Archive for the ‘Fundraiser’ Category

Have you ever retired from an organization only to feel that they never let you go, or that they are trying to pull you back? That happened to me Monday night with the Boy Scout troop. Unfortunately, I have no one to blame but myself. I volunteered for it all. Next week will now be a very busy Scouting week for this retired scoutmaster. Here is why….

On Monday, the 19th, the troop is using their regular troop meeting night to begin selling tickets for next month’s Dad’s Belgian Waffle supper fundraiser. The Boy Scouts will go door to door selling tickets, covering as much of the town in one evening as their are capable of doing. As the troop’s treasurer it will be my job to hand out the tickets, collect the leftovers and money taken in, and start the record keeping for the boys going out on their own.

Tuesday night is the monthly troop committee meeting. I still need to sit down and balance the checkbooks and prepare the report of the troop’s finances. I least I do not have to leave the house. I still volunteer to host the meetings in my basement family room.

I am a Collections merit badge counselor. One of the Scouts caught me after this week’s troop meeting to begin working on the badge. We decided on Wednesday, the 22nd. That makes three nights in a row I will be doing something Scouting related.

So far I have nothing planned for Thursday, but I volunteered my home to host a troop event on Friday. The troop’s one day outing for February was scheduled for this Saturday but only one boy was able to attend. I have always hated the idea of completely canceling a monthly activity so I offered to hold a movie night. The boys took me up on the offer. They plan to watch a couple movies and enjoy pizza, snacks, and sodas. I plan to send them home at 11:00 pm.

On Saturday, the 25th, the troop is hosting an afternoon retirement party to celebrate the three decades I spent as the scoutmaster. I hope some of the troop alumni are able to attend or it will be a small party. I do plan to bring the thirty or so photo albums I have made from those thirty years of activities and functions.

That brings it to five of seven days next week that I will be busy doing something Scouting related. I thought my schedule would slow down after stepping away from the position of scoutmaster. Wait. What’s that? Something is pulling on the back of my shirt. Aaahhhhhhhhh!

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    As the newest treasurer of the Boy Scout Troop 68 committee it will be my job to pay bills and keep the checkbooks balanced. Some of the responsibilities I am familiar with, but others are presenting a bit of a challenge. I hope to have it all figured out by this month’s committee meeting.

    Our troop’s treasury is divided into three funds: the individual Scout’s funds, the high adventure fund, and the general fund. The general fund is used for normal troop operating cost like patches, awards, and some activity expenses. The individual Scout’s fund is the credit earned by the Scouts during fundraising. The high adventure fund is money set aside to assist with the cost of attending a high adventure base or jamboree, thus making it more affordable for a Scout to attend the event.

    Troop 68 holds two fundraisers each year. In the spring we hold a Lenten Belgian waffle meal on a Friday night. In the fall we hold a waffle and sausage breakfast on a Sunday morning in October. The Boy Scouts earn credit for the individual funds based on the amount of tickets they presell. The balance of the spring fundraiser profit goes into the general fund, the fall is used to build up the high adventure fund.

    The Scouts are given the option of participating in the council’s annual fall popcorn sales. All profits the troop receives from this fundraiser goes into the boy’s individual fund. It provides a great way for the Scout to build up his credit for summer camp or other troop activities.

    The troop’s funds are kept in two local financial institutions. The general fund is with the credit union. The other funds are in the bank. Both are checking accounts so it is easy to switch money between the accounts.

    Another of my duties will be to give a treasurer’s report at each of the monthly committee meetings. I will explain what our expenses were during the last month, were any income came from, and what, if any, money was transferred from one account to another.

    While the job of troop treasurer does include some serious responsibilities I believe it will be fun and rewarding. Best of all, it allows me to remain active with the troop although in a smaller capacity than I did as the scoutmaster.

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      There was a fairly decent turnout for this spring’s Boy Scout Troop 68 sponsored Dad’s Belgium Waffle Supper fundraiser that was held Friday night, April 15th. We served 296 people in all, not counting the Boy Scouts who worked at the supper. We served Dad’s Belgium waffles (which are the size of a plate) along with strawberries, fruit cups, a variety of syrups, and refreshments. Since it was a Friday during Lent, and this is a mostly Catholic community, we did not serve any meat with the meal.

