electronics, or toys, and sell them at the garage sale. You can also get creative with the items you receive by organizing them into themed sections or bundles to attract more customers.

Host a Community BBQ

Summer is a season that brings with it warm weather and an opportunity to enjoy the outdoors. It is a time when people love to gather and socialize with friends and family. For this reason, it's a perfect time to plan community barbeques and outdoor picnics as a fun way to raise funds for your cause. One of the best ways to do this is by organizing a community BBQ where attendees pay a fee to attend and enjoy food, music, and games. You can even spice things up by adding friendly competitions like cornhole, volleyball, or other games in which everyone can participate. The key to making this event successful is creating a festive atmosphere where people can have a great time and feel good about supporting a good cause.

Moreover, consider partnering with local restaurants or food trucks to provide food for the event. This can create a wider variety of food options and provide an opportunity to promote local businesses. By doing this, you can create a community partnership where everyone wins and your cause receives the support it needs. Set up donation boxes around the event and encourage attendees to donate what they can. Additionally, you can sell raffle tickets for prizes to encourage people to donate more. This can create a fun and exciting way to raise funds while encouraging attendees to engage with your organization's mission.

Hold a Car Wash

A car wash is a classic fundraising idea that has been tried and tested and has proven to be successful repeatedly, particularly during the summer months. Gathering volunteers to help wash cars can create a sense of community spirit and teamwork, while charging a fee for each car can allow your organization to raise much-needed funds. In addition to offering a basic car wash service, you can consider providing additional services such as detailing or tire shining to increase profits. This can attract more customers and increase the revenue generated from the event.

To make your car wash event even more successful, you can leverage social media platforms to promote it and encourage attendees to share it with their networks. Creating attractive graphics, sharing pictures of previous car wash events, and highlighting the cause you are fundraising for can help draw attention to your event and generate interest from potential supporters. Also, consider partnering with local businesses to increase the visibility of your event and attract more customers. By working with other organizations, you can cross-promote your event and reach a wider audience.

Organize a Summer Festival

Summer festivals are not only great ways to bring the community together but also fantastic opportunities to raise funds for your cause. These events offer an array of activities that appeal to people of all ages, such as face painting, games, live music, and food vendors serving up delectable treats. When organizing a summer festival, it's important to ensure that there's something for everyone so that attendees can make the most of the experience. By creating a diverse lineup of activities, you can attract a larger crowd and increase your chances of achieving your fundraising goals.

To maximize your revenue streams, you can charge an entrance fee to gain access to the festival grounds and sell tickets for specific activities or games. This way, attendees have the option to choose which activities they want to participate in and pay accordingly, while also supporting your cause. Additionally, having donation boxes around the festival can encourage people to contribute even more to your fundraising efforts.

However, it's not just about the activities and fundraising goals - creating a welcoming atmosphere is key to making your summer festival a success. You can decorate the area with colorful banners and streamers, and set up tables and chairs for people to relax and socialize. Consider partnering with local businesses to sponsor your event and provide giveaways or prizes for attendees, such as free samples or coupons. Building strong relationships with local businesses can expand your network and gain valuable organizational support.

Host a Pool Party

Hosting a pool party can be a fun and unique way to raise funds for your organization or cause. With the summer heat in full swing, people always look for ways to cool off and enjoy fun in the sun. By hosting a pool party, you can tap into this desire and create an event that people will be eager to attend.

To make your pool party successful, you can charge an entrance fee for attendees. This fee can cover the cost of snacks and drinks, as well as other expenses such as decorations or rental equipment. Consider offering different ticket tiers that include additional perks, such as a VIP area or exclusive access to certain activities.

In addition to charging an entrance fee, you can also raise funds through raffles or silent auctions. You can ask local businesses to donate prizes, such as gift certificates, products, or services, that attendees can bid on or enter to win. This can help you raise funds and provide a great marketing opportunity for the businesses that donate.

Organize a Sports Tournament

Summer is a fantastic time for outdoor activities, including sports tournaments such as basketball, soccer, or volleyball. These events bring people together to have fun and provide a great fundraising opportunity. By charging a team registration fee, you can cover the costs of organizing the tournament and raise funds for your organization or cause. To further increase your fundraising potential, you can encourage teams to fundraise through pledges or sponsorships.

One effective way to encourage fundraising is by creating personalized fundraising pages for each team. These pages can include information about the team, their fundraising goals, and how donations will support your organization. Teams can then share their pages with friends, family, and social networks to ask for support. This helps raise funds, spreads awareness about your cause, and can attract new supporters.

To make your tournament even more exciting, consider offering prizes for the winning teams or individual players. This can motivate teams to perform their best and attract a competitive spirit among participants. You can also sell merchandise such as t-shirts or hats to further promote your organization and provide a memento for participants to remember the event.

Host a Wine Tasting

A wine tasting event can be an excellent way to engage a community of wine lovers while raising funds for a good cause. To make the most of this opportunity, you must partner with a local winery or vineyard that shares your mission and values. Not only can this partnership provide access to high-quality wines, but it can also help promote your cause to a broader audience. Additionally, you can create a more personalized experience by having the winery or vineyard representative present the wines and educate attendees about the wine-making process.

When planning a wine-tasting event, it's essential to consider the event's logistics. You can charge a fee for attendees to sample different wines, but you should also provide non-alcoholic options for those who do not drink or prefer not to drink. You can also offer food pairings to enhance the tasting experience and make it more enjoyable for attendees. By providing a variety of wine and food options, you can create a memorable experience that attendees will want to participate in year after year.

Start planning your summer fundraiser today!

Summer is a perfect time to get creative with fundraising ideas that not only raise money for your organization but also engage your community. From hosting a pool party to organizing a charity run or walk, there are endless possibilities for summer fundraising events that can significantly impact your cause. By partnering with local businesses, utilizing social media and other marketing channels, and creating unique experiences for your attendees, you can achieve your fundraising goals while building stronger connections with your community. 

From online auctions to mobile bidding, Event.Gives offers a range of solutions that can streamline your event planning and make reaching your fundraising goals easier. Whether you're a small nonprofit or a large charity organization, Event.Gives has the expertise and resources to help you succeed. With these summer fundraising ideas from Event.Gives, you're sure to make this season one of the most successful and enjoyable ones yet!

Want to know more about Event.Gives? Join us for one, or all, of our weekly demos! 

Tuesday at 2 PM EST via Zoom: Deep dive into the Event.Gives manager portal with Q&A. 

The second Wednesday each month at 2 PM EST: Participate as an attendee in a virtual live streaming event, featuring Kandice Luisi and one of our auctioneer partners!

COMING SOON: Check out our “7 Minutes to Success” videos on YouTube!

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