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Eat Well & Earn Money with these October PTA Fundraising Ideas {Part 1}

PTA Fundraising 5 min read
PTA Fundraising Ideas

Now that school is under way and everyone is getting back into the school routine, it's time to start thinking about PTA fundraising ideas. The crisp excitement of autumn provides many opportunities to generate some buzz and start earning money to help your school out.

In fact, we had so many ideas that we broke this epic post into two parts. The first part focuses on food-centric themes - such as Chocolate Day. Read on to find delicious ideas and free templates so you can get started today!

October Holiday PTA Fundraising Ideas

One fun way to add novelty to your fundraising is to base your events around obscure and lesser known holidays. Not only do these special days provide you with a theme but many of them are simply fun - something our kids and many parents will respond to!

We've compiled a list of the holidays that lend themselves to exciting mini-fundraisers that don't take a huge crew or lots of time to plan.

Food PTA Fundraising Ideas

October 1 - International Coffee Day and Homemade Cookie Day

PTA Fundraising Ideas

This is a perfect holiday to celebrate if you have a lot of parents that walk their children to school.

  • Set up a booth with plenty of hot coffee and homemade cookies.
  • Make international creamers available along with plenty of cream, sugar, milk, and stirrers.
  • Allow parents to purchase a deal - coffee and cookie for them + a cookie for their child. Make sure their child can pick out the cookie before walking into the school, and allow parents to return to the booth after they drop off their child to grab their cookie, coffee, and hopefully spend some time chatting with other parents.

October 14 - Dessert Day

PTA fundraising ideas

Want to hold a bake sale? This is the day to do it!

  • Use your PTAsocial Event Organizer app to send out information to parents about contributing desserts. Make it easy for them by providing dessert categories such as cookies, cupcakes, brownies and other bars, rice crispy treats, and cake pops.
  • Let parents know how many you would like and what information they need to provide on the drop-off container (name, number, peanut-free?).
  • Add some pizzazz by making the presentation especially nice: add ribbon to wrapped goodies or display the items on tiered plates.
  • Make pricing easy and let parents know the general price of the desserts so they send their children with enough money.

October 20 - Sweetest Day

PTA Fundraising Ideas

Apparently Sweetest Day has really caught on in a few parts of the U.S. Even if this isn't a big event in your area, there's no reason you can't introduce this to your school. This holiday is officially on a Saturday so it is the perfect fundraiser to hold on Friday, the 19th.

If you want to limit the amount of candy involved, here are a few tips:

  • Instead of focusing on quantity, focus on presentation. Put 4-5 pieces of individually wrapped candy in a small, brown bag, stamped with a candy stamp.
  • Allow students to purchase these bags in advance and suggest that they purchase some for siblings.
  • You can sell fruit kabobs if you would rather stay away from candy but still want to sell something sweet. Make cute kabobs, place in a bag, and deliver at the end of the day.
  • If you want to bypass the candy-for-kids altogether, consider sponsoring a Show Your Teacher She's the Sweetest Day. Allow students to purchase 3 Hershey kisses or hugs for $1. They can decide which teacher the candy goes to. At the end of the day, the teachers are presented with bags filled with hugs and kisses from the students who love them. Make sure you set a goal for the number of hugs and kisses you want the teachers to receive and announce how many they got at the end of the day.
  • Note: You can use this same fundraiser for World Teacher Day or Chocolate Day, if you prefer.

October 28 - National Chocolate Day

PTA Fundraising Ideas

Who doesn't love chocolate?! There are many ways to incorporate this into your fundraising year. Take some ideas from the Sweetest Day or Dessert Day and focus on chocolate-only items. Or, try one of these unique twists:

  • Set up a hot chocolate bar complete with marshmallows, sprinkles, and whipped cream. For younger kids, make sure the water is warm, not hot, and have volunteers put on the toppings so everything stays neat and amounts are reasonable.
  • Sell chocolate-covered strawberries, chocolate-dipped cookies, chocolate lollipops, or even chocolate-covered bacon for something different.
  • Consider making s'mores bags to sell. Fill them with a large marshmallow, two graham crackers, a piece of chocolate and directions for melting them in the microwave.

October - Chili Month

PTA Fundraising Ideas

Chili cook-offs are the perfect companion to cold winds and earlier nights. But, chili-cook-offs are large-scale events. Here's a way to celebrate Chili Month on a much smaller - yet still tasty - scale.

  • Set up a chili refuel station. This can be done in combination with a school event or you can offer it after-school...because we know how hungry those kids are after school!
  • Offer chili dogs, chili-cheese dogs, and Frito pie (in the chip bag for extra ease) along with chips and a drink for a set price.
  • If you want to make this fundraiser a bit more substantial, consider offering other chili food - nachos with chili, chili fries, or even cornbread covered with chili
  • For a play on the "chilly" theme, offer cups of hot chocolate and/or coffee as well.

Consider these foodie ways to add some fun to your school while raising funds. If you are looking for ideas that don't involve food but do involve science and Halloween, keep your eye out for our next post, Have Fun & Earn Money with these October PTA Fundraising Ideas {Part 2}.

About PTAsocial

PTAsocial’s easy-to-use digital tools empower PTAs and PTOs to efficiently plan school community events, and radically increase volunteers and funds raised. Find out more here.

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