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debating selling wreaths, recommendations? other fundraisers?

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  • debating selling wreaths, recommendations? other fundraisers?

    Recommendations for a reputable, good wreath company by someone who has btdt? anyone to avoid?

    realize we are in AZ, so shipping may kill us depending on where they come from, so free-reduced shipping may be important.

    anyone ever sold fire extinguishers or 1st aid kits?

  • #2
    We used Mickman Bros. for wreaths. Good quality, reasonable prices. Most sales were reorders from satisfied customers.

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    • #3
      Our neighboring Troop sells Christmas Trees and uses the inevitable extra lost boughs from trimming and makes the wreaths themselves. They made a lot of extra money that way.

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      • #4
        Know your market. Our troop tried it.. It was a bust as the school athletics had the market all sewn up years before we tried.

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        • #5
          Arizona? Sell relocation maps to live somewhere it's not 110 in the shade. Just looked. Today's forcast is for thunderstorms in Tempe AZ. So much for a dry heat. Actually, I love AZ. Just not having my car sandblasted during wind storms or getting stuck there because it's too hot for the plane to get enough lift for take off.

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          • #6

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            • #7
              We use Mickman Bros. as well, and they are a top-notch outfit to work with. However, we are within driving distance of their location in MN, and someone with a truck and trailer picks them up for us in exchange for gas money. Not sure how much shipping costs impact the bottom line.

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              • #8
                NOBODY around here sells wreaths. except the grocery store, kmart etc.
                this would be for my pack, so add in cute cub scouts to the selling strategy. The troop is a city away that makes so much on their flag program. The pack doesn't have that kind of money.

                As for relocation maps, eh....
                You gotta love the heat, if you don't love heat, you better move elsewhere.

                We had a thunderstorm last night, and actually, gasp, got rain. Settled all the dust, but makes today a bit humid. So it's 100 on the back porch and 49% humidity.

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                • #9
                  I think shipping would kill your profit. It can really dig into profit for units that live within driving distance if you have to have it shipped.

                  I take it that you don't want to do popcorn? Our pack was able to pay for almost everything with just popcorn commission. In this area, packs do popcorn and troops do wreaths plus either a pancake breakfast or spaghetti dinner. However, those are hard to pull off with a smaller unit or one with low parent involvement.

                  Have you checked out some of the other fundraiser suggestions in Scouting Magazine?
                  Our local athletic teams and music group sell coupon books or discount cards with local businesses.
                  Example of one is AdrenalineFundraising.com

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                  • #10
                    Well we do sell popcorn, but popcorn sales in our area have been going down even if we add in more store front sales.

                    So we are looking at something else to do as well, and have had a few suggestions to do the wreaths.
                    Lots of elementary schools and high schools do the coupon books and discount cards, as well as candles, cookie dough, and stuff.
                    Wreaths and 1st aid kits are about the only thing I've not seen come aroud the neighborhood.

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                    • #11
                      We have sold greenery at Christmas for many years, getting them until recently from Sherwood Forest. They had an excellent product and were very helpful; but they were inflexible on quantities and case lots. As the unit got smaller, we no longer were able to support their min's. After writing off the profit two years in a row because of the min's, we changed to Mickman in 2010. While we are not making huge profits, we have potential to increase, and Mickman is anxious to help however they can. We definitely would have more profit if we were closer to them though, as the adds about 20% to our base cost, which of course cuts into the profit margin if we are to sell at reasonable prices. But their case lots are much smaller, and they have no min's. More importantly, they have an excellent product choice and also have the conservation link in tree planting related to product sales. Our biggest challenge is simply getting out in front enough to get descent orders, and to get full unit participation. Having popcorn overlapping is a bit difficult as well.

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                      • #12
                        I think we use mickman as well, but could be wrong.

                        Shipping is included in the price as the wreath is sent direct to the purchasor. Makes it great for gifts to family, selling at stores, church, etc. scouts just have to sell it, not deliver it.

                        great response from the customers, and they last for the entire season.

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                        • #13
                          I am not so sure about the shipping but trees get shipped to Miami and they really don't cost that much more.

                          I think it depends on your local market. The Troop I know that does it gets people willing to pay a $10-15 premiums on the trees they could get at Home Depot down the road. But they pay $50-80 for getting a tree and helping the scouts. The wreaths go anywhere from $10-15 and, like i said, are made from the bough trimmings. They even sell little sprigs with ribbons as "mistletoe" for $3-5. So they have a range of products that even a cheapo like me would have a hard time turning down.

                          Most of what they have are pre-orders. But then they have been doing it a long time.

                          I think if you were starting up a big issue would be the best time to get the trees.

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                          • #14
                            We took a leap of faith this past year and gave the wreaths a chance. We out earned popcorn, by a long shot. Here in Austin, TX they did very well. The wreaths were reasonably priced (so much more so than popcorn). If you are interested, PM me and I'll see if I can extract all the details from my wife (Treasurer) on the accounting of it all.

                            I would be shocked if someone nixes the wreath sales this year.

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                            • #15
                              We do a drive through dinner for $5 each. Costs us $2 and make $3 profit but takes a LOT of labor. Sold about 1,500 tickets, about 70% show up for it. In addition we get about 30% extra in straight cash donations--$3 donation is better than a $5 ticket since you do no work. Everyone is expected to help out--sell tickets, cook, serve, clean-up, or make desserts.

                              It helps that our church has an industrial kitchen. And we are on a major road.

                              It is a great Troop fundraiser for us. Pays for awards, troop hut costs, troop equipment, and subsidize some of summer camp. We leave Popcorn and Campcards purely for the boys scout accounts--we take no Troop cut.

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