Give to the Max Day Raised $13.56M for MN Charities

The total funds raised during the third annual event surpassed last year's donations but were shy of the money raised in 2009; the event set a new record, however, for the number of participating donors and benefiting charities.

The third annual “Give to the Max Day” wrapped up at midnight, and it raised about $13.56 million for Minnesota charities.

A total of 47,535 donors participated in the 24-hour fundraiser held Wednesday-and the donations will benefit 3,978 nonprofits throughout the state.

The total funds raised Wednesday topped last year's event, which generated about $10 million. However, they fell short of the program's inaugural event, which raised $14 million and set a national record.

This year's event surpassed previous years' in terms of donors and benefiting charities. The 2010 Give to the Max Day included 42,596 donors and 3,663 nonprofits; the 2009 fundraiser included about 38,000 donors and 3,434 charities.

The event is organized by, which is run by Executive Director Dana Nelson. It provides donors with information about organizations that match their philanthropic goals and allows them to make online donations to any U.S. nonprofit by credit card. Give to the Max Day challenges Minnesotans to raise as much money as possible for nonprofits over a 24-hour period.

A spokesperson for the organization said Thursday morning that some last-minute donations were being factored in to the “leaderboards” on, which reflect which nonprofits received the most funds.

According to the preliminary results posted on the site Thursday morning, Plymouth-based Interfaith Outreach and Community Partners topped the list for overall nonprofits, excluding higher education organizations, with $319,938 in donations.

For nonprofits with budgets under $750,000, Minneapolis-based Jabbok Family Services raised the most, with $103,385.

St. Olaf College in Northfield topped the list of higher-education nonprofits; it received $230,713.

Nelson told Twin Cities Business on Thursday that the 2011 Give to the Max Day was an “incredible, incredible, overwhelming show of generosity from Minnesotans.”

Click here to read Twin Cities Business' coverage of what was new at this year's Give to the Max Day event. Mall of America visitors, for example, were allowed to donate using laptops in a special “GiveNGo” area; those who donated received discounts at stores and restaurants throughout the mega mall.

Many local nonprofits worked hard to attract donations on Wednesday; for example, performers and coaches reportedly took center circle for nine hours at Circus Juventas in St. Paul, offering the public a free glimpse of their show. Read this report by the Pioneer Press to learn more about how Minnesota charities pulled out all the stops in an effort to attract donor dollars.