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Social evening success stories

While fundraising is a key part of a PTAs function, building a sense of community and encouraging parents to come together at social events is equally rewarding for all. AND, if you can make money from your social event, then everyone's a winner!

Here's our pick of your success stories…

Mamma Mia

The Friends Of Ninelands Primary School near Leeds held a successful ladies film night showing Mama Mia. Rob Major from the Friends of Ninelands explains: 'We charged a nominal fee to cover set-up costs and showed the Mamma Mia film, karaoke version. With a well stocked bar, a great night was had by all, including the four men acting as barmen for the evening. We made £500 profit and we have already been asked when the Friends will be running the next film night!' Running a film night is a great way of raising money and having fun but remember you will need a licence to screen the film and also a Temporary Event Notice.

Race ya!

Cranfield VC Lower School Parent, Teacher and Friends Association, near Bedford, held their first race night last May. Combining the race night with an auction and a raffle, they made a whopping £1,500 profit, in just one night. The race night was 'bought in' from one of the many suppliers available and the auction was made up of a mixture of tangible items and 'promises'.  Lots included things such as signed photos, tickets to local events, an hour's legal services and the opportunity to be head teacher for the day. Cathryn Watters said: 'The race night we held was a great success, not only financially but from a social aspect too. It brought people together who don't normally come to PTA events and everyone who attended had a great time. From the PTA's point of view, having a company to come and run the night was fantastic. We were a bit anxious if this would pay off as there was an initial outlay of £300 but as soon as the night was underway we realised it was money well spent. It took away all the anxiety of working out totes / payouts / setting up the equipment and running the races. The organiser also had lots of ways of getting more out of the crowd and getting them geegeed up! We are already planning our next one and are looking forward to it being an even better success than the first.'

Hogs heaven!

The PTA of Our Lady & St Michaels in Abergavenny held a Ceilidh and Hog Roast for families at the school. Clodagh Shackleton, told us: 'This was an event for all the family. Local musicians the Skirrid Ceukudh Band provided the entertainment with their rousing blend of acoustic and electric instruments playing traditional jigs, reels and waltzes which got everybody on their feet. A hog roast supper ensured that everyone had enough energy to see the night out and we also provided the refreshments.'  The PTA had 10 people helping to make sure the night was a success for all 179 attendees They raised £837 profit from the event.

Ladies night

The PTA at Bilton Grange Primary School near Harrogate wanted to combine fundraising with offering new social events for families. So to mark Mothering Sunday the idea of a pampering and shopping evening (just for Mums) was born and resulted in over 20 stalls selling jewellery, cosmetics and gift as well as offering mini massages, reflexology and bra fitting. The ticket price of just £3.50 included a glass of wine, nibbles and a raffle ticket. Sue Cloggie said: 'Ladies Night In was a huge success - partly because of a modest but very presentable profit of £400 - but much more so from the social angle; with a great atmosphere and lots to look at, mums, grandmas, aunts and friends obviously enjoyed the chance to shop, relax and chat over a drink or two'.

Wine and Wisdom

The Friends of Hyde Park Infant School, Plymouth organised a Quiz night, for the school and local community. To attract as many quizzers as possible, the event had no age limits, everyone could join in. In addition, everyone was encouraged to bring their own wine, hence the Wine and Wisdom theme. On the day of the event, table and chairs were arranged and, more importantly, wine glasses were loaned from a local off licence.  The entry fee was just £2 per person; participants could create their own teams or just turn up and form a team on the night. The quiz consisted of 10 themed rounds with 10 questions per round. The PTA encouraged teams to have a theme for their tables too and to decorate it; there was a small prize for best dressed table. At the interval the PTA ran a quick, additional fundraiser to swell their profits. They sold cloakroom tickets for £1 each; the winning ticket was selected at the end of the interval, half the proceeds went to the person with the lucky ticket and half to the PTA. At the end of the evening, the winning quiz team was presented with a small trophy and the losing team was awarded the proverbial wooden spoon. The event raised £180.


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