In the last few decades, there seems to have been a shift towards humanitarian efforts and philanthropy in the corporate world. Additionally, more people work for non-profits than ever before. Generally speaking, most organizations have either a community outreach department or they task their human resources department with raising money or giving time to the areas they serve. Inevitably, in the case of a fundraising event, someone needs to find and rent a venue.
Finding a venue for a fundraising event can be more complicated than it seems. It benefits the fundraising coordinator greatly if they know how many people will attend the event. This is a crucial factor in choosing the space for obvious reasons. Another factor in choosing a location is what the weather will be like. If it is an outdoor venue, in most places in the U.S. you will want to hold the fundraiser in the spring, fall, or possibly summer months. Although on the surface summer seems safe, you need to consider humidity and thunderstorms when thinking about the comfort of the guests. If everything is set up outside, is there the possibility of a complete wash out, and if so, is there a rain date set?
Places with interior and exterior options that you can use simultaneously seem very appealing with weather in mind. Possibly a location that has a deck or garden area in addition to a party tent. You still may want fans in the party tent as well, if it is not ventilated effectively. Regardless of whether the event is outdoors or indoors, or a combination of both, the setup and layout are immensely important. You will want bathrooms that are easily accessible. Food and drink should be prominently displayed, accessible, and of course, delicious.
Why are all these things important for a fundraiser? Fundraisers are generally two stages. One might be funds raised from the sale of tickets to the event or a donation from a company or citizen. The second stage of the fundraiser, and arguably the most important, is raising funds at the event itself. This means organizers want the event to be a “smash hit”. Going back to the delicious food, an organizer would most likely need to use a reputable catering company or the venue itself may serve outstanding food. Good food keeps people at a fundraiser longer and makes them happy. This might be very beneficial by making them feel more charitable and either donating directly or participating in games, raffles, 50/50s, etc., created to raise funds. Good alcohol may allow for the guests to loosen up their personalities and their wallets as well. Other aspects of the event to think about are music, lighting, and other audio or visual displays that can capture people’s attention. For a lot of these fundraiser events, it is better to keep the guests at the venue for as long as possible.
Of course beauty to look at doesn’t hurt either. At Mountain Branch Golf Club, in Joppa, Maryland, the cascading hills rise up to meet at their precipice, which is where the fundraising venues are located. This gives attendees at fundraising outings a remarkable view of the golf course and the valley below. Mountain Branch, and it’s subsidiary, Tracers Golf have a built in advantage, as they also offer golf itself. The fundraiser could center on a golf tournament or competition of some kind, with a banquet or party afterwards. To maximize fundraising, venue selection is absolutely pertinent. Amenities, views, and delicious food all play a part in keeping people at the event longer and keeping them happy.