Restaurants raise funds for victims of tornado in Joplin

Saturday, May 28, 2011 | 11:29 p.m. CDT; updated 9:02 p.m. CDT, Tuesday, May 31, 2011
Bleu Restaurant and Wine Bar, D. Rowe’s and Harpo’s planned special events that will give their customers a chance to help the victims of the tornado in Joplin.

COLUMBIA — Restaurants in Columbia are contributing to the many donations being sent to Joplin.

Starting Friday, Bleu Restaurant and Wine Bar, D. Rowe’s and Harpo’s held special events that will give their customers a chance to help.

On Friday, Bleu served a new menu during their lunch and dinner hours. Once before, Bleu served a Haitian inspired menu to encourage donations for the relief of Haiti.

“We did almost $11,000 in fundraising,” said Brandon Vair, bartender at Bleu. “It is a small contribution, but I think any little bit helps.”

Proceeds and tips from customers were given to the American Red Cross tornado relief efforts. They are located downtown on the corner of Eighth and Cherry streets.

D. Rowe’s accepted donations of hygiene items and bottled water Saturday in the restaurant’s parking lot behind Walgreen’s at the corner of Forum and Nifong boulevards. Restaurant employees will also be collecting hygiene items at the restaurant throughout the week.

On Wednesday, Harpo’s will host the Joplin Relief Fundraiser, which will feature live music from John Gurney and Andy Laudner and auctions of sports memorabilia. A percentage of the proceeds will be donated to the Red Cross for Joplin relief.

“It’s a way for everybody to have a good time,” said Jared Ater, a manager at Harpo’s. “Also doing it for a good cause and know that that money that they are donating and that they are spending is also going for a good cause as well.”

The music will start at 7 p.m. and continue until 10 p.m. The bar is located on the corner of Cherry and Tenth streets.

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