Open Thursday–Sunday. Plan your visit or get tickets.

Thursday–Sunday, 9 am–4 pm

Open Thursday–Sunday. Plan your visit or get tickets.

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Thursday–Sunday, 9 am–4 pm

The American Girl Benefit Sale, run by Madison Children’s Museum, offers great deals on authentic American Girl dolls, accessories, and books — all for a good cause!

All benefit sale inventory is generously donated by American Girl and Mattel, and all proceeds support the work of Madison Children’s Museum and American Girl’s Fund for Children, which supports charitable programs for children in the Madison area. The sale is not run by American Girl or Mattel.


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Important information about receiving AGBS emails:

  • Do NOT use @hotmail, @msn, or @outlook email addresses! Last year we discovered that these Microsoft-administered email services will not consistently deliver our tickets and other critical messages. Instead, we suggest you make a free email address elsewhere to use for benefit sale communications. (Gmail is free and works very well.)
  • Gmail users should be aware that our communications may be routed to your Promotions tab, so be sure you have the ability to check that frequently, or just enter “AGBS” in Gmail’s search bar.
  • Do not unsubscribe. American Girl Benefit Sale emails are sent by Madison Children’s Museum. If you unsubscribe to emails from Madison Children’s Museum, you are ALSO unsubscribing to all benefit sale emails. Our email service provider takes consumer privacy very seriously; if you unsubscribe yourself, we cannot manually add you back in. To re-subscribe, you will need to re-enter your information in our online subscription form, follow the prompts on subsequent screens, AND click on the link in a confirmation email before you will be added back to the list.

2021 American Girl Benefit Sale

Tickets

  • All tickets are $12 per person
  • This year we only have a limited number of tickets, which were offered to the winners of a random lottery process. All tickets have now been distributed to winners. No additional tickets are available.
  • All shoppers MUST have a ticket to shop in this year’s sale.

Enter the Ticket Lottery

AGBS 2021 Timeline

  • August 25–26: Ticket purchasing lottery sign-up opens.
  • Aug 27–September 2: Tickets on sale to lottery winners. Every person who enters the ticket lottery will be notified by email if the lottery selected them to buy a ticket or not. All ticket sales are final and no refunds will be given. (Note: Only tickets sold to those individuals selected by the lottery as eligible purchasers will be honored. Anyone not selected in the lottery who uses the link to buy a ticket will have their order refunded minus a 25% per-ticket handling fee and may not be eligible for future sales. Let’s keep this fair.)
  • Sept 8: Shopping times assigned by lottery. Shopping times will be randomly assigned to all purchased tickets. Results will be sent by email to all ticket holders.
  • Sept 8–15: Ticket transfer window. If you discover that you cannot use your benefit sale ticket, or if you purchased a ticket on behalf of someone else, you may reassign your ticket to another person using our MyAGBS website. This process will be similar to last year. Please note that it is against our policy for tickets to be resold for more than their original purchase price and that all trades are done at your own risk.
  • Sep 13–Sep 24: Shopify site account verification window. This step is no longer needed. All ticket holders will be automatically added to Shopify. An email with your assigned password will be sent to ticket holders before the sale.
  • Sept 23: A list of select items and prices will be released by the end of the day. Not all items will be included, only those of which we have a larger supply. We cannot confirm the presence of any specific other items before the sale.
  • Sept 25: Online shopping benefit sale shopping. Shoppers may log on and shop starting at their assigned ticket time. The earleist times are at 9 am this year. All shopping must be completed by 3:30 pm. The Bonus Book Buy will take place later that afternoon at a time TBD.
  • Weekends, Oct 9-24: Curbside pickup at the new AGBS warehouse in Middleton, WI. Shoppers may designate a proxy to pick up their order for them. All shoppers and proxys will be able to select from available pick-up times.

Sale Date & Format

    • The sale will take place ONLINE ONLY on September 25
    • Shoppers may begin shopping at their assigned time. The earliest times are at 9 am and the latest are at 3 pm. You may begin to shop after your assigned time but not before. All shopping must be concluded by 3:30 pm.
    • All times are in the US CENTRAL TIME ZONE.
    • All shoppers MUST already have a ticket.
      • Shoppers may only check out once per ticket (ie, the ticket entitles you to buy one cart of goods, subject to the limits above). The exception to this rule is our new Bonus Buy during a designated time after the main sale has concluded, where all ticketholders may log back in and shop for books, making multiple purchases as needed.
    • You can always start shopping later than the entry time on your ticket; you just can’t shop earlier
    • Items are NOT reserved in your cart until you check out. Items may sell out while you are still shopping and will disappear from your cart.
    • You may pay with a Visa, MasterCard, American Express, or Discover. Our online system will only accept one card per order; unlike what we can do in person, you may not split a purchase over multiple credit cards.

