"Fundraising experts disagree on the typical profitability of events or the prospects for the Super Bowl. Remington said there are events in town where 90 percent of the money goes to the organization and there are events where 90 percent goes to event expenses. He said he doesn’t like to see more than 50 percent of proceeds go to costs.
“You certainly want to keep the costs down, but you want to make sure you have a party that attracts people,” Remington said.
“Special events become friend raisers, not fundraisers. They’re not very cost-effective events, historically,” said Gary Dembs, past president of the greater Detroit chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and president of the Non-Profit Personnel Network of Southfield, an executive search firm for nonprofits.
John Fikes, president of Philanthropic Solutions L.L.C., a consulting firm that helps nonprofits enlarge their fundraising base, said events often cost 75 cents to 90 cents for each dollar raised. It’s rare for an event to get into the 50-55 cent range, he said.
“The fundraising at special events is gravy, though you certainly don’t want to lose money,” he said."