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Silent Auction Guide & Toolkit
Learn how to create a successful silent auction fundraiser. Silent auction strategies, timelines, auction items and how to organize and display them, how to close an auction and take payments, and other add on fundraisers to boost the bottom line.

Secrets of the Charity Auction Experts
Learn from the experts! Discover the best selling auction items. How to get auction items donated. How to boost attendance. How to get more bids and higher selling prices. How to coordinating volunteers, staff and auction consultants.

Hot Items for Your Charity Auction Fundraiser

by Deane Brengle


Procurement is perhaps the most important part of planning your charity's fundraising auction. The success of your auction depends on the value and demand for items up for bid. Your team in charge of procurement should be looking for items, experiences, and activities that are not easily purchased. These will have greater value and will encourage people to attend the event.

When planning your auction fundraiser consider the make-up of prospective attendees, their likes and interests, and a realistic budget range for bidders. This match up of auction items to your bidders is critical.

Each charity auction fundraiser has its own unique make-up. Here are some of the hot items for a school auction that may work for you:

  • Pizza a week for six months
  • A day on the farm
  • Roller skating party
  • Family kayaking for a day (with lesson)
  • Paintball for a group
  • A group father/son baseball outing
  • Family season pass to district sporting events
  • Sunset cruise with wine & cheese for a group
  • Lunch with the mayor
  • Dance lessons for a group
  • Job shadowing a local business leader
  • Poker night for a group
  • Six months of flowers from a local florist
  • A chauffer for a day
  • Cooking class for a group
  • Karaoke party
  • Catered lunch for the office
  • Sommelier Class
  • Appetizers and a keg of beer (wine)
  • A father/son charter fishing trip
  • Dinner with a local celebrity
  • Museum sleepover
  • Cigars & a humidor
  • Mother/daughter spa day
  • Police/Fireman for a day (ride in a vehicle, station tour, wear the gear, and photographs)
  • Group walk in your town's parade
  • Half page ad in your local magazine/newspaper
  • Beach weekend for the family/or two
  • CD/DVD a week for six months
  • Mothers only social gathering hosted by a well-liked parent
  • Lasik eye surgery
  • Tour of a local factory, newspaper, radio/TV station, or sporting arena
  • Botox from a local dermatologist
  • The latest computer or entertainment system & installation
  • Super Bowl party


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About the Author:

Deane Brengle is the editor of several free online publications that cover fundraising for small nonprofit groups. You can visit these publications and read more about fundraising in articles by him and other experts in the field at The Fund$Raiser Cyberzine, The Fundraising for Small Groups Newsletter, and Fundraising Booklets.



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Silent Auction Guide & Toolkit
Learn how to create a successful silent auction fundraiser. Silent auction strategies, timelines, auction items and how to organize and display them, how to close an auction and take payments, and other add on fundraisers to boost the bottom line of your silent auction.

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Secrets of the Charity Auction Experts
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