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Written by Hazeltine National on May 15, 2015 4:45:11 PM

Balancing The Budget for A Successful Gala

So you want to plan a gala in Minneapolis, but you’re not sure about one important thing: the cost. Since the purpose of the gala is to raise money for a good cause, understanding costs is crucial – even if you decide that higher costs might have an added benefit (as we’ll discuss later). Here are some tips on things to ask about when trying to calculate the cost peers person for a gala in Minneapolis.

SettingCloseup.jpgVenue Costs

The venue for the gala is a very important piece in figuring costs. Besides basic costs, you’ll need to know what amenities the venue charges for, and what they cost. Consider food, room rental, china, linens, audio or video equipment and service charges – anything the venue might want some money to use. These items should be taken into account when it comes to planning the gala budget and then calculating your cost per person.

Also, does the venue have an event planner? Determine if this would be a good, economical use of your gala budget. When it comes to a host bar, be sure to think this through. It might cost more, but guests might also spend more money on auction items and gala bidding might be better.

Ticket Prices

Knowing the expenses for the gala will help make sure ticket prices are at an appropriate level to at the very least cover the cost of each person attending. Planning these events takes a lot of time and effort, so you don’t want to put all that work into something that will turn out to be a financial flop.

You’ll want to have a formula to figure out the cost per person. Start with a list of line items for the gala, including things like the cost of dinner, room rental, etc. Divide those costs by the number of people attending the gala, but remember that costs will vary for items that aren’t flat rates. For example, if the number of guests changes, that might affect the cost of something like table linens, because you then might have a different number of tables. The most important thing is to keep a list and a budget along the way during planning, so you know what to expect cost-wise.

Balance the Budget

When planning the gala, make sure to bring a realistic budget along for the ride. As the saying goes, you’ll need to spend money to make money. But organizers can help the cause by getting sponsorships and pre-event donations. This should help get more bang for your buck on the cost per person.

Take this basic rule of thumb into account as well: Galas should pay for themselves with money to spare before a guest even shows up at the event. To do this, take a look at table sales, ticket prices, and whatever sponsorships you’ll get. Make sure that ticket prices for the gala and the auction item prices are in line with each other. For example, more expensive auction items will likely sell for less money if the crowd is full of people who purchased tickets at relatively cheap prices. Bottom line, the income level in the room might not support extremely expensive auction items if tickets are on the less expensive end.

Learn about Weddings at Hazeltine

Hazeltine National Golf Club is a private golf club located in Chaska, Minn., about 30 minutes southwest of downtown Minneapolis. The club opened in 1962 with a mission to build and maintain a golf course suitable for the conduct of national championships. Hazeltine is one of only two courses in the United States to have hosted the U.S. Open, PGA Championship, U.S. Senior Open, U.S. Women’s Open, U.S. Amateur, and Ryder Cup. Hazeltine’s meeting and event space, golf shop and specified services in the learning center are open to the public. More information about becoming a member at Hazeltine is available at www.hazeltinenational.com.

Topics: Galas, Events