Using Contests to
Involve Kids with Chiropractic

This section is compiled by Frank M. Painter, D.C.
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By Marilyn Gard

Holidays such as Mother’s Day, Christmas, Easter, 4th of July and Thanksgiving are a great time for contests that motivate children and get them into the office. In fact, it’s not necessary to build a contest around a holiday — you could structure the contest around some aspect of chiropractic care.

Let’s suppose, though, that you decide to sponsor a Christmas coloring contest. To allow for sufficient time to complete a project, announce the contest early in December. Give each child a standard size piece of construction paper (red, white or green) and instruct them to decorate it any way they wish according to a special theme. You might pick: "What Christmas means to me." They may use crayon, paint, glue, small objects, etc. Set a deadline for all entries to be returned.

As contestants bring in their projects, arrange all the pictures on the walls of the reception area according to age groups such as 3-6 year olds, 7-10 year olds, and 11-13 year olds. As patients come into the office, ask them to vote for their favorites by placing a gold star on the picture in each age group. Allow a week for the voting. Obviously, the three pictures with the most gold stars are the winners.

Make a special deal of announcing the winners and presenting the prizes. Take pictures of the winners holding their prizes with their entries in the background. As prizes you might award a savings bond, gift certificates to local toy stores or tickets to a special event like the circus.

There are an unlimited variety of contests and promotions that you can feature. As you hone your ideas, remember that the main purpose of the contest is to involve kids in your office and make them excited about coming in. The contest serves as a way of introducing children to ongoing chiropractic care in an easygoing, relaxed manner.

Thanks to Marilyn Gard for the use of her files!


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