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American Girl Benefit Sale
July 22 – 23, 2017
8830 N. Greenview Drive, Middleton, WI 53562
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- Ticket request forms are available for download here.
- Ticket request forms may be postmarked no earlier than May 3, 2017
- Tickets allow entry at or after your ticket time.
- Ticket costs:
- Saturday, all day, $8 per person
- Sunday, 8 – 9 a.m. $20 per person
- Sunday, after 9 a.m. free entry
Who benefits from the sale?
All sale proceeds are divided between Madison Children’s Museum and the American Girl Fund for Children.
Who runs the sale?
Madison Children’s Museum oversees the logistics for the sale, but the event is a success because of our dedicated volunteers. Approximately 150 volunteers work year-round at the warehouse to repair dolls, and organize inventory, and over 300 volunteers are on-site sale weekend.
Attending Saturday vs. Sunday, or both?
The Saturday sale will have more merchandise. Sunday product will be what did not sell on Saturday, but it will be at a further reduced price. People like to come on Sunday for the best deal, but there are not as many choices as on Saturday. All product is the same for Saturday and Sunday. Nothing is held back.
Sale Inventory and Pricing
The majority of the accessories and dolls arrive at the warehouse in June. We will post inventory lists in early July.
All of the merchandise is either overstock or returns. The price you can expect will be approximately 30% less than a catalog or store purchase. Some items may be reduced even further depending on how much inventory we have. The Girls of the Year are an exception since they are no longer available. Girls of the Year will sell for approximately $120. Madison Children’s Museum has the right to change the prices based on availability from year to year.
The Sunday prices are based on what does not sell on Saturday. You can expect up to 50% off on most items, with the Girl of the Year an exception.
Transportation to and from the Sale
There will be a school bus to take you to and from your hotel starting at 5:30 a.m. Saturday morning and 7:30 a.m. Sunday morning. A schedule will be posted at the hotel. Depending on the number of people taking the bus, it may run a little late, but it will continue to visit the hotels.
Parking is free. The lot is a five-minute walk from the sale entrance. There will be rides provided by museum staff to help those who need assistance. Look for the shuttle sign near the parking lot. A limited number of handicap parking spaces are available near the warehouse.
Please read ALL of the following information!
Ticket Request Instructions
- Print the ticket request form. You can find the form here.
- Decide which sale days you plan to attend: Saturday and Sunday, or just one day.
- Complete the ticket request form, and write an individual check for each day of the sale you want to attend. Once Sunday tickets are sold out, anyone not getting a Sunday ticket will have their check returned.
For example: For two tickets on Saturday, include one check for $16. If you also want two tickets for Sunday, include a second check for $40.
- A self-addressed, stamped envelope must be included with your request.
- Your ticket requet form, checks, and self-addressed, stamped envelope may be postmarked no earlier than May 3, 2017.
We wait two weeks after the postmark date of May 3 before we start processing ticket requests. This allows time for all the requests postmarked May 3 to arrive at the Post Office in Middleton.
As we receive ticket requests, we sort them into boxes based on the postmark date.
When we have received all the ticket requests marked May 3, we begin fulfilling Saturday ticket requests. Volunteers randomly pull ticket requests from the May 3 box and fill Saturday requests. After completing the May 3 postmarks, we continue with the same process, filling consecutive postmark days, until the tickets sell out.
After the Saturday ticket requests are filled, we begin the same process again to fill Sunday ticket requests. Ticket requests for the Sunday Markdown Sale, will be put into another bin, sorted by date, to be pulled randomly until the Sunday tickets are sold out.
Please note: we only sell tickets for the first hour of the Sunday Markdown Sale, 8 to 9 a.m.. Free tickets are handed out on site at 8 a.m. on Sunday for entry between 9 a.m. and 12 p.m..
If you have two tickets, you are not allowed to use the second ticket. Each shopper may enter the sale only one time. There are purchasing limits on most of the inventory. For example you might only be able to purchase two Caroline dolls. The limits are set to provide more people the opportunity to buy certain items we may not have in excess. Limit lists will be emailed out just before the sale. You can subscribe to our email list here.
About the Sale
The annual American Girl Benefit Sale attracts over 7,000 shoppers from all over the country and brings in nearly $1 million dollars each year. All funds raised go to support the exhibits and programs of Madison Children’s Museum and American Girl’s Fund for Children, which provides grants for charitable programs for children throughout Dane County.
Over the past 29 years, Madison Children’s Museum has restored and resold overstock and returned merchandise donated by American Girl and Mattel. The benefit sale serves as the museum’s largest fundraiser and has raised an overall total of more than $22 million. A dedicated corps of 150 museum volunteers work year-round to prepare for the event, with an additional 150 on site during the sale. More than 32,000 volunteer hours are logged annually.
Rules & Regulations
- Each shopper may enter the sale just one time.
- Children under the age of three are not permitted in the sale. Their safety is out concern. Please plan to have another adult care for your child outside.
- Merchandise limits are per-person, not per-ticket, we reserve the right to limit purchase quantities.
- Sale entry times may be delayed at times due to warehouse overcrowding.
- Merchandise is not staggered or held back; all sale items are on display.
- No wheeled devices (strollers, wagons, or wheeled luggage) are allowed, with the exception of devices to help people with mobility issues. Please realize the space in the warehouse is extremely crowded. Everyone is excited and people move quickly. It is best to be able to walk independently or bring someone to help you through the crowd. We are not able to provide a special time for entry. If you need assistance, you will be able to wait near the warehouse door, rather than stand in line. Please let a volunteer know if you are not able to stand for a long time period.
- Current, valid disability parking permit must be displayed for disabled parking.
- There are NO returns. Items are refurbished returns and overstock, and sold as is.
- Madison Children’s Museum does not ship, hold, or accept telephone orders.
- Smoking is not allowed in the warehouse or on the grounds.
- Please DO NOT contact American Girl regarding this sale.
Payment at the Sale
Other Activities at the Sale
There will be over 40 crafters on site at the sale. Seamstresses and craftsmen sell 18” doll clothes, doll furniture etc. Other custom-made items are sold as well such as handmade soaps and decorative items.
The raffle will include a variety of American Girl items. Tickets are $1 each for a chance to win.
The silent auction typically has American Girl products that are no longer available or not easily purchased.
Learn more about our host town at Middleton Tourism Commission.
In February we open room blocks at nearby hotels. Participating hotels are all located in Middleton approximately two miles from the sale.
- Courtyard Marriott
- Residence Inn/Marriott
- Fairfield Inn & Suites/Marriott
- Hilton Garden Inn
The room block will close on June 21, 2017. There are a limited number of rooms in these blocks, so please do not delay reserving a room.
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If you have any questions that can’t be answered with the information above, please email our American Girl Benefit Sale Coordinator.