Fundraising is essential for productive chapter life, and with the Sigma Tau Delta 2017 International Convention just around the corner it is time to start raising travel funds for your chapter to attend. Asking strangers for money can be a daunting prospect, but with the right approach everyone can walk away feeling good about the experience. This spring the Wichita State University (WSU) chapter partnered with their local Barnes & Noble to host a successful superhero fundraiser.
In spring 2016 the Alpha Theta Omicron Chapter at WSU hosted its most memorable fundraiser to date. The chapter teamed up with the helpful staff of the local Barnes & Noble to throw a superhero book fair event, melding community involvement and family fun. From 11:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. customers were encouraged to wear an “I’m with Sigma Tau” nametag, and 10% of any purchase badge-wearing customers made that day was donated to the chapter fund. To capitalize on our superhero theme we also held a superhero reading for children, heroic emblem face painting, and a hero quest battle for superhero prizes. The superhero theme proved appealing to children of all ages, making for an inclusive and exciting event.
The Sigma Tau Delta booth was positioned at the entrance of the bookstore, an ideal location to greet and meet visitors. The name tags and the pencils and coupons from various local businesses proved to be our conversation starters and offered us an opportunity to educate people about the Society. Our selection of books displayed at the booth generated quite a few donations of these titles to our Wichita State Writing Center. To amp up the day’s superhero theme, the Barnes & Noble staff provided us with a “Superhero Selfie Station,” in which customers could don free superhero masks to take selfies in front of a cityscape background complete with stylized comic-book onomatopoeias.
The theme of our superhero fundraiser spread throughout the store with strategically located hero quest stations where adventurers could answer superhero trivia to be entered in a drawing for superhero prizes. During the quest, participants could stop at the face painting station to pick from a selection of superhero emblems to be painted by one of our skilled volunteers who had practiced the previous day on our eager chapter members. The kids fell in love with their temporary “tattoos” and proudly displayed them to members at the entrance booth as they left the store.
In the afternoon, local author Mike Klassen hosted a book-signing booth next to ours. Klassen joined us in engaging a couple of curious young adults on how to become involved in English and creative writing careers. Aside from the superhero fun, holding these conversations with young readers serves as a reflection of what we subconsciously hoped to achieve with our disruption into customers’ Saturday morning: a declaration of our presence within the community and our desire to foster literacy and all aspects of the English discipline. Overall our fundraiser was a success, collecting enough funds to maintain our thriving organization for the upcoming semester, which was made possible by a joint effort from the book-loving (and superhero fan) community and our Sigma Tau Delta members.
Tell us about your chapter’s superhero fundraising efforts in the comments!
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