My sister, Alyssa, and I have been fundraising recently for the Susan G. Komen 3-Day Walk for a cure that we have coming up in November. We’ve tried a million things to raise the funds, but one really cool idea that my sister came up with was hosting a Beer Olympics. I had seen Beer Olympics scenes in movies, but had never been to one before or honestly, even thought they happened in real life, so when she told me about it, I was so excited! She spent several months planning and in the end, everyone had so much fun and she ended up raising $500+ for the cause!
Because we had so much fun, I figured I would share it with you guys! That way if you have a cause that you need some creative ways to fundraise for, if you want to throw an awesome get-to-know-each-other event for your wedding party or if you just want to get together a big group of friends for a day of fun, this guide can help you get started! With that being said… here’s how to throw a successful beer olympics.
First, you have to figure out a few variables and set the foundation for your event.
Things to Decide
- How many people to have on each team
- How much each team will need to pay to participate
- If participants pay individually or per team
- Whether to provide beer (included in the participation cost) or if your event will be BYOB
- How you will assign a country to each team
- Which games you’ll play and how many
- Where you will host your event
To give you an idea of how she set it up, she allowed each team to have four members. You signed up as a team to keep things organized and you could choose your participation fee based on whether or not you wanted your package to include beer. Some people chose to bring their own, while others just purchased the full package. [ADD FEE STRUCTURE HERE]
On the Google doc application form, Alyssa included a section to give your top choices for your team country and decided from there. Some beer olympic how-to articles suggest that the host/hostess is team USA, but Alyssa chose to stay sober and referee during the event and we both highly suggest this if you’re planning on throwing one!
We played four “olympic” games and finished off the day with a relay race. That doesn’t sound like much I know, but it took the full day and most participants had more than enough to drink in this timeframe haha, so I don’t think you need much more. The games we played were Beer Pong. Survivor Flip Cup, Dizzy Bat and Cornhole.
The event was held in a friend’s back yard that was pretty flat and had a lot of open space. This made it easy to set up all of the events and have plenty of room for everyone to enjoy.
Once the foundation is set, you’ll need to spend the time leading up to the event planning out the details. Here’s the to-do list she used.
- Collect information from teams (names of team members, team captain and contact information, preferences for team country, type of beer preferred, questions/concerns, etc.)
- Make final decisions on which games you want to play
- Make a list of things you’ll need and gather them all before the event. Here’s our shopping list to help you get started!
- Tables (Ask around – most times friends will have a couple you can borrow)
- Pong Balls
- Medals (some cheap ones from the dollar store will do!)
- A banner for people to take photos in front of (ours was a painted sheet)
- A tailgating tent if it will be super sunny or is really hot outside
- LOTS of water (stress drinking water to participants all day long!)
- LOTS of solo cups (we recommend getting different colors for the different teams if possible – it just makes things easier)
- An American flag – because we live in the good ole USA! 🙂
- Music – see if you can borrow a speaker from a friend and have your most musically-inclined friend put together a playlist… that or just use Pandora or Spotify to make your life easier.
- A score board (white board) and markers (you can find these cheap at Walmart or the dollar store as well)
- If you’re going to referee, a referee shirt, whistle and visor – because you’re too legit to quit, right?!
- A snapchat filter (for one, this is just so much fun, but for two, it helped generate even more buzz about our fundraising efforts!)
- Optional: Rewards for the first, second and third place teams (she gave out gift cards)
- Plan your opening and closing ceremonies (we had a moment of silence for those who have lost their lives to breast cancer, as well as the national anthem – the closing ceremony consisted of everyone getting their medals, rewards and trying to grab Ubers home! lol)
- Decide how the sequence of events will go on the day of the event (which games will occur simultaneously) and how each game will be set up
- Organize brackets for events
Here’s how the games we played were set up. You can always tweak these to fit your “house rules” or what works best for your group.
At our event, we set up the beer pong as pool play where rankings were based off of the first round and from there the bracket was decided based on who was the top seed in each match-up. Pool play was six cups, while bracket play was 10 cups. We threw out things such as redemption to keep the games moving along, but allowed it in the final throwdown between the top two teams!
Cornhole was set up very similarly, starting with pool play and then moving to brackets. Two members from each team played each other with normal rules to see who could get to 21 points first.
At our event, we had six teams, so dizzy bat was played with three teams at a time. This will vary depending on how many teams you have participate. Once the first round was completed, the first place team from each round went up against each other and the same went for the second and third place teams, until we ended up with three winners who competed against each other for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place.
Survivor Flip Cup
Survivor Flip Cup was also set up as pool and bracket play. We stuck to pretty normal rules here. The biggest deviation from normal flip cup is that each round, the winning team can select a member of the losing team to sit out making it increasingly hard for the losing team to win overall. Not going to lie… this game got the best of me, but it was really fun!
The relay race rounded up our day of events and all teams went against each other. It was a super fun way to end the day!
Overall, we all had such a good time and were excited to raise money for the fight against breast cancer. Have you ever participated in a beer olympics? If so, what were your favorite parts?
C’est la vie,