Orchestrating a fundraising gala is a big endeavour with many moving parts that you must plan out well in advance. Plus, they usually include some pretty important attendees, so it’s one event that really requires extensive planning in order to make it go off without a hitch. To help you streamline the process and make your fundraising gala go smoothly, here are some expert tips to remember.
Know Your Budget
Ensure that you know exactly what your budget is and be strict with it. Galas can quickly add up if you’re not constantly calculating the costs against your budget. So always be aware of that number before you begin planning.
Start With Nailing Down the Basics
With any fundraising gala, you first need to focus on mastering the planning and details of the fundamentals. That includes a smooth check-in and seating process. Start with these two essential elements. Map out the check-in and seating, and then practise with your volunteers, so they know exactly how to streamline it so you don’t have any guests waiting and frustrated right off the bat. You want that first impression to be a good one, and that means the arrival and seating must go smoothly.
Focus on the Food & Service
Next up is the food. It’s always one of the main events that guests look forward to, and often the main reason why many people attend, so the food has to be great. Go over the menu with your chef and catering team. Be sure to offer and a well-rounded menu with attractive options for vegetarians, and other potential dietary needs well ahead of time. Spend a good amount of time pinpointing when each dish will be served, and have your catering staff well informed about the timing. Don’t forget to practice! This may seem silly now, but this is always beneficial to ensure the service is exceptional and that the servers deliver the food and beverages according to your instructions and expectations.
Reflect Your Mission
Since this is a fundraising gala, it’s important to reflect the mission throughout your event. You can do this by inviting certain clients to speak or display some of the relevant work throughout the venue. This always a good way to give a refresher as to why your guests are donating.
Don’t Skimp on the Entertainment
Remember that your guests are coming for the food and to have a good time, so you don’t want to disappoint. This is an area that you should allot a good chunk of your budget to. Ask around for great recommendations and make sure that you choose something that is suitable for your audience and will get them up off their feet and having fun.
Having your fundraising gala go smoothly really comes down to planning well in advance, and nailing down your budget, your fundamentals, your food and, of course, the entertainment. So ask for volunteers, create a committee to help, and get planning nice and early! And for the perfect venue, check out the St. Elias Centre! We have everything you need to throw a smooth and successful gala. Contact us today to learn more about what we offer and how we can help.