How do you rejuvenate tradition? Every year benefit auctions have live auction events and offer packages, and every year it feels harder and harder to get that package with a wow-effect. Many guests have seen it all, making it more challenging to come up with irresistible new ideas. Get started early when putting your procurement target list together and think outside-the-box for auction package ideas.
As you gear up for you spring event, consider the list of amazing auction packages below, which was compiled by our own event experts from auctions they’ve attended over the years around the U.S.:
- Date Night: plan 12 pre-paid dates with activities (once a month for the whole year).
- Night with the Chef: you & some of your friends get a personal meal by a local chef (does not have to be famous)
- Colorado Getaway: Aspen, CO Getaway, which includes golf, rafting, spa, cycling and a stay at the St. Regis or Ritz
- “Best Pizza in Town, you decide”: get as many pizza places to donate gift certificates and put them all together. Create a Certificate that says “The Best Pizza in (name of town, city, area) is _______.” The buyer gets to go to all the pizza places and then they decide which is best and gives the certificate to that establishment. A lot of families really enjoy doing this and it lets the restaurants know that their donation is getting some extra attention than just a part of a “grab-bag” or something. It makes it more of a competition for the restaurants.
- Instant Dessert: flaming dessert created by a local chef auctioned to one table only that same night – bananas foster or baked Alaska. (This also works for table-side specialty cocktails for the night such as Spanish Coffee table-side for the lucky winner.)
- Fire Station Dinner: the fire fighters pay for the food to prepare the dinner for up to 10 people. They had to pay so it was not coming from city funds for the food. This package can include a tour of the fire house and, if feasible, when a call comes in, several of guests are allowed to ride along.
- “Leap of Faith”: this package is geared towards a school where a famous/beloved teacher, father, or principal can be elected to agree to sky dive with 7 other willing participants. (At one school, each spot went for $1,800!)
- Bromance for a Year: provide 8 or 9 different ‘bro’ activities in the local city that appeal to men (e.g. a round of golf with a golf cart, pub brewing experience, or steak dinner).
- Season Pass: season passes to sports events are always popular. To stand-out, offer the package with extra benefits such as side-lines access, signings, etc.
- First to the Valet: “Live Auction opening lot: No waiting in the valet line after the event. High bidder will have their car brought up to front of venue. Parking and gratuity paid. Car brought up to guests with 2 warm Starbucks, waters and warm chocolate chip cookies. Personal concierge to carry auction lots to car. Organizations with venues using busy valet can bring in about $500-600 for this opening lot.”
- Room Makeover: get a home furnishing store to donate their design consultant and a $1000+ certificate to makeover a room.
- Private music lessons with a famous musician.
- Cooking class from a famous chef.
- Be Famous: offer a walk-on role for a theater performance, TV show, or concert.
- Tonight’s Best Table: strategically place the ‘best table’ in the flow of the space so that arriving guests notice it immediately. At the beginning of your event, auction off this ‘best table’ for that night and offer extra perks (e.g. specialty menu, back massages, cocktails from a famous bartender, etc.).