10 Best Virtual and Creative Christmas Fundraising Ideas for 2020

10 Best Virtual and Creative Christmas Fundraising Ideas for 2020

Top 10 Best Virtual and Creative Christmas Fundraising Ideas for 2020

10 Best Virtual and Creative Christmas Fundraising Ideas for 2020

Brainstorming fundraising ideas for this winter isn’t an easy task. Schools can’t rely on traditional holiday gift shop fundraisers, snifty pencils, dances, or other large events that involve gatherings. While some companies, like Kids’ Kastle, offer hybrid and virtual secret santa gift shops, this isn’t something that all schools have access to or it doesn’t pull in the same funds that schools need.

To help get motivated and create some holiday cheer, we’ve put together 10 virtual and creative winter holiday shop fundraisers any school can take advantage of. We focused on low-cost, easy set-up, and maximum interest levels. We hope that these holiday fundraising ideas excite all students from elementary school to seniors, and can complement your normal holiday gift shop fundraiser.

A Snowman Building Contest is a Top School Holiday Fundraising Idea

We love the snowman building contest because it’s flexible for virtual and online school set-ups! If you’re having an in-person school holiday shop fundraiser, you can schedule the snowman building contest to run the same day. This allows your visiting student and family groups to keep social distance as they build outside and shop inside, and it creates decorations everyone can enjoy!

Even if you’re not doing a Christmas shop fundraiser, you can run your snowman building contest one of two ways. Invite families out to build their snowman at safe distances on the school grounds, or have families make the snowmen at home and send in pictures with the students standing by their creations! 

A small fee to enter with an affordable prize will get families active, involved, and raise funds easily for your school.

christmas fundraiser

During Your School Santa Gift Shop, Host an Ugly Sweater Contest

This is another holiday fundraising idea that works for schools on-line or in person. For students and families who come on-site to shop your school Christmas shop, have them dress up and pay a small fee to enter the ugly sweater contest. Have a few different prizes you can reward at the end of the shopping day to celebrate the winners — people can vote, or you can have a panel of judges from the PTA or student council. 

If all of your school holiday fundraisers are staying online, host the contest virtually! Students and families can either submit photos that everyone votes on, or you can do a virtual video session, like a fashion show! Either way, everyone will have a great time voting, dressing up, and chatting about the holiday.

holiday gift shop fundraiser

Think Outside Traditional School Christmas Shop Ideas and Involve the Family Pets

One great thing about virtual fundraising ideas is that you can think about how to include the pets of the students! Have students and families submit photos of their pets dressed up in holiday outfits, celebrating winter holidays, or matching their owners in look-a-like contests.

Families and students will love showing off their pets and getting creative with photography and outfits. Post the photos online and let the voting begin! Have a small fee to enter with fun prizes families will want to win — maybe it could even be a free gift from your school’s Santa gift shop or something for the pets themselves. 

school holiday fundraising ideas

Make Your Holiday Gift Shop Fundraiser a Virtual Silent Auction

A fun school Christmas shop idea is to create a virtual silent auction! Students love the traditional holiday gift shop fundraiser, and this adds an additional element to help get parents, families, and community members involved.

Work to create partnerships with the community, and offer prizes like gift baskets, gift cards, discounts, meet and greets, and more. The great thing about a holiday virtual silent auction is it can run for an extended period of time, it can raise plenty of funds, and it shows a community connection. 

These also offer gift ideas to those placing the bids, so you’re more likely to see people engaging and promoting the sale.

silent auction school fundraiser

When in Doubt, You Can’t Beat a Raffle for a School Fundraiser

Raffles are a tried and true school fundraiser idea, and it’s one everyone can take advantage of, online or in person. Just like with your silent auction, team up with local community businesses or creatives for some fun and exciting raffle prizes. 

Whether these are tailored to the kids and come from your holiday gift shop, or you create something for the parents, it’s sure to create a buzz of excitement.

Raffles can be hosted both in school and virtually, and you can choose between shipping the items or having local pick up stations. Raffles have the potential to be limitless with funds, and are easily promoted. No matter how elaborate or simple you decide to go, look into your options for a raffle this season.

school fundraising raffle ideas

A Fun Holiday Fundraiser Idea is Wreath Sales

Consider the members on your school’s PTA and other teachers and parents that get involved each year with the fundraisers — chances are, you know more than one crafty and artistic person who is a wiz with homemade items. A wreath sale is the perfect opportunity to take advantage of those crafty skills from the parents and teachers in your community!

