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Fund Raising - Spaghetti Dinners

There's no getting around it. People love to eat. And if they can get a decent meal cheap, then there's very little chance that they're going to pass up such a great opportunity. This is where fund raising organizations can make a pretty penny if they come up with just the right meal for charity. Well, nothing beats a good spaghetti dinner for bringing in the crowd and the bucks. If you're a little puzzled about where to start when planning one of these dinners, hopefully the following tips should get you off to a good start.

The first thing you need to do when planning a spaghetti dinner for you fund raising organization, is to find a place to have it. With most organizations, this is no problem as the majority of them are already renting a building for their meetings anyway. Usually the landlord will allow you the extra night for a very nominal fee if not for free. They understand that you're doing this for charity and really don't have a lot of money to spend, otherwise what's the point? You're sure to come to an agreement that benefits both parties.

After securing the place, you need to come up with a date and time. There's no point in trying to come up with a date that everybody is going to agree to because it just won't happen. But try to come up with a date you think will give you the best chance of having the most number of people attend. For example, you probably don't want to schedule one of these dinners on a major holiday as most people probably have other plans. Pick a date when it's unlikely the majority of people won't have other things planned.

After you come up with the date and time, you need to have flyers made up to post around the neighborhood. One of the best places to post events like these is in supermarket exits because everybody has to see them as they are leaving the store. You're sure to have a good number of people show up.

The hardest part of planning something like this is trying to get an idea of how much food to buy. Unless you are making this a "reservations only" fund raising dinner, then you have no idea how many people are going to be walking in off the street. This is the reason why most organizations do make it by reservation only. However, if you go for the "walk in off the street" fund raiser, then it's better to have too much food than not enough. Spaghetti doesn't go bad and it's very cheap. So better to have too many boxes than not enough. Figure that a box of spaghetti feeds about 10 people and figure if you're expecting 100 people, you'll need 10 boxes of spaghetti.

Things like meatballs, bread and even sauce are a little different as they don't have as large a shelf life. But still, it's better to have too much food than not enough. The reason is simple. You don't want people showing up for your event and not get fed. Word of this will spread quickly and the next time you run a dinner you won't get as many people show up.

Aside from the above you will need people to run the event. These will most likely be people from your organization. Hopefully at least one person it is knows how to cook spaghetti. Just make sure the waiters are friendly. Again, you want repeat business.

Fund raising spaghetti dinners are not hard to pull off but they do require a bit of planning. By following the above tips, you should have a spaghetti dinner that goes off without a hitch.

Michael Russell
Your Independent guide to Fund Raising