Experience the “sweet smell of success” while hosting a cow pie fundraising event during a country fair, rodeo or other event. A cow is turned loose on a fenced-in area which has been marked off in 500 three-foot, numbered squares. The cow determines the winner by making the first “deposit” on one of the squares. Chances on each square are sold for $5. The winner receives $500 or 20% of the sales, whichever is less ($1 for every square sold.) Kids and adults will both love this fun event.
Make sure that the animal is well-fed on the day of the fundraising event, to assure a timely “deposit”. Sell squares in advance as well as before ‘turning out’ the cow. A line judge is required for close calls. Set out clear rules to avoid problems and assure impartiality. If possible, choose a field with stands for the ticket holders to wait and watch for the big moment. A football or soccer field (in off season) might be used if fenced or you have enough volunteers to keep the animal on the grid. Possible sources of the star player: a local dairy, horse farm, etc to donate the critters “time” and the field to make a grid. In place of a cow, you could also use a horse, goat, or sheep, even a dog in a pinch! However using a cow will usually guarantee media interest and greater publicity for your group. Choose a docile animal and groom resplendently for the event. Have several volunteers available to patrol the fence and assure no one is able to influence the event in any way. It’s best to have a rain date arranged ahead of time, if needed.
This can take either a short time, or a good long while, and some groups find it a good time to sell concessions like hot chocolate, popcorn, and hot dogs. There may be other entertainment on hand as well. Source: Fun-Attic, Inc. (Grand Rapids, Michigan)
Alternative: Seek approval to allow a cow to come onto a protected gym floor or set up a staked out field area. Find a farmer willing to bring in a calf or calm cow to your event. Once you’ve figured out where the event will take place, sell squares for the area that the cow will be contained in. You can use large cardboard boxes-flatten, tape together that are number. In a field you could use line chalk or some type of safe quick-drying spray paint to mark off squares and number each square. Sell the marked off squares for a set dollar amount. You could even let people pick their own lucky squares. If there were more than one person on a winning square, the money allotted for the winner would be split among the owners of that square. And what does it take to be the winner this fundraising event? The first person that receives a fresh cow patty from Betsy is the winner.
Not everyone has access to a friendly farmer with a splat friendly cow for Cow Pie Bingo or a way to transport the friendly creature. Not everyone either has a large field at their disposal. This is where Chicken Poop can be a great
alternative. Still don’t know anyone with a chicken? You’d be surprised but there are many backyard chicken keepers. If still no joy, try your local farmers market. They might even help run the event for you. Numbered lotto tickets are sold ahead of time. Then a chicken is put into a cage where it walks atop a grid of numbers. The number that the chicken’s “spot” lands lands on (because all chickens “spot” eventually) is the winner. The person with the corresponding ticket gets half the money raised with ticket sales. The other half is profit for your group!
This idea was really creative. It is stolen, I mean leveraged, from the Akita folks. They set up a large pen, put a dog in after he had just eaten, and sold 12 inch X 12 inch squares of the territory for $20 a square. The winning square would get $500, the rescue fund would get the rest. They had 196 total squares, so the rescue fund got $3500!! (There were pre-defined rules about pooping on the lines, pooping while walking etc.!) Source: DPCA Rescue Committee of the Doberman Pinscher Club of America
We have included a number of do-it-yourself fundraising ideas in this section that offer a break from traditional product sales. They were developed by groups just like yours in an attempt have a little fun with their fundraiser. Some of them are tried and true while others show a lot of creativity … and even wackiness in some cases. All of them are obviously not appropriate for every group, but sometimes, with only a little modification, your might find some fund raising ideas that are perfect for your group. If you have an idea for a do-it-yourself fund raiser you are willing to share with others, please send it to us via email. Include anything and everything you would want to know if you were hearing the idea for the first time.