Bars around the country are coming together to raise money for communities affected by the current bushfire crisis.
With hundreds of fires burning across Australia, fundraising efforts in the industry are coming from far and wide, from big and small businesses, and every dollar counts.
In the midst of such tragedy, it’s uplifting to see so many people rallying together, as they have been since fires broke out last year. The below are just some of the most recent and future great fundraising efforts coming from the industry.
Made in the Shade
Melbourne hospitality group Made in the Shade has coordinated an event on 13 January at the Everleigh. ‘Bar Bushfire Shake-Up’ will bring together 16 of the city’s iconic venues and three of Australia’s top chefs with pop up bars and food, followed by a live auction of donated experiences from the venues.
On the night, all proceeds raised will go to the Red Cross Disaster Relief and Recovery Fund, to help provide emergency assistance, first aid and psychological support to communities impacted in the crisis.
Participating venues include Made in the Shade operated The Everleigh, Bar Margaux and Heartbreaker, as well as Byrdi, Eau de Vie, Black Pearl, Above Board, Capitano, Bar Liberty, Whisky & Alement, The Elysian Whisky Bar, Bad Frankie, Union Electric, Fancy Free and the Lincoln. The team behind the now closed Beaufort in Carlton will make a special comeback for the cause as well.
Made in the Shade’s Co-owners and operators, Michael and Zara Madrusan said when they put out the call to hospitality owner friends, they had venues confirmed within minutes.
“We spent the Christmas break, as so many did, thinking about what we could do to contribute to the relief effort,” said Zara,
“The hospitality industry is fantastic at working together to get things done, and we’re all used to moving fast.”
The Baxter Inn
On 29 December, The Baxter Inn specially opened on a Sunday (when they are usually closed) for a special event to raise money for the NSW Rural Fire Service.
With a $50 cover charge at the door, the Baxter Inn Bushfire Benefit saw some of Sydney’s best bartenders from a range of venues coming together to serve their signature cocktails.
Participating venues included Bulletin Place, Archie Rose Distilling Co, Ramblin’ Rascal Tavern, Proof & Company, Sweet&Chilli, Old Mate’s Place, Tio’s Cerveceria, Shade Pines Saloon, Scout, The Lobo Plantation, Charlie Parker’s, Mary’s and Door Knock.
Justin Hemmes kicked off Merivale’s fundraiser for the NSW RFS by personally donating $500,000. The online fundraiser has the goal of $1 million in total, and has already raised over $18,000 through Facebook.
On Instagram, Hemmes wrote that he saw firsthand the heroic efforts of firefighters, protecting communities in Berrara and Narooma.
The post continued: “To the brave firefighters who continue to risk their lives in extreme and terrifying conditions – thank you. You are all heroes. Australia is forever in your debt. In these difficult and heartbreaking times, it is easy to feel helpless – but we can all make a difference.”
Adelaide wine bar La Buvette have committed to donating 100 per cent of profits on 11 January to the South Australia Country Fire Service CFS Foundation.
Australian Venue Co.
From 6 January until 1 February, Australian Venue Co. will be donating a portion of Furphy and XXXX Gold proceeds to the National Bushfire Disaster Appeal, established by Bendigo Bank and Salvation Army.
During the ‘Shout a Mate, the Aussie way’ campaign, Australian Venue Co. venues will donate $1 from every schooner and $2 from every pint of Furphy sold in VIC, NSW, WA and SA, and the same for every XXXX Gold sold in QLD and NT.
Melbourne bar Peaches is fundraising for bushfire relief in a few different ways this week.
From 6-12 January, they have a specialty cocktail where all proceeds will go to the Port Macquarie Koala Hospital. Then on 8 January, they are hosting a charity dinner and raffle for $50pp, with all proceeds donated to the Bushfire Disaster Appeal.
Sydney venue Freda’s will play host to a fundraiser called Make It Rain on 1 February, with proceeds going to the NSW RFS.
The event will feature a YIKES Panel discussion, dubbed ‘a spicy climate debate,’ live music, food, an art auction and market stalls. As well as the door takings and stall sales proceeds, 10 per cent of the bar takings will be donated to the cause.
This bar in Northcote, Melbourne, is hosting a fundraiser for the Red Cross Bushfire Disaster Appeal. As well as DJs and drinks, there will be a silent auction featuring pieces donated by local artists.
The hospitality group is holding a ‘Bushfire Relief Hour’ at all their bars on 17 January from 5pm to 7pm. During this time, all proceeds from food and drink purchases will go directly to the bushfire appeal.
On top of this, Bruce, Elliot and Anna Solomon along with Matt Moran have pledged $10,000 per venue in donations, totalling $280,000. These donations will go to the Rural Fire Services within each venues’ respective NSW and QLD states.