Buffalo Wild Wings (3rd Fundraiser)
On May 4th, we hosted a fundraiser at Buffalo Wild Wings in Brookfield. This location is one of the larger locations, complete with a separate room that we held a silent auction.
We had the space from 11am-11pm (open to close) that day, but we were only able to start setting up 15 minutes before the location opened. We started unloading the cars with our auction items and brought them into the room to find we still needed to move all the tables in chairs. This took us much longer to set up, but we worked together and made our displays. We had so many items that we had to bring more tables in from the outside patio.
Half way through setting up, our local Channel 58 news reporter (Lane Kimble) arrived and did a 5 to 10 minute interview with me. He then proceeded to get coverage of the auction items and the Buffalo Wild Wings location (coverage aired on the 5:00 and 10:00 news).
Before we finished setting up, guests were walking through looking at the auction items we had. This took us longer to get everything set up, but some of our family and friends started to help. We were grateful=)
We were not allowed to talk to the guests that we didn't know, and some of the guests that did know us, didn't find the auction room, or didn't remember it was happening at this fundraiser. One of the problems with this, is that not all the guests knew us that were there for the fundraiser, they saw signs posted at other locations, and they wanted to help.
SInce this was the first auction, we did learn many things. It takes a long time to close an auction with that many items, and I kept it open too late. We did door prizes at 8 and closed auctions at 8:30. Some people came back to collect their prizes, others we were still calling after 10:00pm, and some items we ended up delivering within the next week.
Overall everything went well. We will do things differently next time, but we raised over $5000 on just our auction alone. Just imagine if we would have had experience and closed everything earlier.
I did read a lot about silent auctions before this auction and got really good tips, many of which we were complimented on. One in particular is buying cheater glasses and placing them on all the auction tables so the people who forgot them will still be able to see to place their bids. Those came in handy.
Thank you to everyone that is supporting COTA!