Brussels Bar & Restaurant will hold Beijing’s first ever “Beers for Books” event on September 9 with twelve hours of themed movies and music, food and drink. The idea is simple: fill your keg hole with beer and, in turn, fill an empty room with books.
“Beers for Books” is a popular event throughout the United States to raise funds for Room to Read. In China, the charity of choice is The Library Project, which provides libraries, complete with books, furniture and teacher training, in needy areas of the country.
I first read about Beer for Books early this year, saw no one had done such an event in Beijing, already knew of the good deeds done by Tom Stader and The Library Project staff, and hoped that maybe we could get something going in Beijing. I mean, there is no shortage of people who like beer, and I know several who like books.
It turns out co-owners Kenn Bermel and Jessie Wang at Brussels Bar and Restaurant are up for it. Here is the plan for Beer for Books Beijing, which will run from noon to midnight on September 9:
- A range of themed foods, from La Chouffe-battered fish and chips to Guinness-infused Flemish stew. There will also be a children’s menu until 7 PM.
- A full slate of book- and beer-themed videos on the second floor. Will it include Beerfest? Yes, it will. How about Strange Brew? I happen to own a copy.
- Lucky draws, including for a huge bottle of premium Belgian beer.
- A magical mystery musical guest.
- Beer: A rmb15 donation will go to The Library Project for every Vedett White, Vedett Blonde, Duvel, La Chouffe and De Koninck sold — all beers from Duvel Moortgaat. The beers will also be sold at a discount.
- Voting: Each time you buy one of those beers, you get a coaster worth rmb15 to put in one of several glass jars as a “vote”. Each jar might represent a literary genre, or maybe a beer movie, we’re not sure yet. But it will be fun and it will allow patrons to see, real-time, how much money is being raised.
- And more, including a boat race or two and perhaps even a poem writing contest.
Representatives of The Library Project will be at Brussels to handle the donations. And along with the slate of videos, games and foods, the foosball and pool tables will still be available for those who like to enjoy sport with their suds. For more information, contact Kenn Bermel at beijingkenn (at) gmail.com. I’ll post more info here as it becomes available.