Pull together a group to create holiday wreaths, and involve the help of the students! These can then be sold online or in person to raise money for your school. This is a great holiday fundraising idea because each wreath is unique, handmade, and comes directly from the local community and even from the students themselves. It may involve a bit more prep, but is well worth it for the fun.

how to promote your holiday fundraiser

Keep Your School Fundraiser Simple with a Movie Night

Movie nights are a great holiday fundraising activity for families from your school because you can host them outdoors with minimal investment or planning. With a quality projector and a large lawn space near the school’s exterior walls, you can project any movie you wish onto the side of the school.

Set up can include chairs from the school, or make it picnic-style if the ground hasn’t gotten too cold, and ask families to bring blankets as the night grows chillier. Snacks can be bring-your-own, or you can sell treats that families have made as part of a concession stand to increase fundraising funds. This is a great way for kids to take a break, get outdoors, and for parents to relax, all while helping your school.

virtual fundraising ideas

An Interactive Holiday Fundraiser for the Kids is a Scavenger Hunt

While families are waiting on their school santa shop gifts, ask them to take part in a scavenger hunt. Once your local area is seeing a lot of Christmas and holiday decorations, have families drive or walk around and look for items on the homes, like icicle lights, an inflatable Santa, a depiction of Rudolph, and others! They can take pictures or cross the items off of a list and submit them after a couple of weeks.

If you prefer to stay indoors, make the scavenger hunt happen online or in students’ homes. Have them submit photos of holiday decorations and ordinary objects around their house, instead. A small fee to enter with affordable, enticing prices can do a lot. Plus, the kids will want to participate and the parents will enjoy the activity.

secret santa gift shop for schools

Consider Cooking Lessons for Your School Holiday Shop Fundraiser

Many school fundraisers include food, dough, and similar items during one season or another. If a member of your PTA or a teacher is a wiz in the kitchen, take your food holiday fundraiser one step further and offer cooking lessons. The great thing is, these can happen online, right over video chat.

You can tailor your food fundraiser to parents with quick dinner ideas and healthy lunch items made in under 15 minutes, or you can make an activity for the kids, like holiday cookies or other fun treats they’ll want to make. This is a great option for every family and provides a skill many people are interested in.

cooking lessons for students

Wrap Up Your Christmas Shop Fundraiser with a Virtual Talent Show or Telethon

Don’t let your holiday shop fundraiser be the last hoorah of the year. Take your student’s talent show online with a fun telethon! Kids can record their acts right in their living room, and you can have teachers or parents provide informative and fun craft projects, educational moments, or comedy sketches inbetween acts.

Think back to PBS when viewers would pledge money and be entertained as they watched the show. You can even note that you will have a parent or teacher complete an incredibly goofy act if certain funds are raised while the telethon is happening, like pouring ice water over their head or cutting their facial hair. Be creative! A lot can happen online. 

online holiday school fundraiser ideas

Your Holiday Gift Shop Fundraiser Can Be More Online

Just because normal fundraising activities are out, does not mean your school is going to lack the proper funds and holiday cheer this year. Use virtual learning and online tools to your advantage, and think about simple ways to keep kids engaged that excites families and parents. With a little community effort, your holiday fundraising this year can go a long way.

How to Promote Your Virtual School Fundraiser and Holiday Shoppe 2020

how to promote your virtual school fundraiser

How to Promote Your Virtual School Fundraiser and Holiday Shoppe

how to promote your virtual school fundraiser

The 2020-2021 school year isn’t something anyone anticipated a year ago. As Spring fades and Winter approaches, so does the holiday season, normally a very active fundraising time for schools. This year, however, putting together a school holiday shoppe fundraiser can feel like a challenge. Parents and schools are tasked with finding a way to raise money for their schools while giving kids their dose of holiday cheer without risking everyone’s health and safety.

Here at the Kids’ Kastle, we’ve put together three school holiday shoppe options that run the gamut from safely hosted in-person, entirely virtual, and a hybrid for those schools that need both. Opting for a virtual holiday shop is just the first part of putting the fundraiser together, however.

In order to ensure your holiday virtual fundraising is a success, we’ve put together 7 great tips for how to promote your virtual holiday shop, so kids get all the cheer and the schools can raise their much-needed funds with low stress and great success.

Announce Your Virtual Secret Santa Shop via Email Marketing

Email marketing is a tried and true method that we can’t recommend enough. Whether your school is in-person or online, every parent is checking their email frequently so they don’t miss out on important updates.

Send out a newsletter to all parents announcing the virtual holiday shop for this year. Even if you go with a standard or hybrid in school holiday shoppe, your newsletter can outline all the precautions you are taking and how parents and kids can order this year.

