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Working as a celebrity bartender, City of Alachua Mayor Gib Coerper served up drinks at The Great Outdoors Restaurant’s Pink and Purple fundraiser Thursday evening.

HIGH SPRINGS – The Great Outdoors Restaurant Spring House Tavern and Outside Patio Bar hosted the first Pink and Purple fundraiser on Thursday, April 18, 2013. The event, which garnered nearly $3,000 for Relay for Life, was a great success, according to event organizers.

Celebrity bartenders on hand for the event included High Springs City Manager Ed Booth and Mayor Sue Weller, Alachua Mayor Gib Coerper, High Springs Chamber President Sandra Webb and President of the Yellow Bellied Sliders Bicycle Group of High Springs, Tom Hewlett.

Great Outdoors General Manager Carol Ann Doherty said the restaurant is donating 100 percent of the profits from the patio that night, a total of $2,869. “We started working with the Relay for Life Sponsorship team six weeks ago for the first of what we hope will be an annual collaborative event,” explained Doherty.

Owners Bob and Karen Bentz of West Palm Beach were very much in support of this effort according to Doherty, who also said out-of-pocket expenses for the restaurant were $5,400. “We paid for Tom & Adam, the entertainment for the evening, pink and purple napkins and balloons, staff, and provided the facility…everything it took to generate that amount of cash for profit,” she explained.

“It was a great collaborative effort,” said Doherty. “We were extremely excited about this event and very pleased the entire community came out in support of it. Our staff dressed in pink and purple and we all enjoyed every minute of it,” she said.

In addition to the money raised through more than 150 dinners and many more drinks, “the group earned another $358 through tips received by the celebrity bartenders, chance drawing tickets and the donation jar,” added event chair Sharon Kantor.

Kantor said that 14 groups have raised more than $12,000 for Relay for Life prior to the Pink and Purple event fundraiser. “We hope to double, if not triple that amount by the end of the Relay for Life event.”

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