Chinese auction is a good way to raise funds for a certain organization. Apart from being simple and profitable, it also offers a lot of fun and excitement to all participants. Being a popular fundraising event, it has adopted a lot of names like Tricky Tray, silent auction, penny auction, penny sale, penny social, gift auction, brown bag auction, dark horse, and basket games. Even so, the process is the same no matter what you call it. First, guests buy tickets and place them into a container where a prize of their choice is located. After everyone has placed all their tickets on the specific prize they want to win, the organizer now starts to draw for the prizes. The winner will be the person whose number matches the winning number drawn. Exciting, isn’t it? So if you are planning to organize a Chinese auction, take time to consider the following steps.
- Choose a perfect date, time, and place for the Tricky Tray event. Look for a spacious room where you can hold the event. You may need to find a place with several compartments depending on how you will decorate the area. It is preferable to host the Chinese auction in the evening, most especially on weekend, so that a bigger crowd can attend to the said event.
- Create posters and pamphlets with necessary details about the Chinese auction you want to organize. Indicate the date, time and place. You may also want to put pictures of the amazing prizes to be won. Put up all posters all over town and let other members of the organization distribute the pamphlets. You may also want to post your advertisements on your website if your organization has one. If the Chinese auction is intended to obtain profit, you can be very thrifty by publicizing the event through sponsorship of advertising means like radio stations or local newspapers.
- Solicit for donations. Be open to any donations rather than collecting stuff for a specific target crowd. Books, paintings, collector's items and the like would surely be enticing. But you can still spice up the event by offering gift certificates and services. Hence, look for humble companies who can help you obtain these things.
- Prepare the things you will need for the event like tables, chairs, paper bags, tickets, marker, among others. Set this up the night before the event in order not to cram. Set up the tables where you will place all the items. Tape a paper bag under or near each item. Don’t forget to label each paper bag with the specific item so that the tickets won’t get mixed up.
- Set up a table near the entrance. This is where the tickets will be sold. Cheaper tickets will interest more crowds and can help you sell more. Decide whether the tickets will be of a double-rolled kind or single rolls. Double-rolled tickets let attendees have their own copy of the ticket and watch for their number. Single rolls, on the contrary, needs the name of the attendee on each ticket and wait for their name to be called.
- Allot ample space for the chairs where attendees can wait while winners are called. One or two members can act as hosts for the event. They are responsible in calling out the numbers or winners. The other members can act as posts and be responsible in awarding the winners. They are the ones who will be handing out the prizes to the winners.
To add more profit, you may put food stalls for refreshments.