School Fundraising Grand Bake Sale


The classic bake sale is a school fundraising gathering we all know and enjoy. Buying baked goods made by grandmas and mothers is a pleasure. The fundraising bottom line is not very lucrative, and they’re not intended to be. They are community events to share the goodness of what families bake in their homes.

Not to take from the joy of a traditional fundraising event, how about setting your sights on a grand bake sale? Picture a scene to draw gourmet connoisseurs. Imagine adults mingling in their element, making connections within their community. A relevant event theme is food education and sustainable agriculture.

School Fundraising Donor Strategy

One of the greatest sources of school fundraising money is in individual donors. This unique bake sale is an adult event, and puts the focus on pampering donors. This aspect of fundraising is golden.

Warm conversations with donors will make them want to help your school through donations and involvement. Create the perfect space for that with this gala. Teachers, administrators, donors and board members sharing such moments is one of the rules of successful fundraising.

They’ll enjoy meeting the pastry chefs who have prepared amazing desserts. Discussions will soar as they converse about the organic ingredients they used from local farms.

Grand Bake Sale Logistics

How about a $50 ticket price per adult, with two dessert tickets and two drink tickets? Tickets for sponsors to participate may be sold on your bake sale fundraising website. Create different sponsor and donor levels as well. This may become one of the quintessential events of the year and provide great press coverage for them.

Consider two or three sponsors for the beverages from top restaurants serving interesting concoctions and wines. Ask them not to forget some interesting non-alcoholic options. Beverages too may contain ingredients from local organic farms to keep the theme on food education. Each chef or restaurant will have their own booth for sharing their skills and creating ambiance.

Charity Gala Surprises

The element of surprise delights!

  • Invite surprise guests who are experts in food or organic farming – donors will enjoy meeting them and chatting
  • Raffle the latest cookbooks and books on sustainable agriculture donated from local stores
  • A few enticing silent auction items on display would be a pleasant surprise; A chef preparing a gourmet meal for a dinner party for example – or a dinner for two at a one of the restaurants
  • Surprise your event participants with a local musician to set the tone

Instagram For Foodies

Infamously food oriented Instagram is a great place for restaurants to share photos and stories of the event. Make this pitch to them in seeking sponsors. Instagram has some nice benefits:

  • On Instagram, donors, volunteers and sponsors share their images of the bake sale
  • Ask for permission to use their photos for your social media marketing
  • On your school website homepage share photos of donors enjoying this special afternoon
  • Featuring your donors on your nonprofit website makes them feel like a part of your school
  • You encourage future engagement by having them submit photos on Instagram to you
  • You build your school’s presence on Instagram by attracting attention when followers of donors see them hashtag your school in photos

Just One Internship

Showcase an internship for a high school or college student. Young adults gain experience in vegetable, fruit and meat production through organic practices. They acquire mindfulness of sustainability with regard to the environment. Experiencing a variety of successful small scale, food producing farming styles is enriching. Plans to market food step by step from the garden is experienced.

Meet with organic farms, organic markets and nonprofits to find internship opportunities. Find opportunities on their websites. Just one internship in association with your bake sale will create interest in the event.

  • Announce the interns accepted at your gala and make their parents proud.
  • Create a buzz in your school newsletter before and after the event.
  • Follow-up with stories in customized emails to donors about the internship.
  • Invite speakers to your school on such topics and keep donors interested.
  • Keep showing your donors how you are helping your kids to thrive.
  • Make this a successful, annual event by keeping the story going about each internship.

Cultivate Sponsors For Next Year

As chefs and restaurants are committed elsewhere for this year, make connections for the next. Keep a list of the chefs you meet and follow up with photos of your event. Share emails with them of your success. Entice them for next year’s event.

Building A Sense Of Community

An interesting and delicious weekend afternoon event is a great way to start the PTO school fundraising year. It bring parents and community members together in an easy, social environment. While most school fundraisers raise funds for your school, a grand bake sale strives to get communities working together. There is such strength and power in community partnerships.

School Fundraising Resources

Event management software for this school fundraiser manages the full cycle of the gala. Registering, collecting secure donations, and selling sponsorships are easily managed. The event details, financial reporting and donor reports are contained within the auto reporting section. A comprehensive fundraising website performs on all mobile, PC and android platforms.

Effective school fundraising resources and ideas for PTO fundraising are available free. For elementary school fundraisers or high school fundraising ideas, find resources to help support your school fundraising campaigns. Our list of school fundraising ideas have been developed from hands on experience in helping hundreds of schools.


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Author: Maureen Peine