Going for the GoldAugust 1, 2012 By: Alissa Ponchione
The Summer Olympics come around once every four years, and when each one inches closer, so does unbridled excitement. The Anthem, a sports bar in Chicago, is capitalizing on its sports theme and taking advantage of the games.
Beginning last Monday, The Anthem is hosting an Olympic-themed trivia promotion, which will last until August 6. “It’s centralized around the Olympics and pop culture,” says Heather Hogden, marketing and events manager, about the promotion. She also notes that you don’t have to be an Olympic savant to get questions right. “It’s going to be fun and light-hearted," she says.
The team at The Anthem has been working on the promotion for the last two months. “We always try to be a little different from everyone else and think outside the box. We looked into doing our own bar Olympics, but it seemed like all of those ideas have been done so many times,” explains Hogden.
Being creative coupled with the “lack of [regular scheduled] sports programming” that goes on when the games take over, motivated the team at The Anthem to create a revenue-generating night. “We thought, what can we do in the early part of a weekday night? Something people can do in groups?” That’s when the neighborhood bar team came up with the Olympic-themed trivia.
There were multiple reasons why the bar decided to move forward with the promotion. “It’s a way to add to what [sports theme] we’ve already built, she explained, and thought it was important to be involved.” Anthem wanted to showcase the patriotic side of the Olympics. Hogden saw how popular European soccer was at the bar and “how patriotic everyone was, and it inspired us,” she said. “The American culture isn’t super into the patriotic side [of the Olympics] when it comes to representing a county; we don’t get into it as much as other countries, so that was another inspiration,” to highlight the patriotism of the games.
For the promotion the bar will be decorated with Olympic flags, a fake Olympic torch and winners will receive replica Olympic medals, all enhancing the celebration. Along with trivia, the “more patriotic beers will be on special,” said Hogden. The bar will also serve its famous Quenchers, vodka mixed with Powerade, in the Anthem Keeper Cup for $5; the beer specials include Olympia, Budweiser, PBR and High Life for $4 or buckets for $15.
For Hogden, the Olympics may be short lived, but she’s hoping that trivia night will expand beyond the games. Hogden says that trivia is a refreshing way to bring in new guests. And starting with the Olympics will give the night the momentum it needs to continue throughout the summer, turning it into a regular Tuesday night event and switching the theme up from there.
“It’s all about bringing new people into experience The Anthem and create brand loyalty.” Besides, Hogden continues, “sports are America’s pastime, and they’re always on … and trivia night is a light-hearted way to add to them.”