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How Fundraising Can All Come Down to Lemonade

August 30, 2017

I wrote today’s blog post for 261Fearless New York City Marathoners and San Antonio Rock and Roll Marathon Team 261 Fearless Runners about fundraising ideas to fund their charity bibs (we still have some if you want to join our team) Besides sharing it with them, I hope it inspires any viewers of this blog to get an idea for their own fundraising needs just substitute “261Fearless” with your name. It’s still Wednesday and that means “Wisdom” sharing.

I was driving down a country road and all of a sudden I see two nine year old girls sitting in a driveway with a card table and sign about Lemonade and Brownies. Never being a woman to pass up supporting young girls the way older women supported me when I was their age; I stopped and approached their table. I said, “How exciting you are here today because I was just driving by really thirsty and saw your great lemonade for sale. Can I buy some?” Their smiles lit up as they said, “Sure, let us pour you a cup.”

In my typically girl and women empowerment fashion I said to them, “Wow this is really great. I have been selling things like lemonade since I was your age and now I own my own business. Maybe one day you will own your own business,” they looked at me in bewilderment and said, “Okay?” As if that wasn’t enough to confuse them I said one last thing with a fist pump in the air, “Support your girlfriends by buying from them too. Let’s Go Girls!”

So what does my wild female spirit and this story about trying to inspire two innocent girls just trying to make some money have to do with you? Well it’s about convincing you of your own festive fundraising abilities and using it to motivate others to fund your New York City Marathon dreams.

Here are the lessons from the lemonade stand to inspire your fundraising the ‘old fashion’ way:

Secure Your Own Table – Does your community have an upcoming running event where you could sit and take the same risk as these girls and sell something for a donation to your marathon cause? There are countless fall sporting events, perhaps you are close to a local school, community organization or “holiday” showcase where you could promote your event and collect money. Ask around!

Become a Hostess and Create Your Own Neighborhood Event – Women who sell Tupperware, Pampered Chef and Princess House host house parties where they invite their friends and family to stop by for a drink, snacks and listen to a presentation about what the hostess is selling. Why can’t you do that for your own 261 Fearless sales efforts? Invite 5-15 girlfriends, relatives and business associates to your house for a “Fearless Fall Soiree” and theme it up with purple, maroon and white (261 Fearless brand colors), share stories about Kathrine, show a globe of where 261 Fearless has clubs, have 261 signs around the room, be as creative as you want to get and then grab their attention by talking about why you are running and how you need their support. I am positive you will get financial commitments just like hostesses at these other parties get gifts.

Ask for Sponsorship Support of Your Neighborhood Event – If the lemonade girls were my next door neighbors and asked me to “sponsor” their lemonade soiree, I would have! I would have given them $50+ to pay for the lemonade, brownies and sign. I would ask they put my pink Women TIES business card at their table to hand out (hey you never know if their mom owns a business!).

How do you find a sponsor for your party? Think about other women you know who are in business and sell something – insurance, Pampered Chef, Avon – and ask them to sponsor your party. You promote their company when you promote yours and then give them a table at your house party and a chance to address the audience. Their monetary investment in your house party goes towards your 261 Fearless New York City Marathon totals.

You might think these are silly ideas to consider but if I know two things for sure, women love events and women love supporting other women. Put your creative running cap or headband on and start dreaming up some simple, cool, creative “adult lemonade” event and invite women (and men if you want) to your house party. Wow them with your fearless, fun, and festive spirit and then collect those fundraising dollars.

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