Fundraising…a scary adventure and A LOT of work, but worth it in the end if someone can benefit.
About 5 years ago I had a vision of organizing a bass fishing tournament to benefit ASI. I mentioned it to my husband, since he is a member of a bass club in Maine, but that was as far as it went. A few months ago I started talking about it again. This time after the talk, I jumped in and contacted the president of the club. After several emails we agreed to meet face to face to discuss details and are now on the road to the “1st Annual Angling for Alström” bass fishing tournament to benefit ASI.
I had no idea how much work was involved in organizing an event of this nature. I have spent weeks writing letters for donations and letters of invitation to participate in the tournament. I have made lists upon lists of businesses, companies, organizations, big and small, that I want to be sure to contact. I am begging and pleading with friends and family to cook, sponsor and volunteer on the day of the event. It’s a lot of work, I won’t lie, but I keep thinking of the end product and that is my drive. If I can help ASI in any way, then that is my mission. ASI is like my family and I would never dream of telling my brother that I couldn’t help him, so how can I not help my AS family?
The Angling for Alström tournament is scheduled for July 3. My vision includes the main tournament that will consist of a 2 person team/boat. Each team will pay a $125 registration fee that will include their registration, launch fee, 5 free raffle tickets and a BBQ dinner at the end of the day. The tournament will pay out 80% to the winning team and 20% of each fee will go directly to ASI. (Hopefully the winners will find it in their hearts to donate back to the cause.) Throughout the day, there will be games and activities for children, and a separate fishing derby, “Katelyn’s Angling for Alström”, for any child that would like to experience fishing. My dad and a family friend have agreed to captain their party boats throughout the day taking children out for an hour of fishing. Others have volunteered to weigh and measure the fish as they are caught so the children can record their daily catches. I have been contacting locals to sponsor this particular event so each child will receive a t-shirt with the tournament logo and a prize for their catch. Katelyn is very excited about this part of the fundraiser, as this is her baby, she had the idea and her father just helped her fine tune it.
I have been contacting larger businesses for donations for a silent auction and items to sell tickets on prior to the event. I also have contacted a media crew in hopes to have the event covered or at least a story in the paper. Awareness is half the battle when fund raising for something that so few know anything about.
As you can see, my husband and I, along with the Maine Blade Runners bass club are very busy, but it will all be worth it when we present a cheque to Alström Syndrome International. I challenge you to organize an event. Remember, “Drop by drop, we form a lake”.
Gina, Jeff, Katelyn and Cody Denbow
Full Schedule (Adobe Acrobat PDF)
(Full details on the Tournament can be found at www.themainebladerunners.net/ASI-Benefit-.html)