Michele Kustera is a Team Fox member from Huntington, NY, who threw her first event on January 21. “Bust the Winter Blues for Parkinson’s” was a night of raffles, drinks, food and fun that raised around $2,000 for Team Fox. A snow storm prevented some folks from coming, but it didn’t stop Michele and her 50 attendees from having a great time.
We caught up with Michele to get her thoughts on how everything went. For those thinking about throwing a first-time Team Fox event, take note – Michele provides some great feedback on picking a date and engaging volunteers. Check out the interview below.
Team Fox: What was the biggest obstacle in planning/hosting your own event?
Michele Kustera: I found just finding the time to coordinate to be my biggest obstacle.
TF: If you could do one thing differently, what would it be?
MK: Plan an event in a season when we don't have snow. I also would have probably tried to reach out to more people for help and planning. Several people came up to me at the event and said they could have donated this or that or could have helped in some way other than just attending.
TF: What was the highlight of the event?
MK: Not one particular thing just the feeling of community at the event and how we had about 50 people come out in spite of the weather being a bit of a challenge.
TF: Tell me about your raffle—how many items did you have, how did you secure them, were some items more successful than others, etc.
MK: I had 12 baskets that included wine, sporting event tickets, dinner at restaurants, spa gift cards, local merchants, MJF Basket. All of the items were donated by friends or local merchants. We also did a 50/50 and the winner donated the money back to the Foundation.
TF: Anything else you'd like to share?
MK: I think for a "first timer" it was fairly successful. Didn't meet my fundraising goal but I think I may be able to before the end of the year. The weather did hinder some from coming out and I will send them the link to my page for donations. I would love to try again next year but in the Spring.
Team Fox is the grassroots fundraising arm of The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research (MJFF). Each year, more than 1,500 Team Fox members worldwide turn their passions and interests into unique fundraising events and athletic feats. Since our inception in 2006, our members have raised an astounding $15 million for Parkinson’s research, helping MJFF achieve its mission to speed new treatments and, ultimately, a cure for Parkinson’s disease.