Our Five Favorite Wacky Fundraisers

Hilarious fundraisers can drum up a lot of interest in your fundraising group. They go a long way to creating a fun event for the community of supporters, and in helping volunteers cut loose and have some much-needed fun after all their hard work!

The following five wacky fundraisers are not only unique and hilarious for everyone involved, they also provide a relaxed atmosphere that will help the members of your community get to know more about your organization in a light, social setting.

Dress Up Day

This fundraiser can be set to a theme (remember to keep it appropriate for the workplace). Favorites of ours have included ugly shirt day, Hawaiian shirt day, holiday sweater day, mad plaid shirt day – you get the idea.

Ask your members to dress outrageously in the spirit of charity, and host a public fashion show to show off all of the wacky duds on the runway. Guests attending the fashion show will be asked to donate a set amount.

Alternately, you can ask them to donate what they can, or charge admission via a perishable food item. Also encourage guests to donate more to their favorite attire by having each fashion show participant carry a tip jar and place it near the stage so the audience can show extra support for their favorite fashion model.

Talk Like a Pirate Day

Ahoy matey! Get ready to walk the plank in the spirit of charity! Take advantage of September 19, which is National Talk Like a Pirate Day, if you didn't already know. Grab a stuffed toy parrot and headscarf, and practice your swashbuckling singing skills when your office or school mates get involved in the most swashbuckling holiday of the year.

You can raise money by asking each participant to pay a small fee for the honor to dress up like a pirate for the day. And you can raise more booty by making the last hour of the day a costume contest with prizes for employees or students who really prove to be the best sea dogs.

You can imagine how this fundraiser would be a great alternative for uniformed schools, workplaces, or even a fun replacement for workplace casual Fridays.

Overnight Zoo Invasion

Imagine waking up in the morning, taking a shower, getting dressed for work, eating breakfast and grabbing your keys, only to be visually assaulted by a front yard full of plastic pink flamingos, barnyard animals, deer, pink pigs, spinning daisies or palm trees.

The overnight zoo is a shocking surprise for a birthday, anniversary, upcoming wedding, retirement or shower. To set up an overnight zoo outfit, you first need to find a large source of plastic lawn ornaments. Many local garden centers would be happy to help out during their off seasons (especially during fall clearance) as it helps boost business and it's free marketing.

If you can't find a local supplier, you can always look to online retailers or rummage sales. Once you have your zoo animals, all you need to do is advertise your charity service: you will set up your animals overnight on any yard in exchange for a zoo keeper fee.

Believe us, people love to play practical jokes on their families and friends, and they will be helping your group raise money for a good cause in a viral way because once the zoo appears one year, you better believe the victims will be looking for vengeance, and they will pay almost anything to have the same joke played on someone else!

No Tie Day

This fundraiser is focused on professional organizations where the dress code is really strict or formal. Think large corporations, law offices, financial institutions, etc. You make money by selling a day pass for permission to go without a tie for the entire day (and suffer the envy of their stuffier coworkers).

You can even take this one step further by offering no pants day, but be careful and very clear that this fee is for a pass to wear shorts, not to go without pants altogether!

Other variations on this fundraiser include:

  • Hawaiian shirt day
  • Blue jeans day
  • Wacky hat day
  • T-shirt day
  • Funky shorts day
  • Homemade sweater day

The point is to allow your workers some fun, free from the dress code for just one day. You'd be surprised how much this type of fundraiser improves morale and teamwork around an otherwise stuffy office.

Pampering Behind Bars

You've no doubt heard of charity events that jail their participants for an evening such as candlelight dining in jail, or bail me out of jail? Well, this fundraiser offers a new wacky twist on the lock-up fundraiser by having prisoners make phone calls to family and friends in order to raise bail money for your charity, and for some prisoner pampering too!

First, you need to find a few willing people from the community to be locked up. Next, ask them to bring their phone books. Then, reach out to community beauty and pampering service providers such as beauty schools, massage therapists, manicurists, estheticians, hair stylists, and makeup artists who will offer free pampering services for both men and women in exchange for the free promotion.

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