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Reunion Organizer

Bring old classmates together by organizing reunions.

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Business At A Glance

Reunion Organizer

Startup Costs: Under $2,000
Home Based: Can be operated from home.
Part Time: Can be operated part-time.
Online Operation? No

Business Overview

As a reunion organizer, you’ll be a combination event planner andprivate detective, hunting down missing members of high school andcollege classes, large families, groups and associations, then planningand organizing the bash of the decade.

To find those missing members,you’ll pore through phone directories and computer databases andcontact school and civic records departments and friends, neighbors andrelatives. Reunion-organizing is a growing field–with all those babyboomers being joined by Generation Xers just reaching high schoolreunion age, there’s no dearth of potential customers. And since justabout everybody is out in the workforce these days, no one has the timeto spend on tracking down former classmates or associates and thenattending to all the details of the event. Which leaves lots of workfor you. The advantages to this business are that you can work at home,it’s creative, challenging and rewarding–you get to help people havefun and renew old ties every time you plan a reunion. As a reunionorganizer, you’ll have to be obsessive about locating attendees, aswell as creative about ways to broaden your search. You’ll also need tobe extremely detail-oriented and organized–people will be travelingfrom all over the country to attend events you arrange and counting onyou to pull it all together.

The Market

Your customers can be the Class of X for high schools and colleges,groups and associations, and large, far-flung families. Your best betfor selling to these groups is to establish yourself in your community.Introduce yourself to and leave brochures with vendors inevent-planning industries who can refer people to you–caterers,hotels, florists, printers and photographers. Find out who’s in chargeof the reunion committees for your own high school or college class orthose of your friends and relatives, then call and introduce yourselfand your services.

Needed Equipment

You’ll need a computer with the usual office software, a laser printer,a fax machine, a calendar, a planning book and a phone.

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Entertainment & Events

Theater Productions

A talented play producer can make money from one of the oldest forms of entertainment.

Entrepreneur

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Business At A Glance

Theater Productions

Startup Costs: $10,000 – $50,000
Home Based: Can be operated from home.
Part Time: Can be operated part-time.
Online Operation? No

Business Overview

Producing theatrical plays is much easierthan you think, and many plays have the potential to generateoutstanding profits even if they’re only small community productions.Producing plays simply means you’re the financial backer of theproduction and you pay for the costs associated with bringing the playto stage.

However, there’s a major benefit for producing these types ofsmall plays–often the performers, directors and stagehands will workfor little or no financial compensation. Just the fact that they’retaking part in the play itself is reward enough. Additionally, manyvenues for performances can also be secured for free, providing thereare benefits for the owner of the venue such as refreshment sales orproduct sales. The key to success in producing a community play forprofit is to retain as much of the ticket revenue as possible whileseeking out ways to reduce or eliminate production costs.

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Entertainment & Events

Houseboat Rentals

Renting out your luxury liner is how you can make your business your escape and your escape your houseboat.

Entrepreneur

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Business At A Glance

Houseboat Rentals

Startup Costs: $2,000 – $10,000
Part Time: Can be operated part-time.
Online Operation? No

Business Overview

There are numerous options available to youin terms of starting a houseboat rental service. The first option is topurchase the houseboats ($20,000 to $30,000 each secondhand). Thesecond, and more viable option is to locate houseboat owners and see ifthey are prepared to enter their boats into a rental pool that ismanaged and operated by your service.

Houseboat rental rates are in therange of $750 to $1,000 per week and the person who is renting the boatmust pay for additional operating costs such as gas and insurance. Inexchange for the boat owner allowing their houseboat to be used in therental pool, they would receive 50 percent of the rental revenue andpay no moorage or maintenance fees for their boats. You would keep 50percent of the rental fee and maintain the houseboat for the owner.Including operating overheads, boat maintenance, and moorage, a pretaxnet of 20 percent of the total rental fees per year should be theprofit. Providing you have at least ten houseboats in the rental poolthat were rented for an average of 25 weeks each per year, this examplewould leave you a profit of $50,000. The business can be started forless than $10,000 providing you are not intending to purchase thehouseboats.

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Entertainment & Events

Party Entertainer

Always been the life of the party? Start a party entertaining business.

Entrepreneur

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Business At A Glance

Party Entertainer

Startup Costs: Under $2,000
Home Based: Can be operated from home.
Part Time: Can be operated part-time.
Online Operation? No

Business Overview

There are a couple of options available in terms of starting a partyentertaining service. You can work as an agency, representingentertainers for parties.

Or, if you have the skills, you can be anentertainer yourself. The different types of entertainers forchildren’s parties include clowns, magicians, trained pet shows,singers and skit plays. You can also gear your act to adults and offeryour services for corporate events as a magician or karaoke deejay.This is a relatively low-investment business to start and operate, andthe profit potential is very good. I contacted four different agenciesand found the average rate for party entertainers was $50 per hour,with a minimum charge for 1-1/2 hours including travel. An agencyrepresenting entertainers for parties or being an entertainer yourselfis a good home based business that allows for flexible hours, goodincome potential and loads of fun.

The Market

Your customers are parents who are giving their children parties, andbusinesses who are planning anniversary, holiday or summer events fortheir employees. While you can advertise in the Yellow Pages and sendfliers to local businesses, your best marketing tool will beword-of-mouth. Be sure to bring brochures or business cards to everygig you get.

Needed Equipment

Your area of expertise will dictate the tools of your trade. You will also need reliable transportation.

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