Courtesy Post by Al Fiorillo, President, Southington Land Conservation Trust
We kicked off our first Xmas Tree Fundraiser about 10 years ago. It was one of our groups first attempts at fundraising to cover the cost of our property and Board insurance policies. We borrowed the idea from the Cheshire High School Band who had experienced tremendous success with the event for many years. The first year, the Band Backers actually allowed us to chip the trees we collected on the day they chipped their trees at Cheshire High School.
The next we year we decided to chip the trees on our own. We approached Superior Rental for the donation of the chipper, Camp Sloper (YMCA) allowed us to stockpile and chip the trees at the camp and Deburr Company along with SLCT volunteers provided the trucks and vans to pick up the trees over four weekends during the month of January.
The fundraising event is promoted via the newspaper, social media, mass email blasts and our website. Additionally, a sign in placed on the Southington Town Green for two weeks during December and flyers are placed at local farms and nurseries in town.
Town residents have the choice of either disposing their tree at the Southington Transfer Station of having the garbage hauler pick up their tree curbside for free. So it really is a challenge to compete with the residents option to dispose of their tree for free. But the people who choose to have us pick up their tree for a $15 donation, really want to support our organization. The fundraiser typically raises $2,200 (avg) per year.