In honor of Memorial Day, here’s a video of the Flags In ceremony that takes place a few days before weekend’s main ceremony. The flags are placed in the order in which the wars happened.
The large tomb is the WW1 tomb. On the right is WW2, on the left Korea, and the center was where the Unknown from Vietnam was interred.
I thought I’d do something a little different for this week’s Sharing Saturday post. If you’ve ever wondered what it takes to become one of the guards at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, well here you go.
Let’s say you’re not quite ready to plunge into the logistical challenges involved with putting on a James Bond gambling night or mini-marathon road race. Perhaps you just want to test the fundraising waters by just getting enough money to host a restoration workshop or to hire some goats for weed clearing.
But aside from putting out the coffee can at the local grocery store and diner, how else can you get the change rolling in?
Let’s face it. Most of us don’t carry a lot of cash around anymore but we do like giving for a good cause, especially when it’s for a community effort. So why not tap the local group of high school programming geeks to design a fundraising app? Check out the following sites—you’ll be surprised at how easy it is to set one up.
Using an app means smartphone owners (that would be a LOT of us) can make a quick $5, $10, or bigger donation by just a fast tap to the screen. The donor gets immediate satisfaction of having done something good for a local cause and the cash flows safely through Paypal and gets directly deposited to the association’s 501(c)(3) bank account.
Once the app’s set up, you can link it to the society’s webpage, email it to friends and family, put it on flyers around town, hype it up at the local festivals (just think of all the people coming to the Memorial Day and 4th of July events you can reach out to with this!) and yes, don’t forget to contact the local papers to help you get the word out to an even bigger group.
Oh, and for the students who designed the app? They win too because they can spotlight this as a plus on their college application—especially if the app was successful in raising a good chunk of money for charity.
Here are 7 more ideas to consider if you’re looking to raise cash.
The problem’s simple. Old cemeteries need ongoing infusions of cash for restoration and maintenance. Yet when calls for volunteers or donations go out, the general response from the public is usually muted because everyone’s so busy.
“Hey, the local cemetery’s doing a cleanup day this weekend. Want to go? Oh wait, that won’t work. Johnny’s got a soccer match that day and on Sunday, Mary’s got her recital concert. Maybe we can do it next year.”
Those who do end up helping, do so over and over and over. This is all well and good if you (the volunteer) have the time and the energy to put into the projects. But let’s face facts. After a while, even the best of us get tired of being the go-to person all the time.
Historical societies and cemetery boards need new energy and fresh ideas to catch and retain the community’s interest. Give people a good enough reason and you better believe they’ll care. The trick is doing it in a way that benefits everyone. Fun for the participants= money for the historical society. So with that in mind, let’s use some brawn to generate some cash.
Here’s a thought: Sports, sports, sports, and more sports.
Memorial Day/Veterans’ Day/July 4th/Labor Day/Halloween Cemetery Races
Use the 3-day weekends as an excuse to do good. Set up a 1 mile run for kids but for the adults, make it a 5 miler (or more), all proceeds going to help restore and maintain the local historic cemetery.
For example, check out the Oneonta Pit Run. Over 20 years ago, Oneonta decided to put on a race in honor of a local policeman who died trying to stop a robbery. When the town first started hosting the event, only a handful of people showed up. Now, it’s a huge October weekend happening with over 1,000 people from all over the state participating and raising money for the town’s charities.
Let me repeat that: 1,000 participants.
For a simple road race.
Proceeds going to local charities.
Just think how many headstones could be restored, how many weeds could be whacked, how much genealogical work could get done with that kind of cash.
Hey, if you really want to go all ambitious (listen up rural towns, I’m talking to you here), make it a half marathon with a course that connects around several cemeteries and ending right after that really nasty steep hill everyone’s always complaining about.
Still don’t think it’ll work? Then check out what I found on just one page of googling ‘cemetery race’. Others are doing it, why not you?
Cemetery golf tournaments
If your community is a bit more sedate, then check what’s out there for cemetery golf tournaments.
And for those of us who don’t/can’t/won’t run anymore, how about a cemetery poker tournament?
Ok, so there aren’t as many of those out there as I’d hoped so perhaps a bowling or bingo tournament?
Oh, and if you’re worried about promoting the event, try these ideas on for size:
Anyway, you get the point and hopefully, this will be something to get you started. In the meantime, check back on Wednesday and Friday for some more ideas.