Restaurant/pub night

Important questions to consider before deciding how you will run this fundraiser:
What is your goal for the fundraising activity?
For example; how much money your club is looking to raise.
What is the purpose of your fundraiser?
For example; to build your club’s profile in the community, to encourage participation or to bring new people to your club.
Do you have enough time to organise the fundraiser?
Do you have enough resources and volunteer support to run the event?
Do you want to run this fundraiser as a stand alone event or as a smaller activity at a larger event or day?

Restaurant/Pub Night

A restaurant or pub night is a relatively stress-free fundraiser with the capacity to earn up to $1000.
It involves taking your club community out for a set meal and adding a fundraising margin on to the cost of the night. For example if the set meal is going to cost $20 per person, then the cost of the night could be $30, with $10 going towards your club.
Most restaurants rarely book out on a mid-week night so the lure of extra business is a powerful one that local clubs can take advantage of.
You could also look to raise funds with additional activities on the night such as a raffle or auction.

Why a Restaurant/Pub Night?
These nights are awesome because there is so little pressure on volunteers. Essentially the restaurant or pub do a lot of the hard work for you. It is also an event where those donating money feel that they are getting something tangible in return.
The night can also be as big or small as the restaurant your club chooses will allow.

When should I hold this fundraiser?
This is an awesome fundraiser to hold mid week as this is when restaurants and pubs will usually be most accommodating. It could perhaps be after one of the main training evenings or competition days to ensure people are free to attend.
It can be at any time of the year and could also run as a yearly social event on your club’s calendar.

Key Activities
These are the tasks you will need to consider assign to volunteers at our club:

Before the Day

  • Decide a date for the Restaurant/ Pub Night.
  • Choose and book your venue.
  • Promote the fundraiser
  • Communicate the details of the night to those attending
  • Organise any raffles or auctions that might run at the same time.
  • Sell tickets.

On the Day

  • Ensure the restaurant is set up and ready to go.
  • Brief volunteers of their roles.
  • Take lots of photos.

After the day

  • Publicly thank everyone involved
  • Announce the amount of money raised in club newsletters, on social media, website and around the club.

Who can help?
It is important to engage your members to help in the running of your fundraiser.
For a restaurant or pub night event you could approach them to help:

  • Promote and sell the tickets
  • Help secure sponsors for any prizes for raffles or an auction
  • Help logistically on the day

Your club could also approach current club Sponsors for prizes.

Recruiting your people
It is important to create a culture of volunteering at your club to help not only with fundraising but also across the day to day running of your club. For more on how to create this at your club, click here.

Using technology to make it easier
You may like to consider using technology to reduce the workload on your volunteers and increase your fundraising dollars.
You may like to sell tickets for your event online. An example of a website that allows clubs to do this is This takes care of a great deal of the work usually left to volunteers and automates the ticket selling process. It also allows tickets to be purchased at any time of the day or night.
Selling tickets online means the event can be easily shared online by your members and supporters.
Your club may then also like to use social media, email newsletters and your club website to promote the event.
You may like to live stream some of the event on social media for anyone who can’t be there on the day

Financial Considerations
$10 per head is a good aim for your margin. With a raffle or two, this event can raise $500-1000 on one mid-week evening. You may need to consider costs for placing a deposit on the restaurant, if tickets are pre-sold this will not be an issue.

Clubs may also consider a prizes for raffles or an auction. Prizes may be sought from sponsors and local businesses at no cost in return for promotion.

Promote the event utilising social media and club resources such as the website and newsletter. Your club might also like to create flyers to be left at strategic places like the canteen and dressing rooms as well as posters to be displayed around the club. All the above can be achieved at very little cost.

Communication considerations
Effective communication of your restaurant or pub night event is important to its success. You can use social media to build excitement, sell tickets and countdown to the day.
You can also live stream the event on the day so that those in your community that can’t attend can be part of the event.

Social, Moral and Ethical Considerations
Supply of Alcohol
At a restaurant or pub they are responsible for ensuring responsible service of alcohol.
It is still important to consider whether your club will allow the consumption of alcohol at club events and how this will be monitored. Events can be alcohol free or limits or restrictions set in advance. Clubs need to consider how they will manage the risks of binge drinking.

What can go wrong? (Risk Management)
Financial Risks
There are obvious financial risks if enough tickets aren’t sold to cover the seats booked at the restaurant or pub.
It is important to gather any information from your attendees about allergies. It is then imperative to discuss these with the restaurant or pub. Allergies to food can be life threatening and need to be taken seriously and catered for.
Participant Safety
The health and wellbeing of those who attend your event should be a focus at all times. It is important that your club takes time to consider all possible risks and how to minimise these.

Licenses and Permits
Licensing and permits are generally all covered by the restaurant as they provide the food and beverage services. Clubs need to check with their state or territory regulatory body to make sure they have all the required permissions to run a Restaurant/Pub Night and any additional activities such as raffles or auctions.

Additional Factors to consider
Choosing the venue
Be aware of what your members enjoy eating and try to tailor it to the majority to ensure a high attendance. It is also important to discuss with the venue any dietary requirements of those attending and ensure these are catered for.

Additional Revenue Opportunities
Clubs may like to include other activities as part of their Restaurant or Pub Night such as a raffle or auction.
This links to other pages that have fundraising ideas that can run simultaneously, should the club like to.

Any specific suppliers or links for this particular fundraiser. Could be used for 3rd party advertising in the future.

This procedure should be treated as a guide only. Your club should seek advice specific to the needs of your club and event. Seek further details from authorities and service providers; especially in regards to insurance, licences, permits, spectator and participant safety.


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