Just Desserts

Looking for a different type of fundraising event?  Try combining a fundraising dinner and auction into one event and create a Dessert Auction.  The premise is simple but creates a fun, enjoyable environment for raising funds for a worthy cause.

1.  Host a dinner with a special guest speaker or program.  Publicize the event as a Dessert Auction so people will be prepared to bid when they attend.
2.  Have seating in rounds of 8 or 10 people.  Have your guests pre-register for the event so you know exactly how many tables you’ll need.
3.  Visit local restaurants and have them donate their signature dessert that can serve 8-10 people.  An added bonus is that the restaurants can compete to see which dessert brings in the largest bid.
4.  When you set the tables, include a small chocolate candy to whet the appetites of your attendees.  Be sure to keep the dinner menu light so attendees won’t be too full to enjoy dessert.
5.  Attendees my either bid individually or have each table pool their resources together to bid on a dessert for their table.
6.  The key to a successful auction is to have at least one fewer dessert than you have tables.  That way, if people don’t bid, then they won’t be enjoying a dessert and will be left to eat the tiny piece of chocolate that was preset on the tables.
7.  Have your event staff prepared to cut and serve the desserts as they have been purchased.

As I’ve done this event in the past, it has happened where a dessert was large enough that once it had been served, there was enough left over to put it back up for auction for the remaining table to bid and purchase.  As a live auction, it’s fun to see just how passionate people can get about a specific dessert.  Like with any live auction, it’s important to have a good auctioneer who is able to keep the bidding going.  I’ve had a lot of success with this type of event and hopefully your organization can, too.

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