When I started working with this group in 2010, the organization was moving away from a sit-down dinner. Goodbye traditional gala. Hello something new. The "something new" has changed at each event. For instance, each venue is different. Quality entertainment is hired (I'm part of this). Unique staging and props are used. The event is well-run, from registration to flow to checkout. Generally speaking, this is what I'd call a high production value event. It's classy. There is an emphasis on
First, watch this video showing a challenging school auction venue. This elegant country club has hosted many PGA tournaments and serves as an attractive venue. But as you can see in the video, the set-up could present some problems for an auction, depending on the size of the crowd. In this case, the school auction had an enormous -- and unexpected -- rise in attendance this year. Nearly 60 additional tickets were sold! Figuring out how to manage the overflow was one of those "good
A couple of years ago I spoke at an event in St. Louis and talked with the Silver Rails Event Center in La Plata, MO. It's a railroad-themed inn and railroad museum (based on an 1800s railroad depot), located on the historic Wabash line. I've written before about unusual venues for benefit auctions. As the event coordinator told me about her railroad-inspired space, it brought to mind another story. Here's a penny-pinching, common-sense suggestion ... If you want guests to walk into a themed
Occasionally my clients will ask me about interesting places to hold a fundraiser. I just read about one cool place in Blue Bell, PA (25 miles west of Philadelphia in Montgomery County). I've not yet visited the venue, but reading about it made me want to jump in the car and race north on I-95. Normandy Farm Hotel has two ballrooms, though neither sound particularly large. I think it would work for small benefit auctions as an intriguing venue. (If you've held an auction in the space, please
Almost any space can work for a gala auction, though you might need to make some adjustments. The more unusual charity auction venues have the added advantage of attracting guests to your event. This corporate airplane hangar had some advantages and disadvantages, which you'll hear in the video. Watch the video below.