Coasting for Kids 2011

Tuesday, January 18, 2011 5:11 PM

I have seen on FB that Coasting for Kids 2011 will be held on Sunday July 24th. It looks like all 11 parks will be participating again this year. It also looks like ACE with be joining Coaster Buzz this year.

Since some are not on FB, here is a link to the flyer

Tuesday, January 18, 2011 5:49 PM

Sunday? That's different. At least I know I'll be off that day.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011 7:31 PM

I'm off that day too. Unfortunately, I'll be spending the day flying back from Germany. I guess my Gemini record is in jeopardy. :)

Tuesday, January 18, 2011 8:12 PM

I still haven't got my t-shirt from last year. Oh well. lol

I'm going to do it again this year. Raising money for a good cause felt great!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011 9:48 PM

I did 2009 at CP and 2010 at KI. So where should I do 2011?

BTW, We never got our t-shirts either. I guess Don really dropped the ball on that one.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011 10:24 PM

I never thought of doing it for a different park this time around. I love my Kings Island, which is about 4 hours away, but maybe I should move around to keep it interesting.

I have many CF parks within driving distance. Carowinds is about 4 and a half hours away. Cedar Point is about 5. Kings Dominion is about 6. The seed has been planted in my mind now. lol

I had a blast last CfK at Kings Island last summer. Winning the VIP prize was icing on the cake, but I'd do it all again if I didn't win. It was hard work collecting some of those donations, but soooo rewarding. :)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011 8:43 AM

I'm glad it's on a Sunday this year. I'm sure that will draw a lot more participation. Plus more people in the park means more visibility for the charity. :)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011 8:54 AM

Jason Hammond said:
I'm off that day too. Unfortunately, I'll be spending the day flying back from Germany. I guess my Gemini record is in jeopardy. :)

Don't worry about me stealing it. :) I could barely handle the whole day even with taking breaks. I drove home with a headache, and felt like I was run over by the red, and blue trains.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011 8:35 PM

I clicked the link, but the flyer really doesn't say much. I'd like to get more info, but can't find anything posted yet. Is this something anyone can sign up and do? Without getting too specific, how does it work? You sign up, pay an entry fee, raise money through pledges, that kind of thing?

Wednesday, January 19, 2011 10:06 PM

I'm interested in specifics too. How has this looked in past years?

Wednesday, January 19, 2011 10:49 PM

I did it last year. There is no entry fee. You sign up for whichever park you want to attend during the event, then you raise money for Give Kids The World. Donations can be given to you by cash or a check, or they can use the Firstgiving website to donate by credit or debt card. On the morning of the event, you need to give the park a check or money order for all of the cash that you raised.

It's kind of like people are sponsoring your roller coaster marathon on whatever coaster is chosen for the event. You are let into the park for free, and you don't have to ride the coaster all day, or even an hour if you don't want to. You can come and go as you please. You are free to enjoy the entire park all day. They provided lunch.

I raised over $500 last year, and won a VIP admission for two to Kings Island. Even before I won the prize, and even before I attended the event, I really felt good about raising money. That was what it was all about.

What helped me raise money is that I asked for donations from business owners that I knew. I also asked all of my relatives, coworkers, and acquaintances. I just slipped the interesting event into the conversation, and once they showed an interest, I'd ask for a donation.

I got the local media involved too. Only the newspaper that I worked for showed any interest, but maybe I will figure out how to get the others involved this year.

It was a great experience that I intend on participating in as long as it continues.

Last edited by LostKause, Wednesday, January 19, 2011 10:57 PM
Wednesday, January 19, 2011 11:21 PM

It's still pretty early in the year, obviously, so you'll probably have to wait a little while before everything is sorted out.

Coincidentally, I had dinner tonight with Susie and Kara from GKTW, and we didn't talk about it at all. That's how far away it is!