Make sure the newsletter uses bright colors, bold text, and gets straight to the point. Include a line asking parents to forward news about the virtual fundraising events to all of those who may be interested, to create more hype and further interest in the event.

elementary school holiday gift shop

Promote and Share Your Secret Santa Shop on Social Media

Whether it’s done via an official school account, or you ask parents and teachers to spread the word on their own, social media is a free way to reach dozens of people who may be interested in your school’s virtual fundraising. Create a graphic that sums up the dates, how it works, and how others can get involved, and then post it and share it!

Talking about your Secret Santa Shop for your school online will excite others and influence them to participate however they can. Outline how these virtual fundraisers for Elementary Schools create much-needed funds for a stressful year, and how they contribute to goodwill for the kids involved.

Social media is a direct outlet to your community, friends, and family, so take advantage of that avenue to get more people involved.

virtual holiday fundraisers

Take Advantage of Partnerships for Your Holiday Shoppe

Are there any local businesses that are helping you run your school holiday shoppe this year? Ask them to help you spread the word!

Whether they do so on-site at their business, mention it in their newsletters, post about it on social media, or just talk about it with their clients, it’s another great way to get news about your virtual fundraiser out there.

Partnerships for school fundraisers are generally focused on promoting the school as much as possible, so don’t be shy about asking for a little social boost from your school fundraising partners.

Even if your school is hosting its holiday shoppe on its own, reach out to other partners you’ve worked with in the past and see if they’ll include a link to your virtual fundraising on their website, social apps, or email newsletters.

secret santa gift shop

Don’t Forget Old Fashion Postcards and Mailed Newsletters for Holiday Gift Shops

Although online marketing is great for virtual fundraising promotion, you can’t lose by sending out a mailed newsletter or postcards for your holiday gift shop. If possible, send these items home with the students so they can share them with their parents.

If your local school has moved entirely online, mail them out with links, more information, and ways to get in touch and stay involved. Sending physical mail also allows parents to make note of the holiday gift shop and place the announcement in an area they regularly check so it stays on their radar.

virtual school fundraising

When in Doubt, Use Word of Mouth for Your Secret Santa Shoppe

Nothing works better for school fundraising promotion than a personal recommendation via word of mouth. Hype up the hybrid or virtual holiday gift shop to parents, teachers, and even the students. The more excited everyone is, the more they will talk about it, share the news, and encourage others to get involved.

At the end of the day, the results are all focused on the kids, so if this is your highlight for your Secret Santa Gift Shop, snifty pencils people will be more than willing to share the news with others in their life. This year, people could use holiday cheer more than ever!

virtual holiday shoppe

Make Sure Your Virtual Fundraiser Has a Great Graphic

No matter what avenue you opt for for your holiday fundraising, make sure you have a great graphic to promote it! Something with bright colors, a big title, and a fun image will capture everyone’s attention and make them want to be apart of the fun. 

Include a stellar graphic as part of your to-do list when organizing the virtual fundraiser, as this is more likely to get people involved.

Holiday Gift Shoppes are Easily Promoted with a Catchy Tagline

Another way to spread the word about your school’s holiday gift shop is with a catchy tagline. Mention the fun for the kids, the great gifts, or just include something optimistic and fun that makes people smile! 

If your promotional materials bring joy, more people will choose to get involved with the virtual holiday shoppe and tell their friends about it.

Unique School Fundraisers & Fundraising Ideas for New Jersey Schools

unique school fundraisers for new jersey schools

Unique School Fundraisers & Fundraising Ideas for New Jersey Schools

unique school fundraisers for new jersey schools

It may be early for the holidays, but school fundraising can happen any time of the year and shouldn’t be put off until just winter. When trying to raise money for various programs and a bright new school year for both faculty and staff, taking advantage of fundraising for every season can be the most beneficial way to go.

School fundraising is great all year round and can utilize a host of different school christmas shop ideas. If you’re looking for unique school fundraisers in New Jersey, companies like Kids Kastle cater to every grade level with creative school fundraising ideas. Some of the best school fundraisers are those that are simple and unique to your area, and a company based in your location can help recommend the most successful fundraisers they have helped to host.

Here are just a few school fundraising ideas that you can tweak to your liking or use as is. Whatever you choose, remember that school fundraising is supposed to be fun, and the best school fundraisers usually involve the entire school as much as possible to maximize the fun and to make the students and faculty realize that this will have an impact on everyone.

