The pancake breakfast is a proven fundraising event. It can be a success on its own, or made even better by combining it with raffles and other money raising techniques.
The pancake breakfast requires a large seating area with a kitchen (maybe a school, or church or social club). You'll need plenty of batter, which should be made that morning. You'll want to make several large containers depending on the amount of people you plan on serving that morning. Keep the bulk of the batter refrigerated, refilling your smaller bowls of batter by the stove as needed.
It's important to publicize the breakfast as much as possible. You will want to check the local school and community calendars to make sure no other big events are going on at the time of your breakfast. At the event location on the day of the event you'll want to advertise with signs that have BIG, clear writing. But it's not enough to just have signs up the day of the event. You will need to put it in community papers, bulletin boards, flyers, posters, email chains, and the like. Popular places for families include libraries, churches, school boards, day care centers, and play grounds. Make sure your ads run effectively for at least two weeks.
You will also need plenty of volunteers. During the breakfast you will need volunteers to collect money from your patrons. You will need at least two or three "chefs" with large griddles to cook multiple pancakes at once. You may need another volunteer if you decide to add a meat option. You need people to clean the tables and seat guests as well. You might have volunteers place patrons' orders on the back side of their plate with a Sharpie marker. It's best not to offer to-go boxes.
You can purchase supersize bags of batter mix at bulk stores, as well as plastic utensils, plates, trash bags, syrup, and butter. It wouldn't hurt to ask if you could receive the goods at wholesale or a discounted price.
Pricing & Add-ons.
You might want to consider doing sausage or bacon for an additional fee. An all-you-can-eat breakfast can cost from $5-$7. Make kids under 12 $2, instead of the $5 adult charge. Add $2 for sausage or bacon (but you probably don't want to do all-you-can-eat with these).
Ask for donations. Place a large jug or bucket next to the cash register and label it as the place for donations. Even if people only donate change you will collect a considerable amount.
A raffle maybe? Hold a raffle for some extra cash. Sell tickets for $1-2 and $5-for-3 to guests who are already eating. If you can't get a good prize donated, do a 50/50 raffle where one person gets 50% of the raffle earnings and the fundraiser gets the other 50%. You still keep all the proceeds from the breakfast.
Have two people track and watch the money. Make sure to lock up your donations and put someone in charge of the key. Have two people sign off on the money raised before you leave the scene.
- Location w/ kitchen facility
- 7-12 volunteers
- Posters and signs
- Charity displays/banners (let them know whom they're helping)
- Mixing bowl
- Large skillet area
- Large seating area
- Disposable plates, silverware, cups, and napkins
- Damp towels for cleaning sticky tables
- Cold drinking water
- Mixing spoons
- Pam® or butter for greasing the griddles
- Larger batter containers/bowls
- Latex gloves and/or hand sanitizer
- Butter or margarine (preferably individual packets for sanitary reasons)
- Pancake mix
- Syrup, regular and some sugar free
- Sausage/Bacon (optional)
- Cashbox with change
- Donations bucket
- Raffle tickets and prizes
- Bowl (something to place the tickets in)
- Auction items
- Someone with a loud, commanding voice to speak over the crowd
Mail a check for the funds raised to and payable to:
Support Our Troops®
PO Box 70
Daytona Beach, FL 32115
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