Fundraising Ideas for Your Lacrosse Team
Many lacrosse teams will at some point find themselves in a tight spot monetarily. Even the finest of treasurers can’t always stretch your money far enough. Eventually, your team is likely going to have to hold a fundraiser or three to get enough money to pay the coaches, buy uniforms, and everything in between. With the right attitude, you can make fundraising into a fun event for the kids and make a nice chunk of change for the team while you’re doing it. Here are a few good ways to raise money and keep your team running smoothly.
The Classic Car Wash
The oldest trick in the book – the classic car wash is a simple and fun way to earn some money. Pick a weekend late in the season, when you know it’ll be nice and hot, and reserve an area either on your school’s campus or at a local gas station with access to a water supply. Print out tickets in advance, and have the kids on your team sell five tickets each.
Make ticket selling mandatory for the players. Set a low price of $5, and give each player a pack with five tickets. At the very least, players should be able to sell tickets to their parents and friends, and hopefully to teachers, neighbors, and relatives as well. Make sure the players have their ticket packs at least two weeks before the car wash is to take place, giving them adequate time to sell their stock of tickets. If you have 20 players selling five tickets at $5 per ticket, you should earn $500 for your team.
On the day of the event, you will need a few basic items to make sure your car wash runs smoothly. These items include:
- At least four to five buckets
- Enough rags or sponges for every team member
- Home dish soap
- Squeegees for window washing
- At least two hoses with independent water sources
Make your car wash a day-long affair, split into two shifts. Assign players to one shift or the other, and break them up any way you choose. Midfielders and goalies can work the early shift, while attackman and defensemen work the later shift. However you choose to break the players/shifts up, just make sure you have enough people at each washing station to make things run smoothly.
A car wash on a hot day can be a blast for the kids and is sure to earn a nice sum of money for your team. The kids will enjoy themselves, and it can even be a great bonding opportunity for you and your players to spend time together away from the field.
A slightly more boring way to bring in money is to hold a letter writing campaign, where players write letters to family members or friends asking for donations to the program. With good organization, your team can get all its letters written in one night, and have the money rolling in by the end of the season.
Pick a night in the very beginning of the season and call a meeting for players and parents. A week prior to the meeting, have your players gather the addresses of friends or family members who would be likely to donate to the program. Use this meeting as a time to detail your expectations and hopes for the season, and then transition that talk into one about fundraising and the need to keep the players looking sharp on the field with uniforms and equipment, compensate coaches for their hard work, and handle any other expenses the lacrosse season might present.
Hot Tip: Pay the Man
If you have dedicated and competent coaches, be sure to compensate them! A great coach will be much more likely to stay around for multiple years if he’s being paid like a great coach. These coaches can really make a difference in young players’ lives, and can take your program to unreached heights. Show those coaches how much you appreciate the work they do!
Come prepared with a letter template. Since kids can’t always be trusted to write responsibly or even legibly, having someone who is adept at writing type out a letter template is a fantastic way to streamline the whole process and ensure efficiency. Be clear, concise, and most of all polite in your template letter. Using a nice letterhead, explain that your program is one with great tradition and very high expectations that thrives on annual fundraising and donations.
Give potential donors a sample amount that people have been donating. Set it around $25, but make sure to let them know they can feel free to give more (politely, of course)! Leave a space at the end of the template for players to personalize their message to the recipient, and have them say something nice in that area.
Before the meeting, have your players write out the addresses of the people they are soliciting on envelopes. Then at the meeting, sit all your players down with pens, pre-addressed envelopes, and copies of the letter template, and have them begin to write their letters. Have a few pizzas ready and waiting, and instruct players that they may only eat the pizza once they have finished their letters. Nothing motivates a youngster like the chance to get free pizza. The kids will be done in no time, and then the money should start rolling in.
Letter writing is a simple and efficient way to earn a ton of money for your program, especially if you handle it in an organized manner. Just make sure your guys find out who the best relatives to write to are!
Sell your Swag
Selling team T-shirts is a great way to not only bring in money from outside of the program, but to get it from the players themselves as well. T-shirts are cheap to make if you order in bulk, and you can hold on to the overstock to sell during future seasons.
Give players on the team an opportunity to design a simple shirt with your team’s logo somehow incorporated. Many websites offer easy customization packages and quick turnarounds on bulk orders. Find a simple and non-offensive design and put your order in. It’s probably best to order around 50 shirts in varying sizes, at least half of which are L or XL. Be sure to charge $10-15 more than you paid per shirt.
Another option for selling gear is to have extra game shorts made, and sell those along with the shirts at games and/or on your team website. Alumni and other fans (or even current players) always like to stay up to date with the freshest gear, so make that option available to them. Let your former players and fans wear the gear with pride!
Managing the Money
No matter what fundraising route you choose, make sure that the person in charge of managing the team’s finances is responsible and smart. If you’re going to order team gear for sale, make sure you settle on a style and design that your players and parents are happy with. Now hopefully with all these handy tips, your team will make some good money to fund a great season.