St. Patrick’s Day Fundraisers are great for booster clubs because it helps to not only make a little extra revenue, but it can also be done in a very fun way. Unlike some more serious booster fundraisers, St. Patricks day fundraising ideas usually fall around the more fun and creative categories.
While St. Patrick’s Day does have a historical significance and reason for existing, the day has become very commercialized and now has very little to do with the actual history. This means that everyone is expecting fun, green, alcohol, and parties. Of course, you don’t have to provide all of these things, but tieing in some of the holiday’s basic elements can be a great way to promote your booster club with unique fundraisers.
Check out these 10 booster club fundraising ideas to see some successful St. Patrick’s Day fundraisers that can help to bring in a lot of revenue for your club.
1 Host an Irish Feast
St. Patrick’s day is known for being a day of feasts, so this St Patricks Day Fundraiser ties in quite well. Presell tickets or offer admission at the door to an Irish feast. It can be a casual buffet or a full dinner experience with servers and dinner courses.
Offer different Irish foods and try to keep the theme going. Foods like Cornbeef and Cabbage, Irish Soda Bread, and Irish Stew are all great ideas. You can even turn this Irish feast into an annual holiday fundraiser and team up with local businesses to have them donate foods that reduce your booster club’s costs.
2 Silent Auction
This creative fundraiser can go hand in hand with your Irish Feast. Have a table or tables set up at your silent auction with baskets of donated goods and sheets of paper for people to place bids. They’ll try to win the items by having the highest bid and if they lose, they won’t be out any money, but if they win, your booster club profits.
You can have these baskets of goods be themed around St. Patrick’s Day, the color green, rainbows, or anything else that can be related to this holiday. This St. Patrick’s Day fundraiser can also be made cheaply by having the items all be donated from volunteers or local businesses.
3 Green Bake Sale
Normally people don’t enjoy the idea of eating green foods, but with St. Patrick’s day being a day full of food dyed green, the exception is often made.
Consider having a St. Patrick’s Day bake sale fundraiser with themed good that are dyed green, made colorful or simply decorated to “feel festive.” People will go crazy buying these homemade goods and bake sales are great for booster club fundraising because they often have a very low overhead cost due to the items being donated for the cause.
If you have the time and energy to make this even more fun you can consider selling $1 places for a cakewalk. Set up little pieces of paper on the ground with numbers (usually in a circle), sell these spots for $1 each and turn on music. Have people walk around on the paper and then turn off the music. Similarly to musical chairs, you want everyone to have a spot. Pull a number from a container or spin a card with an arrow and numbers. Whoever is standing on the winning number gets a cupcake. Continue until everyone is a winner.
You should make sure people know that the cake walk isn’t a requirement to get the cupcakes and that since they purchased them already, it’s just for fun. This will allow the nonsocial students to choose if they want to participate or not, while not limiting your profit.
4 Dress Up Day
Everywhere you look on St. Patrick’s Day will have people dressed crazy with their fun and vibrant outfits. For a dollar or two each, you can have students and staff pay to dress this way for the day. Breaking the dress code for a day could well be worth it to the students (just make sure to have rules in place so nothing too inappropriate tries to slip by).
Allowing the students to wear crazy hats for one day in a school with a no hat dress code is a popular fundraiser for any grade level. Plan this St. Patrick’s Day Fundraiser in advance so that students know to get hats, dress-up attire and have their cash ready.
5 Sell Green Pins
Another low cost St. Patrick’s Day Fundraiser that can be a lot of fun and bring a lot of profit is selling green pins. This can range from green colored carnations to fun “I’m Irish” buttons. Sell them cheap and students would buy one or multiple each just because they’re fun and festive. It also helps them to avoid being pinched!
6 Host an Irish Festival
Hosting a fun indoor or outdoor carnival or festival can be a lot of fun. Work with companies to have games or prizes donated and sell admission at the door (you can do a set ticket price or ask for a “by donation” amount. Increase profits with concession sales. This Irish festival can include ways to learn about Irish history as well.
7 Follow the Rainbow Scavenger Hunt
If students are old enough, this could be a great St. Patrick’s Day Fundraiser to do around the local community, if students are younger, this could be great (when modified) for families to do on campus. Collect a small participation fee and set up a “pot of gold” worthy prize at the end.
Team up with local businesses in advance and have a poster/flyer in their front window with clues leading to the next. Have teams/families go from one to the other until they get to the end. There can be a small party complete with food and drinks or a physical prize like a gift basket or trophy.
8 Raffle Baskets
Please be advised that some states do not allow nonprofit organizations to run or operate games of chance like a raffle, so double check that you’re allowed to do this before planning.
Hosting a raffle is always a fun fundraiser and can be done over a period of time or at a single function. Ask for companies and businesses to donate goods and items of value that people would want and then decorate the baskets to look festive. Sell tickets for a reasonable price and draw tickets to see who wins.
9 Host a 5k Run
With St. Patrick’s day being a day of feasting, having a nice 5k Run beforehand can help to make room for all of the food later. Start the day off with a fun morning run where students and teachers were encouraged to collect pledges.
5k run fundraising events do well for booster clubs because there can be little to no cost depending on the location and how much “extra” you want to do. A simple 5k would be location, start and finish lines. A more involved one would include T-shirt sales, concessions, promotion bracelets or lanyards, numbers for each participant to wear, etc. a more advanced 5k could be more fun, but it would cost more to host.
10 St. Patrick’s Day Bingo
Sell Bingo cards for $1 each and have prizes set up for the Bingo winners. This can be a much simpler fundraiser by setting up a small table in a lunchroom or hallway and having people participate during lunch, recess, or some other time during the day when students can devote about 5 minutes for a quick round.
Prizes don’t have to be extravagant, even a simple candy bar would entice people to play so if you don’t get the best donated prizes, be simple with them. People are looking for fun more than an extravagant gift that they have to carry around all day after winning.
With so many great St. Patrick’s Day Fundraisers out there, the hardest part will be to narrow it down to one or a select few. Most of these fundraisers need a good amount of planning in order to be effective, so keep that in mind and designate a planning committee not too long after the New Year.
Don’t be afraid to repeat fundraisers from last year. Annual holiday fundraisers increase profitability and do great for building a brand around your booster club. It helps to give better promotion and gives people something to look forward to every year. Your booster club can profit well from annual and one time fundraisers, just make sure that you take the initiative to begin planning sooner rather than later and promote well to maximize revenue.