Category Archives: fundraising ideas

4 Entertainment Ideas for Your Next Charity Event

ice bar for charity eventsA charity event, especially a fundraiser, is all about creating the perfect atmosphere for your guests. That atmosphere can be created in every different aspect of event planning: venue, décor, food, entertainment…even with an ice bar. From the moment your guests enter through the reception doors until the end of the program, your goal as the charity event planner is to create an over-the-top, enjoyable and entertaining evening that compels your guests to contribute to your worthy cause. You can enhance that experience with entertainers that fit with your charity event theme (we’ve got a few ideas for themes here) or can build your event around these entertainment acts perfect for your event:

Jazz musicians

1379383_394910730612040_353052573_nMake your guests feel like they are stepping into an old jazz club. Find the perfect venue for your night of jazz, and book entertainers such a jazz duo or singer that can make your guests feel like they stepped back in time. Discuss refreshments with your caterer that complete the feel, and find décor that gives your venue a dark jazz club vibe. If you have a large venue, talk to your entertainment agent about other options for entertainers that can give areas of your event their own unique feel (such as by your silent auction tables, or if you want to create multiple jazz lounges where you can talk with your guests).

Piano bar

Are you holding a smaller gathering? Create a piano bar themed event (or rent a room at a piano bar). Hire a pianist and singer that can charm your guests in your cozy setting. Talk to your venue or vendor about cocktails appropriate for the evening, and a meal or appetizers appropriate for your theme. Invite a guest of honor, either the head of your charity or an acquaintance touched by the cause, and give them a place of honor during your piano-bar themed evening.

Dinner and a show

NICEAwards-C068.JPG MR_240_161Want to give your guests a night out together? Coordinate the ultimate night out for your guests, with show girls as greeters, a red carpet (and red carpet treatment), appetizers, cocktails, a fantastic dinner, and a show they won’t forget. Depending on your audience, choose an entertainment act that keeps their attention throughout the night, such as a comedian, play, show band (3 musicians, 30 instruments, WOW!) orchestra or mentalist. Decide what kind of event you want—and who you hope to attract—when deciding on your entertainment, or discuss your vision with an experienced entertainment agent who can give their recommendation and handle all the details. If you want to have a semiformal evening with a comedian or other act, hire a caricature artist to up the level of fun, and give your guests a memento of a fantastic night for a great cause.

Masquerade ball

If you want a one-of-a-kind event that your guests never forget, go all-out with a masquerade ball in a ballroom that leaves your guests awe-struck. Set the theme with your invitations and promotional pieces, and back them up with a beautiful event with lights, masks and feather décor. Complete the event atmosphere with entertainers and an unforgettable main event.

Need any more ideas for your charity event? We’ve planned and attended quite a few (okay, a ton) in our 25 plus years of business. Contact us. We’ll work with you to bring your vision alive, and create the atmosphere you and your guests want and sets the stage for a successful charity event.

Must-Have Fundraising Tips For Your Next Gala

home_splash1No one plans a fundraising gala with the purpose of walking away empty handed. Without the right mixture of entertainment, asking and entertaining, even the most well-intentioned affair can fall short of fundraising goals. As a business or non-profit hosting a fundraiser, expect your fundraising gala to be an investment—an investment that raises funds for your cause if you follow these fundraising tips:

  • Don’t be shy. Your guests are attending a fundraiser.  They expect to be asked, and you won’t raise funds unless you do. But you can’t push too hard for donations either. It’s your job to find the right combination of asking and entertaining that make the gala successful.
  • Coordinate a silent auction. Leverage your professional and personal connections, and the connections of board members and volunteers, to solicit items and gift certificates for silent auction packages for your guests. Make sure your packages are appealing visually even if you don’t have all the items to display, and that the silent auction tables are in a prominent location for the guests to find. Have your emcee or entertainers make announcements about the silent auction.
  • Tie your gala entertainment into your fundraiser. Use your emcee or entertainer to make announcements about your auction or other fundraisers. If you have a unique fundraiser that will take place on the stage, have your emcee or entertainer officiate the fundraiser.
  • Show your guests the impact they can have. Use displays, slideshows and videos to show what their dollars support. You can also have a beneficiary of your services describe their experience on stage, or tape and edit their testimonial into a video.

Guests who are enjoying themselves tend to give more. Choose a theme appropriate for the evening, and get plenty of entertainers to make the night entertaining and memorable. Don’t feel confined to booking one entertainer or that you have to locate the talent yourself. Contact a talent agent for entertainment recommendations and booking. They have a diverse group of entertainers to choose from, years of experience to draw on and the expertise to make your fundraiser a success.