Here at Cause4, we love hearing about all the weird, wacky and wonderful fundraising ideas people come up with. As Halloween creeps around the corner, here are some of our favourites to give you some inspiration!
It comes as no surprise that many people embrace the humble gourd and take it to new fundraising heights at Halloween. Here are some ideas:
- Pumpkin Carving Contest – every year the GUTS Pumpkin Carving Contest in America raises money for the Make a Wish Foundation through registration fees, ticket sales, donations, and food and merchandise sales. What started as an internal team building event in Charlottesville, North Carolina, has turned into an event with growing national reach – is it time to bring it to the UK?
- Pumpkin Smashing Contest – alternatively, if you have more of a flair for destruction than creativity, many people suggest hosting a pumpkin smashing contest instead. Whether you choose a baseball bat to bash or a trebuchet to launch, the goal is simple – pay to enter and destroy the unsuspecting vegetable!
- West Coast Giant Pumpkin Regatta –this autumnal American answer to the London marathon is a personal favourite of mine. The West Coast Giant Pumpkin Regatta has grown into an event with a national reputation that draws thousands of people each year, paddling 1,000 pound pumpkins in fancy dress around the Lake of the Commons – many of whom do it to fundraise for charity.
Let’s not forget Halloween’s spooky appeal. What started in the 1970s at charity fundraising events has grown into a booming business. There are many haunted houses raising money for charity in the US, and the trend is slowly coming to the UK, including a family who spent £20,000 redecorating their house for Halloween! If you’d like to host your own Spooktacular Fright Fest (on a slightly more modest budget) here is how to do it in five easy steps:
- Concoct a haunted plan – no malevolent venture should be undertaken without the necessary frightful preparations, think about when it will be, who is going, plan your haunted path and the tone it will have – gory delight or ghostly comedy? Once you’ve done that, it’s time to decide on your back story – why has your abode been taken over by calamitous spirits and dangerous presences?
- Create an eerie atmosphere – this could include creepy lighting, fog machines, strobe lighting, frightening sounds, an ominously confusing maze… The nightmarish themes are endless!
- Use actors – (or friends) to scare your guests, this could include volunteers shaking people’s shoulders, jumping out and scaring guests, or moaning and groaning threateningly in the background.
- Have props and games – don’t forget the essential shuddersome extras, add more gruesome factor with disgusting games and morbid props such as dead bodies or brains.
- Ghastly grub and disastrous drinks – finally, and in my opinion crucially, don’t forget the Halloween-themed food and drinks for the end!
Zombies Take Over
I couldn’t write a blog without including our favourite undead beings, here are a couple of fiendish charitable ideas:
- Zombie Walks – a tried and tested activity everyone can get involved in is a Zombie Walk. Never heard of one? They’re organised walks where people dress up as, and act like, zombies. Think of it as a much less tiring, and much more creative, enjoyable and spooky race!
- Saving the Undead – Now this one is an original one – The Heart and Stroke Foundation once launched a Halloween fundraising campaign, “CPR Makes You Undead!”. In an appropriately zombie-filled and spine-chilling video, viewers learn what to do when somebody suffers a heart attack, all brought to you by disturbing zombies…
On that spooky note, what will you be doing this Halloween to raise money for charity? Tweet us @OfficialCause4 and let us know!