Hosting Your Best (Boston) Marathon Fundraiser Party

Sara is not only a fundraising expert, but a Boston Marathon finisher.
Sara is not only a fundraising expert, but a Boston Marathon finisher.

The Boston Marathon is one of the most prestigious running races in the world, for which runners must qualify. Luckily, marathon officials realized that not everyone who wants to run Boston is super speedy, and there’s an incredible opportunity to run by raising money for very deserving causes in the Boston area. Herein comes the Boston Marathon charity runner!

What’s one of the best ways to fundraise? With a fundraiser party, of course! Not only are marathon parties more fun than simply fundraising online, but getting your biggest supporters in one place is guaranteed to raise more money for your cause. Looking for some tips and tricks to throw the best marathon fundraiser party EVER? Well, we’ve got your back!

Plan Ahead
Since there are so many Bostonians running for charity, it’s best to plan your marathon fundraiser party at least three months before Marathon Monday (so you should start now!). Work your connections – at your favorite bar or restaurant, friends who work in the industry, or even through social media. From there, you can determine which venue is best for hosting your event, and connect with others that may donate silent auction items!

Create Your Fundraiser Party Page
It’s undeniable that the Internet is the fastest and easiest place to spread the word about an event – but how do you do it? Eventbrite is an awesome solution for marathon fundraiser party-planners.

  • Design? Easy breezy! We’ve created Boston Marathon Templates so you can easily set the theme for your event. Choose between Heartbreak Hill, or The Finish Line, simply by copying and pasting the codes we provide: Heartbreak Hill code, and The Finish Line code.
  • Make it easier for your guests. Guests can be forgetful and don’t always have cash. Have them pre-pay for a ticket and/or make a donation right on your event page. We’ll send your money in just a few days after your event, which you can then put toward your fundraising goal!
  • Give guests options. Have guests who want to attend but don’t drink? Others who want a few drink tickets? How about purchasing silent auction tickets? Create different ticket types so all of your guests can attend “their way”.
  • Get more attendees. Just because someone doesn’t know you, doesn’t mean they don’t want to support you! Bostonians love to come together for a good cause. We’re socially integrated, so expect friends, friends of friends, and maybe people you don’t even know at your fundraiser! The more guests share on sites like Facebook and Twitter, the more exposure your event will gain, and the more tickets you’ll sell. Just check out the stats!
  • Headcount. Know exactly who’s coming to your event so the venue can plan accordingly. There are so many generous venues in Boston, so do them a favor and give them as close to a head-count as possible.

You Said Silent Auction?

Yup! Something fun you can add to your fundraiser party is a silent auction. Local businesses such as spas, restaurants, and boutiques love to support marathon runners.

Prepare a one-pager talking a bit about yourself and the organization you’re running for. Start a discussion through social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook and from there, email your contact the one pager you’ve created. Tell them what a huge fan you are of their business and how you’d be honored to be able to use their donation toward raising money for your fundraising cause. Don’t forget to invite them to the party! Also, make sure you thank them publicly on your social networks and any handouts you give away at the event.

Say Your Thanks

Make sure you publicly thank everyone for attending your marathon fundraiser. Share a bit WHY you decided to run the marathon – was it for health, your passion for running, your love for the organization you’re running for, or a combination? You’re partying and celebrating with purpose, so let that purpose be known!

Keep in Touch

Send a thank you note by using the email addresses you’ve collected through Eventbrite. Let them know they can make additional contributions toward your fundraising goal if they’d like, including on Eventbrite Giving, Eventbrite’s fundraising tool!

We’ll be cheering for you from the sidelines. Here’s to healthy training! Best of luck, soon-to-be marathoners!

Are you planning a fundraiser this year? Tell us about it on Facebook and Twitter!

Check out Eventbrite for your fundraiser, and see how easy it is to collect data and donations, before the doors even open.

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Sara S.