Friday, March 13, 2015

Who Wants A Piece of the CFS Pie?

Who wouldn't like a piece of a $160,000 pie? Custom Fundraising Solutions set a new national record this past weekend for “amount of dollars given back” in only one weekend of Mattress Fundraisers! Yes, ONE weekend! That would mean over $8.3 million dollars given back over the course of a year if we continue momentum like that.  Here are some of the top programs last week:
  • (Milwaukee) Sun Prairie HS Baseball Team, made $8,375
  • (Minneapolis) South St. Paul HS Band made $6,100
  • (Evansville) Vincennes Lincoln HS Band made $7,250
Some key factors to having a successful event include:
  • Student/Coach/Director enthusiasm!
  • Every member doing exactly what they’re asked!
  • Spreading the word using social media and email!
  • Knowing the event is going to be a success!
  • Having FUN!
If you have a success story you’d like to share or if you know a school group in need of raising thousands of dollars in just one day, we want to hear from you! Send us an EMAIL!

Be sure to connect with us on Facebook: @CFSCorporate and Twitter: @Cfsmattress.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Rolling Out the Red Carpet for Grammy Nominee Jared Cassedy

This is the second year the prestigious, Music Educator of the Year Grammy will be given at the 57th annual awards ceremony, February 8th in Los Angeles. The award was established to recognize current music educators who have made a significant, lasting contribution to music education. This year 7,000 nominees were submitted for review spanning elementary school teachers to college professors.  Jared Cassedy, Fine Arts Director for the Windham School District is one of only ten to make the pool of finalists.

Portland, Maine dealer, Michael Logue has had the pleasure of working with this much-respected and well-liked director for three years, raising nearly $11,000 for Cassedy's program with the Mattress Fundraiser.  The Windham High School Band ( is very proud of this prestigious honor, announcing, “…no matter what happens, you've already won in Windham.”

Winner of the award will not only take home a five-pound, four-ounce knick knack for their desk, they will also pick up a $10,000 honorarium. And even the finalists are winners, each receiving a $1,000 honorarium, as well. “I am very proud to be able to work with such a talented group and an exceptional director,” says Logue

You don’t have to win a Grammy to be recognized as an individual making a difference in the lives of our youth. Send us your story so we can cast a spotlight where it is deserved! Send it to

On behalf of the entire Custom Fundraising Solutions team, congratulations Jared Cassedy on this very fine accomplishment!

UPDATE: And...he won! 

Big City Recognition Doesn't Mean Big Business - CFS is Homegrown

Everyone over the age of 30 remembers the ever-popular ad campaign for Pace Picante Sauce, (which first debuted back in 1989) when a group of horrified cowboys shouted, “New York City?!?” after reading the manufacturer’s label on a jar of salsa. 

Salsa made in the Big Apple just seemed wrong.   The city is about big business, and Times Square is its billboard. If there is an important message to be shared, you’ll see it there!  Recently, even CFS was making news on the Reuter’s billboard!  “’The Mattress Fundraiser’ Breaks $10 Million for Custom Fundraising Solutions” was the headline, announcing that we’ve given back $10 million dollars to school groups across the country.  Sounds like big business, doesn’t it? Not really.

CFS has over 50 locations nationwide, and the goal is to grow to over 100 locations, each giving back $100,000 annually. This is a big goal, but Custom Fundraising Solutions isn’t necessarily “big business.” Each location is independently owned and operated by small business owners, living in the very communities where they’re helping kids raise money for school organizations. These are the same people who shop at your neighborhood grocery store, sit next to you at the Friday night football games and send their kids to local schools, toting trombones and soccer balls.  However, by being a part of the CFS brand, each location benefits from the company’s buying power and nearly 10 years of product and fundraising expertise.

Another benefit of looking at the locations as a group is that you can gauge the success of the CFS “The Mattress Fundraiser” model.  We are proud to announce the CFS locations have given back over $3 million dollars so far this year!  And of the 50+ locations, 9 of them have exceeded their goal of giving back $100,000 each. Wow!

So what happened to the small, Texas-based Pace Foods Company? The very company that boasted an authentic Tex-Mex sauce recipe sold out to Campbell’s Soup Company in 1995, which is less than a 100 miles outside of “New York City.”  They eventually succumbed to “big business.”  CFS is committed to giving back big dollars, not “big business.” Now that’s “Awesome Sauce!” (This phrase is recognized by anyone UNDER 30…or closer to 13.)

East Ascension High School Sets National Fundraising Record – Twice!

Every athlete respects the effort it takes to reach a new personal record.  For East Ascension High School, they’ve not only reached a new personal record, they broke a national record…twice! On October 4th, Sarah Thibodeaux of CFS Lafayette converted the East Ascension High school gym into “The Mattress Fundraiser” mobile showroom, for the 3rd year in a row.  Along with her team of mattress experts, they greeted the eager shoppers of Gonzales, Louisiana, who showed up by the dozen.

The school has raised a combined $53,125, setting not one, but TWO national sales records.  They’ve channeled their drive to win into dollars! The very first year they sold 127 mattress sets, and they just topped their own efforts this past weekend, selling 138 sets. That is A LOT of beds! Custom Fundraising Solutions will be giving back $23,575.00 to the school & kids this year alone.  

