Area woman opens garage as bingo hall/casino/fundraising store

Posted on Nov 28th, 2017 in Community Profile

If you need it or want it? They probably have it at the PopUpFUN the fundraising store.

In these modern times, after school and even in-school activities require fundraising as a commitment if you want to participate. Even the richest people are working Bingos and Casinos as volunteers because there is no buy out fee option. Some families are recruiting grandparents, cousins and even hiring strangers off kijiji to do their shifts because they just can’t get there themselves.

“What if my kid is sick? I can’t get there 10 times a year?! Maybe some people can. I don’t know,” said one frustrated local parent.

PopUpFUN the fundraising store is a unique model located in a Calgary area neighbourhood. A local area couple has opened their garage to provide an innovative single location for all their sports team, arts programs, and school fundraising commitments.

“It just seemed like we were all over the place! Trying to get this friend to buy this and that friend to support yada. Why not bring it all together?”

The husband agreed. “All in one place. That’s the innovation. No more driving around like mad people. You want meat? We have it. You can buy it from us or we can order it for you. No sneaking off to a parking lot at some inconvenient time to pick it up. You just come to PopUpFUN.”

The PopUpFUN fundraiser store sells all the family’s school and activity fundraiser items in one place. Girl guide cookies, meat, sausages, pierogies, spices, grocery store gift cards, chocolates, scouts popcorn, and gift baskets. They also host weekly bottle drop off location for bottle drives which is donated to fund all their children’s activities. Don’t forget to grab a coupon book or stop by the weekly craft and bake sale, play a little bingo, or buy raffle tickets with any number of fabulous prizes.

Food and gaming not your thing? No worries! PopUpFUN allows you to support by getting your tickets hot off the press. Ask about the tickets for a comedy night or horse racing fundraiser. Still not your bag? Check out the magazine fundraiser aisle. There really is something for everyone.

“The fundraising for our family alone was enough to warrant a single door operation, ” said the woman, “We opened both garage doors when we starting asking our friends and family if they wanted to sell their fundraising things there, too.”

The husband added that PopUpFUN simplifies the purchasing and supporting processes. For example, if you don’t know a girl guide, you might find yourself twice a year desperately circling the city to find some cookies at a Canadian Tire or grocery store entrance.

“Not anymore. PopUpFUN has the cookies. We have it all.”

What about their Bingo commitments? No problem. The couple has arranged with gaming and their organizations to get credits for bingos done at their garage.

“We were unable to secure a full casino license, but as soon as soon as the cable guy gets here next week, we will be able to offer off-track betting.”

Volunteer staffed by only six families, the store is open all day every day. “Being open 24/7/365 is actually less than half of the combined hours these families were putting into fundraising before the store opened, and now we don’t even have to ask any grandparents to help.”

A retired local area grandparent commented that she doesn’t have to help but she loves to come in for bingo, baked goods, and the bottle count.

“It’s so convenient for me to help and contribute this way!”

Registering the garage as a charity building gives the family a tax break on their mortgage in an amount that covers any overhead expenses. Couple those benefits with the time and fuel savings, the area woman said it’s a “no brainer.” Not only that, the pair say for what they are saving on gas, they will be able to get remote starters for both their vehicles to make up for having to park their vehicles outside the garage.

Be aware! At PopUpFUN the bingos and OTB are non-smoking. But don’t worry about that, “We sell smoking cessation aids and e-cigs as a fundraiser, too.”

The area woman points out that while it is true that you can’t spell fundraising with out F-U-N you also can’t spell public education without P-U-B.

So grab a beer on the deck. All proceeds to the school music program.

“Those ukuleles don’t buy themselves!”