CGCC STANDING COMMITTEES
COMMITTEE NAME: WAYS & MEANS: HOUSE TOUR
HOUSE TOUR / ADVERTISING CHAIR: Kelly Conetta
MEMBERS: Maureen Adams, Diane Benson, Barbara Canney, Lee Drew, Mary Eisenhaure, Kate Farrington, Kathy Gray, Ann Helbock, Julie Hess, Delores Roy, Anne Sexton
To raise funds for the club through a bi-annual tour of 5 houses in Cohasset in early December to cover much of the cost of CGCC activities over the coming 2 year presidential term.
To provide a means to attract new club members and for existing members to interact, socialize and jointly participate in achieving the goal of a successful house tour. It is the single most important fundraiser in the Club’s calendar and is expected to raise net revenues sufficient to cover more than a year’s operating budget.
Appoint a deputy to stand in if Chair is unavailable and additional committee members as necessary to lead each of the Function Committees required to complete the project. It is recommended that club members who are not Board Members should be included as much as possible. This will spread the workload, familiarize members in the working of the committee, involve them more in the club’s activities and build succession skills for the future. Submit all names to be included in the Yearbook.
Discuss with the Club President, VP: Ways & Means (if she is not the Chair of the House Tour Committee herself) and any other deputy, suitable members to lead the Function Committees necessary to complete the project. Appoint those members. Currently, the Function Committees are:
Marketplace Management: overall responsibility for coordination of all activities there including booking venue, communication with venue staff, floor plan, raffle, ticket collection & sales
Marketplace: Hospitality & Staging
Publicity: Art work & printing
Staffing: Docents (including house traffic flow) & Marketplace
Ticket Book: Sale of advertising space
Ticket Book: Page setting and printing
Ticket Book: House descriptions
Ticket Sales: Club Members, Stores, Telephone/Mail, Website
In conjunction with the President, deputy(ies) and Function Committee chairs, decide the date of the tour and plan the strategy and timetable to be followed. Submit the date to be included in the Yearbook. Hold regular meetings of this group to keep everyone informed and up-to-date and distribute notes of the meetings to all involved. These meetings will need to be more frequent as the date grows nearer
Together with the President identify houses suitable for the tour, decide who will approach the home owner and ensure task is completed. Encourage suggestions from club members
Appoint 5 teams consisting of 1 Lead and 1 Deputy Decorator to decorate the houses.
Once group of houses confirmed, appoint Lead and Deputy Decorator to each house. Discuss with the Decorators who they want on their teams to assist them and ensure equitable distribution of talent, skills and manpower
Identify ways to increase revenues and reduce costs
GUIDELINES AND SUGGESTIONS:
Clear, concise and regular communication is key to the successful running of the house tour. There are many moving parts and confusion and upset will follow quickly if everyone is not kept informed and understands both what their individual responsibilities are and those of their colleagues.
Start discussions with the Club President, the VP: Ways & Means (if she is not the House Tour Chair) and any additional deputy early in the new presidential term to decide the overall strategy and responsibilities for the house tour. Circulate notes of the decisions and actions required to those people.
Appoint the Function Chairs during the first year of the term . Meetings with each of these Chairs to decide their individual strategies will be necessary and timing will vary. Any changes to these decisions must be made together with that Chair. These decisions should be recorded and circulated to the Chair and any of her committee members.
In addition, regular Progress Meetings with Function Committee chairs, Club President and VP: Ways & Means, with notes of decisions and action required circulated to all are vital. These meetings will need to be more frequent as the date draws nearer
Select houses which are different in style and personality to help ensure their decorating designs are also individual and different, for example, contemporary and traditional. Encourage decorators to talk to each other about their overall schemes (getting everyone together after a club meeting is a good way of achieving this – perhaps over lunch). Five versions of the same thing will be predictable, bore our ticket holders and reduce their interest in future tours. Discuss the help the Decorators will need and don’t let one decorator hog all the best club talent.
When selecting houses consider ease of parking (a police officer might be necessary but is quite expensive). Ease of house traffic flow, entries and exits, suitable space for putting on and removing booties are also necessary considerations. It is recommended to keep the tour to the ground floor of the houses to reduce risk of accident, to reduce time and cost of decorating and to reduce manpower required to staff each house.
Keep refreshments as simple as possible to produce, serve and keep costs down. See attached report from Patty Johnson.
Cover the cost of venue rental (currently at least $550) by finding 11 vendors selling a variety of goods. Adjust rents accordingly. Vendors increase the interest at the venue and help our own craft and raffle ticket sales.
It is recommended that club crafts for sale should be of high quality and priced accordingly – this is key. Topiaries of various kinds, shell wreaths and trees are examples of items which sell well – these sold out within the first hour in 2013. These sales are important to help cover the cost of refreshments and decorations, however, it is a lot of work to run craft workshops and make the crafts. It is much better to make fewer, better crafts that can be sold for higher prices than lots of little cheap things. See attached Craft Chair job description and report from Barbara Canney.
Ticket sales are the key to raising the maximum revenues. Look for ways of selling as many as possible in advance to cover costs and ensure maximum revenues. Consider increasing the cost of the “day-of” ticket. Most tickets are sold through the stores – consider finding additional stores. Ensure that stores have adequate supplies of tickets especially in the week before the tour so that they don’t sell out of tickets. See attached report from Dolores Roy
There is a box containing information from previous house tours which is worth sifting through. This is currently with Lee Drew