Independence Day is the only federal holiday in July, an official day dedicated to celebrating our country and our patriotism. When I think back to my past celebrations of July 4th, I can smell charcoal as hamburgers and hot dogs cooked on the grill, I can hear the laughs of family members, and I can see fireworks over the lake in my small hometown. Everyone’s nostalgic memories of holidays are different, but a common thread is the food and revelry we enjoy. As a restaurant owner, you want to offer a memorable experience for those choosing to celebrate with you on July 4th. Here are 3 ideas you can utilize in your own restaurant for Independence Day.
Host a Brunch
The holiday falls on a Wednesday this year, which is smack-dab in the middle of the work week! Many people will probably be looking to celebrate early in the day so they can prepare to finish out the rest of the week at the office. The solution? Host a brunch! You can get people through your door early by offering an event early in the day. Designate a time period when brunch will be served to give it a sense of urgency (for example: Brunch will be served between 11 am & 3 pm, last seating is at 2:30 pm).
Make a holiday-specific menu or offer some items that coordinate with the theme of Independence Day. BBQ-style food, fresh & bright summer flavors and refreshing desserts are all great options. If you’re offering alcohol as part of your brunch deal, create a holiday-specific cocktail, like a sparkling punch or red sangria with blueberries and apples. If you have an outdoor space, you can even organize a picnic-style event so guests can enjoy the favorable weather. Lawn games, like cornhole and giant Jenga, can add an element of fun as well to make it seem like an authentic summer barbecue.
Give your decor some patriotic flair with red, white, and blue touches, like napkins and streamers, and even consider running a contest or raffle for a giveaway. Adding an element of fun to your brunch event is a great way to help guests celebrate the holiday. (Just be careful if you're incorporating sparklers!)
Test Your Guests’ Knowledge
Hosting a trivia event is always a great way to get guests in seats. Independence Day commemorates the signing of the Declaration of Independence way back in 1776! Since then, a lot of historical events have occurred in America, which means there are tons of questions to include in your trivia contest. You can focus topics on politics, American history, pop culture, and even famous Americans to keep the crowd on their toes. The Encyclopedia Brittanica has a great quiz that you use as inspiration for questions.
Trivia night isn’t complete with some sort of special, so think up an exclusive menu with select drink and food deals. Of course, you also need a prize for the champion. Some options include a patriotic-themed gift basket, a free dinner on the house, or even some baseball tickets (it is America’s sport, after all).
Market your trivia night ahead of time so people are informed of the event. You can send email blasts, post on your social accounts, and even consider paid advertising on some social sites. Make sure your website also highlights the event (including date and time, as well as any other necessary details).
Unfortunately, July 4th isn’t the safest holiday for celebrators. It proves to be one of the highest for car crashes, with many accidents involving individuals over the legal alcohol limit. Of course, as a restaurant that may serve liquor, you want your guests to arrive home safely. Setting up a taxi service or offering a credit toward Uber or Lyft rides is an idea that you can incorporate into your Independence Day event. Guests will appreciate your effort to provide safety precautions and will be able to enjoy themselves without the worry of having to drive home. Cheers to that!
Independence Day is quickly approaching, and it’s a popular holiday for revelry around the country. Is your restaurant hosting a patriotic event? Consider incorporating these ideas when planning your July 4th festivities.