What's all the buzz?'  There has not been this much tweeting since John Corey Whaley won this year's Printz and Morris Awards!

The initial announcement about Booze for Books, scheduled for April 12, 2012, sure stirred a heated debate.'  While the title says Booze, the event does not have to include booze, and is your opportunity to help raise funds to get books into the hands of needy teens. It's all a part of YALSA's Books for Teens initiative.

Options Galore ' After reading the initial post about Booze for Books, many YALSA blog readers posted other options for events that don't incorporate alcohol.'  Janene suggested “Burgers for Books!”'  Beth mentioned quite a few “Pizza for Pages,” “Tea for Teens,” and “Chocolate for a Cause.” Another Beth wrote “Mocktails for a Mission.”'  YALSA's first Booze for Books fundraiser can be adapted to meet your community's needs.'  The core idea of this fundraiser is to raise money for Books for Teens, which connects at-risk teenagers with books.'  A novel idea!

How do you get started?'  Check out the brand new fundraising guide that provides a ton of ideas on how to host a fundraising event for YALSA. The guide includes templates, tips, forms, weblinks, and more.'  Are you too afraid to do it alone?'  Team up with a librarian from another library!

Let's share some new ideas! ' YALSA started a Pinterest Board to have members share photos and recipes.'  You can snap a photo of your creation (alcoholic or pizza or chocolate, or whatever).'  Another idea is to add a book cover image that inspires your event (I am thinking Cormier's The Chocolate War).

Thinking Outside the Booze Box'  Speaking of chocolate, I may steal Beth's idea, Chocolate for a Cause.'  I am considering hosting an event at a local artisan chocolate café.'  I am thinking handcrafted truffles, cocoas and drinking chocolates, chocolate shakes, and chocolate fondue.'  I can have a dark vs. milk chocolate competition. Besides Cormier's The Chocolate War, I can have copies of Klause's Blood and Chocolate, Esquivel's Like Water for Chocolate, or Candyfreak: a journey through the chocolate underbelly of America. I can have a donation bucket where attendees can throw in a few bucks toward Books for Teens.

Another Box (Pizza Box) Option Instead of chocolate, try Pizza for Pages.'  You can host a pizza-making dinner at your home.'  Have your guests bring their favorite toppings; you can supply the dough and sauce.'  Another possibility is to have a no-host Pizza for Pages event at your favorite local pizzeria.'  Maybe the pizza business will give you a discount.'  Henry Holt has a new book coming out in August, Pizza, Love, and Other Stuff That Made Me Famous by Kathryn Williams.'  Remember you can request YALSA swag and a couple of books as part of your event.

Different Events; Same Goal Whatever you decide, remember the goal is still the same to empower the nation's at-risk teens to achieve more by providing them with free high-quality, new, age-appropriate books.'  So put April 12th on your calendar!

If you would like to donate to Books for Teens outside of a special event, you can do so via the' Facebook Books for Teens' page or send a donation by check to YALSA, 50 E. Huron St., Chicago, IL 60611, attention: Books for Teens.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask them in the comments section below or send me an email at yalsa.lum@gmail.com

One Thought on “Thinking Outside the Booze Box

  1. Sarah Debraski on February 26, 2012 at 9:19 am said:

    Great post, Gregory-those are some really creative ideas. I love the idea of asking a local pizzeria to help out, and your chocolate tie-ins are really cool. YALSA members have the best ideas!!

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