Cookie Dough Fundraisers are a Tasty Idea

Is it making your stomach growl and your mouth water already? A Cookie Dough Fundraiser could be held in a couple of different ways, but the preferred method is to sell homemade dough that can be specially made for each individual order. It’s a lot of work to be certain, but with dedicated and capable workers and volunteers for a good cause, this could work, and be a sweet treat that could earn a lot of goodwill in the community and for the school. If homemade cookie dough isn’t an option for your cookie dough fundraiser, there are plenty of companies that offer catalogs you can utilize instead to get the word out!

cookie dough fundraiser

Candy Fundraisers Attract a Lot of People

Candy fundraisers are typically something you’d see for baseball, softball, and other sports’ teams, but there’s nothing like a good candy drive, especially if you buy in bulk and give people options when purchasing what they want. It might sound like a unique school fundraiser, but in truth, it’s taking an idea and expanding it a bit to ensure that people have more than one choice and can buy what they want while helping with a good cause. Utilizing New Jersey school fundraising companies that offer multiple candy options is a great way to expand on the traditional candy fundraiser.
candy bar fundraisers

A Snowman Building Event is a Great Unique School Fundraiser

Who doesn’t enjoy building a snowman or another snow structure when the season hits and the snow starts to fall? If the weather cooperates and you are in an area with heavy snowfall, this is a great idea for those that have an artistic side to come out and show people what they can do. Both children and adults alike will enjoy getting their hands cold and molding the snow into something new.

Charging a fee to enter the contest that will feature a prize for the top entries at the end of the competition can go a long way towards getting people interested, and the prestige of being known as the best snow sculptor around would no doubt bring a few people in. Encouraging donations from spectators can also help increase the proceeds and make it an entire community event.

snowman building fundraiser

A virtual school party is one of the best school fundraisers for getting people together

Sometimes, the best school fundraisers are going to be those that will be able to promote some type of social distancing while still keeping things fun and engaging. While a virtual party isn’t quite the same, it’s a fun way to connect with people and maintain a good line of communication among the community. Games can even be planned online that will be fun for everyone involved, for a small donation of course. Have online raffles, promotions, talent shows, and more! The great thing about a virtual party is that everyone can attend!
virtual party fundraiser

A picnic can be a useful and simple idea for school fundraising

Although picnics may sound simple, these are easy to arrange and simple to plan with endless possibilities. The event can be the picnic itself, a competition for the best picnic meal, a picnic on location somewhere new and exciting, or something else entirely. Picnics are great for every grade level and every season.
picnic school fundraisers

One of the best school fundraising ideas is a movie night

Plenty of people still love watching a good movie with their family, and an outdoor feature is a good way to practice social distancing while raising money for your school. All a person needs is a big enough surface, plenty of space to sit, and a few dollars for concessions, and voila! Investing in a projector and some comfy blankets will really boost the level of the event, and people will be lining up to donate for access to the premier.
outdoor movie fundraising for schools

A school play is timeless when it comes to school fundraising options

Whether in person or as a virtual showing, donations towards a school play could go a long way towards the continued education and appreciation for the arts that many children enjoy. The emphasis on the arts is definitely an idea that can help an institution benefit from school fundraising, as many schools have had to cut back over the years. Get the students involved in the play and whether it’s a short production or a longer one that uses every grade level, parents and families will enjoy the show while donating to a great cause.
school play

A Parent/Student Trivia Show Is a Fun and Unique School Fundraiser

Why only allow the kids to have all the fun? This idea can go a long way towards getting kids and their parents together to do something fun that can be modified for each grade level and can possibly earn enough donations to make a difference for various school programs. Plus, getting parents and children together to think of the answers while competing against other parent/children duos could be a lot of fun as it could test the parents’ knowledge as much as the children’s. No matter what way you frame it, everyone will have a great time!
trivia fundraising

Talent Shows are one of the Best School Fundraisers

It feels as though this type of fundraiser is overlooked quite often, when it is actually one of the simplest fundraising ideas in New Jersey to utilize! Talent shows can include singing, dance, art, or anything else! Done online or in person, talent shows use very little finances to begin and can raise a lot of money for those who wish to attend and donate. Plus, the kids get to be the star of the show!
talent show fundraising

A School T-Shirt Fundraiser is a Creative and Engaging School Fundraising Idea

This is definitely one of the more unique school fundraisers as it’s typically undertaken by a lot of schools in very different ways. In a lot of ways, it does depend on the grade level as to how involved a community might get, as middle and high schools tend to become far more involved in sports and overall design. However, it is entirely possible to hold a t-shirt fundraiser for grade school, depending on the involvement of the community and the unit cost. It gets the entire community involved and is always a showstopper!


There are many unique school fundraising ideas out there to pour through, and many of them are bound to pique your interest. But one thing to always think about is the community that a school belongs to and what would best serve their interests when seeking to raise funds for your institution. The possibilities are out there, it is up to you to explore them!