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Spring 2012

Creative Fundraising Ideas and Tips for Local Middle Schools

Spring is usually a good time to get a head start on school fundraising for next year. While there are many traditional ways to fundraise, there are plenty of creative fundraisers to make it more enjoyable for everyone. If you are looking for unique fundraising ideas and tips on raising money for local middle schools, here are some suggestions and tips to get you started.

  • Car wash. Car wash fundraisers are a great way to provide a useful service and raise cash. With very little setup and low overhead, you could raise a lot of money while having the opportunity to get outside. Try to find a central location, preferably where there’s a facility that will allow you to use the water for free.
  • Healthy fundraisers. Instead of bake sales and candy sales, choose fun runs, walkathons, and health food sales. Fruit, granola bars, nuts, and even flowers can raise as much money as candy and sugary baked goods. 
  • Gardening fundraiser. Spring is an excellent time for a gardening fundraiser, plus, you have lots of options. You can stick to selling seeds, gardening supplies and tools, or you can focus on plants and flowers. Depending on your budget, the best approach is to offer as many options as you can. Just make sure that you optimize the products you choose to sell. Gardening events are a great place to set up a sales tent.

General Fundraising Tips

  • Offer an alternative product for sales fundraisers. Always offer an alternative to sales-based fundraisers. If your customer doesn’t want your initial product, be sure that you have a sales pitch prepared for an additional item.
  • Use sales incentives. Offering prizes for top sellers is one way to ensure that you help motivate your fundraiser participants. Even if the supplier provides prize packages, you can always add to that with an extra prize. Gift cards and discount cards are always appreciated.
  • Expand your audience. Be sure to pitch your sales to as many people as possible. While neighbors, friends, and family members are typically a sure sale, you can limit your potential by sticking with one audience. Try setting up sales tables at in shopping malls or other places that receive high pedestrian traffic. Special local events and Farmer’s Markets are also excellent places to set up shop. Make sure you use signs that are large enough to read, and be concise while including important information, such as your cause and how much you need to raise.

Spring Cleaning Tips

When spring arrives, many homeowners start pulling out the cleaning supplies to clean the house from top to bottom. While most people remember to clean windows, drapes, carpets, and polish wood floors, it’s also important to make sure your HVAC system is clean and ready for summer. Whether you have a heat pump or central AC, here’s a checklist of some useful tips to ensure that you maintain home efficiency throughout the summer.

  • Change indoor fan direction. If you change the direction of your fans in the fall to a clockwise motion to help distribute the warm air inside your home, remember to turn them back to the standard counterclockwise direction to create a cool breeze when spring arrives. To change the motion, look at the base of the fan. Many manufacturers design the fan with an easy to find switch on the base that allows you to change the rotation.
  • Change light bulbs and batteries. Even if you have recently changed light bulbs and batteries, spring cleaning is a good time to make sure batteries aren’t corroded or that the light bulbs are clean. Take out the bulbs in recessed fixtures and clean them; this also provides an opportunity to clean the light cover. Remember to check lights in fans and to dust the fans as well. It’s also a good time to upgrade your lights to compact florescent lights or LEDs if you haven’t already.
  • Clean your HVAC system. Before you start to clean your HVAC system, make sure you turn off all power to the unit at the breaker box. Then clean the outside components before you clean the indoor unit. Overall, just be sure to clean vacuum out anything that could restrict airflow, such as fallen leaves or lawn clippings, but be mindful of the motor. If you see any corrosion, call one of our technicians to assess the damage and clean and lubricate any corroded parts. Also trim any limbs or bushes that could get caught in the condenser. Inside components can be cleaned with a mild cleaner (avoid harsh chemicals), and make sure you change air filters and vacuum out your vents if you have a forced air system.
  • Schedule your yearly maintenance inspection. Don’t forget to call and schedule your annual maintenance visit with one of our qualified technicians. Yearly inspections will help to ensure that your central AC unit or heat pump works efficiently and safely all summer long.