On the evening of Friday, Dec. 6, the University of Maine’s Honors College Student Advisory Board (SAB) hosted the Deals for Meals Bar Crawl. The event raises money for the Honors College Annual Maine Day Meal Packout, and each $5 Bar Crawl bracelet sold helped to fund over 15 meals for the packout.
“It’s truly amazing to see all of the hard work pay off, and to know that we have done something helpful for our community,” Megan Driscoll, a third-year marine biology student and treasurer of SAB, said. “Come Maine Day, all the people who donate and buy bracelets will get to know that they helped fight food insecurity in Maine, and had some fun while doing it.”
Orono Brewing Company (OBC), Marsh Island Brewing, The Family Dog, Black Bear Brewing (BBB), Woodman’s Bar and Grill and The Common Loon participated in the event. Each of the six venues are located near campus in Orono and had a certain time slot where they offered deals and coupons. Most of the discounts applied to a percentage off for drinks, like $4 OBC pints and 10% off Black Bear Beer at BBB, or a reduced priced menu item.
“To plan for the bar crawl, there is a lot of communication with the bars. I set out an initial schedule, and contact each of them to see if their slot works. If one cannot do a time slot, I shuffle everyone around until all the bars are happy,” Driscoll said. “The bars get increased service that night, we get money for meals, and the participants end up saving money, too. After the crawl itself is all set up, we table to sell bracelets up until the night of the event.”
The Honors College Maine Day Meal Packout occurs every year on May 1, and relies on volunteer groups and students to help pack meals and raise awareness about hunger in Maine. Organized by the Honors College and run by many Honors faculty and students, the Meal Packout takes place at the Memorial Gym on the morning of Maine Day.
“100% of profits go directly towards funding meals for the Maine Day Meal Packout, which is an annual event where we pack thousands of meals to be distributed to people who are food insecure all over the state of Maine,” Driscoll said. “Last year, we packed 75,000 meals, and we hope to match that this year. The bar crawl usually is a very successful fundraiser for the event. Even though the purchase of a bracelet is only $5, it can still make a huge impact.”
SAB functions in the Honors College as a mediator between the dean, staff and Honors students. They meet to discuss and communicate information to the Honors staff about things going on within the college and it also offers opportunities for leadership and representation.
Due to its yearly success in fundraising for the meal packout, SAB hopes to continue the bar crawl in the years to come.