How to Help Our Students by Baking Christmas Cookies!

 

What is a Christmas Cookie Walk? 

It’s usually a Sunday morning event.  Volunteers bake lots of their favorite Christmas cookies, and they are attractively displayed on trays on tables.  Cookie “shoppers” come during the designated time and for a “love offering”  ($10-$15 recommended), they receive an empty, clamshell box.  (Like you use at salad bars.)  Then they walk among the tables, filling their box with beautiful & delicious Christmas cookies.  The boxes of cookies are great for gifts (neighbors, teachers) or to send to college students or to share with colleagues at work.  Or just enjoy them yourself!

 

In 2016, Bon Air United Methodist Church celebrated its 5th year hosting a Christmas Cookie Walk, raising over $3000 for Change the World RVA.  It’s a great way to share Christmas cookies with friends & family, and it’s a very social, fun event during the holidays.  Here are a few basic steps and things we’ve learned.

 

Prior to Event
  • Pick a date.  We have picked Sunday mornings in December that coincide with our United Methodist Men’s breakfast and our annual Gifts of Hope (alternative gift giving).  This has ensured a lot of traffic for our event.

  • Reserve a room.  One of our Sunday school classes very generously gives us their room, located near the men’s breakfast & Gifts of Hope.  It locks, so we are able to set up the afternoon before.  (Highly recommended!)

  • If you would like to have music during the event, recruit musicians.  For 2 years we had a cello ensemble – a local cello teacher and her students (and some of their parents) played Christmas carols.  For the 3rd year, a flute & piano player volunteered their talents.  See who is available in your congregation! Recorded music would be fine, too.

  • Recruit folks to bake cookies.  We set up a Sign Up Genius sign up and set a goal of 50 people baking 6 dozen cookies each.  Ask people NOT to bake brownies or chocolate chip cookies.  The goal of the Cookie Walk is to offer special Christmas cookies to folks who might not have the time or talent to bake their own. (Recruit cookie bakers before Thanksgiving, before they get too busy with holiday activities.)

  • Provide instructions for dropping off the cookies.  At Bon Air UMC, we set up tables on Saturday near the event location, and we ask folks to drop off their cookies from 9:00 am – 3:00 pm.

  • Create flyers & posters.   Post them in your church 7 – 21 days prior to the event.

  • Share information about the event on Facebook, your church web site, church bulletins, etc.

  • Buy clamshell containers & aluminum trays. (The trays we use are actually lids.  May be purchased in a restaurant supply store.)

  • Recruit volunteers to set up the event on Saturday (the most fun job ever!) and to sell cookies on Sunday.  (Again, we use Sign Up Genius for this.)

  • Recruit the most craft-y person you know to make centerpieces.  (Optional.)

 

Day Before the Event
  • Set up tables for cookie drop offs.  Create signage as needed.

  • By 4:00, set up tables.  Cover with white tablecloths.

  • Spread out the aluminum trays. Distribute cookies attractively on the trays. 

  • When trays are full, cover them with Saran Wrap.

  • Set up your Welcome Table:  empty clamshell boxes, cash box or donation jars

  • Lock doors.  Go home and rest.

 

Day of the Event:
  • Arrive early to unwrap the trays of cookies.

  • "Plant" some money in the Love Offering jar.

  • Have volunteers ready to welcome cookie shoppers!

  • If you have leftover cookies, put them in clamshell boxes and sell at the church office or ask volunteers to take them to work to sell them.  (We’ve rarely had leftovers; only when we had bad weather that may have kept people  away.  But it’s good to have a back up plan.)

 

After the Event:
  • Count and deposit your proceeds.  Mail to Change the World RVA – PO Box 3562, Richmond, VA 23235.

  • We thank you so much!  Our students thank you, too! Yum!

  • At Bon Air UMC, we wash & save our trays for next year.