16 Basketball Fundraising Ideas for Your Team or Program
Money is a requirement for many basketball teams.
Funds are required for things like:
- Tournament participation
- Accomodation (hotels)
- Transportation (buses, flights)
- Extra travel expenses
- Training equipment
- Jerseys / Clothing
That's why so many teams, clubs, and associations are always looking for basketball fundraising ideas to ensure their team keeps participating.
To help you, I've put together a list of ideas.
Here are a bunch of practical ways your basketball team can raise funds:
Basketball Fundraising Ideas
1. Sell Merchandise
A common way to raise funds is to sell your own products or merchandise.
Print the team logo on products and sell them during games, school fairs, online, or anywhere else you think will work.
These can include products like:
- Jackets / Hoodies
- Coffee cups
Use online platforms such as SpreadShop and Printful to create your custom designs and get all your merchandise delivered.
2. Charity Auction
Auctions can be an exciting way to raise money.
Request items to auction off from local businesses (if possible), and then include some of your own items to give to the highest bidder.
Signed memorabilia is always a big hit at these events.
You can do these auctions online or create an offline event.
I recommend offline since you'll be able to raise extra money by selling food and drinks, and because it's a great way to gather everyone in the one place for a fun evening.
3. Host a Basketball Camp
Hold a basketball camp during the off-season.
Get a few members of the team to help out while you teach young children the game of basketball for a fixed per-person fee.
For coaches, it’s a chance to connect with kids who they might coach in the future, as well as their parents.
It’s also a great opportunity for players to revisit their understanding of the fundamentals of the game, especially those who have been playing basketball for several years.
This can be a regular off-season event.
4. Organize a Basketball Tournament
Invite members of the community, as well as those from nearby areas, to participate in a basketball tournament.
There are a number of formats you can consider:
- 5-on-5 full-court
- 3-on-3 half-court
You can run these tournaments over one weekend or create a tournament that runs for several Saturdays in a row.
Have brackets for all age groups to boost numbers, and charge teams or individuals to participate in the tournament.
There are costs to this fundraising model (court fees, referees, etc), but your team can raise a healthy sum of money if done correctly.
5. Search for Sponsors
Write personalized letters to local businesses and larger corporations asking if they'll sponsor your team / club.
In exchange, include them in all team-related media (team website, game-day booklet, their logo on warm-up gear, etc).
You'll likely get many businesses who say no, but finding just a few who say yes can make a big difference for your team.
If any of your player's parents own a business, start with them!
For those who do say yes, provide them with certificates that can be displayed in their shop.
6. Organize a Fun Run or Walkathon
During seasons with decent weather, organize a fun run or walkathon.
Have a number of categories or distances (3km, 5km, 10km).
Charge a lower price to participate for those who register early, and a higher amount for those who wait and register closer to the event.
You'll even have the opportunity to create merchandise for this event.
Create shirts / singlets that participants can purchase.
To keep everyone's interest if you plan to make this a regular feature, organize a theme for each run or walkathon.
7. Trivia Night
Host a trivia night one evening where parents, players, and coaches can come together and enjoy some healthy competition.
Charge individually or per table to participate.
All you need to do is put together a bunch of questions, create cards for tables to write down their answer, and then find a host for the event.
These are great events for large groups of people, and you can make extra money by selling food and drinks throughout the night.
(Just make sure no one cheats by using Google on their phone!)
8. Yard Sale
Do you know a few clutter-collectors looking to unload some of their possessions? Maybe you have some of your own?
Hold a yard or garage sale.
Put up posters in your local gym, around town, and on social media letting everyone know that you'll be holding a yard sale.
You’d be surprised what people would be interested in buying.
As they say...
"One man's trash is another man's treasure."
Don’t think you have enough items for a yard sale?
Contact local businesses and other community members to see they wish to donate some of their items to your sale.
9. Town Barbecue
Put those grills to good use.
Early in the summer, have members of the team (depending on their age) working the grill for the rest of the town.
Stock up on barbecue basics like burgers and ribs, along with some other more specific items like chicken and veggie patties.
Include refreshing beverages as well.
Invite the whole community and charge a fee for entry or per food item.
10. Door-to-Door Sales
Perhaps you'd rather take the proactive approach and seek out customers instead of waiting for them to come to you.
Get started knocking on every door in your neighborhood.
If you have merchandise for sale (hoodies, t-shirts, socks, coffee mugs, etc), door-to-door sales might work for your team.
This is usually more successful when you have a tight-knit community.
Be sure to remind prospective buyers of the good cause they're contributing to by being a customer.
And don't allow rejection to get you down.
Just move onto the next door!
11. Bingo Night
Invite the whole town to the school hall / gym for a night of bingo.
Charge for entry or a specific price for a set number of games, and then make sure to set aside funds for the prizes of winners.
This is another opportunity to make money serving snacks and refreshments.
If your budget won’t allow you to serve food, inform participants of potluck and BYOB (bring your own bottle) policies.
12. Fair Booth
Do you have a local fair coming up?
Apply to set up a booth.
Set up a basketball hoop, grab a couple of basketballs, and then mark out a few lines where fair-goers can take a shot from.
Free-throw distance and three-point distance seem reasonable.
Then charge fair-goers a specific amount for every shot attempt or for every set of three shots.
Make sure you've got a bunch of cool prizes for the winners!
13. Concession Stands
Set up concession stands at home games.
This will allow you to sell hotdogs, popcorn, candy, beverages, or anything else you can think of.
These stands are often successful because you can purchase food and drink in bulk, and then sell them individually for a profit.
People who attend home games are also likely to have an interest in the team, so don't forget to set up some team merchandise at the stand too.
14. Sell Calendars
Ask one of the parents with a decent camera to take pictures of each player during live games and practices.
Compile them all together and create a pockets, desk, or wall calendar.
(You'll need each parent's permission for this)
You can design calendars easily using platforms such as Canva.
This basketball fundraising idea works best at the start of the year or at the end of the year - that's when people are looking for calendars!
15. Local Business Raffles
Go around town securing donations from local establishments.
The donations can be in the form of gift certificates, discounts, or products from their store.
They can even be services such as a free massage at the local spa, free haircut at the town’s favorite barbershop, or dinner for two at the local Italian restaurant.
Get players to sell raffle tickets to people in the community.
Then use the donations as prizes for the raffle!
16. Guess-How-Many Games
This is one of my favorites...
Find a large jar and fill it with candy.
Set up a table at the entrace to the gym on game days and ask people if they would like to guess how many lollies are in the jar.
Charge $1 for each guess and present a prize to the individual who guesses closest to the correct number.
Each of the basketball fundraising ideas listed above have their own advantages and disadvantages.
It's up to you to decide which ones best fit your team / program.
Also, don’t limit yourself to one idea.
By using a number of fundraisers throughout the year, you'll have more opportunities to raise funds for your team and you'll find out what works best for your team's specific situation.