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Organizations find new ways to raise money

Ninety years ago, the Girl Scouts developed a solid money-making strategy that would become the envy of charities everywhere: In 1917, a scout troop in Muskogee, Okla., sold homemade cookies.

In the decades since, the savvy scouts have made a Thin Mint selling Tagalongs, Samoas, Do-si-dos and Trefoils, but other nonprofits and groups such as schools, churches, youth sports teams struggle to come up with a gimmick to charm relatives, friends and neighbors out of their hard-earned money.

Bake sales, fashion shows and car washes seem oh-so-20th century.

But now, some are turning to innovative strategies to set their cause apart from the rest. Organizations are creating fun outings or taking a tip from pop culture to raise money.

Take the Corona Animal Shelter. The city department's nonprofit arm held a "dog wash" on Sunday to raise money to build a new animal care facility.

The dog washers charged $10 to $20. Anyone who's ever bathed their pet pooch knows you make a big mess getting Fido clean -- soggy towels, dog hair everywhere and a drenched owner. Paying a nominal fee to have someone else do it, and knowing all the proceeds will help a good cause, seals the deal.

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