The school’s efforts are credited, in large part, to school spirit leader, Jamie Andrews, who said, “We were looking for creative fundraising ideas that could bring in a lot of dollars with not a lot of effort. Working with CFS was exactly what we needed to achieve our goal!” But to have a school-wide fundraiser be this successful takes coordination and enthusiastic participation by every student, faculty member, and administrator. "We have been successful by making this a whole, school-wide project, and are excited about the many items we have financed for our school using the profits made within this program. Our Spartan community, of course, is also credited for their support of our school each and every year. The city of Gonzales can rest easy knowing they not only support East Ascension High School; but they are also purchasing a great bed at a great price!" said Andrews.

Will your school be the next to break Custom Fundraising Solutions’ national record?  CFS challenges YOU!

From “It Sounds Crazy!” to “Best Fundraiser EVER!” …in 61 Mattresses

Behind every successful “Mattress Fundraiser” is a motivated coach or director. Behind every motivated coach or director, is a persistent CFS fundraising expert, wanting to help that program make a lot of money. Bensalem High School has one such story.

Band director Mike Zimmerman got his first “Mattress Fundraiser” email in January of 2013.  Like most staff, Mike is busy, and selling mattresses as a fundraiser “sounded crazy”, so he didn’t exactly jump at the opportunity right away.  But local CFS representative, Dave Cox, of Philadelphia,  didn’t cross Mike off his list. “Dave kept dropping me messages, and stopping by my school to catch me,” said Zimmerman.  “He finally caught me one afternoon, we talked for about 30 minutes, and the rest is history!”

Last September, the Bensalem HS Marching Band ran their first-ever “Mattress Fundraiser”. 

They sold 61 mattresses out of their gym that day, and in the process raised $8,000!  “The place looked great!  This is, in my opinion, THE best way to buy a mattress!” said Zimmerman.   “Great beds, comfortable environment, NO pressure, and really nice people helping out.  It became a big community event!  People were hanging out, lying on beds, and having conversations!  It was fun!”

Before the day was over, the director had already picked the date for the following year’s event.  The “Mattress Fundraiser” will be bouncing back into Bensalem on September 20th this year - and Zimmerman can’t wait.  “Easiest fundraiser EVER!” he said.   “We do a TON of fundraising.  This program was professional, and super easy!  All of the materials were provided by CFS…even the email and Facebook material!  He told me what to send and when, and I got the information out to our community.  It was easy!”

The best part of this story is that Custom Fundraising Solutions has a new raving fan. “I’ve been telling everyone I know about it…other band directors, friends, etc.  I tell all of them that they need to run this one… it sounds crazy, but without a hesitation, JUST DO IT!  This IS crazy, but it works!”

Thanks Bensalem High School Band for your support and enthusiasm!

Twin Brothers Think Outside of the Box – Rival Football Coaches Host a Mattress Showdown!

Nothing says brotherly love like a little friendly competition between rival football teams, right? That’s exactly what identical twin brother football coaches from Pennsylvania think!  In an effort to spice up the monotony of their annual fundraising drives, Coaches Jeff and Jason Cappa turned to Custom Fundraising Solutions to each host a Mattress Fundraiser. Keeping with their competitive nature, the brothers challenged one another to a sell-off.    

The brothers grew up playing ball under their father’s tutelage at Riverview High School in Oakmont, PA, just 15 miles northeast of Pittsburgh. As a 2012 inductee to the Pennsylvania Scholastic Football Coaches Association Hall of Fame, dad, Jake Cappa, nurtured their desire to win. 

Jeff now coaches the Trojan football team at Wissahickon High School in Ambler, 15 miles north of Philadelphia and Jason is the brand new head football coach for the Raiders at their Alma mater, Riverview High, in Oakmont. These teams will face off selling beds on June 14th. Owner of CFS Philidelphia, Dave Cox, and CFS of Pittsburgh’s Scott MacKenzie will be on site, working to ensure victory for their event. Be sure to follow them on Facebook and Twitter!  As a sponsor, setting yourself apart from the rest, you gain the benefit of added attention for your event. Be sure to keep thinking outside of the box and promoting your mattress fundraiser in creative ways!   

A Mention by Al Roker! Virginia Band Uses Mattress Fundraiser To Gets To Rose Parade

A New Year’s Day tradition that takes place in living rooms across the country, is the watching of the Rose Parade, part of Pasadena’s Tournament of Roses. (At least its tradition for those of us who didn’t make the trip to Pasadena, to see it in person.) The parade boasts the best bands in the land, which are peppered among floating floral masterpieces and high-stepping equestrians. This year’s 126th annual event included a band that is very special to Stephen McCarthy, the CFS Virginia dealer. The Westfield High School Marching Bulldogs, from Chantilly, Virginia needed a creative way to send their 270-piece group to Pasadena. Their hefty fundraising goal needed some heavy hitting and the CFS Mattress Fundraiser was just the ticket. In just one day, they sold 80 beds, and received a check for $10,000. While watching the parade from your sofa, you might have heard the famous Al Roker talk about how the band did ‘something he’d never heard of before…a Mattress Sale!’ This moment made all of us at Custom Fundraising Solutions very proud. Our mission to give back millions of dollars to schools and organizations all across the country was recognized on national TV. We want to say “thank you” to all the groups we work with – you are all success stories!

