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Derby Made Easy!

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Chapter 5. Concessions and Diversions

In the previous chapter we talked about the fundraising aspects of a concession stand at the event. With the understanding that each situation is different and local rules may apply, here are some suggestions.

• Determine how long the event will take. Using Robert’s Rules of Silly Guesses #3 you simply multiply the number of participants by 4 and add 30 to the results. This will return, in minutes, how long the event itself will take. Setup and tear down not included. In the case of a pack with 30 boys - figure 2 1/2 hours from when you open the check-in process until the final award has been presented. (Your results may vary, it depends on how fast the Master of Ceremonies talks!) Depending on the length of time you expect for the event and the start time, determine if you are operating during a meal period, between meal periods, or across two meal periods. If you are expecting a four hour event starting at 9 AM you can offer breakfast and lunch!

• Determine the menu and then guess at how much of everything you need. Robert’s Rules of Silly Guesses #5 tells us that you can never be sure of what you need so it is better to buy small containers and open them as necessary rather than the monster-mega sizes and have 54 1/2 gallons of sauerkraut left over! (Based on a true story! There was also 15 pounds of relish and seemed like a million pickles but it “sure seemed like a good idea” at the wholesale discount warehouse. I think the sauerkraut was eventually used to recover several miles of trails in the woods.) Price may also determine consumption. Don’t overlook snack items like candy or chips, fruit, drinks, and desserts. Have a plan to sell any left over bulk items that can’t be returned at the end of the event.

• Don’t overlook opportunities in food service sponsorships. Drinks can often be donated or the free use of a “drink trailer” can be arranged. One year we arranged for a local packing house to donate 300 hot dogs! This will greatly reduce your costs, increase your profits, and provide increased exposure for the sponsor.

• Diversions are important for the “dead air” time you’ll have between the races of different ranks. While it’s guaranteed all your cubs will be excited about the webelos races (because they’re the cool older kids), you will see wondering attention spans during the younger scouts races. It’s also important to have activities for the younger siblings and friends of your cubs. Consider some of these suggestions: show racing movies, have a coloring contest based on race cars, make a craft related to racing, Kim’s game relating to racing, “Thank You” poster(s) signed by all the pack members and friends to present to the sponsors, judges, and so forth.

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