ALEXANDRIA, VA – Yes, it’s March and that’s reason enough for Alexandria, Virginia’s Old Town Irish pubs to compete and celebrate St. Patrick’s Day all month long!
Murphy’s Grand Irish Pub, 713 King Street, and Daniel O’Connell’s Irish Restaurant and Bar, 112 King Street, started a friendly competition this year. All in the name of charity, both bars are working together to see who can sell the most pints of Guinness to reach a total of 10,000 pints sold.
Once this goal is reached, Guinness will donate $5,000 to Christ House in Alexandria. Founded in 1973, Christ House is a program of Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Arlington, which among many giving programs, distributes free meals every day and runs a food pantry with perishable and non-perishable foods for the homeless and low-income households.
Kenny Mitchell, Murphy’s General Manager and Níamh O’Donovan, O’Connell’s General Manager know they are #StrongerTogether and like many area businesses they are helping one another as well as contributing to the community.
After learning from the parent company of Guinness, Diageo, they could receive a $5000 donation once they sold 10,000 pints of Guinness, Mitchell says he and O’Donovan decided, “Hey, let’s do something cool, right, let’s do a community stronger together, that’s what we’re all about. It’s actually our motto this year.” That’s how this friendly bar competition began.
For the past several years, Murphy’s has hosted a fundraiser in March to benefit the Christ House. Normally the event was held at St. Mary’s School and Murphy’s would donate all the food and around 450 families participated. Families could enjoy Irish music and dancing, experiencing the Irish culture with their families. Typically, they would raise nearly $10,000 for the one-day fundraiser for the food pantry. Due to COVID, last year and this year’s fundraisers were cancelled.
Mitchell wished to continue helping support Christ House, so this year the Ancient Order of Hibernians, the Herbert-Cady Division and the Basilica of Saint Mary will present a virtual Holley for 2021. Mention Christ House when you place your food order from Murphy’s on March 12 -13 and Murphy’s will contribute 20% of the proceeds from each order to Christ House in addition to the Guinness goal.
And a bonus to this, while you enjoy your meal at home, you are can log on to www.aohalexandria.org and watch entertainment from the Boyle School of Irish Dance, the Thistle and the Rose, The James O’Neill School of Irish Dance and the Basilica of Saint Mary. Murphy’s will combine their sales from this upcoming weekend, along with the $5,000 from Guinness for the total donation to Christ House.
Another perk while supporting O’Connell’s in this Guinness Challenge is the automatic entry in their raffle to win an amazing Guinness Blonde Adirondack Chair for every pint you order. Michael Doran, Assistant General Manager from O’Connell’s, says ,“We’re giving away a Guinness Blonde Adirondack chair as a thank you for all our customers supporting us in our 15 years of being open and we obviously want to continue to have them back.”
Come out and support your favorite Irish Old Town bars this month and help them achieve selling a combined 10,000 pints of Guinness and you can feel good knowing you are helping serve those in need in our community. Competition started Friday, March 5 and will go through the end of March or until their goal of 10,000 sold is met.