If you have an organization or church that is looking for a way to earn some money and have fun at the same time you might want to consider holding a potluck charity auction. This is a good way to get your community together for an evening of good food, conversation and a little bit of fundraiser activity as well. This concept is quite easy and can be done with less effort than you might think.
First off you need to gather a few of your friends from your church or organization and figure out when you would like to hold the Potluck Dinner and Auction. You need to make sure that everyone who is going to help you put this on will be able to be there on the date that you've chosen. You also need to see if those who are helping with the event will be willing to bring in a meat dish and some paper items like plates, cups, napkins, etc. This will help kick off the potluck part of the event.
If this is a church function you can probably just hold the event at your church other wise you will have to have to find a place if you are an individual organization. If you do have to find a place it would be a good idea if you try to find a place that is going to be free. If the weather is nice you can always have it outside.
After you have figured out the date and the place you can then start sending out invitations through email as well as regular mail. You can make your own invitations as well by creating them on your computer and printing them off. You invitation should list the time, the date, the place as well as phone numbers people can call to confirm.
In the invitation make sure that you let them know that it's a potluck dinner and that you would love for them to bring a special dish of their own and a beverage. You also will want to ask them to bring a White Elephant. This is something that is in good condition but the person no longer uses or wants it and don't mind donating it for a good cause.
You can also put up posters at your church or other community centers to further advertise the potluck dinner and auction so that you can have the best chance of making the money you need for your fundraiser. You will also need to have someone go out an buy all of the things that will needed for the dinner like plates, napkins, cups, etc. This shouldn't be done any later than the day before the auction.
Make sure that you have someone who is willing to be the auctioneer. They don't have to be experienced but someone who loves to talk in front of crowds and has a loud voice would be a great candidate for the auction.
The day of the event you need to make sure that the area you are going to use for the dinner is all set up and ready to go and make sure that the meat dishes are prepared ahead of time and just need to be warmed up when it gets close to the time of the dinner.
Set up the dinner, welcome the guests, take their White Elephant donations and set them up where the auction area will be and sit down and enjoy dinner with your guests. Once the dinner is over the auction can start. People will be able to bid whatever they want on any item they see and think they might want to purchase. Make sure you have someone helping the auctioneer to keep track of the bids when they are placed and then have them take the winner their prizes and collecting the money at the time that they win the bid if you like. It would probably make things a lot easier if you have large index cards made up with numbers on them in black marker so everyone who wants to bid picks a card up and then holds it up each time they want to raise the bid.
If you don't have the people pay at the time they win their bid, you will then need to collect the money from them after the auction is over, so make sure that you have someplace set up where they can go and pay for the items they bid.
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