      We really tried to promote the fundraiser better this year. We also took one meeting night and set the boys out into town to sell tickets, sort of our ticket sales kick-off. We sold over $400.00 in tickets that first night with six Scouts being taken to different parts of town by their parents. After that, the boys (and parents) were on their own to sell tickets before the meal.

      One of our new Scouts, Alex, really did an outstanding job pre-selling tickets on his own. In fact, he sold over $900.00 in tickets, more then all the other Scouts combined (not counting that first night). I understand he had a little help from his parents and grandfather, but Alex did most of the selling. Only two other Scouts in the troop sold over $100 worth of tickets on their own.

      Each of the boys receives credit toward camp based on the number of tickets they pre-sell. Even if a Scout only sells tickets during the first sales kick-off event, he receives some credit. The credit from the first night sales is evenly divided among all the boys, no matter how many tickets they sold in their area of town. That first night of sales earned each Scout a credit of $9.30, which is not really bad for a little over an hour’s worth of work.

      We still have one bill to pay, but it looks like the troop did well. It appears we will made a profit of around $1200.00. Of this, nearly $400.00 will be going into the boys’ individual accounts to be used for camp costs. The balance will go into the troop’s general fund.

      100 Days of Scouting: Day #67.

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        Our local community access television station, Mel-TV, and Boy Scout Troop 68 have worked together during the last 23 years to provide programming about local Scouting. Courts of honor, troop outings, and Laughs For Lunch Shows were regular features. It was a great way to keep Scouting in the public eye.

        Due to recent budget cuts Mel-TV closed its doors on December 31, 2010, and the channel went black. I was a member of the board of directors for twenty years but retired one year before the decision was made to close the station. I had invested hundreds, if not thousands, of hours to the station and programming. I was sorry to see it close down. It was a great asset to the community.

        During the last six months of 2010 the board of directors began the process of shutting things down. Some of the thousands of video tapes and dvd’s were given to another local television station, but most of them went to the Melrose Area Historical Society. The equipment was divided among several local organizations. The Boy Scout troop was offered some things. We ended up with a set of lights, a tripod, a microphone and stand, and the music library.

        Monday evening, during the troop meeting, a member of the Mel-TV board walked in and handed me an envelope. He explained that the remaining funds needed to be distributed to various non-profit organizations. I joked with him about getting a new iPad 2. He asked how much one would cost. When I told him he replied that there was enough to buy one. Imagine my surprise when I opened the envelope and found a check for $1000.00.

        This donation to the troop comes at a great time. The committee has been talking about replace some of our twenty year old equipment. This check will go a long way toward doing that very thing.

        As for the iPad 2? I do not think that would be the best use of this donation. Sorry about that Mr. Jobs.

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          Last week I wrote about a new fundraiser the Boy scout troop was going to try, a Dad’s Belgian Waffle supper. (Read the article HERE.) Since we currently have a small troop we needed to try something different from our usual breakfast fundraiser which requires more people to work then we currently have available.

          Well, the results are in. While we did not make as big a profit with the Friday night supper that we do with the Sunday morning breakfast, we did do pretty well. The troop cleared over $850 after the bills were paid. That will help to pay program and equipment costs through the year.

          The troop has already reserved another Dad’s Belgian Waffle supper for next year which will be held the Friday before Palm Sunday. Once again, we will have the Boy Scouts presell tickets. The committee has already discussed a few ideas to increase the sales, including placing signs at a couple of the busy intersections in town to inform people of the supper that day.

          Everyone who came to the supper really enjoyed the waffles and the variety of fruit. Some people even went back for seconds and thirds. It was an “all you can eat” meal after all. If next year’s supper is more successful than this year’s I could see this becoming an annual fundraiser for the troop.

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            Boy Scout Troop 68 has done pretty well with pancake and sausage breakfast fundraisers over the last two decades. On average, they have netted the troop over a thousand dollars per meal. We use this money for the Scout’s camp funds and for equipment and program expenses.

            It takes a decent sized crew to do a breakfast. Parents do the cooking of the pancakes, sausage, and scrambled eggs. The Boy Scouts set the tables, clean them off, and do the dishes. It usually takes a couple dozen parents and Boy Scouts to work for a breakfast.

