Warm weather is an excuse to enjoy good food with friends. Community volunteers should take advantage of rising temperatures by organizing a potluck dinner to raise money for a worthy cause. Selling potluck tickets to help finance a new church wing, assist with medical bills for a sick resident, or provide money for the local food pantry are a few ideas.
The key to a successful potluck is to have a few choices for each meal course. Use UV coated flyers to advertise the event and include your contact telephone number and email address. When someone contacts you to determine what they can make, assign a specific course (appetizer, side dish, entrée, dessert). Ask each person to commit to a specific type of food within the category because you do not want three peach pies.
Assign someone to supply plates, cups, napkins, and utensils if your budget does not permit providing these. Let someone else make several different beverages including iced tea, lemonade, juice, and punch. Have plenty of hot plates and serving spoons, forks, and platters available because not everyone will think to bring these.
If the UV coated flyers circulate far enough, you may have more than enough volunteers for the menu. Other people can help set up tables and the serving area. Decorate the dining room for the event and plan a surprise like a guest speaker or musical entertainment. Whether holding the event in someone’s home, the church basement, or a rental hall, use tickets to keep attendance organized.
Guests may ask how much food they should prepare. The more food available, the smaller portions most people will take. Provide a ballpark headcount but remind those preparing food that the serving size need not be the same as the number of guests. Leftover food can be donated to a local soup kitchen.