Celebrating the 2012 Olympics at Your Restaurant

london-olympics-2012Every four years, Americans across the country cheer on the USA as its top athletes compete against the world in the summer Olympic Games. From living rooms and clubhouses to bars and restaurants, you’re certain to find groups of people gathered together watching the 2012 Olympic Games and eating over the next few weeks. Although the 2012 games are already in session, there’s still time to create and implement Olympic themed promotions for your restaurant or bar. Use these simple ideas to make your establishment the location of choice for celebrating the 2012 Summer Olympics.

Around the World in 40 Dishes

Highlighting the origin of dishes on your menu is a great way to get your restaurant or bar in the Olympics spirit. Consider showcasing a dish from another country each night of the week, giving guests a few quick facts about the nation’s athletes or Olympic heritage. Alternatively, set up an Around the World in 40 Dishes buffet featuring food from several different countries. Creating an American-themed specials menu is also a great way to honor Team USA.

Titans of Trivia

Trivia is already a customer favorite, so tying this popular pastime into the Summer Olympic Games is a no-brainer. Sites such as Olympic.org and TeamUSA.org are good sources of content for trivia questions. Also, check out recent posts by the Huffington Post and the Chicago Tribune for other little-known Olympics facts.

Sip and Salute

Creating drinks to salute athletes and Olympic teams is an easy and festive way to commemorate the 2012 Games. Follow the tradition of Arnold Palmer and mix up a few different beverages for your guests to enjoy. When naming the drinks, be sure to come up with something quirky or clever – the names of your cocktails can be just as important as the ingredients in them.

No matter how you decide to celebrate the Olympics at your restaurant or bar, here are a few general things to consider. First, think about extending your hours of operation from July 27 through August 12. London is in the Greenwich Mean Time Zone, five hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time in the U.S.  Some early morning events in London will be televised as late as 3 or 4 a.m. Second, ensure that everyone in your restaurant or bar can watch the games if they choose to do so. Bring in extra TVs if needed to make sure that all customers have a clear view of the games while they dine. Most importantly, have fun and revel in the excitement with your guests.