Fundraising Kudos to: Montclair Pet and Wildlife Fund

You know how I love fundraising that makes money by selling something that costs the nonprofit nothing, and the Montclair Veterinary Hospital’s Pet and Wildlife Fund’s “Pet Mayor Contest” is one of the best examples I’ve seen lately.

Here’s how it works:

  • People pay a $25 registration fee to enter their pets in the annual “Pet Mayor” race, fill out a simple nomination form, and send digital photos.
  • Local businesses sponsor pet candidates and provide polling places , where people can vote for their favorite, on their premises.
  • The winning pet gets a $100 gift certificate for veterinary care along with pet food, treats, and services donated by local vendors. The pet mayor’s responsibilities don’t sound too onerous: According to the Fund, the winner “serves as an ambassador of goodwill to all creatures in the community: two-legged, four-legged, furred, feathered and scaled,” enjoying “media attention and the chance to appear in public on behalf of the Pet & Wildlife Fund.”

This is apparently the Fund’s most popular fundraising event of the year. And it’s a proven publicity-generator — I read about it in the local neighborhood paper.