            Unfortunately, our troop membership has dwindled during the last few years and we now struggle to find enough people to work for a breakfast fundraiser. This year, the troop committee has decided to do something a little different.  Instead of a pancake and sausage breakfast we will be hosting a Dad’s Belgian Waffle supper on Friday, March 26.

            One big advantage of hosting a Dad’s Belgian Waffle meal is that Dad’s provides the crew and gear to make the waffles. They provide the paper plates and plastic silverware, and the waffle fixings. That means the troop will not need many people in the kitchen or doing dishes. Parents will prepare fruit cups while the Boy Scouts set and clean the tables.

            Dad’s Belgian Waffles will charge the troop a fee for each plate served. The troop set the price of the tickets which the Scouts have been preselling. If we serve at least 400 people we should make a nice profit.

            Why did the troop committee decide to do a supper this spring instead of a breakfast? Our troop is located in a predominately Catholic community. We thought this would present a good Lenten option for the area’s families. We will find out Friday if we thought correctly.

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              I received an email from Todd at asking for a few more details about our troop’s breakfast fundraisers. His troop has been thinking about conducting a breakfast of their own and are looking for some tips and advice. Okay, here are a few more details.

              We serve a full meal which includes pancakes, scrambled eggs, sausage (smoked and unsmoked), frosted bread, coffee, milk, and a few condiments. It is an “all you can eat” meal so people know they will get their money’s worth. This “all you can eat” policy has seldom been abused by customers. We also allow people to do take-outs.

              Tickets prices are very reasonable. Prices for adults are $6.00 in advance, $6.50 at the door. Children’s tickets (age 5 to 11) are $3.00 when purchased in advance, $3.50 at the door. Children four years old or younger eat for free.

              The number of people we serve varies from year to year and season to season (spring or fall). Melrose is a rural community in central Minnesota with a population of 3300 people. We served 372 meals at Sunday’s breakfast which was up about 30 people from last fall, and up about 100 people from last spring. We have served up to 450 people in previous years.

              As I stated in the previous post, preselling tickets is a key to having a successful fundraiser. This not only helps to spread the word about the breakfast but you will find people who can not come to the breakfast but will buy a ticket or two as a donation to support the troop. Those sales are one hundred percent profit.

              Make sure you advertise the fundraiser. I make up posters to hang around town on my home computer and printer. For more hints about how to advertise for nearly no cost to the troop read my post from a year ago by clicking HERE.

              I hope this information is helpful to your troop Todd. If any of you have any more questions please write me.

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                Another Boy Scout Troop 68 spring breakfast fundraiser has come and gone. The troop has held a spring and a fall breakfast for over 20 years. The two breakfasts are the main source of income for our operating funds and individual Scout credit accounts.

                The key to having a successful breakfast fundraiser is to presell tickets. We begin this process about three or four weeks before the event. We will take a troop meeting night and send the boys out to cover as much of the town as possible in 90 minutes. We have the city mapped out into ten sections. Parents will choose a section, then drive out with two or three boys. We hope to sell enough tickets during that first night to pay for the breakfast expenses. This was easy to accomplish when we had a troop of over thirty members, but with a current membership of only nine Scouts we did not even sell enough to cover half of the expenses. Thus, it becomes very important for the Scouts and parents to make the effort to sell tickets during the next few weeks.

                Of course, we also sell tickets at the door the morning of the breakfast. We charge fifty cents more for a ticket sold at the door then we do for a presold ticket.

                It looks like we did better at this spring’s breakfast then usual. After adding up our income and estimating our expenses it looks like we will have made a profit of over $1600.00. Most of the success is due to the preselling of tickets. In fact, we had one young Scout who sold over $600 of tickets himself, setting a new troop record.

                A breakfast fundraiser is easy to do with a troop of thirty Boy Scouts. Troop 68 currently has only eight active Scouts. I am amazed that we can pull off a successful breakfast with only eight families. It is a great demonstration of the support and dedication of the parents to keep the troop alive. Unfortunately, if the troop gets any smaller we may have to drop this fundraiser because we will not have enough people to work for it.

                On a final note, this is the first time ever that I had to stand at the grille and make pancakes. (Since I became the scoutmaster my job has been to collect the money from the Scouts, supervising them as they do they duties, and pouring coffee as people sat down to eat.) By the end of the breakfast I was getting decent at making Mickey Mouse pancakes.

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