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10 Ideas for the School Summer Fete

Hooray! Schools are re-opening; the first step in the roadmap out of lockdown. Teachers and children can get off the screens and back into the classroom. A sense of normality can resume. As families are keen to get out and about, now is a great time to plan a celebratory summer fete.

Get it right and the summer fete can be one of the best school fundraisers of the year. So, here are 10 ideas to help your PTA make the most of the opportunity.

1. School Fete Themes

Theming your event can make it easier to decide on games and stalls, providing variety from previous events. Here are four suggestions:

Outer space – including rocket making crafts, hoopla ‘Saturn rings’ throw, space hopper races, cosmic face painters and guess how many flying saucer sweets in the jar.

We will Rock You – including performances from the school band or choir, drumming workshop, make a shaker craft and a popstar photobooth.

Down at the Farm – Including wellie wanging, hook a duck, apple bobbing and beanbag throw through the barn doors, tug of war and donkey rides.

Treasure Island – including a coconut shy, spot the treasure–pin in a map, sandpit lucky dip, walk the plank challenge, guess the weight of the pineapple and pebble painting craft.

2. Money-spinning Summer Fete Stalls

No matter what your theme, certain stalls always boost the takings. If you have willing participants, soak the teacher is a money-spinner along with ‘beat the goalie’ challenges. If you have green-fingered pupils, a plant stand is a good idea. Ask for donations to create a pre-loved uniform stall and second-hand book or toy stall.

3. Invite External Stallholders

Your PTA doesn’t have to do it all! Invite local businesses to have a stall at the school fete. To keep things simple, charge a set fee for a table and let them keep the profits. You may have interest from parents who are resellers for cosmetic or book companies, as well as craft makers.

4. Sell Tickets for the Tombola and Raffle

Everyone likes to try their luck in the tombola or raffle. A great way to gather tombola prizes is to have a mufti day just before the school fete. Children wear their choice of clothes in exchange for a box of chocolates, bottle or another prize item. These are then labelled with numbers ending in 0 or 5, with the rest of the tickets going into a bucket.

Letters to local companies requesting a raffle prize could be fruitful. Another option is to lower the stallholder fee and request a raffle donation. You might take a selection of the tombola donations for a hamper or include an impressive cake that has been baked for the refreshment stall.

5. School Fete Refreshments

That brings us to refreshments. The cake stall is always a winner. Send requests for older pupils, parents and grandparents to bake and donate. Does the PTA have facilities to offer tea and coffee, as well as squash and juice as well?

Consider whether you have the resources to offer other refreshments or if there are options to invite local ice-cream companies or other street food vendors.

6. School Fete Performances

There will be talented pupils in your school, who might relish the opportunity to perform to a crowd. Short music, dance, gymnastic or theatre shows add to the school fete atmosphere and encourage family members to linger.

7. Year 6 Enterprise Stall

How about setting your Year 6 pupils the challenge of making items to sell on their designated stall; what a great learning opportunity! The school may agree to a planning lesson, with small groups working together to produce items to sell. They could be given a loan to buy materials, which has to be repaid after the event. They can decorate the stall and learn the art of interacting with customers.

8. Multi-game tickets

Rather than individual charges at each game, you might consider selling a multi-game ticket. This reduces the need for small change and encourages full participation. The ticket has boxes that are ticked by the PTA volunteer at each stall.

9. Incentivise PTA Volunteers

The challenge with big events such as the school fete is securing sufficient volunteers to help with the set-up, running stalls and clearing away. Requesting cover for specific time slots, rather than the full event can help. Could you offer other incentives, such as a free drink, cake and raffle ticket for all volunteers? If so, include this in requests for help.

10. Painting Competition

Transforming the school hall and/or field into a themed fete can be a lot of work. Why not get the children involved? For a homework project, they could be asked to decorate paper plates, templates, lanterns or bunting triangles in designs to fit the theme. All can be collected in, strung together and used to add colour to the event. A winner from each year could receive a free multi-game ticket!

With these summer fete ideas, we hope to inspire your PTA fundraising event.  Check out our fundraising blog for other PTA fundraising tips!

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