Fundraising Ideas for Sports Teams

Fund raising helps sports teams cover their expenses.
Fund raising helps sports teams cover their expenses. (Image: baseball field image by Xavier MARCHANT from

Recreational and scholastic sports teams require funds for the purchase of equipment and uniforms as well as other expenses such as travel costs to compete in tournaments. With budget tightening in schools, teams sometimes have to do their own fund raising in order to continue playing their sport. Coming up with fun and innovative fund raising ideas can help any organization be more successful.

Link up with a Professional Team

As a way to spur season ticket sales, the Milwaukee Brewers Major League Baseball Team dreamed up a promotion that would appeal to any fan -- a chance to be a big-league baseball player. One lucky season ticket holder will be given a Major League contract, including Major League pay -- for one day. Since professional sports teams strive to contribute to the local community, consider approaching one to participate in a raffle for this prize, with the proceeds benefiting the amateur recreational or scholastic sports team.

Think Beyond the Bake Sale

Activities such as bake sales or car washes can help raise money, but using a more creative approach can result in higher attendance and contributions. Have a neighborhood barbecue challenge, with backyard grilling enthusiasts -- these could be team members, members’ parents, or fans and supporters of the team -- preparing their favorite steaks, ribs or chicken dishes. The proceeds from the sales of the food would go to the team. Let the diners vote on their favorite dish and give a trophy of “Best BBQ Chef” to the winner.

Get Donors Involved

Play up the fun aspect of sports by letting people who donate to the team be a part of the action. A high school golf team could give lessons to donors who are less proficient in the game than the team members. An adult basketball league could give clinics to show donors’ kids the fundamentals of the game.

Recognize Contributions

Most people like to be recognized for doing good deeds, for helping others. Amateur theater companies often print the names of key contributors in the programs handed out for each performance to show their appreciation. A sports team could hand out fliers with the game schedule and a list of donors to thank. Or if funds are available consider placing an ad in the local paper listing the names of donors and expressing thanks. If you play at a ballpark with an electronic scoreboard, you could highlight donors’ names periodically on that during the games.

Auction Memorabilia

Many professional sports stars began to discover their athletic talent from playing high school sports. Helping the next generation of student athletes could be something the sports star would be interested in. Contact the player’s agent or the public relations department of the team he plays for and ask it he could autograph a baseball, a bat, a football or other item that the amateur team can auction off as a fund raiser.

Build a Brand Name

Create a catchy nickname for the team and design a mascot. Create a costume of the mascot design that a person could wear. Ask a local store to allow you to have the mascot appear outside and solicit donations. Sell t-shirts with the mascot and team name printed on them.

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