Fete Showcase: Success Primary School

We spoke to Michelle Gilmore, 2011 Fete Convenor for Success Primary School, and received the inside goss on what they did and how they did it. Read on to learn more…..

Name of school or group: Success Primary School, WA

Date and start/end time: 13 November 2011 10am – 4pm

Theme or title: Success Primary School Family Fun Day

Any ‘drawcard’?: No. We did make sure there was something for everyone and made it big enough to appeal to a wide range of people. We had stalls, rides, plus entertainment from the local community. We invited students from other schools to showcase their talents.

Number of students at the school: 580

Estimated number in attendance: 5000 people

Profit from the day: ~$25 000

How many did you have on your committee and what were their roles?
6/7 people. Someone was in charge of collecting donations and raffle prizes, someone else was in charge of booking the entertainment and scheduling them on the day and I was the Fete Co-ordinator in charge of booking market stalls, budget, fete layout, liaising with our local Council and general overview to make sure everything ran smoothly.

Number and type of rides: 9 – bouncy castle (Shrek), bucking bull, inflatable slide, bungy run, velcro wall, zorb ball, Chopperville (for under 3’s), dunk tank & an animal farm.

Number of stalls/activities: 50

Five highlights from the event

  1. Seeing all the kids and families enjoying themselves and watching all the hard work from the committee come together.
  2. Realising we would reach our goal (raising enough to finish air conditioning the entire school).
  3. By pre-selling all day ride tickets, the kids were able to start the fun as soon as they arrived (the line for ride passes was LONG!).
  4. Watching the school families, local community and local government come together on the day to ensure it was a success.
  5. Watching groups from the community entertaining families all day (we invited a local karate club, dance groups, cheerleaders etc) to perform in front of the food area for all day entertainment (this also bought their families into the fete to watch).

Five ‘lessons learned’

  1. Volunteers are a crucial part of the day but just because they say they will turn up, doesn’t mean they will! Also, have a number of roving volunteers to help with issues that crop up throughout the day (emptying bins, helping busy stalls etc).
  2. Keep the committee to a small, select group of people – especially with meetings. It will stop things going off track too often.
  3. The co-ordinator needs to be strong and say no when needed (and stick to it).
  4. Be ready early on the day – quite a few people turned up before the start time!
  5. Use the school community – find out what you need and ask school parents. Some may not want to donate time on the day but may donate goods from their business to raffle. Other parents made crafts to sell. There are a number of ways to get parents involved.

My #1 Top tip for:

Promotion: Use social media – Facebook was fantastic at getting the word out.

Engaging volunteers: We offered a special raffle just for those who helped out on the day. I also made a point of going around and thanking volunteers on the day for their hard work.

Sponsorship: Get sponsors early and ask for what you need. From our major sponsor, we received more than just cash. Keep them happy and they will be happy to sponsor you again!

Making it fun: Put yourself in the kids’ shoes (not the parents) – what would they want to do? I asked quite a few kids if I wasn’t sure which ride to book for example to check what they would want to see!