  • NEW! Bonus Buy: This year, we will be offering a special Bonus Buy after the main sale has concluded. All ticket holders will be able to log back in again and shop again for books and other items not sold out during the general sale. More info TBA.

Inventory

    • All of our product is donated by American Girl/Mattel and comes from their overstock or returned merchandise. Quantities vary widely.
    • All products are sold AS IS, with no returns, refunds, or exchanges. All dolls are inspected by our volunteers and care is taken to ensure the dolls are in very good condition.
    • Dolls may come with or without some small accessories. We will not be able to confirm the exact accessories or outfits for each individual doll.
    • Truly Me dolls’ outfits vary and may not match the doll pictured on the sale website.
    • Packaging may be imperfect. We focus on the quality of the product, not the box. Dolls may or may not be secured in their boxes.

Limits & Prices

    • Purchase limits: a total of FOUR dolls and FOUR accessories per ticket.
      • Dolls include all 18″ dolls, Create Your Own, Bitty Babies, and Bitty Baby gift boxes. Each ticket entitles its holder to buy FOUR dolls total.
      • Accessories include furniture, pets, clothing, and other miscellaneous items and will be individually priced. Each ticket entitles its holder to buy FOUR accessories total.

  • Doll prices will be:
    • $60 for Truly Me dolls
    • $120 for Create-Your-Own dolls
    • $70 for Character Dolls (historical dolls, Girl of the Year dolls, contemporary characters)
    • $40 for Bitty Baby
    • $65 Bitty Baby Gift Set
  • As in previous benefit sales, we cannot guarantee the selection that will be available when you shop. Individual items will sell out throughout the day, sometimes very quickly.
  • A more extensive list of items and prices will be announced the Thursday before the sale. As with previous benefit sales we cannot confirm the presence of any specific item before the sale
  • We are setting these limits so that every ticket holder can be sure of having the opportunity to buy up to the posted limits. Since the ability to purchase a ticket is not guaranteed and the limits are low this year, we advise against planning a trip to the sale that involves traveling a long distance,

Order Pickup

  • Shoppers will collect their purchases using CURBSIDE PICKUP ONLY from our new warehouse location in Middleton, Wisconsin. Pickup appointments will be scheduled for weekends in October, starting on October 9 and concluding on October 24.
  • We will not ship any orders; no exceptions.
  • You may designate another person to pick up your order.  Full details on the pickup process will be communicated later. No further information is available at this time.

AGBS is NOT run by American Girl

  • This benefit sale is run by hard-working volunteers and staff of Madison Children’s Museum. American Girl generously donates all product to us, but they do not run the sale in any way.
  • The online sale will take place on a separate website, currently under construction; the sale is NOT on American Girl’s website.
  • Please do NOT contact American Girl with questions about the sale.

Why Isn’t This System Perfect?

We ask for your patience and understanding during this process; while we have extensive experience running an in-person event, moving logistics online requires a major overhaul. The survey data was very helpful, but it also underlined how every choice we make would please some while disappointing others. There is no perfect solution to the problem of how to transform a beloved event in uncertain and shifting times.

As a reminder, the Benefit Sale is NOT run by American Girl; we are a small group of volunteers and a few staff members from Madison Children’s Museum. And this year we are an even more limited number of individuals. Please remember that the benefit sale is just that: a benefit event, more like a bigger version of a PTA bake sale than a polished, corporate operation. Your participation isn’t just about getting discounted American Girl items; it is about providing vital funding for charities that serve children at a time when funding is harder than ever to come by. Thank you so much for being a part of Dolls Doing Good.

We are trying to do the best we can despite the very unusual circumstances. Thank you for your patience, understanding, and support.


Still looking for more info?

We are short-staffed due to the pandemic, so we deeply appreciate your kind patience and understanding. Thank you.

Questions

If you have any questions that can’t be answered with the information on this site, please contact us via email. Also, there is a wonderful community of veteran sale-goers and sale volunteers on our Facebook page. They are generally very generous with their time and willing to give advice. We highly recommend liking the page and joining that community.

For ticketing support questions

If you have questions or concerns, contact us as soon as possible. All help requests are time-stamped. We will respond to your question as soon as possible. Regardless of your method, be sure to provide your full name, phone number, email address, order number (if applicable), and a description of your issue.

Please contact us via the methods below:

  1. Email benefitsale@madisonchildrensmuseum.org (fastest response)
  2. Send a direct message to the American Girl Benefit Sale Facebook page (posts to our wall or comments on posts might not be seen)

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Media

For media inquiries, email the Madison Children’s Museum’s communications team.

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