Skip to main content

The City Journals

Crawling for fundraising: The third-annual Sugar House Pub Crawl

Jun 22, 2017 04:25PM ● By Natalie Mollinet

Wasatch Brew and Pub kept busy during the Sugar House Pub Crawl that attracted more than 2,000 people. (Natalie Mollinet\City Journals).

By Natalie Mollinet | [email protected]

The combination of sun, perfect temperatures and a large crowd of thirsty people equaled a lot of donations during the third-annual Sugar House Pub Crawl.

The crowded event was not only a success for the Sugar House Chamber and the participating bars/restaurants, but also for KRCL, a community radio station that benefited from the event’s proceeds.

“KRCL has been a sponsor of our event from the very beginning,” Tony Coopola, the marketing and merchandise manager for Squatters Craft Beers and Wasatch Brewery said. “They are also big supporters of American Craft Beer Week, which is the main reason that the pub crawl happens on the week it does every year.”

This year, between 2,000 to 2,500 people participated, going to nine different bars in the Sugar House area: Campfire Lounge, The Tap Room, Fiddler’s Elbow, Sugar House Pub, Black Sheep at Epic Brewing Company, Mellow Mushroom, The RUIN, Trolley Wing Company and Wasatch Brewery. Legal-aged participants came from around the valley to participate some even wearing costumes such as Ninja Turtles or beach bums.

“It was very nice, it was very well planned out. I liked that you could start anywhere and end anywhere, it was like a strategy game,” John Wilson, one of the attendees, said. “I did like that it was in Sugar House, I don’t think there is another place where it could be.”

The Pub Crawl in Sugar House event was planned three years ago, with the planning committee trying to figure out a way to bring the community together and not just to bring some awareness to the Sugar House area.

“We really wanted to give back,” Coopola said. “The first crawl, we donated to The Sharing Place, which is a local Sugar House non-profit and from there, we realized that a pillar of the event should allow us to give back to our community.”

Anyone that chose to participate was asked to grab a “passport” or a stamp card from the home base, which was at the Sugar House Plaza. From there, the attendee needed to go to all nine pubs and receive a stamp at each location. There weren’t any rules indicating that you had to drink an alcoholic beverage at the bars, all the person needed to do was go into the establishment—no purchase was necessary.

Once the participant went to all nine locations, they could turn in their passports for prizes, including two tickets to the Idaho Brew Fest as well as other prizes. For others, it was just an excuse to have a fun afternoon with friends on a warm spring day.

“Some of the people in our group were super focused at getting to all nine bars and then there were other people in the group who were holding us back with their not-so-strong desire, they just wanted to hit a few bars,” Wilson said. “But we did it, we finished the bar crawl, we had a drink in all nine bars.”

The plan is to continue the tradition and help other non-profits in the area. The planning committee is taking into account the changing liquor licenses and will have to reassess how the event is going to work, but they do expect to continue the tradition into next year.

“We really wanted this event to show Sugar House as a destination with a vibrant nightlife,” Coopola said. “By bringing people from all over the valley and beyond to the heart of the action, we feel really helps put Sugar House on the map.”