Thursday, January 20, 2011 7:44 PM

Thanks, Travis. I'm really thinking about doing this (I'd be at Dorney) as I've never done something like this before. I put out some feelers today to see if anyfriends/co-workers would be interested in sponsoring me when I have further details. I also sent an e-mail to GKTW asking them to provide details to me when available. Thanks to Jeff for his update above as well. Does one have to be a member of CoasterBuzz or another group in order to participate?

Thursday, January 20, 2011 9:27 PM

One tidbit that I forgot to mention. Last year, in order to participate, one needed to raise at least $50. I assume that a few people just donated their own $50 so they could attend the event.

I believe Cedar Point had more participants than seats available on the reserved Gemini train, but if I recall correctly, everyone got to marathon at some part of the day.

They had prizes for the top winners, which added an incentive to keep raising money.

Also, while the event was going on throughout the day, at Kings Island, Give Kids The World had a table set up to ask for donations from the general public, which was somewhat successful. A few park guests even donated $50 at the table so they could participate in the marathon, which was kick-ass cool.

The event began at 6am on a Thursday last year. I worked late the night before, and started driving to Kings Island a little after midnight. I got to Mason, OH a little after 4am, ate at the McDonald's, and tried to take an hours nap before the event. Without sleep, I stayed at the park until I couldn't hold my eyes open anymore. Sunburned and chafed in my secret places, I kept falling asleep while standing in line for Firehawk, and around 8pm, and left the park and drove to my nearby hotel.

Thursday, January 20, 2011 10:14 PM

You don't need to be a member of anything... just a willingness to raise money, which most of us found to be super easy.

Saturday, January 22, 2011 8:08 AM

Several people have already shown an interest in sponsoring me if they can keep it to around 20-25 bucks. I should be able to raise at least $150-200 so I do hope to do this. Only thing is, I'm not active on FB or any other social networking sites, so I'm hoping I'll still be able to get all the details and sign up, either through this site or GKTW's. If anyone finds out info that I may miss, PM me, okay?

I seem to remember reading last year's coaster at Dorney was Steel Force. My preference would be Talon, but I'll handle any one they throw at me...

Saturday, January 22, 2011 11:28 AM

I didn't find any info on Facebook last year. CoasterBuzz is in charge of getting the word out about the event, so I think you'll be fine.

Last year, to sign up for the event, we had to make an account on the FirstGiving site. This allowed people to use their credit and Debt cards to donate. It was customizable, as you could put your own personal message on the site. As I got check and cash donations, I added the amounts to the site as well, helping my total increase.

You don't need to ask for a certain amount from people who donate. I asked a lot of people, and told them any amount would be fine. If another one of their friends or coworkers gave a certain amount that was high, I would tell them, and they would usually match that amount.

Some people donated $2 and some people donated $20. Some business donated $50. If people donate by credit or Debt card, they get a thank you E-mail from GKTW, and some kind of a receipt for taxes, I think.

I even went as far to make up a few business cards, and put both the Give Kids The World and Firstgiving websites on there, along with my E-mail, to make it more official.

Last edited by LostKause, Saturday, January 22, 2011 11:31 AM
Saturday, January 22, 2011 12:13 PM

We had a big old graphic on the home page for months... and plugged it in the e-mail newsletter several times. Believe me, it's not like we try to keep it a secret!

Saturday, January 22, 2011 12:16 PM

I had friends who donated as little as $10 and as much as $250 (yes, it shocked me too!). I never dreamed I would raise as much as I did. I emailed a bunch of friends whom I thought might be interested, posted it to my facebook status a few times, and sent one more round of emails just before the deadline -- a lot of people like to mull it over and wait till the last minute. I didn't do any active, outright 'campaigning' per se.

Travis, I like your idea with the business cards, for in-person contacts. I might have to do that this year.

Saturday, January 22, 2011 12:25 PM

That's great that they are doing it on a Sunday! Normally I would be able to participate, but this time around, I will be coming back from Scandinavia. Doh! I was even considering driving out to CP to marathon Gemini with Josh. Oh well, maybe next year. I hope they keep having it on Sundays from here on out. I think that will make for the best possible turnout of fundraisers.


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