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A Spooktacular Guide for Planning A Halloween Trunk or Treat Fundraiser with Editable Templates

A Spooktacular Guide for Planning A Halloween Trunk or Treat Fundraiser with Editable Templates

What is Trunk or Treat?

A "Trunk or Treat" fundraiser is a community-driven event, typically organized by schools or other local organizations, where participants decorate the trunks of their cars with various Halloween themes and park in a designated area. Children then go from car to car to collect candy and other goodies. It's like Halloween on wheels and can be held in any location that has sufficient parking space.

This setup not only ensures a safe and controlled environment for children to collect Halloween treats, but it also fosters a sense of community and camaraderie among participants. Trunk or Treat events also offer a unique fundraising opportunity, as proceeds from admission, registration fees, concessions or donations can go towards supporting your school or organization. 

trunk or treat fundraiser guide


Step 1: Trunk or Treat Event Location and Safety

Secure a Location

When hosting a trunk or treat fundraising event, it is important to secure a safe and suitable location. Consider factors such as the size of the parking lot, the availability of restrooms, and the proximity to other businesses or attractions that may draw people to the event. Additionally, make sure that there are enough spaces for all of the participating vehicles.


Safety should be a top priority when hosting a Trunk or Treat event. Make sure the event location is well lit, and there are plenty of volunteers to ensure order. If the parking lot does not offer lights, you could also consider hosting the event during the daytime. Let participants know about any rules and regulations like no running, no throwing candy, and no open flames. 

Crowd Control Considerations:

  • Staggered Entry:  This ensures that the indoor space doesn’t get overcrowded and everyone can have a fun and safe event.
  • Designated Activity Areas: Consider setting up designated areas for different activities. This helps distribute the crowd evenly across the venue and maintains a smooth flow of movement.
  • Ticketing System: Implement a ticketing system for games, food and treats. This will help prevent long lines and manage crowd flow effectively.

Bad Weather Back up Plan:

Weather can be unpredictable, especially around Halloween. To ensure your trunk or treat event goes off without a hitch, it's crucial to have a backup plan in case of bad weather. If the forecast predicts rain, wind, or even snow, consider moving the event indoors to a large hall or gymnasium if feasible. If it's not possible to move the event indoors, try setting up tents or marquees to protect the trunks and participants from the elements. Encourage participants to bring umbrellas and dress appropriately for the weather. Keep an eye on the forecast and communicate any changes or updates to the event participants promptly and clearly. After all, a little rain shouldn't dampen the Halloween spirit!

trunk or treat fundraiser template set


Step 2:  Create a Marketing Plan with Trunk or Treat Templates

The key to drawing a crowd to your Trunk or Treat event is effective marketing, and that's where our customizable Trunk or Treat templates come in. Creating a fun and visually attractive flyer or poster is a must if you want to attract participants to your Trunk or Treat event. 

Social Media Promotion: Use our eye-catching templates to create posts on Facebook, Instagram, and other social media sites. Regular updates about the event, including any contests or special attractions, will keep your audience engaged and excited.

    Marketing Campaigns: Use our templates to create eye-catching ways to market your trunk or treat event to your community. Remember to include all the important details: date, time, location, and all the fun activities you plan to host. Our templates also allow you to upload your own images such as a QR code to Use our awesome postcard template in a mailer campaign or send out our trunk or treat invitation to those in your community.  

    trunk or treat postcard mailer editable template

      Flyers, Invites and Posters: Another effective way to promote your event is by distributing flyers and hanging up posters in your local area. Use our templates to create vibrant designs that are sure to grab attention to boost turn out for your trunk or treat fundraiser.

      In addition you can also send out invitations to promote your event!  Don't want to print?  Not a problem!  You can use our trunk or treat invitation template to download and email out as an e-vite in an email marketing campaign as well or upload directly onto your company, church or school's webpage. 

      Our set here comes formatted in 3 sizes to use as a invitation, flyer and poster.  Use them all or pick the marketing method that's right for you and use the coordinating trunk or treat template.  It can't get any easier!

      trunk or treat editable flyer poster template

        Tickets: If your event requires tickets, our templates can help you create professional-looking tickets without the need for a designer. Simply add your text, download and print!

        trunk or treat ticket template printable

          Banners:  Banners are a fantastic way to catch the eye and build anticipation for your Trunk or Treat event. With our templates, you can create impressive, large-scale banners to place in strategic locations around your community. Remember to make sure they're visible from a distance and include all the key details like the date, time, and venue.
          trunk or treat banner

          trunk or treat outdoor banner


          Yard Signs: When it comes to promoting your Trunk or Treat event, yard signs are a great option. They attract the local community and can boost visibility and spark interest!  Not to mention they are cost-effective and easy to install. You can place them around the neighborhoods, in people's yards or in school parking lots or other community centers, turning every corner into a mini billboard for your event!

          trunk or treat yard sign

          Remember to incorporate QR codes whenever possible on your trunk or treat marketing templates.  Incorporating a QR codes can significantly enhance the experience for participants and streamline various event processes. They also allow participants to access more information about the event directly, such as schedules, location details, signups, or any updates. This can be particularly helpful in gaining more attendees and participants for your event. 

          The more people that know about your Trunk or Treat event, the more successful your fundraising efforts will be. So create a realistic budget for the event, use eye-catching and user-friendly templates to market your event in a variety of ways and get promoting at least a six weeks prior to the event date.


