Ideas for Pub Night Fundraisers

By Katie Jensen

The friendly setting of a pub encourages giving.
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A pub fundraiser turns a night of camaraderie, conversation and conviviality turns into money to support a good cause. Convince a local celebrity to contribute time as bartender or server. If there's a professional sports team in town, perhaps the cheerleaders would drop in for a few moments to provide entertainment. A well-excecuted pub night fundraiser could be the talk of the town for months, but most importantly, raise a significant chunk of cash.


A real pub is an ideal location for a pub night fundraiser. The furnishings and fixture are in place -- no wondering about where you'll find bar stools or tables. The establishment has a liquor license and the proper permits for food handling as well. The pub benefits because of the exposure to new customers. If the event is not held in a pub, find a location where you can create a pub atmosphere. Check with the city, county and state for what permits or licenses are required.


If nobody knows about the fundraiser, it won't be a success. Send out press releases several weeks before and a media alert the day before the event. Post the event on local calendar sites. Ask the organization you're raising funds for to send out an announcement about the event several times. Take advantage of social media by tweeting, posting the event on Facebook and in your Google+ circles.


Pub night takes in the physical world. However, there may be supporters of the organization that want to contribute to the fundraiser but can't attend. Create a blog about the pub with information about the fundraiser and how it's developing. Upload photos and blog about what's going on as the fundraiser progresses throughout the evening. Have a button where money can be donated in a conspicuous place on the blog. Let visitors "buy" a virtual glass of beer or hamburger as their donation.

Games and Contests

Darts and billiards are fixtures in a pub. Stage a tournament with the entry fees going to the fundraiser and the winner receiving a gift card to a movie theater or free dinner. Other possible contests include trivia, card games or charades.


Bubble and squeak, shepherd's pie, soda bread, fish and chips, and, of course, rare roast beef are all dishes you'd find in a pub. Choose some unusual dishes such as colcannon -- cabbage and mashed potatoes with lots of butter -- as well as traditional pub fare mentioned above, along with bar staples like chicken wings, sliders and sandwiches.


Serving beer and wine is a given for pub night fundraiser. However, if the event is held outside of a commercial pub, be careful that additional licensing or permits aren't required; if they are, be sure you meet the requirements. Also consider that there are liabilities when serving alcohol. If an attendee drinks too much and causes an accident on the way home, your organization could be sued.