A Message from our President


Cleveland is home to Custom Fundraising Solutions – Cleveland, which was born 8 years ago from one crazy idea and a desire to change the landscape of fundraising, as we know it. CEO, Joe Matejka combined years of success in the furniture business with an early career in fundraising, where he became an expert in peddling popcorn, wrapping paper and even selling sunscreen to the 3rdcloudiest city in the nation. From that, he created, “The Mattress Fundraiser.” This out-of-the box idea spread like wildfire, and locations now span the country at nearly 50 strong, and have raised almost $3 million dollars for kids last year.

That is a feat in itself, but Cleveland recently hit a major milestone! Just last week, they crested $1 MILLION dollars donated to kids all over northeast Ohio, in just a little over 5 years. As a company, Custom Fundraising Solutions has a many goals: some of which are to grow to 100 locations nationwide, each location donating $100,000 annually, for a company grand total of $10 million dollars per year being given back to groups. We are very excited as we grow closer to that goal and thank all the sponsors that have believed in us to help us grow, and to know that we are helping kids every step of the way.


Taking a one-of-a-kind approach to fundraising, Custom Fundraising Solutions offers mattress fundraiser opportunities to schools, churches, and other nonprofit organizations in need of raising money. In operation for close to a decade, Custom Fundraising Solutions surpassed the $5 million level in donations to schools across the nation. With 40 locations and a goal to establish 100 locations across the country, the company set a goal to open 20 new locations in 2014. The company focuses on its unique fundraising tactic of selling high-quality mattresses for a 30 to 60 percent discount off retail pricing. More than 1,200 schools in 37 states, like Lakewood High School in Colorado, have benefited from the sales.

The Lakewood High School football team in Colorado decided to forgo the usual chocolate bars and pizza sales to try the more unusual mattress fundraiser. They set a goal to raise at least $7,000 for the purchase of new football helmets and shoulder pads. Working with the company’s professional fundraising consultant, the team joined forces with some parents to market the fundraiser to people in the community who needed a new mattress. They set up the event in the lobby of Lakewood High School, providing a showroom of quality mattresses prospective buyers could touch and feel to find the one best suited for them. The sale was held both Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. While the team benefited from the mattress sales, the community benefited from the discounts on the 22 different types of mattresses, such as Restonic, made available through the fundraiser.


Manor High School Band
Providing a unique twist to fundraising, Custom Fundraising Solutions works closely with organizations to hold mattress fundraisers. Headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio, Custom Fundraising Solutions has given back over $2.5 million dollars in 2012. The company works closely with high schools, junior highs, and elementary schools, as well as other nonprofits seeking to earn money for special projects, equipment, or other needs.

In April 2013, the Manor High School Band in Central Texas chose a one-day mattress fundraiser to help fund equipment and travel expenses. Through the program, individuals were able to view 22 different types of mattresses and purchase a mattress at a significant discount of 30 percent to 60 percent under retail price. All marketing, sales, and delivery were handled for the school, which benefited from the proceeds. The non-traditional fundraising method reaped thousands of dollars for the Manor High School band. Other school groups across the country using this fundraising method include athletic boosters, high school chorus groups, show choir, and sports teams.


Custom Fundraising Solutions, with its successful mattress fundraiser, has helped many school groups and organizations in their efforts to raise money. By offering a successful alternative to traditional school fundraisers, Custom Fundraising Solutions, provides an important service for students and their families.

Many families dread school fundraiser time. Often, students try to raise money by selling products such as candy and magazines door to door. Relatives may feel pressure to purchase a product they don’t need, or that they wouldn’t purchase if it weren’t for the fundraising campaign. Since students may be assigned quotas to meet, family members may feel that they have no choice but to help the student sell as much as possible.

Additionally, they may worry about the safety of the student while he or she tries to sell the product, particularly if the student goes door to door. Groups such as the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children have expressed concern about the potential dangers of this practice. Fortunately, in recent years, more attention has been paid to the pitfalls of door-to-door sales, and alternatives to traditional fundraisers have emerged.


A leader in the fundraising field, Custom Fundraising Solutions offers an innovative mattress fundraiser that has been widely successful. Custom Fundraising Solutions’ approach involves setting up mattress sale days where community members can test different mattresses in order to make an informed selection.

Many people may struggle with purchasing a mattress. They may be unsure which type of mattress is better — a firmer mattress or a softer one. While these factors vary greatly between individuals, there are a number of things to keep in mind.

Most individuals who have back problems need a mattress with a medium level of support. If it’s too soft, the person will sink down into it and not receive the needed support. If it is too hard, there might be too much pressure on areas such as the shoulders and the sacrum. A medium-support mattress is therefore generally a good option. Another possibility is a firmer mattress with a pillow top that is soft enough to provide sleeping comfort.