          Step 3: Trunk or Treat Sign Up and Registration Process

          You will also need to create a registration process for participants, volunteers, and vendors. Use our trunk or treat vehicle registration template to make sure all event rules are conveyed and to ensure an easy sign up for participants.

          trunk or treat signup registration form

          These ensure safety, maintain a family-friendly environment, and promote a smooth flow for the event. We've listed some considerations you may want to include on your form:

          • Setup Time is Key: Make sure to let participants know when their vehicle should be parked and decorated on the day of the event. Late arrivals might not be able to join the fun.
          • Spookily Appropriate: Remind participants to keep their car decorations family-friendly. Graphic images, explicit content, or inappropriate themes should not be allowed. You may want to refrain from too scary of costumes and decorations as well, especially if the event is geared towards very small children.
          • Safety first: Decorate with safety in mind. Ensure nothing obstructs the driver's view or poses a risk to attendees.
          • No fire or furry creatures: The use of fire, smoke, live animals, or harmful substances in your decoration is a no-go.
          • Clean up: Once the event ends, make sure to clean up. Let's keep our venue litter-free!
          • Rules are rules: Not adhering to these rules may lead to disqualification.

          Volunteers can assist in various roles ranging from setting up the event, decorating, managing games and activities, to monitoring safety measures. Make the volunteer sign up process as simple as possible with our trunk or treat printable volunteer sign up sheet.

           trunk or treat volunteer sign up form template

          Step 4: Explore Additional Fundraising Opportunities

          In addition to providing family-friendly fun, a Trunk or Treat event offers an excellent opportunity for community fundraising. Here are some other ideas to consider:

          1. Food and Beverage Sales: Partner with local restaurants, bakeries, coffee shops or food trucks to sell concessions. A portion of the sales could go to your chosen cause and your attendees will appreciate the delicious offerings, especially hot chocolate or apple cider to stay warm on a cold day.
          2. Raffle Tickets: Sell raffle tickets for a chance to win donated prizes. These could range from gift baskets to services donated by local businesses.
          3. Chili Cookoff: Want to add some spice to your Trunk or Treat event? Organize a Chili Cook-Off where participants can showcase their culinary skills. Sell tickets for attendees to sample the chilis and vote for their favorite. This not only raises funds but also adds an exciting competition to your event.
          4. Craft Sale: Collaborate with local crafters or students to create and sell Halloween-themed crafts. The proceeds from the sales can contribute to your fundraising efforts.
          5. Sponsorship: Reach out to local businesses for sponsorship. In return, offer to display their banner or logo during the event.
          6. Pumpkin Carving Contest: Nothing screams Halloween more than a carved pumpkin! Host a pumpkin carving contest as part of your Trunk or Treat event. Participants can bring their pre-carved pumpkins, or if you have the resources, provide pumpkins and carving tools on-site. Charge a small entry fee for each pumpkin submitted. Attendees can vote for their favorite designs by donating a set amount. Make sure to award the best-carved pumpkin to keep the excitement level high!
          7. Halloween Carnival Games: This is not only a fun, interactive idea but also a great way to boost your fundraising efforts. Sell tickets for kids to play the games and if they win gift small prizes or treats! Here are a few simple Halloween Theme games you could include during your trunk or treat event:
            • Pumpkin Bean Bag Toss: Cut out large pumpkin faces from a piece of cardboard and make the mouth part wide enough to toss a bean bag through. Kids will love trying their luck tossing bean bags into the pumpkin's mouth!
            • Ghost Bowling: Paint a set of bowling pins white and draw ghostly faces on them. The kids will have a blast trying to knock down the ghostly pins with a black bowling ball.
            • Spider Ring Toss: Arrange plastic spider rings on a table, with each spider ring assigned a specific point value. Provide rings to the children to toss onto the spiders. The higher the score, the better the treat!


          Step 5: Trunk or Treat Vehicle Contest Decorating Awards

          Decorating the trunks is the heart and soul of a trunk-or-treat event. It's a fantastic opportunity to let your creativity fly high and to amaze the kids and other participants with your innovative designs. Some creative and fun trunk decorating ideas include transforming your car into a haunted house, zombie apocalypse scene, or a spooky graveyard. Use props, decorations, and lighting to take your decorations to the next level. 

          Organizing a contest can add a touch of competitive fun to your Trunk or Treat event. Use our editable trunk or treat award templates to make your own awards and customize for your event.

          trunk or treat car award editable templates


          Here are some award ideas to motivate and inspire participants:

          1. "Spookiest Trunk" Award: This award can go to the participant who best manifests the Halloween spirit with the eeriest decorations.
          2. "Best Theme Execution" Award: This award can be given to the participant who best brings their chosen theme to life, demonstrating creativity and attention to detail.
          3. "Most Interactive Trunk" Award: This award can be for the trunk that provides the best engaging experience for the kids, be it through games, puzzles, or other interactive elements.
          4. "Kid's Choice" Award: Let the kids be the judge! This award can go to the trunk that gets the most votes from the young participants.


          Step 6: Halloween Trunk or Treat Gift Tag Favors

          One way to make your Trunk or Treat experience truly memorable for the kids is by adding a personal touch to your treats. Instead of just handing out candy, consider attaching a Halloween-themed gift tag to your goodies. This will not only delight the children but also make your car stand out! 


          Sending kids home with a special Halloween goody bag or gift is a great way to end the Trunk or Treat event. 

          trunk or treat favor bags 

          Trunk or Treat Halloween fundraiser events are a fun and exciting way to celebrate Halloween while raising money for your school or community group. With some planning, creativity, and safety considerations, you can host a successful Trunk or Treat event that everyone will enjoy. Use the tips and ideas mentioned in this blog post to make your Trunk or Treat event the talk of the town this Halloween season!


          trunk or treat fundraiser templates
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