Ever been to the AYCE chili night hosted by the volunteer fire department in the small town down the interstate, or the charity dinner held at the civics center to raise funds for a local clinic or women‘s shelter?
You too can cash in on people’s desire to gather together and eat, drink and be merry! All it takes is a little planning, a thorough spreading of the word, and a few good cooks. Local businesses are usually happy to donate supplies, and volunteers can chip in as well.
A grill out is one of the cleanest ways to prepare food - provided you use the proper fuel. Propane is a fossil fuel, and ordinary charcoal is a non-renewable resource as well. Hardwood charcoal, however, is made from trees from sustainable forestland. If you can manage to convince a store to donate some, you will be in business!
You can also talk to your local grocery and snag some hot dogs, burger patties, buns trimmings and condiments. Often they will be more than willing to donate if you will display a banner or sign they supply you with that gives them a plug as a supporter. Ask volunteers to bring side dishes and desserts to round out your meal.
Local radio stations and newspapers will probably run a little ad for you for free, and you can also distribute flyers printed by your friendly local copy shop. Plan on charging a reasonable amount per adult and less for children - or put a cap on the charge for a family, so those with lots of little ones can still afford to come. Have someone appointed cashier, but also have a ‘tip’ jar so people can donate extra if they want!
If you can swing it, get a local band or some talented members of your organization to provide some enjoyable musical entertainment, or have a boom box and some speakers set up to provide background. Plan on having a member of your organization make a little thank-you speech.
You are ready for your ‘all you can eat’ grill out fundraiser! All you need is some hungry supporters, and you should be able to show everyone a good time while making a handy profit.