Winter is a great time to host a community event because the cold weather tends to bring people together. There are dozens of potential options for events to choose from.
Winter is undeniably bitter, but without a coat, it can be unbearable. Setting up a coat drive for a local school or homeless shelter can be a great way to support your community and bring out the philanthropic nature of your peers. Get a local radio or TV station to join and make it a fun event with prizes to entice more people to attend. You can also ask local newspapers to run advertisements ahead of the drive as a Public Service Announcement.
Santa meet and greets are always fun but you can make the event more community-oriented by suggesting an “entry fee” of canned goods, hygiene supplies, or paper products. These items can then be donated to a local homeless shelter, spreading the cheer and goodwill of the season. An alternative would be to ask for pet food donations and give to a local animal shelter. This could be held outside or indoors in case of bad weather.
Christmas or Winter Expo
Expos are a great way to not only involve the community but also help small business owners or local crafters earn money. Set up tables in any indoor location and decorate the area festively. A small fee can be collected from the expo vendors to help offset the cost, support the locals, and donate part of the proceeds to charity.
Winter Wonderland Reading Event
For a more education outing, consider working with a local school or library to set up a night of reading. You can seek volunteers to read to children, set up crafts and activities that coincide with a certain theme, and provide souvenirs to the children in attendance. Encouraging families to come out when the weather isn’t ideal can help improve community relations and demonstrate your willingness to bring people together in a tightly-knit setting.
Winter Fun Run
The weather may be chilly, but that doesn’t mean people have to stay indoors huddled around a fire! Hosting a themed fun run can be fun for all ages. Encourage the donning of costumes to boost morale and distract from the cold; watch as Santa, snowmen, and reindeer traverse a predetermined map, and everyone will enjoy themselves! You can require an entry fee that you then donate to a local charity; sponsoring a nonprofit around the holidays can improve participation and increase the donation pool.