60 Event Ideas for Bars & Improving Customer Retention— The Ultimate List

Jul 6 · 5 min read

This list has been gathered from our customers and collected from the internet. It is in no particular order and designed to let you quickly scan through and connect different ideas.

Understanding what you can do is half the battle.

For a more in-depth article, see 70 Event Ideas for Cafe and Bar Managers

The List

Sports Fans — host a Super Bowl party

Wall of Famea customer wall of frame for winning or recognition. This could be based on “completing” the beer menu, related to your monthly dart tournament, local “Guinness Records”, and interesting local achievement.

Wall of Fame “Walk”if your bar is situated near a walking trail you can have a wall of fame for the time it takes to walk (made easier with GPS tracking but ideally set to the bar managers stop-watch timer). see Killarney Gap of Dunloe as an example.

Open Mic for musicians

Wine Tasting

Photo by Timothy Hales Bennett on Unsplash

Beer Tastingyou can turn a simple beer flight into an event by setting a time during the week and welcoming those interested.

Marathon Celebrations — catering for long-distance

Pop-up Catering

Friday-Long-Luncha purpose made 3 course meal for businesses in the local area to enjoy a more social long lunch. This competes with the concept of social team building activities and other more exepensive options. The Long-Lunch, allows for businesses to regularly have a social aspect built into the week for their employees.

Friday-Late-Lunchslighly similar to a long lunch. The late-lunch is designed for after the Friday lunchtime rush and includes a beer or two to connect the time between Friday lunch and Friday after-work drinks and keep patrons sitting.

“X” Groups — connecting professionals that work in different departments together. This can be combined with a ‘Friday-Late-Lunch’ or Happy-Hours concept to have a once-a-month “X” Group catering for a specific group.

designersXengineers — graphic designers and software engineers….this is a large subgenre with many other specific subgroups. eg. “Frontend and Backend Developers”.

X-Drinks — to encourage intermixing between groups, you can offer a free drinks vouchers (or 2-for-1) that can only be redeemed by the “other” X group. It’s optional if you ‘police’ this or not.

paintersXwriters — painting in cafes and bars are increasing thanks to the likes of Yaymaker and private hosts organizing painting classes.

Music photo created by antoniogravante


Open musician night — works well when you have a traditional style bar with space.

Open Jazz Night

Pop-up Craft Brewers /Tap Takeoversenabling your bar to be a space for pop-up craft beer

Board Games

D&G Board Games

MTG Games

Table Games — pool tables, air hockey

Astronomical and Meteorological Eventsif you have the outdoor space…

Paint and Sip

Beat the Bartender

Film Night * — a licence will be required

Support Local Teams

Intro To Local Teamshort 20–30 minute talk about the local team for ex-pats and non-locals to learn and begin their journey to support the team. e.g. Breakers NZ Basketball Team (if you are based in Auckland!)

Social Board Games

Photo by JOSHUA COLEMAN on Unsplash


Photo by N. on Unsplash

Treasure Hunt Bar Crawlpartner with other bars and provide a printed map with tips and hints.

Local Scavenger Hunt — don’t partner with other bars, and provide a printed map with tips and hints that lead back to your bar.

Photo Scavenger Huntthe end goal is a collection of photos of local interesting sights.



Dart Tournament

Shove Ha’Pennyhttps://www.mastersofgames.com/rules/shove-hapenny-rules.htm

Beginner Dart Gamestips and strategies for beginners


Salsa Nighttypically a class followed by a ‘night club’

Salsa Night “Open Night”simply Salsa Music with space for people to dance if the mood is right.

Disco Night

Paint Nighthttps://www.yaymaker.com/

Bar Crawl

Bunny Hop (Bar Crawl)https://www.instagram.com/bunnyhopcrawl/?hl=en

Karaoke Night

Eating Contests

“After Party” — related to when group of people do outdoor activities and need a place to end the activity in a social way.

5k After Party

Mindful After-Party



Cookoff — if you have the space to allow for competitions (food licencing and regulation notwithstanding)

Plantbased Cookoffplant-based vs. real meat cookoff

Truffle Cooking Class and Lunch

End of list…

So, what is Gohono?

We have launched a ‘Social Groups Platform’ for Cafes and Bars — and we increase customer retention by connecting cafe/bar customers that share similar interests.

I (based in Barcelona) and my co-founder (based in Germany) are building www.gohono.com — we help cafe and bar managers reduce the risk of organizing events by first connecting their customers.

Gohono is a new way for cafes and bars to engage their customers. If you are interested in a free 3-month pilot program, please visit www.gohono.com .