For North Side fun, don’t run – crawl
Monroe Street Pub Crawl visits nine bars, benefits charity
It’s an annual migration of sorts, and it includes nine bar visits and about a three-mile walk.
Great Shape! Inc.’s Monroe Street Pub Crawl was launched in 2008, and it’s headed out on its sixth tour on Saturday, beginning at 5 p.m. at Sidebar and Grill, 1011 W. Broadway Ave., and ending at 2 a.m. at Rick’s Ringside Pub, 921 W. Garland Ave.
“We encourage people to register online so we know how many T-shirts to get,” said Britney Magleby, one of the organizers from Great Shape! Inc. “But you can sign up at the beginning at Sidebar. We can figure that out.”
All the proceeds from the pub crawl go to support Great Shape!’s work in Jamaica, providing health care and education to in-need families.
There are three parts to the program: volunteer dentists and optometrists provide free eye and dental care for Jamaicans, and a group of Great Shape! volunteers and staff bring and install used computers at schools in Jamaica.
“We also show the teachers how to use the computers,” Magleby said, adding that sponsors pay for T-shirts and other costs so every cent made on tickets goes to Jamaica.
Last year’s pub crawl drew more than 100 participants and raised $3,500 for Great Shape!, Magleby said.
This year’s crawl is not quite as long as last year’s but it still includes scaling the North Monroe Street Hill.
“We call that ‘The Bender’ ” Magleby said.
The crawl visits nine bars on the way up the hill; dinner from food truck Jamaican Jerk Pan may be ordered in advance.
This year’s starting point is Sidebar, and owner Michelle Peterson said she’s happy to have the group back.
“We were part of it for the first time last year, and they were great fun and very polite,” Peterson said. “Everyone had a great time, and we are happy to be the starting bar this year.”
Since its beginning, the pub crawl has ended at Rick’s Ringside.
Renae Shontell is the manager there, and she said many pub crawls come through Rick’s, but this one is special.
“This is very cool because it’s for a good cause; it’s not just for someone’s birthday,” Shontell said. “It’s a really cool event, and we love that we can support them.”