Video Courtesy of Univeristy of Toledo and ABC 13 News

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Celebrity Waiters and Waitresses

Potential Revenues:


Revenue Source:

Tips collected by the celebrity wait staffs


Social media, press releases, flyers, posters, advertising cards for the 5 x 9 inch “bill presenters” used by restaurants to present the bill for a meal


Miscellaneous logo shirts or other paraphernalia that you intend to have the charity wait staffs use.


Area restaurants

Volunteers Needed:

Teachers, policemen, firemen, students, radio and TV celebrities, politicians, and movie celebrities who will wait on the tables

How It Works:

In this fundraiser, you are enlisting the support of a high-profile community group to act as waiters and waitresses at a local restaurant.  In turn, these celebrity waiters and waitresses are expected to donate their tips to your charity.  

Who are these high-profile people?  Some of the best candidates are local teachers, policemen, firemen, radio and TV celebrities, politicians, and even movie celebrities.   

Sometimes, members of a school sport team, like a school baseball or soccer team could be the “celebrity group” for an event like this.  The important factor is which group would bring in the diners.  If the restaurant selected is a high-school hang-out, then the school’s sports team will be a logical choice.

This is a great event for building awareness for your cause, and you might be pleasantly surprised at the size of the tips when you enlist the support of local celebrities, firemen, and police.

Another favorite time to consider is around a holiday or on a spooky night like Halloween.  Getting everyone to dress up is always a fun alternative for the celebrity wait staff.

Ideas to Consider:

This is usually a win-win-win scenario for all parties.  The volunteers that wait on the tables get a lot of positive publicity; the restaurant usually has a banner business day; and the charity gets a lot of badly needed funds. 

One of the concerns for a restaurant owner may be for the wait staff, and how they will feel about losing a day of wages.  If that’s the case, you might want to suggest that because the celebrities are waiting on the tables free of charge, there won’t be any staff salaries paid that day.  Perhaps those funds can be used to give the wait staff a paid day off - or a partial day off - if you establish a time limit on the event. 

Someone familiar with the cash registers and other ordering devices that the restaurant uses will need to be available for the guest wait staff.  Alternatively, perhaps a simple pre-event instruction session will be adequate.

Make sure there are no entanglements regarding the conduct of the event, such as the age of the volunteer workers if you use students; special insurances for the restaurant; and even legal ramifications for the personnel involved.  In most cases, these worry points won’t become “show stoppers,” but it’s always better to check into these issues beforehand.

Source of Idea: Soroptimist International of Santa Cruz, a local chapter of an organization devoted to improving the lives of women and girls, has successfully held this dinner venue since 1991. Resource Guide: http://www.nationalserviceresources.org/node/17690

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